Traditional masculinity ‘harmful’

American psychologists go after the binary

“Socializing boys to suppress their emotions causes damage…” (photo by Filios Sazeides/Unsplash)

The following comes from a Jan. 8 story on The Christian Post.

The American Psychological Association has issued new guidelines spelling out how “traditional masculinity” is “harmful” to men and boys for the purpose of helping the psychologists who work with them. The guidelines have already drawn considerable criticism.

The professional guidelines, which reportedly took 13 years to develop, are the first of their kind that the group has published for clinicians for working with men and boys.

The APA relies on 40 years of research “showing that traditional masculinity is psychologically harmful and that socializing boys to suppress their emotions causes damage that echoes both inwardly and outwardly,” the January 2019 press release explains.

Among the assertions the APA makes are that “the more men conformed to masculine norms, the more likely they were to consider as normal risky health behaviors such as heavy drinking, using tobacco and avoiding vegetables, and to engage in these risky behaviors themselves.”

“What is gender in the 2010s?” Ryon McDermott, a psychologist at the University of South Alabama who helped draft the men’s guidelines asks in the report.

“It’s no longer just this male-female binary.”

The role of the clinician, he says, can be to encourage men “to discard the harmful ideologies of traditional masculinity (violence, sexism) and find flexibility in the potentially positive aspects (courage, leadership).”

McDermott and his team are working on a “positive-masculinities scale” to capture peoples’ adherence to the pro-social traits expected from men, something that has not yet been measured systematically.

“Traditional” masculinity is never defined precisely in the report. But the authors do say it is “marked by stoicism, competitiveness, dominance and aggression [and] is, on the whole, harmful.”

Thus far, some reactions, spanning the political and professional spectrum, have dismissed the APA as an untrustworthy and ideological organization….

 

 

Comments

  1. Anonymous says:

    BS. I want my patriarchy back with a healthy dose of toxic masculinity. I am a woman. I was born in the 1950’s. I am a victim of the sexual revolt and so is my family, my children, my friends. These people have too much time on their hands. They need a real job. There are lies and statistics as they well know

  2. helen wheels says:

    Anonymous Jan 9:
    Thank you for your candor !

    by the way is APA spelled: the
    american psychotic association ?

  3. Not surprising, no real need for “men” in this society, unless you need a sperm donor.
    I would refer the statisticians to Pope St. JP the Great’s “Theology of the Body”
    Our physiology speaks volumes about our natures.

  4. St. Christopher says:

    Really, “Stoicism, competitiveness, dominance, and aggression;” these are bad things? Real men marked the advances of Mankind throughout history. Yes, yes, I am aware that women are heroic, too, and have not had their stories adequately told yet; and that “Mankind’s solitary boast” is a woman (Mary). But, men do the trail blazing, the fighting (and defending), being the wall holding back barbarism and moral evil. As St. Paul said, women are to be “submissive” to their husbands, but men are charged to “love” their wives, as Christ loved Mankind. Our duty is to protect, and to defend, and to die, as is necessary. Christ is our example and Lord. All the traits noted by the APA are, indeed, what man needs to have, and to train…

    • I used to argue with one of my feminist gym teachers — way back in the time of the flood, the 1950’s — about St. Paul. She accused him of being a male chauvinist for saying that a woman had to obey her husband. I told her to read the rest of the passage — that the man had to protect and die for the wife. Quite frankly I think at times he got the worse end of the deal. (laughter.)

  5. Most certainly one can define masculinity in such a way that it is trivially toxic. What these empty-headed savants fail to do (yet) is to define masculinity in its most noble sense, and so they construct a straw-man argument. And while these ideologues are at it, maybe they can impress us by defining toxic femininity and make even greater fools of themselves. It is sad that it takes a non-Catholic like Jordan Peterson to attack this pernicious ideology. Catholic leaders, enlightened by the Moral/Natural Law contained in Scripture and Tradition, should have beaten Peterson to the punch. That they haven’t indicates to this reader that they can’t. And if true that is a great sorrow.

  6. Anonymous says:

    I think that many psychologists think in terms of “sickness”– and are out-of-touch with normalcy, and good, normal health! They also forget that in America, we have many cultures that have come here- many are deeply emotionally expressive, traditionally– for both men and women! My parents were first-generation Americans, children of immigrants! Their traditional concepts of masculinity and femininity were very strong, and well-defined– and also– they were all quite emotionally-expressive! Very talkative, hands waving in the air– strong personalities! Quite creative, too! Sometimes, strong quarrels, loud voices! And regardless–overall– LOVE!! (I don’t think the psychologists are in “my” culture!)

