This was inspired by Editorial Page Editor Greg Kesich’s May 26 column, “Help for those who don’t know how to ask.”

Yes, I am among those insecure, uncertain and brave men who for eons have been acting strong, seemingly impenetrable and faking insensitivity. You see, with all the recent negative publicity thrust upon us, all we can do is sit back and suck it up. No one of late seems to consider the social and moral obligations of the male gender’s history. It is born into us, a large segment of our DNA, chromosomes, molecules – whatever – that we provide, protect and produce.

Now, I suppose, none of that is expected of us, so where do we go from here – booze, depression, suicide, anger? How about all of above? We certainly don’t appear to be seeking help, and if we did, where would we begin?

Mr. Kesich’s column proposed a possible outlet through the Colorado public health website Man Therapy, but this too raises a question: Are men really that desperate to indulge themselves in counseling when they can be escaping to a golf course or a baseball game or the convenient tavern for a couple of brews with a pal?

The facts are coming in already: The bodies are piling up and the future doesn’t hold much hope. Are we a dying breed after all, fading away into an abyss of ubiquitous accusations of bad behavior from almost every corridor of communication? OK, I know I’m dramatizing but it’s deliberate, to show how probable the situation can be or develop into.

Those of us who are still in the younger segment (believe me, I’m not) still have a chance to adapt, even if it’s temporary, sort of going along with it, playing the game until the next hand of cards is dealt. But for us in the older generations, it’s just not that easy to change in midstream and cast off all the pride we collected from doing what we thought we should – that is, provide, protect and produce.


The earth below us, our grounding, is shifting and loosening as it tries to find new placement – seeking understanding that will once again connect us to each other. Not only are our moral and social beliefs in a state of flux, but the universe as well is in perpetual turmoil. Men everywhere still remain relevant, holding on to their badge of honor of rugged individualism and self-reliance.

This is why men “do not go gentle into that good night,” or those murky chambers of psychoanalysis. We have difficulty opening up to anyone, even those we love the most, probably because they are the hardest ones to face. Our hurt is camouflaged with a tough but vulnerable veneer. Scratch the surface and you may find a pussycat!

I, for one, do not believe any individual or group can claim blame to the dysfunctional conditions today, as the matter is far greater than any single element. This is a condition facing all of us, one that has been in the works for a long time, and one that is looking for and needing a remedy. But before that remedy can be found, there needs to be a common agreement: We need to stop combating each other!

No quick answers today, but I would like to suggest that men open up more to that one person who means the most to them, which will begin a healing process that may have lasting and rewarding benefits.

In the meantime, pass the mashed potatoes, turn off the TV, play with the kids and/or grandkids and, above all, don’t forget to take the trash out this week before you have that healthy talk with the one you love.

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