Yesterday I saw the video for “The mask you live in” campaign, which is based on idea that boys should not be forced to wear a mask of “being a man” and that we need to change the way in which we educate boys in order to not force them to hide their emotions, as this causes severe behavior problems in the later stages of life.
Although there is a general believe that it is more acceptable for girls to express their emotions, I think the problem goes a lot deeper than just gender separation.
I’ve thought about this many times, because I’ve often found myself in situations in which expressing who you are or what you think/feel (and I am not talking about ideas which offend others!) is not only not acceptable, but it usually opens the door for other people to step all over the “piece” of you that you just shared.
I don’t know when our world got so twisted that being open, sharing your thoughts, passions and emotions or asking for help triggers in others this almost automated response of mockery.
I don’t know when people who have enough emotional intelligence to actual be in touch with their feeling and emotions ended up being “the broken ones”… while others spend ridiculous amounts of money on self-help books, therapy or yoga in order to connect with their inner selves.
Walking around with an open heart has become more dangerous and embarrassing than crossing a highway at peak traffic hours, naked!
I like the idea behind the campaign, but it’s only the tip of a huge iceberg. What we need is an “anti-jerk” campaign, aiming to change not just the way in which boys are educated, but the way we interact with each other, on a daily basis, starting with our homes and friends circles and continuing with our work and public behavior.
Jerks should be the mocked ones and they should be the ones feeling embarrassed by what they say… but that’s never going to happen, because as it is with each problem, you need to acknowledge it first and it takes too much intelligence and courage to admit you are a jerk!