    • My mother had a handsome older brother, very successful in business, too. But he was too “macho,” and so my mom worried about her sister-in-law, whom she was close to. She decided to have a big talk with her brother, all about the importance of marriage and family life, and the sacredness of home and family– the most important thing in the world! And he did change– and was a great husband and father, too!

  7. Steve Seitz says:

    This report appears to have been written by the feminine version of misogynists. How would women like it if the American Psychologist Association wrote an article that described “traditional femininity” using only the negative feminine attributes. In short, this is a propaganda piece. It’s authors are without a healthy sense of shame.

  8. This article is a superficial description of a very complex topic. When men go to war they have, suffered trauma when they come home they avoid facing themselves. Everyone suffers. We can talk about virtue, holiness, Moral values. We need men with leadership, courage and strong morals. Today’s secular society degrades men and women. Let’s turn to Our Precious Lord and cling to Him.

  9. History Major says:

    I recommend that everyone here listen to Fr. Ripperger’s lecture called “How to Raise a Man.”

  10. Anonymous says:

    Regarding male chauvinism– male chauvinists are dysfunctional men who are bossy, selfish, and “me”-centered. They are not normal. Also– it is abnormal for men — or women– of any society, to want to be “teen-agers forever,” not growing to full, mature adulthood, with adult responsibilities.

  11. LOL.

  12. I’m sure these researchers are a lot like my experience of most professors in the little community college I attended before entering the seminary in 1974. They’ve been greatly influenced by the extremist society around them. In those days they smelled of marijuana and B.O. They were “Peaceniks” and came up with the infamous “There are no right or wrong answers, only how you FEEL!”.

    These professional boys and girls haven’t grown up yet and are still impressed by the current psychosis that there are more than two genders and that men should be eunuchs and even women, if at all possible.

    And so we have another tiny group with an extremist position that we’ll remember as part of the insanity in our world, not the norm at all…

    • Anonymous says:

      Father Higgins. the suicide rate among men has skyrocketed. This isn’t about hippie stuff. It is about saving lives.

  13. The psychological and social science professions and academic departments have been thoroughly corrupted by PC nonsense and irrationality.

  14. In the words of that beautiful wedding son, “Woman takes her life from man and gives it back again, and there is love.” All else is delusional.

    • Correction: wedding song. And the words really: “Woman draws her life from man and gives it back again”, but the meaning is all the same.

      • “Woman sucks the life out of a man”……

        • Ah, bohemond. How unromantic thous art.

        • Catholics aren’t as free as non-Catholics to move on from bad people. It can be embittering. I have not experienced the depth of betrayal and abuse that you have but I have had a situation where someone I had been very generous with (both time and money) turned nasty. They continued being a #$%^& for 10 years, both to me and my family. Yep, a female. I could have cut them off but it would mean cutting off an elderly parent and a sibling because the only time I see the bad person is when I visit family. I informed family why having that person there was a problem but they just make excuses and enable.

          • My marriage is pretty much over, she is with someone else. Much like Anon, sacrifices galore, pretty much broke in every notion of the word. I thank God for women like the Magadalene …, Not another Cross please my back will break….

          • Anonymous says:

            bohemond, I’m sorry. If you really loved her and you are heartbroken, this might be too soon but…what is really painful can become really freeing. I know other Catholics, usually women, who don’t get over it when a spouse leaves them for another. I know others who get involved at Church and form new friendships and get new jobs and have a entirely new life that doesn’t include the old baggage. I will pray for you. This life is short; eternity is long. Live holiness even when others make it difficult. Confess if you fall. It strengthens as well as cleanses.

          • bohemond– from “another Anonymous”– go talk to a good, trustworthy priest about your heavy crosses! Jesus is very near to the suffering, betrayed, and broken-hearted!

          • I would rather not… plus men who are dedicated not having a intimate sexual relationship with women would not understand or relate.. Not another cross I will not accept it

          • Anonympus says:

            Well bohemond– that fine, if you don’t want to go talk to a priest! Anyway– regardless– Jesus is always there, and you can always talk to Him! He was pure of heart, and celibate, and He loves all of us, and understands us intimately, deeply– and will never, never fail any of us! Jesus is there, always– and He can help!

