I hear so much about “boys will be boys”, but what does that really mean? Are we just giving them a wide scope to be able to get away with behaviour we deem unacceptable for girls or young women, or is it that we do not want to allow them to be gentle and tender because then we would have to stop and see how far we have fallen from our own lived gentleness and tenderness?
And so instead, are we choosing to turn a blind eye when their behaviour becomes wayward because we do not quite know how to respond to it due to our own level of shutting down and hardness?
Whatever the reason, I feel this “boys will be boys” label needs to be addressed and boys need to be seen for who they truly are, and as women we know exactly how that is – and men, so do you, because we can all feel it.
We do not need to be told how boys or men should be, that they are different to girls or women, that they are tough, hard and strong, and to be completely honest, it is not ok that we as a society continue to instil these ideals, beliefs and impositions onto them, because I know from personal experience that men are extremely gentle, tender and loving and love nothing more than to be held by another and met for who they truly are.
Yes, men have a body that is physically designed to be able to lift or carry more than women, but their inner quality does not differ to ours. They are naturally gentle, tender and sensitive and if you observe them, how they are as young boys, it is not until they begin to head into their pre-school years that their gentleness begins to be replaced by a hardness, a shutting down so to speak, of their natural expression, as if they think they have a particular image they have to live up to – that they should be playing with trucks and cars and not dolls, or heaven forbid, wear a dress in public or want to have their nails painted.
I know a lot of fathers cringe at the very idea of their son wearing a dress or wanting to learn ballet – some because they are afraid of their son being teased by other boys, or because the fathers are worried about what other people will think of them; that if their son does girly things or behaves ‘girly,’ it is a direct reflection of how they are in their own masculinity. This, for some, is a huge challenge.
We have two sons, one aged 3 and one aged 20 months, both of whom are extremely different in their expression. Our oldest loves to wear dresses, have his nails painted, tie his hair up, play with dolls and play ballet. His favourite colour is indigo and he absolutely adores being held and is extremely affectionate and quiet in his mannerisms. He is loving, gentle, tender, affectionate, caring, vulnerable and fragile, no less so than our 8 year old daughter, who, mind you, has a favourite colour of blue.
Our youngest son has the same qualities as his brother. He is loving, caring, nurturing, tender and gentle. His way of expressing this is, however, very different. He has from the very beginning loved trucks and cars, preferring to play with hammers, work tools and he is more vocal in his expression, but this does not make him harder than his brother because he too loves to be held and to hold another.
Both boys are completely opposite in the way they express their inner qualities but those inner qualities are the same, the same as their father, who has over the years dropped the guards and protections he built up over his childhood to now live the absolutely beautiful tender gentle man he is today, forever deepening his love for himself and living that for his sons to feel and see.
Seeing the love our boys are, how they live and hold us in this, for me reflects how I am with myself, and I can see how, as my partner deepens and develops his love for himself, it exposes where I am not loving with myself. At times this can be challenging, because there is a level of comfort many of us do not want to let go of. And if men stay in their hardness and protection, then it does not challenge us to step out of our own protections and hardness we have created over the years.
I know that without the ongoing love and support from Serge Benhayon and Universal Medicine, I would not be able to support or nurture our boys to love in and from the absolute beauty they are, to see how each one needs to be supported differently to allow their natural expression to shine through.
I am constantly blessed by how gentle, tender and loving they are, and I can see how hard it has been for my husband to break down the barriers of protection he has built up around him over the years to hide his own gentleness and tenderness. It has been a long road for him, one that is not yet over and, like so many of us, we are only just beginning to understand what it is to truly live who we are naturally, without the impositions of society.
For many boys, the pressures, ideals and beliefs of how they should be become too much, so they succumb to how they think they should be. Meanwhile there is a trapped little boy within, just waiting to be met for who he truly is, and when he feels safe, and feels met, what you are met back with is absolutely glorious: the innocence of a man is truly beauty-full.
So why do we as a society continue to push and shove men into these boxes? Why do we paint a picture for them to live up to that is so far removed from who they naturally are? Why is it so important that they remain in and live from that hardness, instead of the natural gentleness and tenderness they are?
Both of our sons are encouraged and supported to express and live the gentleness, tenderness and vulnerability they are. They are supported and encouraged to live the men they naturally are, to not lose themselves and live up to the ideals and beliefs society has for so long pushed upon them.
They are allowed to, and encouraged to cry, and we stop and listen to what they have to say and what they are feeling – they are treated no different to our daughter, and no less.
