Human nature is very complex. Men have learned to be strong, competitive and courageous in times of danger. History has shown that we are able to conquer our fears and reach our goals — as long as our will, conviction and desire are present. Mankind has overcome the hardships of war and natural disasters. Yet there is one natural fear that seems to overshadow most men: the fear of rejection. This instinctive emotion paralyzes and hinders us from doing the things we really want to do, including meeting women. Some men are so afraid of rejection that they would rather run through a minefield than walk up to a woman and ask her out on a date. The need to feel desirable and part of a group is inevitable, and some people will place themselves in extreme circumstances just to preserve that feeling of belonging. …there is a very simple way to overcome this crippling emotion: Develop a greater fear of regret. My father hit the nail on the head when he told me that I wouldn’t regret the times that I made a complete fool of myself, but rather the times that I didn’t try something out of fear. I learned that valuable lesson way back in my early 20s. I had a crazy crush on this sweet girl, but I was too concerned with rejection to ask her out. A few years later, I bumped into her at a friend’s party and found out that she also used to have a thing for me. I finally let her know that I’d had a crush on her, to which she replied, “Why didn’t you do or say anything?” Of course, it was too late because she had already gotten married. Most men fear rejection because it lowers their self-esteem. But there is really no reason to lose any confidence when women say “no” because they aren’t really rejecting you. How could they be rejecting you when they don’t even know what you’re all about? The important thing to remember is that no one in this world can appeal to everyone’s tastes. Each woman has her preferences, so if she rejects you, it just means that you don’t fit the description of what she desires. If you think that women who reject your drink offers or date requests are frightening, you don’t know what true rejection is about. Once a man sees what true rejection is, he realizes how childish it is to fear approaching unfamiliar women. True rejection occurs when a woman rejects a man with whom she has spent a considerable amount of time. It is the ultimate rejection because the man is dismissed due to his all-around identity. From an article by Curt Smith http://www.askmen.com/dating/curtsmith/19_dating_advice.html
As I look back on my life,
I realize that every time
I thought I was being rejected
from something good,
I was actually being
re-directed to something better.
It seems that we are re-discovering the undeniable fact that men and women are actually quite different. And we are beginning to develop a coherent and compassionate understanding of healthy, normal male emotion, behavior, and relationship dynamics. Man’s earliest ancestors lived in a harsh and hostile environment that placed a high premium on physical strength. The strong survived, and the weak lived exceedingly brief lives… Because he was the fighter and because he was the provider, it was inevitable that the male came to be responsible for woman’s welfare. This is the historical reality. Gender differentiation evolved out of actual physical, perhaps physiological, necessity. This biological foundation, along with recent findings from modern brain science, helps to explain why men do what they do, feel what they feel, and how they struggle with confusing, even conflicting contemporary role demands and expectations. Men have primarily been defined by their work roles (along with conquests and success in business, sports, wars, and other ventures), not by their role relationships within families or other social groupings. Historically, men were dominant over women, driven primarily by physiological factors, and the major forces of historical change were conducted by powerful male rulers and military leaders, a male-dominated church, and other powerful men. In the modern era, male stereotypes developed as a result of cultural ideals created in literature, movies, and television (cowboy, romantic hero, soldier, 1950’s family man, and even the angry, bigoted archetypes like Archie Bunker). Currently we are influenced by post-feminist stereotypes such as the bumbling, ineffective and inarticulate man, or just the insensitive “cave man” who “cannot communicate”. The role of men in the workforce, relationships and society has changed dramatically in recent history, as a result of revolutionary economic and social changes. Until very recently, there was no need or expectation for men to communicate in an intimate manner. There was no historical necessity for men to talk about their feelings, to be emotionally sensitive to others, or to “validate” women or children. From article by Richard J. Loebl, LCSW, PA http://www.goodtherapy.org/therapy-for-men.html
Feelings are not
supposed to be logical.
