Sons

Son

I sometimes wish you were still small.
Not yet so big and strong and tall.
For when I think of yesterday.
I close my eyes and see you play.

I often miss that little boy
Who pestered me to buy a toy,
Who filled my days with pure delight
From early morn to late at night.

We watch our children change and grow
As seasons come then quickly go.
But our God has a perfect plan
To shape a boy into a man.

Today my son I’m proud of you
For all the thoughtful things you do.
I’ll love you till my days are done.
And I’m so grateful you’re my son.

by Larry Howland

Boys

Credits:

  1. Image 1 from https://quotabulary.com/amazing-quotes-about-mother-son-relationship
  2. Poem from https://quotesjoss.blogspot.com/2018/08/mother-son-inspirational-quotes.html
  3. Image 2 from https://proudhappymama.com/30-beautiful-mother-and-son-quotes-and-sayings/

Movember to stop men dying too young

Movember 5
It is closing in on the end of Movember. We all have grown accustomed to the furry upper lips floating majestically around our offices and the city. Sadly they will soon be disappearing. With the month coming to an end comes a big ask: take the time this weekend to talk about health with a man that’s important to you. It doesn’t have to be a clinical interview; just taking the time to check-in can make a difference.

Across the world, men die an average six years younger than women, and for reasons that are largely preventable. Which means that it doesn’t have to be that way: we can all take action to live healthier, happier and longer lives.

Movember 1

From humble beginnings in Australia in 2003 supported by New Zealand in 2004, the Movember movement has grown to be a truly global one, inspiring support from over 5 million Mo Bros and Mo Sistas around the world. Movember’s initial focus on men’s health and prostate cancer expanded over the years to include testicular cancer, mental health and suicide prevention. Since 2003 1,250 men’s health projects have been funded by Movember, including:

  • three-part series ‘Man Up’ that tackles gender stereotypes, the pressures of manhood, and why so many men are driven to suicide.
  • the ‘Making Connections’ project delivered across multiple sites in the USA. This initiative connects men and boys within their communities to promote resilience across generations – working in particular with boys and men of colour, military members, veterans, and their families.

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In 2016 Movember united with the National Breast Cancer Foundation Australia – funding research to transform the lives of both men and women. The move allows researchers to leverage genetic similarities between prostate, breast and ovarian cancers to create progress in treatment methods.

The Movember website has great resources about men’s health and how to start a conversation.

Let’s join our efforts to shine a light on the health risks men need to know about, increasing awareness to stop men dying too young…

US Foundation Photoshoot 2015

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Credits: All photos are from the Movember website.

Depression in men

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Depression is an illness that affects both men and women. While men suffer from depression just as often as women, they are less likely to talk about it or ask for help.

Like women with depression, men with depression may:

  • Feel sad, hopeless, worthless or empty
  • Feel extremely tired
  • Have difficulty sleeping or sleep too much
  • Not get pleasure from activities usually enjoyed

Other behaviors in men that could be signs of depression include:

  • Escapist behavior, such as spending a lot of time at work or on sports
  • Physical symptoms, such as headaches, digestive problems and pain
  • Problems with alcohol or drug use
  • Controlling, violent or abusive behavior
  • Irritability or inappropriate anger
  • Risky behavior, such as reckless driving
  • Weight increase or loss

Overeating — particularly the high-fat, low-nutrient foods people are more prone to binge eat — can lead to or worsen depression.

Image

Men often turn to drugs or alcohol to try to cope with their emotional symptoms. Nearly one-third of people with major depression also have an alcohol problem. Often, the depression comes first with alcohol making it worse. Alcohol is a depressant. That means any amount you drink can make you more likely to get the blues. Drinking a lot can harm your brain and lead to depression.

Bachelor

Alcohol abuse and depression are both serious problems that you shouldn’t ignore. If you think you have a problem with either, talk to your doctor. There are lots of choices when it comes to medication that treats depression, and there are drugs that lower alcohol cravings and counter the desire to drink heavily. Depression, even if it’s severe, usually improves with medications or psychological counseling (psychotherapy) or both.

Other things that may help include:

  • Spending time with other people and talking with a friend or relative about your feelings
  • Increasing your level of physical activity and exercising  regularly
  • Engaging in activities you typically enjoy, such as ball games, fishing or a hobby.
  • Breaking up large tasks into small ones, and tackling what you can as you can. Don’t try to do too many things at once
  • Delaying important decisions until you feel better. Discuss decisions with others who know you well.
  • Keeping stable daily routines. For example, eating and going to bed at the same time every day.
  • Having a balanced diet
  • Avoiding alcohol

The-Rock-quotes-1-800x800

Have you ever battled depression?
What helped you the best in your battle?

