Each year catalogues, TV and press remind us how great our dads are, and that the one day of the year to really celebrate this is Father’s Day. But what do these messages really tell us about the beauty of men and what it is to be a man?
If we came from another planet and looked at the media around how we celebrate Father’s Day we would assume that men love to:
- work on cars
- have lots of tools
- spend time and money in hardware stores
- drink beer and brew it at home
- do anything associated with BBQs
- play or watch football
- play or watch sports of any kind
- play with gadgets
- use an X-box
- read and watch thrillers, comedy and action stories
- escape the grind, get away from it all (for some this also includes getting away from the family)
- dress trendy or sporty
- eat meat.
So what does all this say about what it is to be a man? What if you are a man who loves to:
- be pampered
- buy his own clothes (including socks and jocks)
- drive a car but not be married to it
- go to the ballet
- watch romance movies
- have a bath
- spend time with the family, truly enjoying being with them
- dress up
- go walking?
Would enjoying these things risk torment, rejection or being considered unmanly or just weird?
Is it possible that the narrowness of what we are ‘told’ men are like limits all of us? How much do men bend to fit this mould, and how much do we miss out on when they do?
Imagine if Father’s Day celebrated the true beauty of men?
What if we considered more deeply what it is to be a man – beyond the rough, rugged, outdoors stereotype, or the beer drinking, car loving bloke, the gadget guy or the sophisticated executive roles we’ve all been fed – and appreciated instead the innate delicateness, sensitivity and beauty of men?
It could unfold into the kind of Father’s Day where we acknowledged and treasured the tenderness of men and enjoyed all that came from men being allowed to be and share their beauty.
Inspired by the work of Universal Medicine and Serge Benhayon.
By Adrienne Ryan & Peta Schaffer, Daughters, Queensland, Australia
If we truly celebrate men for who they are, it would not involve any toughness, façade or protection but allows them to be delicate, sensitive and deeply tender.
So often, we explore the stereotypes and diminishment made of women – the true and exquisite nature of what it is to be a woman – in our press and society… But do we really look at what’s going on for men in this regard? It is indeed horrendous, with so much confirming that to be a man one has to be ‘tough’, ‘beyond emotions’, have a buffed physique and the rest.
The conversation most definitely needs to be opened up in all respects, that we reclaim the exquisite nature of BOTH sexes, and learn to honour this far more deeply in the way that we relate to each other. Every one of us has a tender, beating heart, every one of us feels, and every one of us is precious beyond measure. There is simply no more and no less in this, but an equality that can be felt, if we but open up our hearts to it.
We are all the lesser in society due to the stereotypical and oftentimes completely false images portrayed of either sex… As you’ve just touched the tip of here Peta and Adrienne, there is so, so much more to us all than this, and we deserve to live in a celebration of what it is that all of us – men and women alike – innately bring, and have to offer.
That we may foster what’s true in ourselves and between us, and let the walls come a-tumblin’ down…
Thank-you for this blog.
Yes I agree, as we reduce men to this stereotype, we equally reduce ourselves. Let’s bring those walls down and discover and celebrate what is underneath.
Here’s to celebrating the true beauty of men every day – ditching the stereotypes and not limiting it to one day of the year.
Hear, hear Helen, I agree we should celebrate men and women everyday, and not save it for just one day of the year. This would be amazing if we all celebrate each other regularly.
Love all the comments from men on this thread and truly appreciate those who are willing to show their deep tenderness and beauty to inspire all women to reflect this too.
It is rather sad to restrict the celebration of our father to one day in the calendar.
Every day and every connection with anyone is a moment that offers another the true self reflection of love we all have for one another constantly.
When I think about all of the Father’s Day magazines that you describe- as a kid this is also what I used to buy for my Dad- socks or a watch for father’s day and often in a dark brown colour. It is funny because I never took the time enough to notice what he would have actually liked- I expressed in the way I thought we had to- I know he would have much preferred a card sharing how I felt about him or something like that more- I thought buying him socks was showing my love for him- but it always felt empty and a bit dishonouring of him but I never challenged this- each year I would just do the same.
When a man expresses his vulnerability and gentleness I melt. It is interesting because before I met Serge Benhayon and Universal Medicine I would have run a mile from these natural qualities within a man because they made me feel very uncomfortable. It makes sense to me that as I embrace and appreciate these qualities within me so too do I embrace and appreciate them within a man.
