This old dog has learned a new trick, y’all.
Yep. You read it correctly. To be fair, it’s less of a run and more of a slight jog, but still….I’m getting my heart rate UP, people! And I’ve been running with enough frequency and intensity that I’ve even developed a little knee injury that I’m somewhat proud of. I have to ice it and take an anti-inflammatory after I run, which makes me feel very legit.
I usually run the same path each day. The first part of my trek goes through a little neighborhood. I typically have an iPod that I run with, but the earbuds broke (probably from ear sweat), so yesterday I was able to over hear some families’ conversations as I jogged by.
One in particular went something like this:
“Are you a boy or a girl? Tell me. Are you a boy or are you a girl?” said a woman, who I’m assuming was Mom, to a young boy who was crying.
“I’m a boy,” whimpered young boy wearing horizontally-striped shorts with vertically-striped t-shirt.
“You must not be a boy, because boys don’t cry. Only girls do,” said Mom.
He must have been three or four.
Y’all. Please hear my heart and not any pretension when I say that I found this wrong. I find it so sad that a young boy was told that he is not allowed to cry—like crying or being sad is solely a feminine thing to do. It’s like he’s not allowed to feel. Why is this? Why is it considered tough or manly or heroic to or right to “suck it up”?
I so appreciate that Nathaniel was raised to be allowed to emote. He cried on our wedding day---buckets, actually. And he cries at movies. And he cries in church, and I can honestly say that I find him MORE masculine and I so respect that he owns how he feels and expresses it. Can’t men be both masculine and emotional?
What say you, blogosphere? Do any men read this blog? I’d love to hear your take. Do you feel any societal or familial or generational pressure to “brush it under the rug”?