Learning And Unlearning And The Courage To Get It Wrong
Shout out to the Let’s Talk Bruh podcast for introducing me to emotional labor on episode: Let’s Talk Bruh – Emotional Labor and breaking it down for me.
If you identify as primarily masculine and have yet to take any action or even speak up during this time where womxn identifying folx need us the most, I encourage you to listen to Tupac – Keep Ya Head up.
Listen through the chorus.
This song came out in 1998. Look where we are now. We gotta do better. We gotta speak out to protect what’s right and not be scared of saying the wrong thing. Because inevitably, we will say the wrong thing. Everyone says the wrong thing once and a while. Does it make you a terrible person? No. Our intention speaks for us.
If you say the wrong thing, DO THE WORK to correct course, deal with the consequences and DO BETTER. Learn, and unlearn behaviors and ways of thinking that our unhealthy society taught us. Show the Womxn around you that you can be trusted to stand up for them. We have to earn that trust though, by investing in that emotional labor ourselves for once. Women identifying folx, I know ya’ll already do a lot of emotional labor for us. This is a big ask, but the good men need to know they have support for when they inevitably get something wrong.
Cis het men, if you don’t know what you can do, FIND OUT. Look at the credible sources online, share your potential solutions with womxn around you without making them do the work FOR you. I don’t have a solution, but maybe a step toward one. Whatever needs to happen to protect what’s right is how we end this oppressive society’s view on womxn’s sexuality . . . womxn’s bodies as objects.
Womxn, knowing I have your support when I say the wrong thing, allows me to grow. I thank you for that and then I DO THE WORK which means correcting my shit, apologizing and then I DO BETTER. That same support you offer me, extend this to the good men around you. Share this with them.
The in-fighting about who’s suffering most now needs some kind of action. The problems are out there and all over the media. Social media specifically creates the perfect breeding ground for bullying and punishment instead of an opportunity for folks to improve and get better.
Ellie Wiesel, Holocaust Survivor and author says, “The opposite of love is not hate. It’s indifference.” One type of indifference is the silence of men who think they’re unaffected or unqualified to speak against those who are against womxn’s rights to their own bodies. Maybe some men are afraid because they think womxn are angry at us. Hell yeah, they’re angry! Understand why and fix it by being part of the solution.
Courtney W. Brame is the Founder of Something Positive for Positive People, a hub of sex-positive resources.