I love this photo is feels like a total surrender, really open and a very warm embrace between a father and son. A great expose in how Father’s Day just stereotypes what a father ‘should’ be, is or likes doing. A stereotype that really needs breaking to instead allow men to be honoured and accepted for the sweetness, tenderness and gentleness they truly are.
I heard a boy recently challenge this and say that in our Australian culture there is still this unsaid belief that men don’t talk about their feelings. He shared how we need to if we want things to change- I am super inspired by men and boys who continue to honour their sensitivity.
Yeh the belief we put onto men that they don’t talk about their feelings is one of the most imprisoning. How totally crazy that it should be ok for women to talk about how they feel but it not be ok for men to, and I agree it’s inspiring that there are so many men that refuse to be defined by these crazy ideals and beliefs.
Just imagine if Fathers Day was transformed to really celebrate the tenderness and true inner strength of men, and that all the old paradigms were left behind.
Interesting when we look at how we currently celebrate Fathers on Father’s Day. To me none of the things on the first list truly celebrates Fathers. I feel there is so much more we can do to truly celebrate men for who they are, we are missing out on so much when we deny their delicateness, sensitivity, tenderness and beauty. It is not in the presents we give our fathers on Father’s Day that counts but in the quality and connection we choose to have with them on a daily basis and with true appreciation for who they are that is the greatest gift of all.
Some men hide their beauty and tenderness inside a tough outer exterior, but deep inside is the sensitive little boy who is there all along. I love to see this love and sensitivity openly claimed and displayed by men.
When we want to develop men like that, that is the reflection we should present. I love myself being tender, loving and caring, it just the most beautiful kind of energy to live in. I can fully accept that as being my true beauty, and that is what I show to this world. While still doing a lot by the way:-)
Such a great point you make here Adrienne & Peta, the way men are portrayed through marketing for Father’s Day is incredibly reductionist. It is an accurate representation however of the way we’ve ‘boxed’ men in general, and it would seem, many men have accepted these parameters of who they are and what they are interested in. Allowing men the scope to be interested in any number of ‘un-manly’ pursuits or attributes is essential if we want men to be true to themselves, and therefore bring the richness of who they are deep down to their family, friends, colleagues and communities. We are all losing out when they don’t, but if we keep holding them to these stereotypes, then we will only get the reduced version.
Men are bombarded with the stereotypes they should be from young. It is no wonder that men start living those stereotypes, these images which tell them that is the norm.
Very young boys are beautiful, tender and loving. So it is revealing of the false expectations we put on them, and they put on themselves, to grow up into tough, rough guys.
It’s a beautiful thought to imagine men being pampered and honoured for their tenderness on father’s day or even any day for that matter. We have it so terrible wrong with stereotyping, and unfortunately as a result, we are all losing out on many men not expressing their innate sweetness because of inappropriate labels and expectations.
Wow what a difference it would be if we used Father’s day to support the delicateness of men – to confirm them in their tenderness. I love this idea – that it could be men’s day rather than father’s day 🙂 We have an opportunity to change the whole way men are portrayed – dropping the stereotypes and being open to the true sensitivity they naturally hold.
To let men be and surrender to who they are.. How incredible would this text be if we used that as a headline of a men’s magazine, would that not totally rock the world and bring it upside down! How cool, and how true!
It feels so good if we would let men be, and not put all these images, ideals, desires onto them because we need them to be a certain way that fits our comforts, ideals and principals. As how rude is that!?!! So ladies and men lets let each other be , and see what will happen.. I’ve gotta sense that by this choice the world becomes real, honest and true – which we allow everyone equally to be who they are.. And men can definitely inspire!
Certainly at school if I had read out the second list I would have been pilloried by my peers… there the training ground was to be tough, I learnt to be strong so no one would mess with me or tease me, and I established myself as far up the pecking order as I could. All to the detriment of me – the gorgeous man that enjoyed singing, loved nature, and was gentle at heart.
I loved reading this simple yet very true, society really pushes these untrue images of men around. Your blog is a great reminder that we can bring change to this deeply held image of men by regularly celebrating and appreciating the beautiful, tender and gentle qualities that men truly are.
