Jul 05, 2010 @ 12:01 pm | By TheFeministGriote | 1 Comment
“Men who are afraid to feel must keep women around to do their feeling for them while dismissing us for the same supposedly ‘inferior’ capacity to feel deeply. But in this way also, men deny themselves their own essential humanity, becoming trapped in dependency and fear”-Audre Lorde from the essay “Man Child”
The issue of domestic violence has been on the lips and minds of everyone due to Chris Brown making a supposed “comeback” and also because of Kat Stacks. Kat Stacks is the infamous groupie who blogs about her sexual exploits with rappers and athletes she has been assaulted twice and both times the attacks were captured on video and both videos have gown viral. There seems to be a paradigm shift on how we as a society respond to domestic violence. In the case of Rihanna and Chris Brown society felt bad for Rihanna because she is beautiful and “talented”, but since Kat Stacks is not Mother Teresa we do not care about her being victimized. I wrote a blog about how we should forgive Chris Brown (see earlier post). Since posting that blog I have been engaged in various conversations about the incident and feel compelled to attack the issue from another vantage point.
Men are as much a victim of patriarchy as women are and often times, they hurt more. As women we have been conditioned to be in touch with our feelings and too always express our feelings. For the most part when we see little girls crying we encourage them to purge and we let them cry. But when we see little boys crying both men and women are inclined to make him stop and make him man up we say stuff like, “crying is for girls” or “stop acting like a girl”. Therefore from a tender age young men are being trained to suppress their feelings and to associate being open and honest about feelings as being weak or worse being a woman and God forbid one acts like a woman. Now when that little boy grows up and is taught to dominate everyone around him, show no love and mercy, and above all never show weakness what type of man do you think he grows up to be? This young man grows up to be emotionally inept.
As human beings we hurt and we feel hurt. One half of society (women) is being taught to indulge and manage their hurts while the other half (men) is taught to ignore hurt, therefore with this type of unbalanced conditioning how can one not expect an explosive and detrimental outcome when these two human beings cross paths? Every time we as a society make men feel guilty being about being in touch with their emotions and we do not teach men how to deal with hurt in a healthy way we are fashioning and molding a potential man who will violate not only women, but other men in the society as well. Every 15 seconds a woman is battered and every 6 minutes a woman is raped in North America. This is according to the Women’s International Amnesty website. This means we all know someone who has or who is currently a victim of domestic violence. As a thinking modern society we need to look at ourselves and see how we contribute to this alarming statistic.
Patriarchy affects us all. Men need to be conditioned when they are young to deal with emotions in an honest and transparent way, the same way we we allow our little girls that courtesy. Women cannot be responsible for feeling for every one and then be condemned for the very act. Violence against women should never be condoned or made light of. Both the victim and the victimizer need help and need healing. The law will deal with those men who refuse to change, but for our young male children there is hope that we can raise them in a way that they learn to respect women and learn that emotions are vital to life and learning how to deal with them makes you strong not weak!
Categories: Mind Over Chatter