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    American Psychological Association: ‘Traditional Masculinity’ Harmful to Men and Boys

    American Psychological Association: ‘Traditional Masculinity’ Harmful to Men and Boys

    “traditional masculinity—marked by stoicism, competitiveness, dominance and aggression—is, on the whole, harmful”

    We now live in a world where questioning whether Chelsea Manning is truly a woman can get you deplatformed on social media for hate speech while the American Psychological Association sees traditional masculinity as a mental disorder.

    The APA just published a lengthy screed on the topic which reads as if it was compiled with assistance from a college symposium on intersectional feminism. I’ve tried to digest some of the most telling passages.

    Stephanie Pappas writes at the APA website (emphasis is mine):

    APA issues first-ever guidelines for practice with men and boys

    APA’s new Guidelines for Psychological Practice With Boys and Men strive to recognize and address these problems in boys and men while remaining sensitive to the field’s androcentric past. Thirteen years in the making, they draw on more than 40 years of research showing that traditional masculinity is psychologically harmful and that socializing boys to suppress their emotions causes damage that echoes both inwardly and outwardly.

    The implication is clear. Manliness is bad.

    The main thrust of the subsequent research is that traditional masculinity—marked by stoicism, competitiveness, dominance and aggression—is, on the whole, harmful. Men socialized in this way are less likely to engage in healthy behaviors. For example, a 2011 study led by Kristen Springer, PhD, of Rutgers University, found that men with the strongest beliefs about masculinity were only half as likely as men with more moderate masculine beliefs to get preventive health care…

    The report even invokes John Wayne. And naturally, links masculinity with racism.

    This vision of masculinity may summon up an image of a closemouthed cowboy, à la John Wayne. But there’s more to masculinity than macho swagger. When the rules of manliness bump up against issues of race, class and sexuality, they can further complicate men’s lives.

    For example, the masculine requirement to remain stoic and provide for loved ones can interact with systemic racism and lead to so-called John Henryism for African-American men, a high-effort method of coping that involves striving hard in the face of prolonged stress and discrimination.

    Then we get the completely taken-as-unquestionable suggestion that transgenderism, unlike masculinity, is completely normal.

    Today, transgender issues are at the forefront of the cultural conversation, and there is increased awareness of the diversity of gender identity.

    Which brings us to what is the possible goal of this entire exercise. The belief that gender is actually nothing more than a social construct.

    Indeed, when researchers strip away stereotypes and expectations, there isn’t much difference in the basic behaviors of men and women. Time diary studies, for example, find that men enjoy caring for their children as much as women do. And differences in emotional displays between boys and girls are small, according to a 2013 meta-analysis (Psychological Bulletin, Vol. 139, No. 4), and not always in the stereo-typical direction. Adolescent boys, for example, actually displayed fewer externalizing emotions such as anger than did adolescent girls.

    Professor Jacobson commented on Twitter:

    Twitchy has compiled some reactions to this as well:


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    The most hilarious part of this study is the part where they mention these masculine men don’t eat as many vegetables! I don’t see that section posted here but read it elsewhere.

    shrinkDave | January 9, 2019 at 9:46 am

    Apparently, there are no traditionally masculine men in the APA. Here’s the truth: boys growing up without a traditional masculine man at home have a high risk of suffering from anxiety disorders starting in their teens. Good luck to the psychological researchers.

    CaptTee | January 9, 2019 at 1:49 pm

    Was that put out by the APA or NAMBLA?

    I wonder if they have any common Board Members?

    Psychology “jumps the shark”

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