It is interesting going on dating sites because nearly all men present themselves in this way as often they think that’s what they need to be. Once you connect with them and get to see under that you get to enjoy the beauty of the man but it takes work as it is not always what is presented and many men don’t feel safe to show this.
Great Blog – Fathers day is often seen by the man himself and those around him as a day off, a day to not have to ‘do’ anything, have a few beers, maybe not have to take any responsibility for what is happening around him e.g. kids, partner, doing the dishes etc. What if Fathers Day highlighted the sensitivity, gentleness and love that all men reflect to their young ones, what if it is about the presence, stillness and solidness that being a man is – Fathers Day could offer so much – if the essence of our men was what was truly celebrated and claimed.
A real thought-provoker that leaves you in no doubt that the images, the projections and the stereotypes of men that we’ve learned to accept actually belie a real depth of quality that we’re not acknowledging, encouraging, appreciating or celebrating.
These stereotypical pictures of men and what they ‘love’ to do and what their lives are all about, is a horrendous rejecting of the gorgeous qualities that have been there to be expressed from birth. The men in my life growing up were all placed in the top category, and unfortunately we missed out on seeing them for who they are…. until now. It is so beautiful to see and feel a man who allows himself to be seen, regardless of what pegs society try’s to push him into.
One thing that is most desperately needed now on the planet is the role model of the man who feels his tenderness and the innate strength that comes from that surrendered connection to the inner knowing
You would think that after thousands of years we would be excellent at being parents… Is this a case? No it is not… have we evolved in this area… Apparently not… Is there a fundamental awareness missing? Yes there is… And this is where Universal Medicine and the ageless wisdom really is there to be noticed… It is the missing link in how to actually connect with ourselves and bring up our young.
We have created an image of how men should be, that excludes their naturally gentle ways. It then becomes all about living up to the image of a macho strong man that never cries or shows their feelings. No wonder we have men today that don’t know who they truly are, the image created and which we expect them to live by is a million miles away from the tenderness they were allowed to express as a child.
Real men live the real them and not the fake copy that has been designed to impress those who are looking for distraction, not truth.
We have carved a way of living far removed from the truth of who we are. To cope with the onslaught, the men toughen and the women harden. Thus it takes far more courage to live with openness and tenderness amongst this, than it does to develop a hard exterior to ‘cope’. A man should be celebrated for expressing his innate tenderness, not ridiculed for it, but as a society we have shied away from this as it means taking stock that all we have thus far created in terms of gender roles and dispositions, has in truth been a lie.
Adrienne it’s fantastic to think and explore what it would be like if men were allowed to simply be their natural tender loving selves. Meeting other men with this open minded and open hearted attitude, without needing or expecting anything has made a huge difference to my relationship with other men, friends and strangers alike.
Every single day can be a ‘fathers day’, a celebration of what and who a man truly is, all he does but most of all the tenderness, love and deep deep care that he can bring
I would love to see the myths blown away. Imagine the ads in the media coming up to Father’s Day if we saw more about gifts for men which encouraged them to nurture themselves and share their joy with their families and others. Although still well in the minority, it’s been a real privilege to meet more and more men who are starting to live this way.
This is a timely blog to read after discussing the very topic of what it means to define a True Man last night at a mens group. A Man that is known and defined not by what he does, says, thinks or even acts. But a Man who is defined by the love he is first, his universality and his true care and tenderness, which makes him amazing in what he does by all of the love he then brings to it.
Men are just as caring, tender and sensitive as women. The more we open our eyes to all the qualities they hold equally with us, the more they will feel the confidence to be able to express the true gentle-men that they are.
I love feeling the tenderness and sensitivity in my husband and sons. Their reflection can be a reminder to me of the lack of tenderness I have in my body at times. What a gift for me and those they are in contact with during the day.
I have noticed some men in a charity shop I volunteer in, looking enviously at the variety of colourful items, clothing and other, that is considered for women only! Some guys buy and others look and put back, fearing what I wonder, ridicule surprised looks? I do think men are showing their softer side more but there is a long way to go! Lets hope that through men who are part of groups such as Universal Medicine and are learning to show their tender side may set an example for others to share their feeling and softness, with each other and us all.
Yes, how much have we boxed men in, often chaining them to a stereotype that isn’t true and when we are limiting the opportunity to see and feel the true beauty that lies quietly within them. We must unlock our own chains as well as theirs so we can let out all the love we are.
