Dear society, The expectations and standards you put on us can have a large influence over the choices we make. We see this everyday on social media platforms, in books, news, movies and even in our education system. Although we have improved from our position 50 years ago, there is still an invisible expectation of men to be strong, bold and fearless.
I don’t identify as a male, but I can emphasise with the dilemmas they go through. Women have been held against the weak and submissive standard for millennials and only now, are we beginning to break the norms. I can imagine what it must be like for young males to hear the phrase “Boys don’t cry”. The fact that we continuously pressure men into hiding their feelings and silencing their emotions perplexes me. Each individual should have the right and power to express their inner thoughts and feelings without being laughed at for doing so.
I am fortunate enough to be at a school full of open minded and supportive peers which leads me to believe that the old traditions and norms are breaking. Maybe what keeps this cycle of pressure on men comes from family tradition and values. I see it myself within my own family. The men are expected to be tall, physically fit, and to provide for the family. Every time we have a family gathering, I see the effect it has on my cousins that don’t fit this standard and honestly, there is no need to. Each individual is amazing as they are and although family is important, it should not be the only factor in your happiness and life.
A world where each individual isn’t tied down by invisible chains made by an old society is a world worth fighting for. As a woman, sister, and friend to my male peers, I understand the pressure that society often emits. Because of this I will continuously empower and advocate for men and I hope you do so as well.