I have been blessed to grow up with many boys in my life, both close to me and from afar, and they have been absolutely beautiful both inside and out… caring, loving and always there to support you when needed. However, even with this, over time they too have fallen into the trap of how you should act to be a man, and I know these boys have grown into men with the hurts of not truly being able to express what they are feeling without being labelled as a “wuss” or “ponce” or worse. But never have they lost that inner quality, for when you meet them from your own gentleness, you see that sparkle come back to life.
Men are naturally teddy bears and it is time we supported, nurtured and honoured the beauty they have within. To do that, we as women have to begin to live our own inner qualities of gentleness and tenderness, to allow ourselves to be vulnerable and fragile, to reflect an openness that supports and allows men to begin to live theirs.
Let all sons have the role models they need and deserve, and let’s not live in a way that keeps us shut down from those closest to us, or humanity.
Published with permission of my partner.
By Nicole Serafin, 44 yrs, Woman, wife, Mother, Hairdresser, Tintenbar NSW
It’s a boy! What is true gender equality?
Men – are we set up to fail?
Men and expression – echoes from behind the wall
Whenever we say someone WILL be something, are we not almost condemning them to that action, or at the very least excusing it. What if we resolved to see the best in people and no matter their behaviours rather than holding people to stereotypes and actions that are clearly not who they naturally are.
Women have a big impact on how boys are raised so the more we allow our fragility and preciousness the easier it will be to allow this is boys and men. In this way we as women have a responsibility to the men in our society.
Men in their tenderness will be a much needed change of love and harmony in our world. I am my own observer and incorporating tenderness into my body has lessoned my self-abuse, anger and sadness
” or is it that we do not want to allow them to be gentle and tender because then we would have to stop and see how far we have fallen from our own lived gentleness and tenderness? ”
This sounds more like the truth – “boys will be boys” is just a red herring, or a decoy so as to give an excuse so that the truth will not be looked at.
But now this writing brings the truth to the surface for those to see, thank you Nicole.
Men are naturally tender, sensitive and gentle and do love to be touched and held, ‘Yes, men have a body that is physically designed to be able to lift or carry more than women, but their inner quality does not differ to ours.’
This is a great point to make, and I can relate with this very much so in relation to when my boys were young, ‘Both boys are completely opposite in the way they express their inner qualities but those inner qualities are the same’.
When my partner met my male friends he was touched by their openess and how one of them went up and hugged him straight away. He said it reminded him of a time when he lived in another country and was very touched by this gesture and shared how he wished that this was our common way and that more men were this open.
yes, women hug each other so much more than men and yet I have watched how much men love that feeling of connection when it happens spontaneously.
Could one of the main problems with domestic violence be that our men growing up have not been allowed to be their tender, gentle and truly loving selves?
Boys love to dress up in dresses, paint their nails, push a pram with a doll in it, wear make-up and play with making food and tea. It is such a natural thing for them to do. I have two boys ages 7 and 9 and it has been a blessing to observe their interactions with the above clearly revealing to me that boys are no different to girls. As they get older they are becoming aware of what is cool and what isn’t and this is also interesting to observe when they are torn with what they want to do and what and how society expects them to be and live. It opens me up to becoming increasingly aware of the responsibility I have as a parent and a role model and live what is true for me to my children and to all children in my life.
Very young children – both boys and girls – have a sweetness and a tenderness. However at some point boys are taught to toughen up and ‘be a man’, implying it is not ok to cry and feel their hurts. When this attitude is replaced by accepting men are just as fragile and tender as women, society will change considerably. No more ‘macho’ men trying to hide their hurts.
It is time for these important conversations about how we socialise children away from their true essence because the effects of this on society is devastating. Boys and men who have been cut off from their sensitivity, gentleness and tenderness can suffer enormous pain and tension from living who they are not. The learned hardness, roughness and toughness is a breeding ground for being careless with their own or other people’s bodies. This all can result in domestic violence and other violence, drinking and drug use, and various other behaviours harmful to self and to others. We are not just harming boys and men by socialising them this way, but deeply harming all of society.
I love that there are some parents out by now, who understand the categorizing boys and girls get put in from a young age. They allow boys to play with dolls and wear dresses for example. I love that, it destroys these picture that don ´t allow true expression from either gender.
If we allowed both boys and girls and men and women to simply be themselves and to express, honour and live in accordance to our innate qualities, our world collectively would certainly be a much more harmonious and loving place to be.