        • I am sorry for what you have had to go through, bohemond, and will pray for you. Sometimes when we try to break the tension on here with a little humor, we do not realize the crosses others have had to bear, and that it is not so humorous to some people. God’s blessings to you.

  15. Anonymous says:

    I am another “Anonymous.” Catholics should always pray for guidance, in all situations– and Our Lord will always lead you to the right decision! He knows what is best! He has very good reasons, for all things in life — far beyond what we can possibly know! He also can bring wonderful, good things, out of very bad situations, as St Paul said — and He can also work unexpected miracles, in all situations in life–you just never know! It may take a lot of time and patience- but prayer– and patience!– is the only way!

    • Anonymous says:

      With things getting so bad in the world and in the church it’s hard to believe what you say. I’ve done everything right, played by the rules, courageously stood up for the faith, and I’ve been screwed right and left. While nothing happens to the wicked. I’m left wondering if I’m a fool.

      • Anonymous says:

        I am another “Anonymous”– remember, the same things you are describing, happened to Jesus! I was taught, very young, that anyone desiring good character, and desiring to follow Our Lord- — would have to be strong and courageous, lifelong! It is not an easy path! But God gives us the grace to walk that path to Heaven! The “fallen world” is weak, sinful and corrupt— exactly as it says in the Bible! I was taught to ignore this, and keep close to Our Lord, and persevere! In so doing– you may also be God’s instrument, to bring His Light and Love to others– but may never know it! You can do much good!

      • Anonymous says:

        You know, Anonymous (I am another “Anonymous!”)– Christ was also viewed as “the Fool,” and His Cross, the greatest folly imaginable! We are told, to “embrace the folly of the Cross,” and follow after “the Fool,” Christ! Have faith! Heaven awaits! The “fallen world”– and all its empty, false beliefs and promises- belongs to the Prince of Darkness, the REAL Fool, Satan!– who rejected God, and fell from grace, eons ago, stating proudly– “Non serviam!”

      • We are supposed to be content with that.

      • Anonymous says:

        Saying that you’ve been screwed right and left indicates that you wanted something for yourself that you did not get. Or maybe you got something you did not want.
        If you lose your girlfriend because you won’t attend her colleague’s gay wedding, you may feel screwed but you are better off.
        If you lose your job because you refuse to do something immoral, trust that God will care for you.
        If you get a cross burned on your lawn, it’s scary but they don’t usually harm people these days.
        Think about all the recent martyrs who have lost their lives for the faith.

  16. helen wheels says:

    Anon of 1/13 @ 9:03
    You are at the very crux (cross) of human existence.
    7 billion people on the planet; 7 billion different opinions on the matter =
    none of which matter one damn bit. It’s either True or it’s NOT.
    I WILL pray for you as I pray for myself
    this is crunch time

  17. Anonymous says:

    I am another “Anonymous”– remember, the same things you are describing, happened to Jesus! I was taught, very young, that anyone desiring good character, and desiring to follow Our Lord- — would have to be strong and courageous, lifelong! It is not an easy path! But God gives us the grace to walk that path to Heaven! The “fallen world” is weak, sinful and corrupt— exactly as it says in the Bible! I was taught to ignore this, and keep close to Our Lord, and persevere! In so doing– you may also be God’s instrument, to bring His Light and Love to others– but may never know it! You can do much good!

  18. Anonymous says:

    You know, Anonymous (I am another “Anonymous!”)– Christ was also viewed as “the Fool,” and His Cross, the greatest folly imaginable! We are told, to “embrace the folly of the Cross,” and follow after “the Fool,” Christ! Have faith! Heaven awaits! The “fallen world”– and all its empty, false beliefs and promises- belongs to the Prince of Darkness, the REAL Fool, Satan!– who rejected God, and fell from grace, eons ago, stating proudly– “Non serviam!”

  19. Bernie Mac says:

    Many years of data show that boys and men get a “raw deal” – particularly in their formative years. As a 65 year old man, I grew up with “real men” – real tough guys. My dad was a WWII vet – he would beat on my sibs and I. Another was a priest, Father Shawn, the chaplain for our high school football team. He was real macho – he tried to molest my brother and I. Yes, traditional “manhood” is a bunch of nonsense. After all, Jesus wept!

    • Yes, traditional “manhood” is a bunch of nonsense. Only to one filled with self hatred..and feminized little men

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