Real Men Don’t Cry…


Real men don’t cry.

There it is in black and white. Do you believe it?

There are many myths that I can tell my kids, many I will tell my kids – mainly those that are entertaining or involve a useful lesson. But one that I won’t?

Real men don’t cry.

There are many reasons out there, many antiquated stereotypes of the male ego. You see we are suppose to hunt, provide, and protect the family. But men aren’t supposed to care.

Real men don’t cry.

It has to be a sign of low testosterone, or perhaps a mama’s boy who was hugged too much as a child. Maybe a man that was too in touch with his feminine side. Because…

Real men don’t cry.

It’s got to be a sign of weakness. Insecurity. Immaturity. If you are a man and you cry, someone (perhaps The Man) strips you of some imaginary man card. You can’t be a man because…

Real men don’t cry.

Then explain this to me. Why is it that when I see athletes achieve great achievements (championships, awards – remember when Kevin Durant won his MVP award?) that their eyes suddenly become drowned in tears. Allergies? Onions?

Ever watch an NFL Hall of Fame speech. Some of the baddest men, titans of the turf, gladiators of the gridiron are overcome with tears when they thank other men, their parents, their God, for helping them to achieve their dreams.

Remember Mike Tyson? THE Baddest Man on the Planet? Yep, I’ve seen him cry when talking about his trials and tribulations in life. Hockey players, baseball players, golfers, basketball players (remember MJ after he won a title after his father’s murder or his Hall of Fame speech after he ripped everyone that doubted him?) – players of all walks (and all perceived levels of “manliness”) have shed tears. Does that make these sporting icons less masculine?

Real men don’t cry.

Does that mean only women care? Does that mean only women feel? In an age where we don’t talk about mental health and wellbeing enough and we allow others’ perceived notions to become yardsticks of our masculinity, I think it is all that more important to acknowledge our feelings. It’s all that more important to realize that we have a spectrum of feelings and allow ourselves to feel them. And find healthy ways of expressing them.

Because our kids are watching.

This doesn’t mean that I’m advocating for everyone to cry it out over every drop of spilled milk. Nor am I saying that you have to cry in front of people – or even at all. Instead, let’s just put one of the great myths to bed and the stigma that goes along with it.

Real men can cry.

Need proof? As I was finishing this post up, I came across an interesting post about LeBron James. It referenced a series of posts about a Fresh Prince episode that hit close to home for him. And you know what? He admitted it made him cry. Every time he watched it.

I guess if The King can cry, real men can cry too.

That’s it for now…Captain out.

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