Several years ago, on International Men’s Day, Canberra’s ABC radio station rang me up and wanted to do an interview in Drive Time. I was happy to do it, until I found out my interviewer was a lady.
Not that I have anything against the ladies, but ABC women (and many of the men) are noted for their bias against the male of the species. However, I am always up for a challenge, so I did the interview.
I was asked if International Men’s Day was some sort of backlash against feminism. My reply was ‘no’, but perhaps it is time for an International Men’s Day, as International Women’s Day has been going for over 100 years, while International Men’s Day has only been going for small fraction of that time.
I don’t think my interviewer liked me pointing out that International Women’s Day was started by communist women and was originally celebrated as ‘International Working Women’s Day’.
I also pointed out that International Men’s Day was not about keeping the gender war going, but about moving towards true gender reconciliation and equality. I mentioned the fact that men have been vilified for over 50 years in contemporary culture, and that maybe this was a way for them to recover some remnant of self-respect.
After all I said, men do have fragile egos, even though they dare not admit it.
I should have known better than to be honest ‘on air’, but I guess some things never change. My female interviewer was getting increasingly unhappy with me. She pointed out that women have fragile egos too, so I decided to pull out of this one because I was just digging a hole for myself.
Believing that we could have frank and open communication on the differences between men and women was a bridge too far. Having said that, my interviewer was right. Women do have fragile egos, but in a different way to men.
A woman has a deep need for love and to be cherished. A man has a deep need for affirmation of his manliness and respect. We are equal but different!
If a man doesn’t receive value from his father, he will spend a lifetime looking for it in other places, most times the wrong places.
Fatherlessness cripples men and women differently, but overall the effects are just the same.
So what is Sons of the Father, the book by Gordon Dalbey, all about?
It’s all about the deep need of a man to be a much-loved son of his father. This book was written by Gordon Dalbey in 1995, but like all long-living books could have been written yesterday. Sons of the Father, along with books like Iron John by Robert Bly, are classics within the Men’s Movement.
As I said in the clip, Dalbey’s book is deep water, and profoundly spiritual as well. Some men, who are only able to talk about football, cars, sex and beer, may find it daunting. However, many years ago Sting sang, “We are spirits in a material world”, and the sooner we learn the truth of that statement, the better off we’ll be.
Being masculine is being a spiritual being, but in a masculine way. To say that men and women are equal is true, but then to say that we are the same is a monstrous lie.
In the above YouTube link, Gordon Dalby talks about how men run from their courage and masculinity to the detriment of themselves and those around them. Watch the YouTube clip at your own peril.
If you don’t like watching clips, buy Gordon Dalbey’s book instead.
Leaders are readers. Perhaps that’s why you are reading this newsletter?
Accept the realities of our differences, rest secure in them, but make sure you affirm your sons and love your daughters, because we are all Sons of the Father and we all need love and affirmation.
Yours for more sons of the father,
PS: Again we thank all our Dads who have participated in the Decorate Dad Challenge up till now. Watch video here. Several Dads4Kids donors have banded together to put up a Matching Challenge towards those who would like to make a donation towards Dads4Kids up until midnight Friday 18 December. The amount that has come into the Decorate Dad Challenge so far will be doubled. That goes for direct donations as well. That is the good news. Every dollar given up to the full matching challenge amount will be doubled between now and midnight Friday 18 December. Donate NOW!