An interesting headline I saw in the papers the other day… “Father, son remanded for burglary”.
Also I got firsthand account of a lady who expects her boyfriend to beat her before she will be “okay”. Sick, right? Well, so I thought when I heard it also.
But something strikes me about the newspaper headline and the “not okay lady”.
My guess is, that son wanted to be a real man for and by father’s standards to the extent of joining father in a burglary. On the other hand “not okay lady” might have had an abusive childhood which distorted her expectation mould of who a real man should be; “a woman beater”.
Out-rightly, many of us would agree that the expectations shown here do not make for a real man. More subtly, however, we most times do have expectations and prejudices as to who a real man is and so we either force ourselves (as males) into certain moulds, or try to force others (where we can) into our own moulds of a real man.
The next time you are are forced to utter the “be a man” statement (to your son, brother, boyfriend, husband or just any male) or the famous “I am a man” statement (as a male), pause and ask yourself the simple question… “HOW DID I COME ABOUT MY DEFINITION OF A REAL MAN?”
Away with all the erroneous “my father said”s and “this-is-the-way-my-father did-its” (no disrespect meant to all our wonderful fathers, especially mine).
For parents, uncles, and aunts, enough of village and street sense in training our male children. Be deliberate, seek to understand the male child and his uniqueness.
To the male, most of your friends are still trying to discover themselves so away with the “that’s-how-we-roll” approach to being a real man.
Sorry to disappoint you but A REAL MAN IS NOT YOUR IDEAL MAN. They are very likely two different persons.
About the Writer: Anointing Ogie is a graduate from the famous Uniben and holds an MSc in Economics from Unilorin. He works as a research associate with a Policy Think Tank Organization in a part of West Africa, Nigeria. He writes only on the basis of the vision he has, and that’s to see young guys transition to being real men.