Feminism is all the rage these days and in a good way. It has allowed women to open up and start healthy conversations about and against years of oppressive realities. Interestingly, a less talked about facet remains: how does feminism benefit men.
There are many good things about feminism and its impact on men is one of them. Feminism does not pick sides but rather contributes to overall gender equality which is truly the need of the hour. Contrary to the popular perception that labels feminists as anti-men, feminism also has advantages for men.
Feminism in modern society is a changing landscape. New topics and concepts are coming to the forefront every day. The question of how does feminism benefit men is one of them. Unfortunately, this aspect of this movement for equality of sexes is not as openly discussed and debated. Let us now turn that around.
Men And Feminism
Men and feminism do not get along, as a large cross-section of them are often prejudiced against this movement, calling it a “male-hating agenda”. Well, these prejudices often stem from years of patriarchal conditioning. Understandable, but this trivialization and over-simplification do demean a movement of monumental consequence.
Men around the world have been victims of patriarchy and very few of them are doing anything about it. It is unfortunate that a lot of men do not even understand how does feminism benefit men. When it comes to discussing feminism, men often feel insecure and disgruntled, mostly due to the lack of awareness or feeling threatened by whatever little they know about feminism.
Feminism as it is today also talks about issues that men face and have been facing for quite some time. For instance, the gender-biased approach to “being a man” is detrimental to their general well-being. One of the major advantages of feminism is that it is not a one-way street.
Rather, it encompasses the ingrained societal issues that are bothering all of us. And these prejudices are conveniently placed inside their belief system, causing damage beyond comprehension. Feminist men are much-needed in society today and a better understanding of feminism can make that happen.
What Is Feminism?
Quoting from Wikipedia, “Feminism is a range of political movements, ideologies, and social movements that share a common goal: to define, establish and achieve political, economic, personal, and social equality of sexes. This includes seeking to establish educational and professional opportunities for women that are equal to those for men.”
So, that being said, let’s take a look at how does feminism benefit men.
Changing the dynamics of conventional parenthood
Among heterosexual couples, there’s always pressure on the man to provide for the family while the woman is expected to stays at home, taking care of the household and children. The conventional gender roles have done more damage to society, where the man is often deprived of spending time with his kid.
The assigned role given to the wife is equally regressive since caregiving shouldn’t be restricted to women. A woman is expected to have a phenomenal work-life balance and be the perfect woman and wife.
In modern society, where patriarchy is still at large, liberal culture is slowly dissolving the prejudices with the help of feminism. More men are starting out as caregivers while their wives are out there working a 9-5 job.
This is undoubtedly one of the many good things about feminism. This movement has also empowered men to do what their heart desires. People will still judge, but as long as you know where you stand, these judgments have no consequence at all.
It’s okay to cry
Crying is portrayed as a sign of weakness and gets conveniently categorized as something women would do. In reality, crying is just an outpouring of emotion when circumstances get overwhelming. And boys can cry too.
When boys don’t cry or don’t express themselves emotionally, it affects their mental health too. So, men need to be a bit more expressive, and feminism says it’s okay to cry and be expressive about your emotions.
Emotional baggage can really weigh you down sometimes and crying only helps with that. Thanks to this shift, more and more men are now talking about their mental health openly and reaching out for help if needed.
The “tough, masculine” tropes are falling back and that is a very healthy transition. How does feminism benefit men? Well, this is a good starting point. The conventional masculine traits are slowly getting dissolved. They are not entirely gone, but you don’t always have to be tough to be a man. Be tough either way, because this world is unforgiving and evil.
Pink is not feminine
Pink has always been thrown under the bus for being too “loud” or “feminine”. It has always been considered a woman’s color. Men have rarely embraced this color, and even if they do, it attracts a fair share of ridicule and mockery. Often, men have been called “gay” with vulgar implications if they wore pink.
But a color can’t be constricted to any particular gender or sex. Pink is for everyone and male models are advocating that by wearing outfits in that very color. It is okay to be a man who wears pink. That idea is finally hitting home.
Dominance has nothing to with being a man
The social standard for being a man is no less than frustrating. The frustration is also detrimental to their mental health. Men are always expected to be dominant, in control, and capable of fulfilling a list of social obligations.
Failing to meet these standards somehow makes them lose credibility. This burden of expectations has pushed so many men to the brink of despair, depression, suffering and struggle. These prejudices have the implications of a very binary outlook of gender and roles assigned to them (conventionally).
So, we need feminism. Period.
There are many positive effects of feminism. One of the advantages of feminism is that it has brought to the forefront many issues in society that were not talked about before. It is enabling people to stand up for themselves and walk away from societal expectations to build a healthy life that suits them.
Feminism has a long way to go still but it has empowered both men and women. It has allowed them to be unafraid of who they want to be and seize opportunities regardless of what is societally expected of them.
The point of feminism is essentially the reversal of patriarchal conditioning that is stifling both men and women. It is helping people realize the prejudices that they have been subjugated to. Moreover, it is allowing them to change that and live life on their own terms.