Feminism Today: Toxic Masculinity

Feminism Today: Toxic Masculinity

Grace Ruchala, Writer

Something people don’t really think about is how the patriarchy affects men. But it does. Men are attacked by themselves and the men before them everyday. They are told to be tough, rough, and to never show emotion of any kind or they will be alienated and called weak. Feminism wants to change this. We recognize men as human beings with thoughts and emotions, who are not driven by their hormones and deserve respect.

Another way toxic masculinity affects men is by telling them what they can and cannot be and do. The patriarchy has sexualized certain jobs like nursing and retail jobs that if men want to venture into these fields, they get mocked for it. This also happens with single fathers. Men can’t stay at home and clean or take care of their kids without being made fun of or being seen as weak. Single fathers do exist, and they work just hard and are just as devoted to their kids as single mothers, and sometimes society forgets that fact.

Jackson Katz’s quote sums up a common expression and why toxic masculinity affects men from an early age, “The argument that ‘boys will be boys’ actually carries an anti- male implication that we should expect bad behavior from boys and men. The assumption is that they are somehow not capable of acting appropriately, or treating girls and women with respect”. This phrase is often used with many others to excuse boys from wrongdoing or to blame it on their gender instead of realizing that they can do better and should.

Many things that are only seen as women’s problems actually happen to men too, sometimes more often but it is never heard about because of the shields the patriarchy puts up about these issues, “I’m concerned about boys with mental illnesses and eating disorders and abusive relationships and sexual assault survivor stories and self-harming tendencies who never get the attention or care or help they need because of all those things “don’t happen to men” or because “all men are horrible monsters” and I just wanna say if you’re a boy and you’re struggling with something hard, your gender doesn’t diminish or dismiss your struggles or make them any less significant or difficult and I love you and i’m here for you” – they-call-her-angel.

Feminism did not give men these problems.

Other men did.

Below is a link to a huffington post article about toxic masculinity and 48 things men hear in a lifetime that are bad for everybody