Serge Benhayon has redefined for me what it is to be a man. His tenderness and strength and abiding love, his honour and integrity and HUMOUR and a never-ending source of wisdom, has always and always will inspire me to be all that I am , as a man
Gorgeous and so true how we limit and box our idea of men – not taking anything away from the behaviours such as fishing, sports etc – however they do not represent the true essence of men. When I held my two sons in my arms for the first time, I could feel the absolute tenderness of this little boy, how connected he was to the oneness of the Universe – we certainly don’t convey this in Bunnings ‘Fathers Day’ ads.. Instead of waiting for marketing to ‘get it’ – I am inspired to connect with, confirm and honour the essence the men in my life so that we can build a new and true way of supporting men.
What I can feel from this blog is that men do equally deserve to be looked at from sensitivity. They deserve to be lovingly approached, hugged, smiled at, and encouraged to be sensitive and express themselves all openly, just like we are able to do so as women. I feel that it so important for us to realize that we are equal and we need an equal approach. I too have been living in a way that was not that. But I can feel now that I am able to change that, and so do I feel the urgency of us allowing men to be men, themselves, and not for the hooking ideals & believes, voices , we have given our power to. But to stay with what we feel and embrace men and women equally. There is no such thing as sissy. We are all equal sensitive to love, we should all have the open opportunity to explore this again…
This blog is very revealing of the expectations and shaping of men by our society. I have always known how tender and sensitive I am but learnt in my teens how to present a different facade in order to be left alone and fit in. I would change my posture, facial expressions and behaviour to send out a message to those around me. This kind of process is very hurtful for men as not only have they felt rejected by society for how they truly are (tender, beautiful, caring ) but they then reject themselves in order to become something different either to fit in or to protect themselves from feeling even more rejection, but the hurt only continues. It also strikes me that here we are talking about men and it is very true that to let men come back to who they naturally are this awareness of the design of society which maintains the stereotype needs to be revealed however this starts when men are boys. In their super sensitive state they begin to feel the expectations on them to be a certain way sometimes before or in the early years of school. As Chris has written regarding parenting, it is so very important to be aware of what is passed onto children at this stage from parents and wider society for it is here that we begin to tell children that they have to be something else.
It is the boys giving the cards to their fathers, who are also taking in the cards message as to what they should become.
To understand how to be a father, we must understand ourselves, to know our conditioning and to be able to observe our reactions, and to start to heal our old hurts… otherwise , with the best of intentions, we will just pass on our concepts and beliefs to our children, and on , and on. Universal medicine always presents the opportunity to break this cycle, so that true parenting can be initiated.
Wow…. how much we’ve compartmentalised men and women into ‘gender’ boxes. Women like this, and that and men like something else and are something else. But the truth is that both men and women are very much the same in their essence, tender, sensitive and beautiful. When a man comes and lives from his essence not hiding his sensitivity or tenderness it is truly beautiful to behold and feel.
As humans we stereotype the genders because we hide from the truth that the Soul is androgynous and in its expression is both the femaleness and maleness – the in-breath and out-breath of God. The genders exist to allow us to reconnect to both the maleness (motion) and femaleness (stillness) so that we can harmonise this expression within us over many lives. As a humanity, when our ‘in-breath’ equals our ‘out-breath’ we will have true union of both ‘male’ and ‘female’ and no need for seeming opposites in genders, for we will be living as One again.
“Imagine if Father’s Day celebrated the true beauty of men?” What a great thing to be asked to consider. We don’t often hear the word “beauty” associated with men; it’s normally something like handsome, rugged, hard working etc. The truth is that men are just as beautiful as women and it is time we celebrated what men bring to our lives.
Absolutely Elizabeth – I can remember the first time is was told I was beautiful – it changed things for me. Now I can feel it deep inside. Similarly, the first time someone bought me flowers – at first I was surprised but now I realise that there is something amazing reflected back to us in them. There is a naturally expressed beauty and fragility in flowers which is also in us.
It was great to re-read this blog and be reminded that when we feel into the person and not their gender or stereotype or boxed in group that comes from their body we get to experience so much more. Reading some of the guys comments had me smiling, there is a real joy in seeing someone open up in themselves and show off what’s underneath all those pictures.
