I have always wondered if I am a lesser man. You know the stereotypical men are supposed to be strong, tall, and take care of their families. I feel extremely vulnerable and my physical strength is at an all-time low. Also, I have been single for a long long time now.
What does Failure to Launch as a Man mean?
This is a concept popularised in some men's help book where the author says that boys who lack strong father figure role models fail to launch. The consequences are seen as the following.
- Playing games well into the '30s
- Not wanting to marry and settle down
- Some are very uncomfortable with women ( as they always are rejected by women), also called as "incels".
- No fixed means of livelihood.
There are many more consequences, but to sum it up. The boys who fail to launch and become a part of society. This causes them and society great harm.
For eg. These men if they marry fail to take responsibilities of the family and this leads to more divorces and more boys growing up without their fathers. The circle will continue unless a conscious effort is taken by society to intervene. But that is beyond the scope of this blogpost now.
It is said by the men's rights authors that in many western families boys are growing up without fathers. In India, the problem is not as severe. But still, we need to be cautious. We have imitated the west and just a couple of decades behind in culturally catching up.
Feminist views on this stereotype
The entire fourth-wave feminist movement has been accused of turning men into meek sheep or sacrificial cancel culture goat. It is said by certain liberal thinkers that men are not speaking up and it is high time they speak up.
While the left-liberal is of the view that this stereotypical view of the "man" is patriarchal and outdated. They say it does tremendous harm to men's Psyche.
What does the typical woman want out of a man?
I have realised no matter how liberated or rich the woman is, the thing the woman desperately seeks in a man is someone who can earn a living and is capable of supporting her and her kids. Women need a certain kind of stability to raise and nurture kids.
Life is not easy
A couple of lines from the Pakistani poet Jaun Elia comes to my mind. Which means
I have even endured a life, which was unliveable.
Life is hard, this is something I had no idea till I was well in my mid 40's. I had a rose-tinted view of the world. I was certain that I would always be fine. But this illusion of mine has taken such a battering that I might have become a nihilist in a way.
Why say life is hard, you would ask, Am I making it any easier?
I wish my father has informed me about this, I mean who would have been a better place to inform me about this, he started working at the age of 10. Perhaps the comforts and riches he experienced in his 40's and 50"s made him forget about all these hard things? Is it really possible to forget the hard life in better days?
Boy's need to be told to take ownership of their problems, they needed to be guided and pointed towards appropriate tools for the same.
Why do I think I have failed to launch
It is said that fathers take the boy via the rite of passage and launch into adulthood. My father had the dual responsibility of being a Dad and a mother. So he could never be strict with me about anything. He was generally nurturing towards me as he felt I had grown up without a mother.
This meant that I failed to launch as a man, but it is still not too late, I might just celebrate my 50th birthday by launching into Man!!! Wish me luck!!! :)