My Letter to Men on International Women’s Day

My Letter to Men on International Women's Day shadow play portraitI believe that women are all-around amazing and can bring so much goodness if we work together.

But I really want to give a word to the boys.

My Letter to Men on International Women’s Day

The women empowerment movement is great. It is bringing so many women out of the shadows and into the spotlight. We are here, owning our space and defying century-old customs. My beef with it, though, is, this movement divides men and women instead of fixing the actual problem.

To fix the problem, we need to communicate with each other. Or at least that’s how I heard relationships worked. If we fluff all of the females up to be better than men, then aren’t we just doing to men what they have done to us?

I’m all here for equality and equal pay and equal respect. Our voices deserve to be heard just as much. But are we silencing men in the process? Are we allowing the bad that has been done carry on because we’re not actually cleaning up the problem, just protesting it?

I think I’m what you call a gentlemanilist.

I want to empower men to be better. To step it up.

I’m calling for you to be gentlemen. Not just hold-my-door-open stuff, I mean, respect-women-instead-of-objectifying-them stuff.

I mean having the opportunity to take advantage, but choosing not to.

I mean seeing women for more than what they look like.

I mean walking with humility rather than an air of arrogance.

The True Gentleman is the man whose conduct proceeds from good will and an acute sense of propriety, and whose self-control is equal to all emergencies; who does not make the poor man conscious of his poverty, the obscure man of his obscurity, or any man of his inferiority or deformity; who is himself humbled if necessity compels him to humble another; who does not flatter wealth, cringe before power, or boast of his own possessions or achievements; who speaks with frankness but always with sincerity and sympathy; whose deed follows his word; who thinks of the rights and feelings of others, rather than his own; and who appears well in any company, a man with whom honor is sacred and virtue safe.” – John Walter Wayland

You don’t always have to be strong and have it together. You don’t have to pretend that you have no emotions.

Be the gentleman that this generation needs. Not another player, manipulator, or swole bro.

We value vulnerability, kindness, and realness.  We value you and what you bring to the table. We need your strength and intelligence and humor and love.

So show up for us, respect us, and we will do the same for you.




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