When I share a blog-post written by another male with a fellow dude, usually he’s quick to dismiss it or bash it without really reading it, because:
– Men often feel threatened by the possibility of another man’s popularity or intellect, so they protect themselves by thinking “What a pretentious douche.” We’re quick to write you off. If you infringe upon another male’s ego, they will mentally murder you with immediate character assassination.
– Men tend to be insanely jealous of other men’s success, usually because they suffer from intense insecurity or a lack of affirmation. It’s not always their fault, but it’s why men will see other men in a gym and say, “He ain’t all that big” or “He probably takes roids.” When a man gets jealous because his girlfriend is being hit on by another dude, this usually isn’t about his girlfriend, but it’s about the power-struggle of “conquering” his property.
– Most men do not like reading blog posts, or books, or the instructions, or street signs.
– Men will devalue another man’s success by crediting external factors, while blaming his failures on internal factors. So the big businessman or the famous megachurch pastors have “sold out” by smart marketing or shiny facilities, but they’ve gone bankrupt because they’re incompetent idiots.
– Most men find it easier to complain and criticize, instead of actually working to do something.
– Men like to use the words hater, troll, douche-bag, or sigh, because we perceive a disagreement as an attack on our identity, instead of embracing the “opposing view” as a way to build bridges.
– Men want to have the best story in the room. Hence, they love to story-top each other.
– Most men think they’re already very enlightened, so they’ll tear down another man who might remotely be smarter than them. Or we condescend by saying things like “You’ll get it eventually” or somehow think we’re “further along in the truth.”
I know that these issues overlap across genders, but seriously:
Men tend to be the most vicious, vindictive, catty creatures of all, and we destroy each other with snarky sniping deconstruction and various macho forms of eye-rolling. When a woman does this, she’s called a b-word. When a man does this, he’s called a critical thinker.
I’m not saying we don’t think critically or that we can’t dismiss obvious mansplaining. I’m sure it sounds like I’m bashing men for bashing men: but really, I would love it if we could celebrate each other and learn from one another’s success. I wish we could slow down and even consider the points that another man is trying to make, and instead of feeling so threatened, we could admit, “There are smarter men than me, and I could benefit from engaging in conversation.” I wish we could high-five each other when we get the book deal, the movie contract, the keys to a new business, or when one of our blog posts go viral.
Jealousy only holds back the next generation, and I don’t want everything about me to die with me. My hope is to pass on the torch, to promote others to a better place than me, to work myself out of a job, to encourage you to be the truest version of you. I want to pour out the best of me for the best of you. I never, ever want to be the smartest person in the room. God help me, I don’t do this perfectly: but I want to lift up men to run this race together.
Men: I want to cheer for you. Nothing would make me happier than to see you surpass me in every way. It wouldn’t even be that hard.
We need more bro-support and bro-promotion and bro-love.