Google+ Bree Bronson's Babies: Like the male elephant

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Like the male elephant

Safari
Last September I took a trip to Kenya with my Father. It was his birthday present. During the trip we visited Amboseli National Park wondering the thousands of elephants that live there. Our guide told that the male elephants always live alone, to which Father commented "just like us guys then, haha".

His comment didn't seem like a complete joke and it made me think. Are guys alone in this world? Because that's what Husband keeps on trumpeting as well: "I'm alone working my ass off to support for the family and no-one appreciates my efforts". Right. When I think about Father or Husband they are way less alone than I am or Mother is. The both guys are working which attaches them in a tight network. Father has multiple friends and hobbies, Husband has his own friends as well. And there have always been networks for guys (army, different clubs) where women aren't welcome (almost) at all. Still the both guys feel that they are "alone in the world". Why?

Home has maybe been traditionally the place where women "rule". Sure enough, right now my work is at home so I know exactly how things are run here. And most certainly enough, if I'm the one doing the cooking I'll also decide where the pots, pans, plates and ingredients are stored in the kitchen. I'm not telling Husband either how he should organize his desk at work. I think this somehow threatens Husband because he wants to decide about everything. And snce I don't let him to and keep marking my territory in the house he becomes a micro manager ("that's not how you froth milk" - editorial note: Husband doesn't drink coffee, nor has he ever tried frothing milk). So maybe he feels sort of an outsider at home? Me and kids have become a team because we spend so much time together, I'm not surprised if Husband feels left outside because he's never there with us.

My Mother rules at home for sure as well, but I don't think it explains why Father feels like a male elephant. I burn for egalitarianism and I think guys are somehow threatened by women who also have started to network now. In Helsinki area alone, there are networks for women working in IT, women entrepreneurs etc. Only for women. Ladies are now networking like guys have always done and I think that's somehow frightening men. Or is it? What do you think?

I think it's fantastic that the roles are changing a bit. If only guys would stay at home with the kids more too. Then, I think, they would get an insight to how it feels to be really lonely all the time. Even though you're never alone.

9 comments:

  1. Could it be that their feeling of loneliness is somehow related to the nature of their relationship with other guys? Most of the men I know do have a range of networks as you described but when they spend time together, their discussions are (mostly) limited to the nature of network (work, hobby etc) where as I find that most women, moms in particular, speak of quite personal things even with less familiar people. This of course isn't true for everyone but at least fairly common around me. I have plenty of people to complain how lonely I feel at home with the baby while He seems to have limited people to complain to (hence He is complaining to me...)

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    1. That's a good point about the guys' relationship to other guys. I have a good male friend who ventilates his feelings with me and we discuss very personal things with each other. We chat like I would chat with any female friend. He commented to me once that guys don't really talk openly about their problems with each other. If a friend is having a hard time and comes over the support he gets goes along the lines of "sit down, let's play World of Warcraft, I'll get you a beer". But there's no talking about feelings or directly about the problem. Why an earth?! I can point out dozens of guys that would benefit from that *a lot*. Do guys consider confidential and open discussions somehow embarrassing? Or "gay"??

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    2. Why on earth indeed? And how could you make Him talk about his feelings before there is so much things bottled up that He will burst?

      By the way, commenting would be SO much easier without that password thingy which really doesn't work well in mobile.

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    3. Husband is a "bursting type" - he will swear a long, ugly list of horrible words if he spills he's Coke on the table. So I don't think he really bottles up so much stuff, he just bursts really easily about everything. So you can imagine his reaction to things that aren't fixable in 5 seconds with a dish cloth. :) I know when it's not a good time to annoy him. What I don't know is how he could calm down a bit so that I wouldn't need to be on my tiptoes all the time. Go figure.

      Thanks for the feedback - I tried taking off the word verification now (did it disappear?). I originally put it on because I want to allow anonymous comments due to the nature of topics in this blog. Let's see how it works out - if we start getting spam on the comments I might have to put it back to make it nicer for us after all.

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    4. By the way: I blog with my mobile almost all the time as well so I totally hear you...

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    5. Yay, it works well now, thanks!

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    6. Great! Let's hope the spammers don't notice the change. ;)

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  2. Anonymous commenting is a good thing with topics like these!

    Having to be on one's tiptoes is a terrible thing. I know that from my childhood and the same thing seems to be happening now with Him. Reading your stories (as well as talking with friends) has been really helpful while trying to decide how we can come out of this situation without collateral damage. Things aren't bad yet, but I feel strongly that one should never have to be afraid at home so something has to change, quickly.

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    1. I thought too that anonymous commenting is a must here althought it would at some point require moderating the comments or putting the password thingy back. I feel it's important that everyone can comment freely about how they feel.

      One day it dawned on me that I was in a similar being-on-my-tiptoes-situation as a kid too. My Father and Sister are people who will pour all their negative feelings to their family members. So I never knew how they would meet me when they came home. They could be sunny and friendly or complete monsters. Funnily though they didn't fight much with each other. And now Husband is like that too. What am I, a complete idiot?! Like you said, one should never have to be afraid at home and I feel too that something needs to change.

      I'm so glad if I can offer peer support to someone, that's what I need myself as well. I'm processing my feelings and my situation a lot with my writing since I don't know what would be the right thing to do. Reflecting and changing thoughts with others is great; at least I know that I'm not alone.

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If you say it, I'll hear you.