Dangerous is the man
who has rationalized
To continue to open yourself up emotionally to an abusive or addicted person without seeing true change is foolish. You should not continue to set yourself up for hurt and disappointment. If you have been in an abusive relationship, you should wait until it is safe and until real patterns of change have been demonstrated before you go back. In that horribly rough, shaky, nerve-rattling stage of stepping out in the truth, many adult survivors will have strong physical reactions to what they are remembering or seeing in a new light. They will, in many cases, demonstrate the symptoms of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. They have been locked in a false reality for so long…. they are bound to feel the physical pain, via headaches, stomach pains, panic attacks, etc. in looking at the truth of what is. (And all that is one of the many, many reasons we highly recommend therapy for all adult survivors of emotional child abuse.) Unable to endure the headaches and that terrible feeling of guilt, of being orphaned, many adult survivors hurry back. A professional therapist, however, may tell them to hold on. Wait. Give it time. You don’t hurry back to the abusers to stop having headaches or feeling bad. Go to a professional therapist. Even if you cannot afford regular visits, go when you can to the same one, who will know your history and will be able to guide you through everything. They will not be sentimental about what could have been and can remind you of what exactly you’d be hurrying back to. Get rid of the magical thinking— “I wish my parents had been loving!” or “Maybe my parents will love me this time!”— is a tremendous step towards becoming healthy once more. So, let yourself mourn what you didn’t have and mourn what you did have. You have the right to be sad. It’s all right. Let yourself be sad…. (Just make sure that the mourning doesn’t last for too long or become suicidal or hopelessness… Look to the present. Remind yourself of the gift that you’ve given yourself in facing the truth of your emotionally abusive childhood. You can no longer be held emotional hostage. You are free to be who God intended you to be, free to be your most authentic self. Instead of wanting to turn back to the past, focus on what you have today… and try and create a new life for yourself with friends who are emotionally healthy, loving, and kind… and be that to others, too. By Veronica Maria Jarski http://theinvisiblescar.wordpress.com/tag/adult-survivors-of-emotional-child-abuse-2/
Don’t turn your face away.
Once you’ve seen,
You can no longer act like you don’t know.
Open your eyes to the truth.
It’s all around you.
Don’t deny what the eyes
To your soul have revealed to you.
When you unconditionally love a child, you love and accept him no matter what. For example, if your child drew on the walls with crayon, you won’t like what he did, but you still love him. According to a WebMD article titled “10 Commandments of Good Parenting,” it’s impossible to spoil a child with love. Just keep in mind that love isn’t synonymous with material possessions, low expectations or inappropriate leniency. When a child gets into trouble, a parent has a couple of ways to handle the problem — with punishment or discipline. Parents who use punishment do so as a way to make a child stop what she’s doing or to make her “pay” for her undesired actions or behaviors, according to the Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University’s publication, “Discipline and Punishment: What is the Difference?” Punishments often have nothing to do with a child’s offense, are self-centered and place responsibility on the parent to take action. On the other hand, discipline helps a child learn to behave appropriately, uses logical consequences that relate to the offense, shows respect and helps a child learn self-control. Parents are a child’s first teachers. From his first words to social norms, a child learns by watching and listening to his parents. According to the article “How to Be a Good Parent: It’s All about You!” on the Psychology Today website, being a positive role model for your child can be more effective than disciplinary measures or behavior training. Because your child looks to you to see how he should socialize and behave, it’s important to make your actions and words worth imitating. Children thrive on routine. When your behaviors, boundaries, rules and modes of discipline are consistent, your child will trust you, feel safe and respect your authority. While it’s important to be consistent with your behaviors and values, it’s equally vital to practice flexibility as a parent. As your child grows, so will her needs and skills. Making adjustments to the way you parent will help foster independence and intellectual growth, and provide a structured, supportive environment. Allowing yourself to pursue your own sense of independence is as important as fostering your child’s autonomy. Remember that you are more than a parent; you are a person with talents, hobbies and others who care about you. As you let your child explore and develop a sense of self, occasionally take time out for your own pursuits. Otherwise, according to Firestone, you’re at risk of living your life through your child, which can lead to emotional voids and rebellion. by Flora Richards-Gustafson, Demand Media http://everydaylife.globalpost.com/qualities-make-good-bad-parent-3846.html
Your kids require you
most of all to love them
for who they are,
not to spend your
whole time trying
to correct them.
The stereotypes of reserved men and emotional women are widespread and do affect the way young boys and girls are raised. Some researchers argue that we may be ingraining gender differences that do not naturally exist by accepting and passing on these stereotypes to our children. Other researchers believe these differences have developed due to the evolutionary roles placed on men and women to survive and thrive. While researchers debate these gender differences, they agree that the differences ultimately can have a negative effect on members of both sexes. Some research has found that the differences may be rooted in cultural stereotypes. For example, women are perceived as being more emotional and behave that way because it’s believed that’s what women do, while men express emotion only when the situation warrants it. Parents may have a hand in promoting these gender differences, expressing disapproval with boys who cry or express other “weak” emotions while shrugging off similar behavior in girls. Other studies posit an evolutionary cause for these gender differences in emotion. Men serving as hunter-gatherers needed to take more risks and be more dominating, while women who stayed home and cared for young needed to be more nurturing and cautious. These roles have resisted change as human society has progressed, and indeed, progress may cause these roles to become even more pronounced. Gender differences in emotional processing and response have direct consequences on the physical and emotional health of men and women. Overly emotional women tend to be at greater risk for depression, anxiety, and other mood disorders, while men who repress their feelings tend to be at greater risk for physical ailments such as high blood pressure, and also tend to indulge in more risky behavior and vices such as smoking or drinking. Others believe that parents can help dull or negate these stereotypes by refusing to reinforce them. Whether you’re trying to bring up children without gender stereotypes or looking after your own emotional health, be aware of these gender differences and how they affect both men’s and women’s experiences of the world. From an article by Dennis Thompson Jr. http://www.everydayhealth.com/emotional-health/gender-differences-in-emotional-health.aspx
Women need to feel loved
and men need to feel needed.
Rita Mae Brown
There’s absolutely nothing wrong with pleasing people, including ourselves. If we’re willing to make sacrifices for the sake of another, who are we to say that’s wrong? But the fact is, people pleasing isn’t about pleasing others, but fending off our fear of rejection. Those of us who would consider themselves people pleasers are generally individuals who feel the need to be accepted by the world around them. And not just a general acceptance, but that of each person they come in contact with. And to maintain this madness, we seek to please with abandon. One of the great misconceptions among people pleasers is this idea that we’re ‘good people’ who are just trying to make everybody happy. … it’s not so much our great concern for another human being, but our obsession with the way others may perceive us. As a result, we tend to say yes to everything and rarely stick up for ourselves. Even if someone blatantly wrongs us, we are usually the ones who absorb the hurt and then stand in the corner, fuming to ourselves. It’s not a pretty site. The fact is, when we try to please everybody, we end up pleasing nobody. Tired from the burnout that comes from the over extension of ourselves and frustrated by the fact that we keep letting others take advantage of us, we quickly become ineffective in helping others and often times end up resenting everyone around us. Then, when we finally run into a situation where our help is truly needed, we are too depleted to help out. Also, our ability to decipher a real need from that of someone trying to take advantage of our people pleasing nature, is quite skewed. In our minds, every ‘need’ is a requirement for us to act and in time, this wears us down to worthlessness. From an article by ‘Eric’ @ http://motivatethyself.com/overcoming-people-pleasing/
If you are busy pleasing everyone,
you are not being true to yourself.
A man will have faults. An overweight man can look at himself and take the steps needed to shed pounds. A man with poor eyesight can wear glasses or contact lenses. How often, though, does a man look inside himself for ways to improve? A man’s emotional and mental health are just as valuable as his physical, yet the former receives much less attention. One of the most common mental illnesses in men is depression. 10 % of men will suffer a major depressive episode during their lifetime. Great men in history who suffered from depression are numerous: Abraham Lincoln, Ernest Hemingway, Winston Churchill, , and Buzz Aldrin to name a few. Aldrin overcame his depression and alcoholism, eventually becoming Chair of the National Mental Health Association. Churchill took up painting to keep what he called the “black dog” at bay. The treatment Hemingway sought for his depression only served to deepen it. The ECT shock treatments stole from him valuable memories and hindered his writing ability, precipitating his suicide… What makes mental illness, such as depression, so difficult to deal with in men is the perceived shame that comes with admitting it. The World Health Organization states that fewer than 25% of male sufferers worldwide will seek treatment “[because of] social stigmas associated with mental disorders including depression.” A man may put his pride before all else, no matter what the cost. I know this, and I know how high the price can rise. Depression’s origins vary from man to man. Sometimes traumatic events such as sudden death or illness triggers depression. Early social interaction and a man’s childhood also play a major role. If a man felt neglected or unloved by his parents, or ostracized by other children, depression is more likely to become a constant companion. Eventually, however, depression boils down to a question of biochemistry. Although we all have sad episodes in our life, even some lasting for weeks or months, men who suffer from depression have some sort of imbalance in their brain chemistry that causes pain and suffering for no reason and without warning. While looking to the past to find the root of a man’s depression can be beneficial, a focus on positive and active treatment now and in the future is most essential. By S.M. Leahy http://www.artofmanliness.com/2009/09/01/dealing-with-male-depression/
That’s the thing about depression:
A human being can survive almost anything,
as long as she/(he) sees the end in sight.
is so insidious, and it compounds daily,
that it’s impossible to ever see the end.
