LET'S HAVE A MAN'S TALK
In this post-modernist age where we have great liberty in almost every aspect of life, we often find a big obstacle on our road. We have been taught (and to be more specifically: it’s been expected of us ) that we should follow the rules presented to us by society. Today, I want to share some thoughts which were keeping me busy the last couple of days. (Hence the lack of posting for the past two weeks!) There will probably be some ladies out there who will want to read along, which, of course is permitted. But do remember I’ve labeled it a ‘mans talk’.
What we’ve been taught
As we look around in society, we’ll discover a dictated pattern of life going from a young boy to a man. We can loosely divide it into these points:
- primary school (because we need the basics)
- Sports and clubs (because we need competitiveness)
- College (putting, of course, emphasis on getting good grades)
- Good grades (because they equal a good job)
- Good job (because it means having a beautiful title)
- PhD (because it equals big money)
- Additional bonus (a wife and –perhaps- some kids… not necessary, but nice while you’re at it)
When you ask a man who he is, most of the time people will start telling something about their status in terms of a profession. In most cases, they’re leaving personal information about who they really are aside. People identify themselves with the position they have achieved. This is a normal behavior, widely accepted in our society. Without noticing, we too often still focus on being accepted society. This is not limited to the minimalists out there, it counts for a lot of us. Unnoticing, we are trying to keep up with the Joneses in one way or the other.
(Be it material, spiritual or in terms of activity)
Questions start to rise when we look at the “masculinity” of nowadays. Nobody can deny the growing trend of “grown up” guys in their twenties and thirties still acting like little boys, who want to play with their cars, computer games and homeboys instead of maturing and be the men they should had been… (Yes, this includes ‘us minimalists’ as well) Then, there’s a multitude of men who want to enjoy the benefits of a married life, without taking responsibility for it. My question to society is this: Why are we creating life-users instead of life-givers? Why do we give our professions a higher rank than our family? Why leave the upbringing of the children to the state and why leave their education to Disney and Nickelodeon? I’m thinking we have to adjust our priorities and get back to basics; to the men we are meant to be. We don’t need to talk about this “prehistoric” caveman. Let’sjust keep it real for now.
When a person ask for your name, you will probably be so polite to tell him. However, It gets interesting when you are at the point of giving answer to the question of what you do for a living.
Who are you?
- I am a husband.
- I am a father.
- And when I got some free time I like to…
As men, we need to know: whom we need to protect, whom we need to provide for, whom we need to love and whom we need to shape.
There’s an old quote, saying “the family is the cornerstone of society”. However, I doubt if we still believe it. Age segregated clubs, the media, peers and society are doing their best to dissolve the family unit as we know it. Nowadays, everybody has his own agenda (from the 6 old month baby who needs to go to daycare to daddy who meets with his homies for a drink after work.) Everybody is doing his own thing. And inevitably, because every person in the family is doing his own thing, there isn’t much time for the family to spend together. I think it all boils down to this:
When a man spends a lot of his precious time investing in a prosperous business as a manager or director, the outsiders look at him as someone who is part of the “American dream”
When a man spends his time investing in a multi-generational business as a husband or father, people look at him as someone who is wasting the time, which could have been used in the business world.
Time to refocus
- We need to be surrounded by wise men, who are sound, responsible persons, able to teach you how a real man should behave. I’m not talking about a macho man who is demanding respect and appreciation of others. He would not fit the bill.
- Rather learn how to be a responsible, mature, caring person.
- Learn to be a good steward of your relationships, time, food, health, money and possessions.
- Learn from other wise men to be a loving, talking, caring, safe, loyal, person. By loving I don’t mean this random physical sensual power, but a decision to give yourself to your wife.
- Love her as you love yourself, not giving to expect something back. This is a sacrificial kind of love. (I know I’m not making myself popular by saying this.)
- You are not alone anymore because two became one. Don’t be bossy but be her defender and surely she’ll want to be your helper. Treat her as a jewel.
- Take some advice from experienced men how you can teach your boys to become men who, at their turn will love, take care and provide for their family. Give them your heart. Children also learn life lessons from our actions even when we don’t say a word.
- Teach your little gentleman to look to proper character qualities when he is searching for a mate who will be his wife
- The upbringing of a child is more important and has a greater impact than earning a lot of money at you job. Therefore disciple and train your children
- Teach your daughters how a man ought to behave himself when he is around her.
- Let her see how you treat your wife with respect.
- Let it be clear that she is not an object of lust or the possession of any guy.
- You will never give the keys of your Ferrari to a little boy who has no driving license. Don’t give away your princess in this ‘casual dating world’. Never.
Remember, being a husband and a father really is an honourable calling! Do you think your children will remember their first promotion made on their job (or even your job!), rather than the times their father was there for them…? I think not.
I also don’t believe that “Quality time” happens every time that you are with you wife and/or your children. You’ll have to make a serious effort in investing in them… So men, man-up and don’t forget about your responsibilities! There are enough people in this world living for themselves.