It is so beautiful to feel a gentle-man who is fully embracing his sensitivity and tenderness. Until I allowed self-love and self-nurturing into my life I did not realise what I was missing as I was too busy building blockades of my own to enjoy those gorgeous men out there celebrating their gorgeousness. Even if some are still hiding under cover.
The ‘what if’ list of what a man loves made me smile. It is gorgeous to think of men loving these things and not just everything in the former. What you have been told you ‘should’ be like most definitely limits you and denies you true appreciation and expression of the gentle tenderness and beauty you innately are…qualities which Father’s Day should absolutely embrace, honour and celebrate.
I work in a florist. Sometimes I get a man customer who wants to buy flowers for himself and worries what kind of manly flower he can have. Maybe a cactus or something he suggests. I have always said that men can have any flowers that they would like and it seems a shame to limit themselves. One man came in because a woman he works with has a jar of flowers on her desk that he loves the look of. He asked me if there was something he was allowed to have that wouldn’t look feminine. It feels very sad that men often cannot enjoy the simple beauty of flowers just for themselves. Maybe we could encourage people to consider giving men flowers and break down that barrier, making it a more normal occurrence. Father’s Day- give him flowers.
Love this Amanda – give him flowers on Father’s Day, it’s only 3 days away and I feel inspired to do just that – thank you!
Any stereotype we cling onto or try to live up to, is imprisoning and holds us back to express our true selves in all our delicacy , power and love. I have men in my live that allow their tender part to be expressed in how they are with themselves and others. It is beautiful and it is time this becomes the norm.
Are men stereotyped or do we stereotype ourselves? I wanted to be rough and tough and macho because for me it was a very effective way of avoiding feeling hurt. I had to stop when I realized younger men were copying me and I did not want anyone else to feel as miserable as me. The stereotype is only there because we create it and we fuel it with our energy.
I always thought I was independent of mind but I was so keen to appear to be a man I did most of the above, I could not have stereotyped myself more. None of it was true or brought me any joy. I thought I was being me, but really I was being the stereotypical Aussie bloke. How much of me was there in that? Almost none, how could I be so influenced, like a sucker? Did I want and need to fit in so bad that I took on that personality? Thank you Adrienne and Peta for outlining what a man is not. It is up to us men to show each other what a man is.
With Fathers day around the corner this is timely to be reading this blog. I have recently looked at fathers day cards for my children to give to their Dad for Fathers day and I was met with very similar to what you have expressed above. These cards rarely depict what my husband truly is as a father and all the things about him that we love and cherish. I love the question that you have posed here- How much do men bend to fit this mould, and how much do we miss out on when they do? In my experience we miss out on a lot. We miss out on the true, tender so gentle and loving and precious men that they are.I absolutely melt in pure love when I see this in men.
It is true, the stereo typing of men in our media completely misses the true nature of men which is super tender and loving, these stereo types can make growing up a confusing experience for boys and young men, confusion which leads most men in our society to be disconnected from who we truly are. Serge Benhayon and Universal Medicine present a true way and it is so liberating, truly beautiful.
What a great post! How exposing seeing the list of things that are assumed that fathers like and only like. I have often thought the ‘gift list’, was always ridiculous, but when you really look at it – it’s like there is no where else to go. You either fit into this box or you’re not really a man.
Appreciating that men are in fact gentle and loving creatures is not always that easy, because of the sheer amount of pressure on them to not be themselves, and therefore they will often act in a way that makes it difficult to see past the falsity. But, the more we can all practice being our true selves, the more everyone gets an opportunity to do the same, as we set the standard for being yourself as ok and welcomed.
Considering this I sense would not be something allocated to one scheduled day of the year, deeply considering what it means to be a man, one of pure tenderness and the strength felt by all in that, is something worth honouring and celebrating every single day!
It would certainly be a very different society if men were truly honoured for who they truly are and not what they do that is for sure. Secretly deep down all men ask for this even if on the surface it may not appear that way.
Reading your blog is an eye opener as to the expectations of what men are to be in society. It is so true that the advertising for Father’s Day points to all those points you described. Imagine the freeing and the joy that men would feel to surrender to themselves and express the truth of who they really are and what they really enjoyed to do, not just because it is expected of a man.
