What are men’s issues?
Our culture carries many myths about men and their feelings. Most of them are not very flattering.
Men aren’t in touch with their feelings
Men can’t share their feelings
Men don’t know how to have close friends
Men only want sex
Men like being in control
Men are all about anger
Like all myths, these may carry a grain of truth. But, they are only a tiny part of the story. Men have a much deeper, richer and meaningful emotional life than our culture likes to admit.
At the same time, men are taught that being “successful” or being “a real man” carries a lot of demands.
A real man knows what he wants and goes after it - he makes it happen
A real man is financially successful - he shoulders the bulk of (or all of) the family’s financial responsibilities
A real man endures through the tough times without complaint - no “whiners” allowed
A real man sacrifices his own needs for the needs of his loved ones - he has no needs
That’s a lot of pressure for anyone to carry.
Issues often addressed by men in therapy
With so many responsibilities on their shoulders, men often have a hard time finding their own desires and meaning. This often requires finding a level of balance between a man’s individual needs and the needs of his partner or family. Is having time for myself selfish?
Intimacy and relationships
What does it mean to be intimate with another person? How can I learn to trust and open my heart? How can I share myself, but not lose myself in the relationship?
What does sex really mean to me? What do I want from sex? Is my selx life fulfilling? How can my partner and I communicate about our sexual needs and desires? What myths about men inhibit my sexual experience and connection with my partner?
Finding meaning and joy
Who am I? What do I really want out of life? What do I find deeply meaningful? Where do I see myself in the future? What kind of man do I want to be?
Importance of Men’s Issues
There’s no denying the privilege that comes from being a man. Male privilege is real. But at the same time, men also pay a price for being a man. And without a place where it is safe to discuss that price, the cost can become much too high.