Men & Feminism

Then we get the question—what does fem­i­nism do for men? The answer: a whole hell of a lot.
–From God­dess Musings

*throw­ing some water on the men who just fainted*

By the mere (mere? ha!) ques­tion­ing of gen­der roles in our soci­ety, we are not only free­ing women up, we are also ques­tion­ing and free­ing men. Let’s just take a few things in life and com­pare to the 1950s era. Men were the bread-win­ner — Now they can share that with women, hell, they can stay home. Men weren’t the nur­tur­ers with the kids — Now dad­dies are free to snug­gle up with their kids. Men’s roles in our lives have changed since my own father was a kid. Who takes the cred­it? Cer­tain­ly not the fem­i­nists in most peo­ple’s minds.

But IMO, it is the fem­i­nists who should take cred­it for trans­form­ing soci­ety to a point where it is ok if you are fif­teen and don’t want to play foot­ball. It is legal for a man to take time off when his son is born. That home eco­nom­ics is open to young men learn­ing to cook him­self a decent meal. Men now can win full cus­tody of their chil­dren! This is because fem­i­nists fought for laws that are gen­der-blind. I don’t think the fem­i­nists got their thank you card, althou we do get hit with those so-called “fathers rights” ads on the expressways.

While soci­ety isn’t ful­ly ready for stay-at-home-dads, the con­cept was noth­ing more than a punch­line ten or twen­ty years ago. So while men’s roles aren’t trans­form­ing as fast as wom­en’s are, don’t blame the fem­i­nists. Blame the peo­ple *cough* men *cough* in charge who frown at the thought of Bob tak­ing a month to spend with a new­born. Pol­i­cy changes that help moth­ers will ben­e­fit fathers, too. Many fathers are now for­go­ing paid work to stay home and raise their kids. And per­haps even more fathers (and moth­ers) would enjoy stay­ing home longer and pro­vid­ing more mean­ing­ful care for their chil­dren if it was tru­ly val­ued by soci­ety and eco­nom­i­cal­ly fea­si­ble to do so. That would ben­e­fit everyone.

Who’s going to be out there fight­ing for this? Men? If so, join hands with your fem­i­nists sis­ters, don’t be afraid to car­ry that label. Fem­i­nism is about equal­i­ty and equal oppor­tu­ni­ty. This fem­i­nist is more than hap­py to let the men car­ry the torch and join the fight.

Cyn is Katie's mom, Esther's Mémé, and a Support Engineer. She lives in the Atlanta area with her life partner, Rick, and their critters. She knits, does counted-thread needlework, reads, makes music, plays TTRPGs, and spends too much time online.
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