Great Blog, Men and tenderness…in the past that would have been Chalk and Cheese, but men all over the world are connecting back to the true tenderness they are. I love visiting my Dad who has been in the construction trade all his life, but when we are both together in the garden talking about flowers and and how he likes to nurture them and appreciate the colour and scent they produce i can see and feel the real man inside, Strong yet tender open and loving.
This is powerfully revealing Andrew, the hard and tough construction worker becomes this tender, flower loving and expressive true man with his son. It reveals how we actually never lose that essence, we just bury it and it is worth pondering, how much energy goes into burying that delicateness by living out stereotypical roles and how much does this affect our health? When we are not honouring our truth, it goes against the natural order of things and the disharmony is played out in our bodies.
Andrew, there’s an awesome blog right there — Men and Tenderness. No longer chalk and cheese but a reality so many men who have been inspired by Universal Medicine now live, and inspire other men to reconnect to as well. So beautiful what you shared about your dad, the tenderness with which you’ve shared is gorgeous.
When I consider what it is that I truly love about the quality of a man it is his natural tenderness and deep sensitivity, which reflects a gentle and beautiful strength that inspires me to connect to the same within me.
There is so so much more description that can be added to what a man is, than listed in this blog, although it is a good start. How about placing his arms around another human being and embracing them with all the love and tenderness in his heart, for instance? How about look at a child with the knowing of gentleness and care in his eyes, so that all anxiousness and feeling of not being enough, just melts away in that connection? How about being gentle and playful with another man, without an ounce of competition and slagging, yet being honest and truthful at the same time. So so much to being a man.
Thank you Simon, I could feel the fullness and tenderness within you as you express about being more than what this blog describes about being a man. It is beautiful and thank God for you!
So, so much to being a man….. I would like to hear more Simon Voysey, maybe a good time to write your own blog….?
That was my same thought as well Jacqueline! So much here to be shared by many of the men who have commented, tender dynamites every single one of them 🙂
Yes Simon, agree… so so much ore that does need to be shared with our societies that have forgotten to cherish the true beauty of men. Beautiful what you have shared here.
Father’s Day in our house always seemed like it was there because there’d been a Mother’s Day earlier in the year and that fathers had somehow got together and said ‘What about US?!’, resulting in a ruling that there should indeed be equality across the sexes in this regard. And so the day was set, the commercial machine got rolling and out came all the stereotype-laden cards you describe. High time the more sensitive, tender and delicate sides of men were acknowledged – and every day, not just on one granted, if we’re honest about it, for pure commercial gain.
In my experience and many others experience (I Guess) this stereotype is so far off from who men are. Get any man one on one without other men around whom they have to put the macho act on for and you will find a tender, open, caring and respectful person. As my son has become a man, I have seen the absolute beauty and preciousness men are. His friends are just as tender but some of the ways in which they have been brought up and imposed on can hide this tenderness from shining out onto the world. Men are delicate and there is nothing quite like being in a man’s presence when he is allowing this to be.
The more I am getting to know the men in my life I am seeing just how sensitive they actually are. Often they may put on a tough exterior but you do not need to scratch the surface very much for them to expose their soft underbelly. Recently I have found that the men have been more willing to open up and be tender with themselves and others then the women I know. Many of them have been attending men’s groups presented by Serge Benhayon and you can feel how much this is supporting them to look at the roles that they had taken on, let them go and re-connect with their natural sensitive self.
It is interesting how much these clichés define our lives and imprison us into roles that we have to play, sometimes not even considering that their is another way; until one day we realize that we can step out of it. The question is, do we take the risk to step out and allow ourselves to be seen as a role-model for others to see that there is another way.
When we allow ourselves as men to feel the deep tenderness that we truly are, we are an inspiration for all the young men to be growing up around us, we become role models of gentleness and strength joined together.
In my experience, men deeply yearn to express their sensitivity and appreciation for others but they have been really hurt by life. And those stereotypical things that we associate men with are actually not really liked by a lot of men. A lot of men I know would really like to express themselves in relationships and show people who they really are.
I love to see a man show his sensitive, loving and tenderness. I feel safe to be in his presence and it allows me to be me.
Great point, the beauty of men is hardly captured and reflected by the media. Instead, we swim in stereotypes that help men to be far from their sensitive, tender, delicate nature and their innate beauty.
