Neely Steinberg loves men. Below, she shares a list of qualities, actions, and moments that remind her why.
Recently I wrote an article for the Good Men Project about hook-up culture, in which Hugo Schwyzer and I disagreed about the effects of casual sex. It gained the attention of Susan Walsh, author of the blog Hooking Up Smart. She wrote a post about our contrasting opinions, and offered her thoughts as well. The comments section within her post grew quickly—as of today there are more than 1,000 responses. Reading through the feedback, I was struck by the disillusionment and disappointment among men with the content on the Good Men Project, a site whose very purpose is to bring issues of modern manhood to the forefront of national discussion.
One commenter on Walsh’s site wrote: “…the good men project inevitably implies that men are not basically good by default, but work has to be put in to making them that way, or in finding the exceptions who are.” Others agreed with the general sentiment that many of this site’s articles unfairly start with the basic premise that something is inherently wrong with men and men thus need to be socially engineered to become, well, good.
It was with this unfortunate perception in mind that I set out to create a list of things that I love about men. Pure and simple. No talk of feminism or slut shaming or gender depictions in the media or rape culture here—just an unadulterated tribute to men, a panegyric, a compilation of reasons to be thankful for the male species, in ways both big and small, superficial and profound, personal and professional. They are in no particular order, the creation of my stream of consciousness. I could have gone on for hours, but it’s my hope that you, Good Men Project readers, will add to this list, so that anyone who visits this site will see how much we appreciate and adore men and what they bring to our lives and the world. We can return to the heavier debates tomorrow. For now, let’s have a Kumbaya moment. Leave your reasons in the comments section, and let’s see what we can come up with together!
Here are mine:
- I love when a man puts his hand on the small of a woman’s lower back, as if to say, I’m here for you if you need me.
- I love when a man wipes away a woman’s tears or pushes a strand of her hair away from her face, tucking it lovingly behind her ear.
- I love how millions of men go off to work every day and then come home after long work hours to share in the housework and child-rearing.
- I love how men contribute hundreds of millions of dollars every year to charities in the U.S. and across the globe.
- I love when a man makes us feel like women.
- I love when a man waits patiently inside an elevator to let all the ladies out first.
- I love how a man who would go to the ends of the earth for a woman he loves.
- I love how a man who will rub his partner’s feet at the end of the day even though he’s had a hard day at work too.
- I love the men who so bravely and willingly risk their lives in service to our country and to protect us all.
- I love being Little Spoon.
- I love the way a man looks into his child’s eyes and loses himself.
- I love that men’s various discoveries throughout the ages (scientific, mathematical, medical, etc.) have made our lives easier.
- I love the way a man runs into the ocean like maniac.
- I love the shape of a man’s big, strong back when he leans over to pick up something heavy.
- I love when a man knows what to say and what not to say to make a woman happy.
- I love when a man tells a woman how lucky he is to have found her.
- I love the way a man takes a woman’s delicate hand, brings it to his lips, and kisses it gently, showing how much he adores her.
- I love when a man chows down on his food, as if only a 9.0 Richter Scale earthquake could shake him from his glorious feast.
- I love how a man in love thinks of his partner’s sexual pleasure before his own.
- I love a man who will do the jobs that most of us would never consider. Sewer inspector, anyone?
What do you have to add?