Holy shit, this story of emotional damage is difficult to read:

I wanted my son to reject masculine stereotypes. Then he fell in love with tractors.

At first I thought this was written by a single, Leftist mother.

Then I discovered it was written by a dad and I almost had a stroke.

After turning 2 years old, my son, Avishai, started demanding that he only wear tractor shirts, and my mind spiraled into darkness. I catastrophized worst-case scenarios, imagining a world where he fell for everything stereotypically manly. I envisioned him on a football field, barreling through mega-muscled opponents. Imagined him waxing a sports car on a warm summer day. I have always judged other guys who seemed boxed in by masculinity, but 3 ½ years ago, when I became a stay-at-home dad, my bias skyrocketed.

This boy likes tractors and his dad immediately became repulsed by the idea of his son being a happy boy, embracing the stuff that guys often like.  Not even 2 years old and he doesn’t like who is son might be because the dad has misunderstanding of masculinity.

Minutes after his arrival, we took turns cuddling him against our bare chests. While the midwife and her assistant cleaned up, my wife, always one to joke, even soon after giving birth, bragged that she had a connection to our new baby that I could never attain because men couldn’t bond with babies like women could.

What an absolutely horrible thing for a mother to say to a father.  This is truly atrocious.

Now we have a piece of the puzzle as to why this man is so broken.  He is in an emotionally abusive marriage with a psychopathic wife.

Her comment stabbed into me, but I feared she was right. To me, femininity was connected to empathy and kindness while masculinity equated to being frigid. Men didn’t hug. Men didn’t say I love you. Men were angry. Aggressive. Inept as parents.

Fuck this guy sideways, this is absolutely wrong.

Every day I fed Avishai and cuddled him and soothed him. We co-slept, and he snoozed with his head resting on my chest, listening to the rhythm of my heartbeat.

I did the same thing.  When my son was a baby, I had nap magic.  I’d swaddle him in a blanket, lie down on the couch, put him on my chest, and we’d nap together.   Worked every time.

The difference is that I never felt like my masculinity was diminished doing this or that I was boxed out by my masculinity to snuggle my son.

I held resentment that so much of society acted as if dads couldn’t care for their kids (therefore putting pressure on women for the brunt of the caregiving) — but I too looked at dads that way. I shuddered at jokes about men being incapable of figuring out how to work a diaper, yet I felt most couldn’t.

I hate this too.  I hate the pop culture “dad is an idiot” trend from TV shows and advertising.  Again, the difference is that I didn’t let it break me.  I didn’t let it make me hate my masculinity or other fathers.  It made me hate the people that pushed that bullshit.

What I discovered is that a lot of came from a toxic form of femininity, single mothers who felt the need to denigrate men as a way of justifying not having a husband.  “Dads can’t take care if kids the way women can so it’ll be fine not having a father around for my baby.”

I became even more of an avid stereotyper: I grimaced at anyone driving a Ford car, the John Wayne of automobiles. I hated men who wore plaid. Felt ill if someone mentioned a wrench or another tool. When my mom-in-law bought Avishai a coverall with footballs on it, I shoved it into the depths of his closet, never to be found.

This man is broken.  Absolutely broken.

I have two pickup trucks, a sportscar, two safes full of guns, five chainsaws, almost a dozen axes, a shop full of tools.  My diaper bag was a converted range bag.

I snuggle my children.  I am champion kid breakfast maker (French toast is my specialty).  I changed diapers.  I am the preferred hair brusher for my daughter, and I’ve painter her finger nails on more than one occasion.  I set up an archery range in the back yard for my son.

At no point is a owning a truck or tools antithetical to being a loving father.

In fact, I’d say they go more hand-in-hand than not.

It wasn’t as if I’d grown up with a negative example of fatherhood. My dad was an interior decorator, working 60 hours a week at the family business: Deitcher’s Wallpaper and Design Center. Outwardly, my father filled the role of man of the house, but inside, my mom made most of the family decisions. My father was never afraid to blur boundaries. I was hugged frequently and told I love you. He, too, despised sports, but loved watching Hallmark movies with my mom.

This neurosis gets weirder all the time.

My gut reaction was that either this guy was raised by a single mom or an abusive dad.  No son to a decent father would feel this way.

Maybe the problem is that his dad was so unmasculine that he decided that masculinity traits were the problem.

I’m not versed enough in psychotherapy to break this down.

In many ways, I am an extension of my father, further pushing what is acceptable for men. Once my son could walk, I paraded him through the park while he rolled his baby doll down the sidewalk in its stroller. I felt accomplished because he mirrored being a caretaker.

Now it’s starting to get weird.

There is a difference between a dad pushing his progeny in a stroller and a little boy with a baby doll.

But then came the tractors. It started with YouTube. On days I was especially drained, I’d sit Avishai in front of the TV and click on “Little Baby Bum.” He fell in love with the tractor songs, and I was so worn, I didn’t care. When he asked to watch clips of construction equipment, I mindlessly pressed play. But when he demanded the shirts, I felt like I failed him. I pride myself on blurring gender lines. I wanted him to, also.

I had to make a choice: buy him clothes with pictures of heavy machinery on them and make the kid happy, or force him to wear shirts emblazoned with fuzzy animals to appease me.

This is abuse.  The dad has his own neurotic issues with gender roles but is forcing them on his son, to the point where he’s coercing his child to wear non gender conforming to make dad happy.

