Gender Issues: Big Boys Don’t Cry Essay, Research Paper
Big Girls Boys Don t Cry Taking A StandEssay Number One Jaime Kozlowski187-62-0771 Freshman English: ENC 1101T/TR 8:00 – 9:15CPR 301-FInstructor: Tanja Diederich22 September 1998 Strong, fearless, and tough describe the 90 s idea of a perfect or stereotypical man. The roles a man holds in society today include: the protector and the shoulder to cry on. For a male to show emotion labels him as weak and sometimes homosexual. In the 90 s, advertisements use extremely muscular men to appeal to their audience. Most of these men look tough or mean and never display any sign of a weak emotion. Men have accepted this image as their role model and ideal image. Realistically, the display of emotion shows a sense of equilibrium in the body, self-esteem, security, and it separates the men from the boys. Typically, American society depicts women as weak, not capable, and frail. Since showing emotion exemplifies weakness, crying and whining are acceptable for women. How often do male actors cry in a movie or in a Television show? Directors do not hesitate to have an actress cry because it is considered normal for females. This stereotype expresses to the world that crying is feminine. Guys who have insecurities attempt to refrain from showing emotion and try to conform to the stereotype to avoid criticism as much as possible. Obviously a secure man with self-confidence would not feel the need to hide his true self or emotions. Especially since the human body benefits from crying and the expression of emotion. Medical studies have shown that most people feel more refreshed and happier after a good cry. In Chinese medicine exclusively, the balance of Yin and Yang or feminine and masculine is necessary to achieve health and inner harmony. Yin represents the weak, material, and internal (feminine qualities) while Yang represents the hot, exciting, vigorous, functional, and external (masculine qualities). Chinese people believe that equilibrium of these two is necessary in order to achieve complete inner harmony. It is acceptable for a Chinese male to cry and express emotion. Men from the Chinese culture must possess more wisdom than American men do because of the fact that the Chinese posses this equilibrium. Not only do Chinese men have masculine qualities but they also contain an equal amount of feminine qualities. Maturity, wisdom, and honor coincide with the equilibrium of Yin and Yang and obviously these are desirable qualities. Why do young American men view crying and displaying emotion as weak and unstable? That is what American culture has told them. Many quotes can be found in movies, TV shows, etc to support this point. The phrase be a man frequently associates itself with men who begin to break down or show emotion. While boys begin to make their trip to manhood the last thing they desire is their boyhood to stay with them. They want to be men even though these boys have no clue about manhood.
As boys mature into men they receive a new set of rules and identity. Many men cry when they witness their wife delivering their baby. Just observing the miracle of birth brings these grown men to tears. As their children grow, many more life experiences cause men to cry and show emotion. Their kids first day of school, first significant other, the day they get their license, and eventually the grown child s venture to college. At this point in life, men evolve into mature beings and then they can find the security and strength within to cry and show emotion. They no longer care if they fit the stereotype of a typical man. Perhaps this wisdom, acquired by age and experience, separates the men from the boys. Young American men sometimes find the need to date many women at once and thus portraying the mack stereotype. Guys, typically those under the age of 30, find dating many women as a self-esteem booster. These men believe that the more women they date the more desirable they seem. Insecurity and low self-esteem might cause men to do this. The need for compassion, attention, and constant praise shows weakness and self-consciousness. Men believe that dating many women portrays them as manly or stud-like but this really shows instability. I ask this; if men who date many women show insecurity why do men see crying, a display of weakness and insecurity, as unmanly? The perception of strong and weak; masculine and feminine; self-confident and insecure has proven to show inaccuracy. Advertisements, television, models, and endless other self-esteem ruining entities, continue to corrupt America and our values. What happened to individuality? Why do we need constant reassurance that what we do is acceptable? It seems as if that only the truly strong can possess true individuality, true strength, true self-confidence, and true security in the critical world we live in today. Therefore, if crying and showing emotion have developed into weak actions and deemed unacceptable by American culture then expressing emotion and crying shows strength. The irony is baffling. Typical qualities that supposedly show strength display insecurity and traditionally weak qualities ultimately exemplify wisdom, maturity, and strength. Therefore, real men do cry.