So greatly shared Nicole. As many of the sayings that we circulate today, without consideration of what we are actually saying, ‘boys will be boys’ is another that does not represent or confirm the truth of who we are in essence, and in this case the true qualities of boys and men. The fact that we all as a society encourage boys to hide their sensitivity, mask their tenderness and hold back their loving feelings from a young age, so they are not deemed ‘weak’ or considered less accepted, is a crime that we are all responsible for taking part in. And it is in sayings such as this which are currently in circulation, that exposes the imposing conditioning that continues to pigeon-hole and hinder the well-being, true development and empowerment of our boys and young men today. As we all have had a part in creating this dishonouring idealism, we equally have part and a responsibility to turn this around by the way we are and the quality in which we meet the boys and men we are with.
This blog is so needed. Only a few men can actually really ” remember” how naturally tender and fragile they are. Society pushes it kind of out of them… I always have the focus when I meet men to remind them and show them how much I appreciate them being also connected to their femaleness and sensitivity. In my experience they blossom in my presence. Imagine all the women would give this feedback. Lets go !
That is a beautiful call to make and something we can all do – honour the men and boys we meet for who they truly are, and offer space for them to express this.
I work with pre-school children and what I can see every year is that the natural quality of each boy is pure gentleness, which is exactly the same to the natural quality of each girl. With 3 years old, all of them are very open, innocent and tender, no difference at all. When I relate to men, I like to remember that and connect with that child whithin me and them that remains untouched. This makes me feel closer to them without the barriers and differences that society has set up between us men and women, and communication becomes easier and more heartfelt. In fact, we are not so far as we are told to be…
Boys without a doubt are naturally tender so it takes a lot of work to toughen them up. The familiar sayings have a lot to answer for as ‘boys will be boys’ excuses unnatural aggressive behaviours and ‘boys don’t cry’ shutdown our boys ability to express their sensitivity.
Thank you Nicole. This is something all parents of boys could do to read! There needs to be changes made in how we raise our boys in particular, and that can only come from us as parents being aware of what we are doing to our children (boys in this case) by insisting they toughen up and not allowing them to connect to their natural tender way of being.
if men stay in their hardness and protection, then it does not challenge us to step out of our own protections and hardness we have created over the years. Yes, and the same for women, if we do not bring the divine qualities of sacredness and grace to men, they are then not supported and confirmed by us. We each know our true qualities deep within, but seem to find it hard to look at our hurts around our past choices as the man or woman.
I love this focus on someone’s inner qualities rather than their outward attributes (such as strength or appearance). It is that which shines through and remains constant from the day we are born all the way through to old age.
The more I open up to what this article offers the more remarkable, sweet, tender, precious and strong I find the men in my life… it is really inspiring.
Yes and that in turn allows women the opportunity to honour more of what they innately bring.
It is very beautiful to let our children express from their inner expression and not according to the pictures there are. It allows them to just be and explore the world and themselves in it from an inner confidence and this is very beautiful to observe how they then know themselves and are not in constant dependancy what the world delivers to them but bring out what they have to offer the world.
Today I witnessed a quite intense stand off between two young men, both very angry and one with a heavy metal chain dog leash that he looked ready to lash out with. As I carefully watched the situation unfold, I was struck by how much uneasy and unnatural tension was in these men’s bodies – it was almost like you could see their ideals and beliefs around being a tough man and not taking crap from another man egging them on, pushing them forward and making it impossible for them to back down and come off the attack. But in the very fact that you could see how unnatural it was, and you could see the ideals locking into their bodies as beliefs acting out as behaviours, I could see beyond this to the fact that they were in truth beautiful and sensitive men, who have never been shown anything by the world then to squash that true expression and instead to wear the mask and heavy overcoat of being a tough, rough and aggressive man.
“Both boys are completely opposite in the way they express their inner qualities but those inner qualities are the same.”
I love this line Nicole as it beautifully sums up all of us and how we all have different expressions and we all look different on the outside but our inner essence is the same. The beauty of our different qualities in expression is needed for the whole as we are all an equal part of the larger universal puzzle that is life.
Yes indeed, this is all our responsibility. To nurture and support young men to live who they are, deeply sensitive and caring. I too am blessed to have the man I married value this side of himself and therefore we have been able to raise our son in the same way. It is extraordinary how much of a push there is from society for them both to be harder though. I take my hat off to them for standing by who they truly are over who society has been asking them to be.
To live like a true men, required for me role models who live a true life, because in society and also close family there were and aren’t any models around. I did not know for a long time there was a different way of living, and thought that my way of living was good and normal. Fortunately I have met men like Curtis and Michael Benhayon who are these rare role models who show what it is like to live like true men.
