However, both men and women are largely unaware of the damaging impact on men that a culture of male dominance can cause. It causes shame to both men and women. Sexuality brings abundant opportunities to exaggerate both our vulnerability and shame, to feel pleasure and close, but also to feel unworthy, unacceptable, and unlovable.
Shame and Manhood Boys must separate from their mothers to establish their masculinity. To accomplish this task, they look to their father, peers, and cultural standards and role models to define what it is to be a man. Hypermasculinity Hypermasculinity exaggerates stereotypical male behavior, such as an emphasis on physical strength, aggression, and sexuality. Masculine ideals of toughness, success, and anti-femininity are promoted.
It rejects all feminine traits such as tenderness, compassion, and empathy. Being socialized this way, many boys and men have had their emotions shamed in order to conform to the masculine ideal of toughness, creating homophobia around tender feelings. It puts pressure on men to measure up to these norms and simultaneously shames other parts of them. The challenges were designed to be frightening — even to adults.
Over my objections, one of the male leaders brutally shamed any boy who showed fear, and worse, tears. This is how shame gets passed down. He may struggle in isolation. Because signs of femininity are despised by heterosexual boys trying to establish their own identity, gay teens experience bullying and shaming at school, which may account for a higher rate of adolescent suicides among LGBT youth and substance abuse than heterosexuals..
Objectification of Women Countless men are socialized by their fathers, brothers, and male peers to objectify, dominate, and degrade women. Objectification of women strengthens these values and strains male relationships with women.
The popularity of violent porn is growing, and studies show that it contributes to pedophilia, misogyny, and violence against women. Hard porn is often the basis for male sex education. It normalizes male conquest, control, and dominance and promotes the fantasy that all women enjoy what men demand, including aggression, or that they can be easily coerced to Jensen, Teenage boys then believe that they can and should behave this way, but are disillusioned and disempowered when they discover reality differs.
Power over the opposite gender is used to bolster male low self-esteem and deeply denied shame. This includes shame for any reason, not just sexual shame. But it comes at a price. Teaching boys to be hypermasculine and to disrespect women as equals encourages domination, emotional abuse, and violence. They have to hide their feelings and natural instincts. They feel alienated from other boys and from their real self. They may reject the tough, abusive role model their father represents.
Some teens withdraw and have difficulty establishing their masculine identity. When boys and men have to defend their toughness and image, it further heightens their vulnerability to shame as well as their defensiveness.
Some boys and men become bullies to compensate for insecurity. Like the counselor at the ropes course, they shame others or their own children the way they were shamed at home. Depersonalizing sex and objectifying women both absolves men of responsibility for their actions and protects them from the shame of rejection Carnes, Yet, half of men feel shame about their behavior toward women, leading them to question their worth and lovability as human beings Elder, Shame and Intimacy Men want connection as much as women.
But all of these expectations on them generate insecurity and vulnerability to shame that make connection and authenticity difficult.
Real intimacy can be too frightening and carries shame- anxiety. Instead of receiving nurturing and closeness, many men separate love and sex — and substitute sex for love to avoid the anxiety of intimacy.
Sex is also used to allay anxiety, fill emptiness, lift depressed feelings, and build identity and self-worth. But loveless sex sets the stage for impotence and depression later May, It can potentially leave them with guilt, shame, low self-esteem, and feeling even emptier than before. Sex can become addictive, since there is short term pleasure, but the emptiness is never filled. New partners must be found to ensure excitement and avoid intimacy. Affairs and sexual flirtation with someone outside of a committed relationship are often initiated to boost self-esteem but risk damaging the partner and the relationship, creating more shame.
Over time in long relationships, sex may be divorced from all feeling and become machinelike, especially when any emotional connection has waned. However, shame and psychological emptiness can heal with psychotherapy and self-love and compassion. See Conquering Shame and Codependency: Out of the Shadows: Pornography and the End of Masculinity.
Conquering Shame and Codependency: Lancer has counseled individuals and couples for 28 years and coaches internationally. Male Sexual Shame and Objectification of Women. Retrieved on June 17, , from https: