• Nick

Outfathering toxic femininity

I have recently finished listening to a Dr Jordan Peterson podcast in which he interviews The boy crisis’s author, Dr Warren Farrell. Some of the points in the interview are gobsmacking, including the following:

  • Children who are raised without a substantial father figure have 14% shorter telomeres, which roughly correlates to a 14% lower life expectancy;

  • Girls who are raised without a substantial father figure are around twice as likely to be victims of rape;

  • Girls with brothers are less likely to be victims of rape;

  • Boys with substantial father figures are around half as likely to be diagnosed with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD).

What is even more impressive, in this interview, is the explanations of the reasons why these disparate statistics occur, where Dr Peterson and Dr Farrell give practical hypothetical situations that allow one to understand exactly how a good father figure can instil lifelong lessons into their children leading to/preventing the forementioned consequences.


Toxic femininity


I have previously written about how Toxic Masculinity isn’t actually a legitimate scientific terminology. It has no taxonomic or definitive meaning. It is typically a term used to denigrate masculine characteristics that gives the false air that there is some actual legitimacy to it. Thus, I have used the term toxic femininity in this articles title tongue in cheek. What I am really referring to is something along these line:


The active deprecation of virtuous male characteristics such as maturity, fatherhood and playfulness.


Extrapolating this definition a bit more, I am referring to the omnipresent disparagement of typical male characteristics which have historically otherwise (until quite recently) been though of as exemplary. If you are finding your bloodpressure a bit too low, watch the following video where various definitions are rendered of ‘toxic masculinity’ (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jaqUCY0lXB8). If you have held off on watching this for fear of suffering an aneurism, here’s a few quotes for your edification:


It refers to a subset of violent, destructive or oppressive behaviours performed in an attempt to live up to a mythological idea of masculinity


Kind of the reverse of when a girl would watch Disney’s Beauty and the Beast and would try to find a beast, turn him into a man, and marry him? The video’s orator further opines:


Think Batman for example; he’s intelligent, self-sacrificing, and dedicated t

o justice; Great. But some of his behaviour is toxic. His aggression, emotional detachment, and misogynistic control over women are all forms of toxic masculinity


I’d posit that if DC comics tried to publish a Batman comic or film that portrayed a Batman who was passive, emotionally attached and a feminist, they would rival the depths of loss of a queer-normative Buzz Lightyear film without Tim Allen.


Why fathers are optimal, if not necessary


One of the primary reasons proffered by Dr Peterson and Dr Farrel as to why children with fathers do so much better, is the concept of rough and tumble. This is the tossing, tackling, scrummaging and wrestling that fathers do with the sons and daughters. It is not to say that mothers cant do this as well, just that it doesn’t come to them naturally (if you don’t agree with me, that’s fine, but how do you account for the formentioned incongruent statistics?).


A father who wrestles with his kids will keep them on the point of ecstacy, like going on a ride at the show they are a hairs length away from danger and pain, but instead have the enjoyment of being thrown around, tickling and competitions of stength. The child will inevitably step over the line, as will the father from time-to-time. The child will learn where physical and pain boundaries are situated in relation to playing with others. Further, when there are smaller children involved in the scrimmish, the older children will learn that they cannot merely dominate the smaller children in the play as there would be no opportunity for fun with that. If the father chastises the older child for exerting too much dominance, or hurting the younger child, it will remove the fun from the situation (which is far more impactful than the chastisement by its self) thus both children are forced to learn empathy and potentially delayed gratification.


As to why women who are raised with a substantial father figure (and brothers) are so much less likely to be victims of rape than their counterparts without these figures, the answer is likely twofold: Firstly, the girl will learn other ways to entertain the males in her life other than sexual gratification (football, barbeques and fishing). Secondly, she will learn the danger signals and defensive stratergies for male aggression. I'm sure this will be seen as victim blaming, however, this is just my understanding of the discussion in the podcast.


Outfathering


Using the previously mentioned video’s metric, if all men no longer sought to embody the ‘mythical’ standards of manliness (being) aggressive, emotionally detached, or misogynistic the world would be a better place. Sadly, we know this to be almost incontrovertibly wrong. Boys who are brought up without fathers do worse in almost every measurable life standard. Surely being raised without being subject to the father’s toxic masculinity must remove at least part of the patriarchal evil?


The answer is that men, by virtue of their biology, are much more likely to be aggressive, emotionally detached (whatever that means) and disagreeable to all people (including women). The secret isn’t in removing these biological proclivities, it is learning to control them. If you want a dog, it isn’t all about picking a placid breed of dog, it is equally about training the dog not to attack. There have been plenty of instances of the friendly family dog suddenly losing its cool and attacking its owner.


Getting back to Outfathering; for people who tout the idea of toxic masculinity, the last thing they want to do is have children with fathers do better than children without fathers. Getting married, having children and raising a strong family embodying the virtues of manhood is the biggest affront to those who seek to destroy the atomic family. In short, it is survival of the fittest. You raise your god-fearing family, let the progressive types dye their hair purple and die an solitary spinster spouting how evil your family are.

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