There is a word in the lexicon for this: grooming.

I took on being an at-home father because I wanted to bond with my son, and I realized that meant I needed to let him discover his own interests. He had to define his own identity, not influenced by my own bias of what I deemed to be too masculine.

This is grotesque.

Who uses tractors?  Farmers.

What do farmers do?  Work hard and feed the world.

Farmers are skilled, knowledge, caretakers of the earth, generally good neighbors, and fiercely self reliant.

That is the zenith of good masculinity, working hard to feed civilization.

But dad has a problem with that as “boxed in by masculinity.”

Dad doesn’t understand what good masculinity it and rejects all of it in perverse gender confusion.

Dad seems to have come around a little bit but is still clearly broken, not understanding actual masculinity.

His wife is also clearly broken.

I just hope to God for the boy’s sake, the boy doesn’t end up broken too.

 

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By J. Kb

14 thoughts on “A broken man in a broken marriage is upset his son isn’t broken”
  1. There were a lot of men born in the 50’s and 60’s whose fathers weren’t the most outwardly loving of parents. My own father rarely showed emotions while growing up, but when he did, you knew you earned or deserved them. And he did change diapers and play with us as kids. But during our middle school years he was busting his ass so our mom could stay at home and raise us. They felt that was important. As a result, our quality time was more diminished. It was still there, just somewhat less due to circumstances. I never once felt trapped in masculinity because of it. I felt proud that my dad was caring for his family. You are right, that man is broken. I have a psych degree (that I don’t use) and can confirm your suspicions. He has issues.

  2. Oh, leave it alone. This story is written as a modrrn day fable. Notice the buzz words. Notice how he presents as ‘recognizing his own bias’. He writes in the first person as if seeking redemption of his sins against society. He is the sacrificial lamb, so he thinks. He should be concerned of his sins against God.

    At the least, this idiocy is written – by one who is paid to write, imagine that – to get under your skin or to deepen the divide. The faires are now loud and proud. Just scorn them and move on. Go buy a ‘tractor shirt’.

    1. I’ve always found it interesting how much commonality there is between woke “think pieces” from outlets like WaPo, NYT, Politico, or Jezebel and some of the old fire and brimstone sermons of the First Great Awakening.

      The specific imagery changes, of course, but one could easily imagine Johnathan Edwards’ famous “Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God” sermon from 1741 being delivered by Greta Thunberg or Ta-Neishi Coates….

  3. This guy clearly doesn’t understand masculinity nor fatherhood. But, lemme just add that he also apparently doesn’t understand childhood.

    Regardless of gender, most toddlers like tractors, bulldozers, construction equipment, pigs, cows, horses, and so forth… They’re Big. They’re Loud. They’re Really Big. They play in the dirt. To the average toddler, big plus loud plus dirty equals Nirvana.

    This man’s mother must have made the nanny steam clean the sandbox between his pre-scheduled, pre-paid, student-led, organic sand castle crafting classes.

  4. Sad, if true.

    As Ish noted, I had a Penthouse letter vibe from this–very nearly all concocted narrative.

    1. Wait, all those Dear Penthouse letters were just made up stories? All of my teenage motivations were based on lies? To this day I still book hotels with hot tubs in the hope of finding a bikini team that needed their boobs oiled by a helpful stranger.

  5. Alot of these “Guys” dont just seem to drink the kool-aid, but it appears Many are Booting it up multiples times a day, everyday, 365 and popping the pills.

    Why…WHO TF knows. It’s suicide in my opinion.
    People can justitfy Anything.
    I give the news and media in general as Proof.

    imo.

  6. Reminds me of the piece awhile back who said something along the lines of his kids being a big inconvenience in his life and admitted to being a cuckold, his wife sleeping w/ other men then telling him about it.

    Same kind of personality.

  7. If that is a real person(it ain’t a man), the kid isn’t his/the wife knows he knows the kid isn’t his and it(he) is getting some on the side, from the neighbor Bill. As per Obozo, called on the down low to hide his faggotry.

  8. Words fail me.

    Well maybe two come to mind: fake and ghey.

    What’s wrong letting boys be boys and girls be girls? My daughters were drawn to dolls and princess dresses. My son to trucks and spiderman outfits. If I had a 10 spot for every mother that tried to ban toy guns (like my sister) only to have the boys use sticks instead I’d be retired now. Hell, My 3 year old son sat on my shoulders watching tractor pulls and was mesmerized by the noise and smells.

    My son, as other guys I knew kids, was my shadow from about age 5 to high school. Helped me work everywhere, soaking up everything like a sponge.

    Poor kid. Has to be stuck with a sissy-boy father.

  9. Even if this is pure prose, it illustrates mental illness. You can be masculine and still be a caring parent. J.Kb gives his own examples, many of us could add our own.

    The woke crowd is pushing this crap hard, as if masculinity is something to be stamped out, exterminated. The same crowd continually reminds us they “follow the science” with everything from covid to gender, yet somehow ignore that in nature, the strong survive and the weak perish. To think humans are exempt from that is foolish.

    We all saw the military recruitment videos from China and Russia compared to our own in the recent past. As a nation, we won’t survive without strong males. The kid wants tractors, give him tractors. When I was kid, we ran around the neighborhood with toy guns. Then laser tag. The subject father above would have a stroke. Survival of the fittest.

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