You’ve been told, in actions and in words, what it takes to be a man. Now it’s time for the truth.
I write a blog that empowers, supports, and inspires women all the way along their journey to true love, and I’ve helped thousands of women in the process. But the more I write, the more stories I hear, the more women I work with, I’m discovering there’s really something more going on here.
What I’m realizing is that I’m also writing about men.
About the men we love.
About the men we can’t stop believing in, even when they’ve stopped believing in themselves.
About the good men we know are in there, longing to be loved so deeply even though they don’t always realize it.
About the men we never knew. The men we may never know. But still so very much the men we want to know.
The Little Boy Inside
It’s the little boy buried deep down inside that I’m talking about here. The little boy who never knew that he could express himself emotionally. The one who never felt safe to do so.
I often ask the women who’ve found their place in the internet community we’ve created together, to find the little girl inside them that they never knew; the one who doesn’t know any limits. I ask them to find her and get to know her and find out what she wants to do with her life. It’s how they find themselves.
I’m here to ask the same of you.
I want you to find that little boy inside you that you never had the chance to fully know. The little boy who had such big dreams. The one who probably still has those big dreams, but is afraid to admit it, maybe even to himself.
Big dreams that didn’t involve becoming a tough, hard shell of a man and discarding his emotional, sensitive side right along with his favorite teddy bear, simply because he didn’t know he was allowed to bring it with him.
The little boy who always had to be something someone else wanted him to be in order to be loved.
The little boy who couldn’t cry. Who couldn’t express himself. Who couldn’t show his emotions. Who couldn’t have a booboo. Who couldn’t hurt. Who was told in too many ways, “You’re fine—shake it off”.
Even when he wasn’t.
The little boy whose life was decided for him based on what could earn him a good living and get him a good wife. Instead of feeling free to choose to live the life that would make him truly happy.
Playing the Part
It seemed like he played the part very well, except he didn’t.
Not on the inside. Not where it really counts.
That’s why he’s still the little boy inside. That’s why the relationships we have are never about the two adults we think they are, the ones we see in front of us. They’re really about those hurt little boys and girls, the ones that live deep down inside of us.
We’re just learning to recognize their need to come out and express themselves. And feel. And hurt. And cry. And finally be allowed to express every single emotion they feel.
And hopefully get a chance to play. And feel loved.
It’s The Only Way.
As women, what we want more than anything else is a sensitive, caring, feeling, emotionally stable and strong man. We want a man who’s in touch with his feelings; someone capable of a strong emotional commitment.
The problem is that most of you have always been told to not be this way.
It’s the paradox of the mixed messages you’ve received for so long. The more sensitive, caring, emotionally available men I work with — because it’s not only women, but it’s these men who have found their way to me as well — the more hopeful I am that there’s a tide that’s turning as more and more of us are asking the question of what it truly means to be a man.
And the more open we’re becoming to looking beyond the pat answers that never do justice to the real question being asked, the more we’re finding the voices within us to say what’s never been said before.
Be your true full self.
Be every bit of that emotional, sensitive, feeling, caring, beautiful human being you are.
That’s every bit of what it means to be a man.
It’s not just you who’s gotten so lost along the way; it’s every single one of us who thought we knew so much better than you.
We didn’t. But you do.