The fog is like a cage without a key.
A marriage is a living family system. Like all living things, it can get infected with toxic agents that result in its death. Immunities are what combat potential infectious agents. I call these potentially fatal–to-your-marriage phenomena the 3 A’s: addictions, affairs, and anger. Almost all folks from time to time get impulses to do things that their head would say are out-of-bounds. Drinking a bit too much, getting a bit too friendly with someone of the other sex when your love has already been committed elsewhere, and speaking harshly when a cooperative voice would have been preferable are mistakes. Mistakes are for learning. Mistakes like these create feelings of guilt and regret Those are the signs that it’s time for figuring out what went wrong, a totally genuine apology, and learning. The learning is the basis for building an immunity. A small dose of a toxic phenomenon can strengthen your immune system’s ability to resist the sexual-drinking-anger impulses that might otherwise grow increasingly toxic until they get you in trouble. A vaccinated relationship is likely to grow ever stronger and more loving over time. By contrast, repeatedly making the same mistakes instead of using small incidents as a vaccination against larger problems can lead to one of the 3 ‘A’s’. The 3 ‘A’ mistakes can get you fired from the job of spouse. Alcoholism, affairs and anger, in addition to wrecking your marriage, can have profoundly negative impacts on your children. Modeling addictions, affairs and anger teaches your kids that this is what adults do. At the same time, addictive, sexually unfaithful and excessively angry behaviors teach your kids that attachments are unreliable and unsafe, making your kids less able to establish secure positive relationships as they reach adulthood. By clinical psychologist, marriage counselor and author Susan Heitler, Ph.D. http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/resolution-not-conflict/201110/resisting-the-3-main-temptations-destroy-marriages
A successful marriage
in love many times,
always with the same person.
Another person’s assessment of you is just as valid as yours—and possibly more so with respect to how you relate to other people, whether these relationships are familial, friendly, or romantic. In simple terms, people who think of themselves as nice may come off as obnoxious jerks to others, and people who think they have nothing to offer other people may be seen by others as very interesting. The point is that you don’t know as much about yourself as you think, especially with regards to how other people see you and think about you. Self-loathers may always feel inadequate, but they must remember that they’re only seeing part of the picture that other people see. Even though they may never believe that their own view might be biased, they have to accept that the part of themselves that they’re seeing may not be the most important part of themselves to others. A person’s self-perceptions are not complete and they’re not necessarily any more “right” than anyone else’s perceptions of him or her. We can learn a lot from how other people see and react to us, but we have to be willing to listen and accept what we learn, especially when it clashes with how we see ourselves. Taken from an article by Mark D. White, Ph.D. http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/maybe-its-just-me/201306/do-the-self-loathing-see-the-same-self-others-do
I imagine one of the reasons
people cling to their hates
so stubbornly is because
they sense, once hate is gone,
they will be forced to
deal with pain.
To be true to yourself means to act in accordance with who you are and what you believe. If you know and love yourself you will find it effortless to be true to yourself. Just as you cannot love anyone else until you love yourself, you cannot be true to anyone else until you are true to yourself. Be who you are! Have the courage to accept yourself as you really are, not as someone else thinks you should be. Do not take action or pretend to be someone else for the sake of gaining acceptance. When you do things that are not genuine or a reflection of the real you, you will not be happy with yourself and will end up confused. You’ll be confused because you won’t know whom to please, or how. Self-respect comes from being true to who you really are and from acting in accordance with your fundamental nature. When you respect yourself, others will respect you. They will sense that you are strong and capable of standing up for yourself and your beliefs. When you are true to yourself, you allow your individuality and uniqueness to shine through. You respect the opinions of others but do not conform to stereotypes or their expectations of you. To be true to yourself takes courage. It requires you to be introspective, sincere, open-minded and fair. It does not mean that you are inconsiderate or disrespectful of others. It means that you will not let others define you or make decisions for you that you should make for yourself. http://www.essentiallifeskills.net/betruetoyourself.html
He who trims himself
to suit everyone
will soon whittle