When a boy becomes a man? – Huff Post

29 Sep

I recently came across this well-written article, and I wanted to share it with my readers.  The author, Melissa Schultz, is a mother who is transitioning from a full house into an empty nest.  She shares her mother’s perspective on what it means to be a man.

Here is the article.


The positives of this article:

  1.  It doesn’t link manhood to various traditional, yet lacking markers – like having children, making money, or growing a beard.
  2. Great portrayal of a mother’s struggle to allow her children to grow up.  “And then, even then, when we see our sons as men, sometimes, we still secretly see them as our little boys. Because we want to. Not because they are.”
  3. Gives several inadequate markers of manhood, but doesn’t fully answer the question, “What makes a man?”  Her answer is, “For me, a boy becomes a man when he lets himself fall in love. It says he’s ready and willing to discover who he really is, to take risks; to care for someone other than himself.”  While the ability to fall in love can be a mark of knowing who they really are (self-discovery), take risks (courage), and caring for others (self-less), these characteristics are still greatly lacking.

I think that all men regularly ask themselves if they are truly a man.  As boys, we long every day to become a man, and yet often never fully feel satisfied that we have arrived.  These uncertain feelings can lead men to a lack of confidence and confusion.

While we can never adequately define manhood, we can encourage one another in this journey.

Here are some additional articles that encourage you (or someone you love) in this pursuit.

Dr. G. David Boyd is the Founder and Managing Director of EA Resources, a non-profit designed to encourage emerging adults and their parents.

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