I recall my Industrial Visit trip to Bangalore-Mysore sponsored by my College 3 years ago, it wasn’t particularly a pleasant trip in any sense because management was disorganized and disdainful. The accommodation was far from perfect, let alone be remotely decent.
During my train journey back to Bombay, I was experiencing emptiness (I did almost fall into depression phase) and couldn’t hold back, felt heaviness in my chest, shortness of breath. I had to vent out what bothered me within. Tears eventually started running down my cheeks, After continuous insistence from my friends, I had to wake up and sit and have something to eat. They were sympathetic and at the same time no less than Socrates.
Words of wisdom starting pouring from all the corners and it got concluded with a line so cringe-worthy. One of them said ”Ladki ho kya jo itna ro raha hai’? (Are you a girl to cry so much?)
The person wasn’t being mean, it was clearly said with a good intention and out of concern for me. It’s not that I haven’t ever come across this statement in my life, In fact I did, many a times and truth to be told, was irksome to say the least.
This was a sign of an unhealthy living, I was forced to think now, Aren’t we mature enough to understand feelings? How long will boys be suppressed from expressing their emotions?
Why do we make a big deal out of boys shedding tears? I am still wondering where did this concept originated from? A girl crying is rewarded and deemed acceptable but a boy doing the same is punished or ridiculed. Isn’t it a classic example of sexism? A boy’s masculinity is questioned when he is caught showing signs of being vulnerable with teary eyes and puffy face.
The notion that crying is feminine and sign of weakness stem from gender stereotype. Young boys are brought up to be a stronger person, expected to play the role of protector and trained to handle high intensity of stress physically and mentally because’ they are men’.
What one doesn’t realize is that Bottling up feelings for years leading to extreme health condition stands high. Besides falling prey to cardiovascular and neurological disorders, the person (esp. male) forgets sensibility, essence of warm touch, expression of Love and fails to recognize emotions anymore in long run. As a drawback, he tend to attain a threatening personality that can endanger people around them, if not medically consulted.
With my personal experience, problem surfaces from the Grassroot level.
When a school going boys are seen showing signs of emotional weakness, sad or physically injures themselves, He is discouraged from crying and teachers and peer make a fuss about it, while on the contrary, he should be allowed and made feel better about venting out. It’s a social faux pas
When a boy is allowed to channelize his emotions in a proper, undisrupted pattern with lot of care, while growing up, he masters it. Agitation seems to be in control and mood-swings are hardly visible and develops good judgement, excellent social and decision making skills.
This can be possible with a healthy discussion within an open-minded, sensitive family atmosphere respecting male sentiments, after all our feelings are validation of our inner world. Parents must get rid of certain misconception of masculinity from their mind. In my words, Being a man shouldn’t be limited to only to develop muscles, flaunt abs or exhibit machoism. Masculinity also means to be gentle, nurturing, respecting the countervision with dignity, run behind kids, be creative. He needn’t to be a Superman or a Batman to protect their loved ones, Sometimes walking away from a possible threatening situation can be a wise decision taken by a man.
Men are humans and do have flaws too !! Let’s not burden them to be solo kickass hero all the time. Like women, they do have proper functioning tear ducts and a heart to work on. Be it a happy or sad moments, Allow them to welcome tears 🙂