Over the years, men have been taught, trained and conditioned by the society to be brute, strong and built to be unbreakable. A man have been told to tuck in his fears, tears and emotions because those are traits of weakness which should never be found in his demeanor. The flinching society tags a man with emotions as a “sissy” possessing traits of a woman and therefore should not be addressed as a real man.
A man is seen as the head and leader and as such should be strong willed at all times regardless of what is being thrown at him. A man is not allowed to show his emotions because society believes only women possess such and are permitted to express those ostensibly depressing, horrid and deeply hurting emotions even in public. So, society says it’s okay for a woman to hurt and cry even in public without any fear of degradation, but literally unacceptable for a man. So he begins to use outlets like alcohol, drugs and sex as safe spaces.
So, while the women get the needed emotional attention they deserve when they are hurting from the men and society in general. The men on the other hand, get backlashed by both men and women in society. Little wonder you hear people especially in these parts say,
“Are you not a man?”
They go on to question his masculinity because tears or hurting is synonymous to femininity. The society has ended up raising men to be stoic in their feelings.
Men have become emotionally numb and worse off, they don’t wanna talk about it because that would only be showing weakness. A menace that has desecrated our society for decades and that needs to change. We are all results of our background. We are all realities of our past. While we may not be able to change how we were raised, we can change how we raise the next generation.
The suicide rate among young people between ages 18-25 has skyrocketed by 60% since 2000. In 2017, studies done by the CDCP in the U.S showed that 47,000 people committed suicide and men made up 70% of that number. Psychology Today, states that suicide among young adult male is four times greater than among females. The inherent pressure imbued in a young man to succeed and hold the fort for his entire lifetime is gigantic and gruesome when he doesn’t attain the expected results placed on him by society. A feel of ineptitude hovers and he’s left in this hollow, wondering if society even recognizes his existence. As a result, he becomes distraught, depressed and a lot of times, feel undeserving of the pedestal, “A Man.”
This ideal has trickled down generations passed to every man especially among Black men. He’s taught to shove his emotions and keep bringing in that cheque. Now while we may not be able to completely exterminate the ingrained symbol of strength that men represent, we can create a space where it’s okay if they don’t feel that way every day. Where we understand that mental health is mental strength and thus, productivity. So to every young man out there, take time to embrace your hurt, find a safe place to share and get back on your purpose because a break never hurt anyone. Hang on to those dreams, it gets better. This is Danny world.