Curated content to foster new masculinities

Emotional Labor: What It Is & How To Do It

Men’s labor is often defined by work that occurs outside the home, that can be easily quantified and monetized. Domestic labor, or the work that happens in this home, as a part of daily life, is often framed as less valuable, and often unpaid (ignoring monetized domestic labor provided in other people’s homes by women of color). It should be no surprise that in our patriarchal society, domestic labor has and is most often carried out by women. Similarly, emotional labor, or the emotional burden that is carried in order to maintain, sustain, and support a relationship has also typically fallen on women.

Emotional labor is the work of asking how someone’s day was, asking if they are ok, listening to someone complain about their boss despite having had a terrible day with their boss, it is supporting the decisions someone makes, it is taking time to make plans with or phone calls to people we care about, it is taking care of ourselves so that we don’t put the burden of care on others. While reading this post, I saw myself as both the carrier and cause of an emotional burden: I have not always been the most thoughtful roommate, or empathic friend. At times in my intimate relationships, I have been the one carrying the weight, acting as caretaker or homemaker, while putting my needs on the back-burner to prioritize my partner. Relationships require give and take, but without an understanding of emotional labor, the imbalance can becoming damaging. This post–from Miri on Brute Reason, her blog focusing on mental health and social justice–continues a discussion around emotional labor that utilizes tangible examples to define the concept while providing specific techniques we can use to create emotional equity in our relationships.

[Both Miri and The Bridges We Burn do not subscribe to concepts of gender essentialism, and reject any notions that anyone based on gender, sex, or race are naturally more inclined to care-taking or are more emotionally in-tuned. It is important to recognize, however, normalized gender roles, the ways we socialize emotions, and the ways in which we perpetuate negative behaviors in our relationships. Regardless of our gender identity, all of our relationships will strengthen by an increased awareness of emotional labor.]

– Brett Goldberg

Read the full post via Brute Reason.


‘Steven Universe’ is the Feminist Cartoon We All Need Right Now

If you were to ask my friends name three of my favorite topics, they would likely answer, “cats, cookies, and feminism.” So you can understand my delighted surprise when the first episode of Steven Universe begins with young Steven going to his favorite bodega to buy his favorite dessert, Cookie Cats which is ice cream sandwiched between… Keep Reading


Men, Friendship, and the Health Effects of Loneliness

The expectations of toxic masculinity–and normative masculine gender socialization–takes a toll on men and boys in a variety of ways. This is by no means an argument for minimizing or re-centering the discourse on rape culture away from women, girls, queer folks, people who are gender-non-conforming, and other marginalized communities and individuals. But in order to… Keep Reading


Toxic Masculinity Feeds Rape Culture

Toxic masculinity–the way of being a man that requires aggression, sexual domination, earning big money, being athletic, and most definitely, being heterosexual–not only feeds rape culture, but is co-dependent upon it. In fact, rape culture and toxic masculinity feed each other while destroying everything they touch. The video below from MTV News provides a quick and… Keep Reading


Consent For Kids (video)

Because we need as many resources as possible, and because everyone loves cartoons, Blue Seat Studios–the folks who brought us the “Consent is as Simple as Tea” video–presents “Consent for Kids.” The video is a resource both for parents to teach the basics of consent to their children, as well as for kids to help them… Keep Reading


These Fifth-Graders Know that Solidarity is a Verb

When the Catholic Youth Organization in New Jersey mandated that coed teams were only allowable through 4th grade, 5th-graders on the coed St. John’s Chargers basketball team unanimously voted to forfeit the remainder of their season including the playoffs. The boys on the team refused to play without their two girl teammates. After referees refused… Keep Reading


The Importance of Empathy in Everyday Life

Empathy–the ability to understand the emotional experience of another person–is, not hyperbolically, the beginning step to answering most of the problems we face as a society. We are currently experiencing an era of increased “Othering” in which we are encouraged to see the differences in other people, and not the similarities. And because of those differences we are… Keep Reading

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