Men Have Insecurities, Too

Men Have Insecurities, Too

Summer is ahead, and every magazine cover that graces the shelves in the store is splashed with men and women and their summer bodies. Celebrity "worst summer bodies" and "best summer bodies" hook us all in despite being an abhorrent way to body shame the masses. We all look to each other to compare physiques, feeling ashamed, or embarrassed about the way that we look. The social media onslaught of weight loss accounts and hardcore dieting influencers get to us, and we find ourselves in a perpetual state of insecurity. Women everywhere body brush, work out, eat salads, and desperately strive for the "perfect" bikini body - and there's no let-up.

And yet, men - who everyone seems to forget about - have the same insecurities, too.

Men worry and compare just as much as women do. There is a massive uprising in the number of women who are using plastic and corrective surgeries to uplift, enhance, nip, and tuck every wrinkle, every stretch mark and every inch of loose skin. We have it exposed to us every single day, and yet not enough people are worried about the women nipping and tucking their bodies into oblivion. Instead, we copy the trends of boob jobs and nose jobs and bum implants. No one pays much attention to the insecure man who worries he may need male breast reduction to be able to look as sleek and shiny as the men gracing the magazine covers. No one worries that he sees himself in a distorted way. No one thinks to question whether the surgery is a good idea, because no one is noticing that he is considering surgery in the first place.

Spotting The Insecure Man

It's challenging to get a man to talk about how insecure he is, because of centuries of ingraining that men are supposed to be strong, silent, and repress their emotions. However, men are just as vulnerable as women to the societal pressures of body image. There are just as many male influencers out there who are using Photoshop and filters to sharpen their look. Men - particularly Dads - often compare their less-than-honed physique to these men on the magazine covers; they just suffer in silence about it. Men don't want to be seen to be less than funny, less than handsome, less than fit.

They want to maintain an image of confidence, even when they don't feel it. But this facade is as damaging as the constant onslaught from the media and their peers. Let's take body hair as an example: it's totally natural for men to have body hair. Centuries of evolution tell us that men are designed to be hairy pretty much everywhere, from face to toes. And yet we are living in a time of manscaping; where men feel pressured to remove chest hair, armpit hair and even pubic hair.

There are many men out there that deal with conditions such as gynecomastia, which is known colloquially as "man boobs." It's common, but the worry of what people will think have men rushing to get male breast reduction surgery as quickly as possible to fix the issue instead of exploring why it happens and how to reduce it naturally if possible. We are a world of humans who care more about looks than we do sanity - and it has to stop.

The Ideal Male Body

There are always jokes about beer bellies and receding hairlines going around in all forms, but when does this stop? Why do we condemn women when they poke fun and shame other women when we don't condemn men who body shame each other? All of this body shaming? It comes from a place of insecurity. We poke fun at these topics because we're too ashamed to confront the real issues. Men have stretch marks. Men have cellulite. Men have excess body hair and overgrown eyebrows. They have larger bellies with age, or thinning hair and looser skin. All of these things are entirely normal, and poking fun of them just reinforces the idea that anything other than perfection is not acceptable.

The "ideal" male body does not exist because there is no one universal ideal. Some cultures believe in cutting the foreskin of a baby boy to make him "perfect." Some cultures believe that men with the longest beards are the manliest. In female society, we deem stretchmarks as ugly, which means that men now do the same. We have got to stop. We are creating a generation of unhappy men because we can't stop obsessing over physical looks.

One thing that everyone needs to remember is that no matter how much you nip and tuck, cut and stuff, everyone is going to get older. Hair will thin. Skin will sag, and weight WILL be gained around the middle. This whole media circus of focusing on the ins and outs of the bodies of men and women has to stop and the sooner we work together to stop this, the better we will all feel. Consider how many industries would crumble if we all just realized that every body is a normal body to have. If you want to embrace man boobs, embrace them. If you're going to shave your body FOR YOU, shave it. If you're going to have a healthy relationship with someone, don't try to fit into what you perceive to be their ideal body. We all - men and women - come in a variety of shapes and sizes, and the sooner that we all realize this, the happier we will be.

Men are just as insecure as women, so instead of focusing on the so-called insecurities that we have, let's start focusing on what we love about ourselves. Those male stretchmarks? Those are living proof of growing over 6 feet tall. That "dad bod"? That's just a show that you've relaxed on your workouts in favor of your family. Your body should be celebrated - so get on with it!
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Men's Magazine: Men Have Insecurities, Too
Men Have Insecurities, Too
Men have insecurities just like women. It's time we should reconsider men as a human not as some kind of robot.
Men's Magazine
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