It’s so true, men get portrayed as a certain character.in the same way women also get presented to be a certain way. The truth is we are all our own individual people, men or women and we each have our own unique way to express, which is actually a really beautiful thing.
Let’s celebrate the true tenderness of men every day whether they are fathers or not.
Yes Oliver and Mary this is a beautiful proposition – lets celebrate men in their tenderness and beauty and not define them by what they do or what gadgets they own.
The media definitely has it all wrong, but the over-cover is thick and the men of the world quite scared. For if they’re not all of the things they think they should be (with thanks to retail catalogues and tv adverts), then who are they? I think this is a great blog. I mean I’m not a father, but I’d like baths, dressing-up and pampering myself, I also love walking around Bunnings and buying tools: I’m not conflicted as to which activity is manly or correct for me and I hope that all men are celebrated for their beauty and not their activities looking ahead into the future.
I agree, Oliver. Activities do not a man make. The idea is preposterous.
I am married to the most gorgeous tender, courageous, sensitive, loving, wise man and I celebrate every day being with him. I don’t need a special day to appreciate how awesome he is or to tell him so, as I let him know how precious he is to me everyday.
Thank you Adrienne and Peta a beautiful article and something that is worth celebrating, the men and father’s in our life for who they are rather than an image that needs to be lived up to.
In this day and age it is becoming easier and easier for men from all walks of life to embrace the fact that we are tender loving beings and that this only enhances the fact that we are men .
Adrienne and Peta, your post had me smiling all throughout, and feeling how wonderful men truly are. You mix such reality ha ha (!) and truth aaahh (!) in your listed bullet points, it’s made me appreciate more the depth of divine quality that’s there within every man. Your words: “…..where we acknowledged and treasured the tenderness of men and enjoyed all that came from men being allowed to be and share their beauty”. Gorgeous and so celebratory of the essence of a man, words expressed and lived here from the essence of a woman.
Being a woman, I wonder how men would respond to being celebrated for their delicateness and gentleness. It would be completely different, but I would imagine freeing as well.
I will all ways like my meat roasted over open flames and the smell sweet of flowers. I buy my clothes by how they feel… I like soft feeling things… cashmere is nice. A soak in a hot bath with bubbles is on the list. I have just visited my sister and told me my Lap top cover was not Manly…I like purple! But… I did cave in at the car rental place when I got a free up-grade of my economy car … and I just had to accept the Ford Mustang.
Haha, very funny Steve!
A tender man who knows what he wants and likes and will not accommodate or put himself into one of those stereotype boxes! Thank you Steve!
I always felt that one of the key points of being a man is being yourself – whatever that is. That is the most simple and the most powerful way to be. I have a feeling that applies to women as well – it seems gender neutral.
I can relate to that too! Both with husband and father, as they are both so much more than what these ideals impose.
To celebrate the beauty of men may remind them that that is who they are and we love that that is who they are. There is so much that is precious about men. How wonderful it would be if this was celebrated and appreciated all the time, so those men who have hidden their loveliness away (behind fishing, cars, sheds) will have the courage to let it out for all to enjoy.
How much do we miss out on the qualities of a man (or woman) when we hold them to these stereotypes? How much do we miss out on who we and others are by rolling them in these roles and expecting them to only live by said roles? Thank you Adrienne and Peta for the reminder that we are much more than our genders.
You are so right Leigh, how long will we play this game of genders and their stereotypes together. We are really missing out on both sides. To see the transformation in men who are choosing to live their innate qualities like being tender, sensitive and sweet is a true miracle and yet natural!
“Imagine if Father’s Day celebrated the true beauty of men?” – it would certainly be a very different day than it has been up to now. What an opportunity for all men to come on out from behind the roles they are expected to play in society, and to show how truly tender and naturally loving they are. Now how beautiful would that be?
Feels to me like true equality Adrienne; equality of expression and creating the space and to allow the truth of who were are to emerge, not the cramped stereotype. Let’s invite men out, in the true sense!
This is a beautiful blog and helped me to see that I too have judged and put expectation on men and how I think they should be, specifically my father. I particularly loved this part “How much do men bend to fit this mould, and how much do we miss out on when they do?” and see that this can also relate to women.
