Men and Image
by Dionna Sanchez
Emphasis On Moms
There has been a lot of discussion about how the media influences women and their self esteem; as well as their image of themselves. But there has not been too much (if any) attention paid to the affect our society and the media has on the men in our lives. And don't be mistaken - their IS an affect on them!
You see, our men feel like they have to live up to a certain standard just like we do. They feel like they must be strong, successful, in good shape, and they are given the impression that if they show emotion - that means they are weak.
We need to start encouraging our husbands and our sons that just as we as women want to fight against the stereotype that we must be skinny, flawless, and perfect at all we do....they need to fight against the stereotype that they must be financially successful, in tip-top shape, and fearless.
We are humans. We are an imperfect people. Since when did that not become okay?? Our men feel the pressure just like we do. The main difference is that men internalize their feelings more, so they don't express their frustrations about the standards they are expected to live up to.
We need to start embracing one another - imperfections and all. Yes, living a healthy life is a good thing...it will extend your life and give you more energy. Yes, it is a wonderful thing to be financially independent and lack debt. It is admirable to be courageous. But there needs to be a healthy balance. It is more than okay to have a few curves on your body; especially if that is in your genes! It is more than okay to not be super-rich if you love your job and your family and your life. And - it is more than okay for a man to show that he has compassion for another human being. To me - that makes a real man. I don't want a cold-hearted hunk of steel, I want someone with depth. Don't you?
Let's give our men a break. Stand by their side and encourage them to be REAL. You can be instrumental in lessoning the effect society has on your husband or son's heart. All he needs is for you to believe in him. Do it today.
~Dionna Sanchez is founder of Emphasis On Moms and resides in Idaho with her family. You can read more thoughts on media and the family at
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