#YesMenToo

I would like to say first that it’s not my intention of taking on the #YesAllWomen hashtag. Women do deal with some serious challenges. It’s not my intent to take a shot at that. However, there are certain things that men must deal with, and I would like to bring some attention to that.

Recently, there was a mass-murder in Santa Barbara, California. The perpetrator targeted women specifically, apparently upset that he didn’t have sex. He certainly had a warped view of things. For one thing, he apparently had an unrealistic perspective of the male-female relationship, coupled with a sense of entitlement.

He also spent hours a day playing World of Warcraft, so he was complaining about not getting something he wanted, while apparently doing little to actually obtain it. This kind of sense of entitlement isn’t anything that’s new, though it’s unusual in that it’s taken to this extreme. I could go on about how this indicates the kind of wrong thinking that’s apparently gaining momentum in America. However, that’s a different topic.

There are certain things that men do have to deal with.

For one thing, there is the perpetuation of the idea that sex is something that men must always be preoccupied with. Men feed into this notion too, and the popular idea is that if a man doesn’t have a stronger libido, then he must be less of a man somehow. You’ve probably heard that men think about sex once every thirty seconds. This is statistically inaccurate, but you’ll find it hard to find the man who admits that he doesn’t obsess over sex that much. If men were that preoccupied with sex, how would most of us function in society?

As I see it, sexual desire is a universal human trait, and can be healthy, depending on how it’s expressed. However, the notion that men must obsess over sex every waking moment of our lives doesn’t do men any favors. I do have aspirations, and I prefer to be remembered for what I strive for and differences that I make than how much I think about sex.

It’s assumed that when men gather together, we talk primarily about women and our sexual exploits, and there is an assumption that, if left to our own devices, we’d spend hours a day looking at pornography on the internet. This doesn’t paint of picture of our gender as being productive and intellectually engaged, but neither does the notion that men are constantly sexually-obsessed.

I would also like to point out that, often, men are judged by physical appearance instead of what else we have to offer. The popular notion is that men focus on function over form, and while this is generally true, it’s because of this that this is frequently overlooked.

Sometimes, men with certain physical characteristics are favored for female attraction over those without them. This girl I knew in high school (that I was interested in) had a poster of Brendan Fraser in her bedroom. He would be the guy known for playing the role of Tarzan and George of the Jungle, among other things. Women would generally prefer to have a poster like that in their bedrooms (though their spouses might object to it). As a skinny teenager with acne, there was little more I could do than accept the fact that I was in competition with other members of the male gender for the sexual attention of women, even as the media instilled in young women unrealistic expectations of male characteristics.

Some women prefer certain characteristics in men, and many of these are physical characteristics. What could I do to get the attention of women other than attempt to live up to their expectations?

It’s expected of men to be in competition with other men, and women seem more attracted to men who butt heads with other men. How far would a man get complaining that we still live in an age where men compete with other men? After all, women are usually more drawn to men that they feel can protect them, and a man that just complains is probably complaining about a game that he’s losing.

Sometimes a person looks for certain characteristics in a potential suitor. Sometimes a person prefers some characteristics over others, some of them physical. This is often called an indication of a person’s tastes.

Do I mean to say that women are unfair to men? Sometimes, they are. People sometimes have a double-standard toward other people. For example, there is a problem with domestic violence against men. Little about it is done, because men are typically viewed as being on the administering end of the domestic violence problem, and when someone behaves violently against men, it’s expected of him to be macho and “take it.”

Some men have a conviction against committing acts of violence against women, and when such a man is the recipient of spousal abuse, there is little he could do about it. And because he’s a man, he can expect little sympathy from either women or men.

The American legal system has an overwhelming bias favoring women in domestic disputes. This is also the case when it comes to sexual crimes; it’s typically assumed that the man is at fault. This problem is magnified by the fact that, when it comes to sexual crimes, people are prone to assuming the worst in other people, and thus a mere allegation is sufficient to heavily damage some people’s lives. Because of this, some people attempt to get revenge on other people by accusing them of committing a sexual crime. And when the person issuing the allegation is a woman, a man who is on the receiving end of it is in for the battle of his life.

There are other challenges that men face, but these are a few of the big ones. Many view it as being “the way things are”, and because of this, many cope with life facing these conditions. There are certain things that men have to deal with, and deal with them, we do.

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