Why has the true nature of men been so bastardized? It is no coincidence that pressure on a man to be so rough and tough is the polar opposite to the true strengths he holds in all of his sweetness, tenderness and warmth.
Hello Adrienne and Peta, you are officially the new Father’s Day ambassadors. I enjoyed the article and would love to have a shift in focus of what Father’s or Men’s Day is all about. We seem to project a mould of what a man should be as you say but there is no real man in amongst that mould. I guess collectively it is up to the men that this affects to stand up and speak about what they would like to see and not just accepting things for how they are. It is great that women would take this stand but it is also up to men to action what they feel. Thank you.
Gorgeous blog, it made me melt feeling that the true beauty of men could be celebrated in this way as within every man is a truly tender, loving and gentle person longing to be met and seen for who he is.
Beautifully said Jade, I can only agree in full, and seeing the men at Universal Medicine events is so awesome, to feel them in their tenderness is very beautiful.
We should celebrate men for their tenderness, sweetness and beauty every day. After I read your blog, I can so feel how we as women are playing a big part in limiting men and not allowing them who they truly are. The more we re-claim who we truly are, then the men can also re-claim who they truly are.
This is a great article Adrienne and Peta. I recently had a conversation with a man about clothes and colours and how it feels to wear certain things and I could feel him open up and it almost felt like I was feeling the relief in him that he could share this way and not feel embarrassed or worried about it. It was a beautiful conversation and this encouraged me to have more conversations with other men, acknowledging their feelings and tenderness and I have found in most cases that they light up and I feel the beauty that they are as they feel safe to express from a tenderness and not go into a stereotypical performance. Men have a tenderness just as women do and it is beautiful to feel that expression come to the fore.
Adrienne and Peta, I feel that your vision of Fathers Day is a real possibility for the future. And I agree that boys are boxed in whilst growing up by the stereotypes of men that exist everywhere. I feel that men are quite lost when it comes to who they really are in essence. I feel to add that most women are as lost as the men. Crazy isn’t it, that both men and women are behaving in a way that is not actually natural!
When I read the top list of what we are made to think are things men love doing I just had to laugh about the ridiculousness of it. Yet I have bought into this belief as well! So glad I am now so much more aware of the true tender beauty that men really are and that is so much more than that stereotype lists as that is so limiting and not describing men at all.
It would be a very good place to start that Father’s Day became a day to really celebrate the fact that underneath all the rough exteriors lies gentle and tender men and even if no other time, men could just see what it feels like to be pampered and not drink or watch football and see where it goes.
Thank you Adrienne and Peta for expressing this in such a clear way. The sad thing is this stereotyping begins so early and is everywhere. Even the paper we wrap a young boy’s birthday gift in has a message of who he should be and what he should be interested in. When was the last time we wrapped a boy’s gift in really beautiful paper?
Lovely the way you propose Father’s day to be. We can start with celebrating our own dads this way. And…we don’t have to wait till Father’s day comes.
Some great observations here Adrienne and Peta. We so often look at the effects of the media, society and marketing etc on women but don’t seem to take much time to see how men might also be affected by these things. I know when I can feel the absolute tenderness from men that this is a very natural way of being for them. Thank you for sharing 🙂
I had such a good laugh with this, Adrienne. The stereotype of men you picture here is hilarious. And it is exactly how most the men of my childhood used to be. Back then I felt so lonely being part of the second group of men that you depict. My feeling is that many men would feel much less lonely when we would start to see our delicateness, sensitivity and true beauty.
The thing that has always struck me about days like Father’s Day or Mother’s Day or Valentine’s Day etc, is that the focus is so much on the material aspects as a way of showing ones appreciation or love. Are we missing the point of true celebration and appreciation of what these days offer? And why wait for such a day when we can celebrate ourselves and each other every single day!
Yeah I agree with you Marika. What would our world be like if we would celebrate each other and ourselves everyday?
Thank you Adrienne for offering us a moment to appreciate all the men in our lives and how truly beautiful and gentle they can be. It feels as though women have been part of the false image that has been created to be the stereo typical man. I feel in my neediness and lack of self worth I needed to depend on a man who was ‘strong’ and for him to support me he became hard in the process. I felt unable to ask for what I wanted in a direct and honest way and began to manipulate the whole relationship to get my needs met. There was no allowing and grace or room for us to express our deeper feelings of how we felt.