The hated patriarchy rules us all. Feminism is commonly thought of as women’s equality when it is really gender equality. I could on for hours, maybe even days, about the issues modern women still have to face. But I wanted to write a post about gender equality issues that effect men and boys in our society. Before you ask, NO. This is not about being a ‘meninist’. Or wanting to have a “men’s history month” to go along with “women’s history month”. It’s about awareness.
- Child custody cases are always messy. However, I do not believe that a mother should be highly favored to have more custody of her child than the father. Sadly, there are bad parents everywhere but gender has no effect on whether or not they are bad parents. The playing field should be even and fair, so to speak, between the mother and the father (if it’s about a heterosexual couple’s children). Gender bias sometimes effects men.
- Men and boys that are victims of sexual assault need validation that they are not alone. Sexual assault statistics show a low amount of attacks against men, but how accurate is that when a man rarely reports being raped? People of all genders and sexualities have been sexually assaulted. Rapes are underreported as is. The amount of men and boys who report rape is even more underreported. All victims of sexual assault need validation that what happened was not their fault, and that they are not alone.
- The last issue that I feel is very important is more broad. It’s about society’s expectations of men in general. If a man isn’t tall, muscular or smells of overwhelming testosterone at all hours of the day, he’s ridiculed. If a man engages in a ‘feminine’ activity, he’s automatically assumed to be gay. Men should be able to dress however they want, just as women should, without being criticized. The overbearing expectations put on young boys to be manly men has been around a long time. Boys are encouraged to play sports and talk to girls. Not everyone likes sports (what about art? music?) and not everyone likes girls either. When a little boy gets in trouble, he’ll more likely be excused with ‘boys will be boys’. This is warping people’s minds as they grow older to not take responsibility for their actions. Extreme masculinity honestly nauseates me. Gender expectations/roles should be eliminated. They’re very outdated. A man shouldn’t be criticized for being a stay at home dad while his wife works. There’s nothing wrong with that. There’s nothing wrong with a boy being a little bit feminine just as much as there’s nothing wrong with a girl being a little bit masculine.