I have seen the absolute purity and love that pours out of a man who does not hold back his tenderness – bring it on I say!
Indeed- it lets everyone melt, who is blessed to be in that man´s presence.
I saw a friends young son the other day and he was so beautiful, tender and sweet – he seemed totally at ease and there was no part of him that seemed violent, aggressive or any of the other traits we associate with boys even from a very young age, and I got to see how it really is about raising our children, boys or girls, un-imposed to allow them to just be themselves.
We all have the responsibility to lead the way with being tender, fragile, loving and honouring of ourselves, and not hold back waiting for others to do it first. Being love without any guarantee anyone else will be love too is the way to live.
That is the way Lucy indeed. But what does it mean being love? We as men don’t have a clue. Fortunately I have touched upon layers of tenderness and fragility inside myself that I did not know, but feel as the true me that I want to live.
Boys are the tenderest of beings, and so the amount of hardness they can build up in protection from the world is enormous – that is , unless that boys allow their precious tenderness to be with them as their strength.
Strength in tenderness in a world that promotes the opposite is a powerful model this world needs.
When a man is truly delicate and tender it is enough to make you melt. There is so much beauty in this, and it is a man’s true nature.
Everyone should be held responsible for their actions no matter their gender, sex, age, culture, race or religion – everyone needs to be taught about the consequences of their actions and that there is a kind of joy to be found in being responsible for our impact on others.
‘I am constantly blessed by how gentle, tender and loving they are, and I can see how hard it has been for my husband to break down the barriers of protection he has built up around him over the years to hide his own gentleness and tenderness.’ This is gorgeous – a father learning to be a man from the love of his sons.
A year ago my son started an apprenticeship and is currently working on a building site. In this environment he finds it difficult to hold and express from his innate gentleness, his walk has changed and his hands are hardening from the physical work. What I appreciate however is how much he is still willing to feel and express when he comes home and how much the reflection of gentleness at home supports him to stay with himself to the best of his ability throughout the day.
‘For many boys, the pressures, ideals and beliefs of how they should be become too much, so they succumb to how they think they should be.’ This is the same for girls. We all fall prey to the demands of the outside world in one way or another, at one level or another. Awareness has to be the name of the game – allowing ourselves to observe what is going on without being effected by it in any way shape or form, and awareness from a place of connection within ourselves so that we can feel safe about our choices.
The ideas and beliefs that the outer will determine the quality of the inner is the game that we have been sold on a massive scale. Bringing a division and complication between men and women that is not true as our innate being comes from the same source.
The message of this blog to me today is that both men and women are invited and inspired to return to their natural state of being, that is being tender and caring and very delicate in how we behave and give expression to that what lives within. Imagine how the world would be if we would do that all together tomorrow morning. It sure will be noticeable in the air that something major has been shifted.
We must be careful not to set the social standard low and accept behaviour that is way out of line. We should be setting the standard super high teaching all of our children and young adults that decency and respect is a requirement not a option in this society.
I agree and appreciate the sureness with which you have written this. No waver and no negotiation, there is a standard with which we should be treating ourselves and each other, below which we do not accept.
The action of the feather brushing the cheek of this man in the blog image, says it all for me. The tenderness that men are and can express is as delicate and as light as a feather.
If I take me for example, I became something I was totally not. Being born on a farm in New Zealand I had to become tough and I had to play rugby and show that I was tough, there were no other option shown to me, no role models at that time to show me there was another way.
So it has been such an amazing journey back to the tenderness I know now that we are all from.
Indeed Kevin, we are lacking the role models that show young boys the way to go. Everything in our society is showing boys to be hard and tough, there is actually no other option. But hey, we can make this change today and be that reflection that is so needed that then will expand through the ripple effect we have on all men and women we meet. To me it actually only needs a few generations, like the children of Nicole, they will present this gentleness and tenderness they are to the world and in turn will allow their children to grow up in the same manner too. It is just a matter of time until this fortress of masculinity will dissolve and men and boys will live their natural state of being.
Go both of you!! that is two divine reflections in this world 🙂 The harder we all get in our manners and the more we deny the sensitivity that lives inside us the worse mental health is going to get. I love that you are both choosing to address the growing mental and physical health crisis by being the change for yourself and for others to see there is another way.
And that you are now able to show this to other men for them to have the same choice of honouring their true tenderness and qualities too from the very real perspective as having allowed this in yourself – gorgeous.