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Sources:

Credits:

Are you being deeply understood, truly supported and completely and utterly loved?

“We had 11 truly joyful years of the deepest love, happiest marriage, and truest partnership that I could imagine … He gave me the experience of being deeply understood, truly supported and completely and utterly loved – and I will carry that with me always. Most importantly, he gave me the two most amazing children in the world…

Dave was my rock. When I got upset, he stayed calm. When I was worried, he said it would be ok. When I wasn’t sure what to do, he figured it out…” wrote Sheryl Sandberg in a moving tribute to her husband.

 

How many women are lucky to have such amazing, empowering and supportive men in their lives? Men, who empower them to achieve their full potential in life and do share the load of less glamorous family chores to support them. Men, who hear women’s voice and treat women’s choices with respect. Men who recognise that “if we tapped the entire pool of human resources and talent, our collective performance would improve… the achievements will extend beyond those individuals to benefit us all”.

Respect, Give It To Get It

As Sheryl Sandberg points out in her book Lean In, “women still face real obstacles in the professional world, including blatant and subtle sexism… Too few workplaces offer the flexibility and access to child care and parental leave that are necessary for pursuing a career while raising children. Plus, women have to prove themselves to a far greater extent than men do… A 2011 McKinsey report noted that men are promoted based on potential, while women are promoted based on past accomplishments.”

discrimination against women in the workplace

Sheryl also notes that “in addition to the external barriers erected by society women are hindered by barriers that exist within ourselves. We hold ourselves back in ways both big and small, by lacking self-confidence, by not raising out hands, and by pulling back when we should be leaning in. We internalize the negative messages we get throughout our lives… We lower our own expectations of what we can achieve.”

So true. I’ve observed that so often during my University years. While the majority of male students were charging in the exam rooms totally unprepared but still full of confidence, the best female students were spending days and nights preparing for exams, however were still trembling with fear of a failure.

After the exams male students often credited their success to their own innate qualities and skills, while female students often attributed success to good luck.  Interestingly enough, after a failed exam male students were often blaming bad luck, while female students were more likely to believe it was due to an inherent lack of ability.

While some women are happy to stay at home looking after their family and children, others might want to pursue career. In both cases they need to have a choice.

Unfortunately, as Sheryl Sandberg points out, while “professional ambition is expected of men” it is “optional – or worse, sometimes even negative – for women. “She is very ambitious” is not a compliment…

Men are continually applauded for being ambitious and powerful and successful, but women who display these same traits often pay a social penalty. Female accomplishments come at a cost….

The stereotype of a working woman is rarely attractive. Popular culture has long portrayed successful working women as so consumed by their careers that they have no personal life. If a female character divides her time between wok ad family, she is almost always harried and guilt ridden…”

While acknowledging biological and some psychological difference between men and women, it is important to recognise that, as Sheryl puts it, “in today’s world, where we no longer have to hunt in the wild for our food”, both men and women should be given a fair chance to make their own choices. ”

However “until women have supportive employers and colleagues as well as partners who share family responsibilities, they don’t have real choice. And until men are fully respected for contributing inside the home, they don’t have real choice either. Equal opportunity is not equal unless everyone receives the encouragement that makes seizing those opportunities possible. Only then can both men and women achieve their full potential. …

Men's New Role as Househusband Challenges Chinese Tradition

We all want the same thing: to feel comfortable with our choices and to feel validated by those around us. If more children see fathers at school pickups and mothers who are busy at jobs, both girls and boys will envision more options for themselves. Expectations will not be set by gender but by personal passion, talents, and interests…

My greatest hope is that my son and my daughter will be able to choose what to do with their lives without external or internal obstacles slowing them down or making them question their choices.”

Thanks Dave and Sheryl for giving us a real example of the deepest love, happiest marriage, and truest partnership in which you both were supporting each other in making your choices in life and reaching your full potential.

A photo of Dave Goldberg, the Facebook executive, who died suddenly on May 2, 2015. He is pictured with his wife Sheryl Sandberg. Photo posted by Sheryl Sandberg on facebook.

Are you being deeply understood, truly supported and
completely and utterly loved?

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Image 1: from http://img-hd.com/dave-goldberg/
Image 2: from http://dailytechwhip.com
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mage 3: from http://unitedtruthseekers.com/
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mage 4: from Are You Discriminating Against Women Employees Without Even Knowing It?
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mage 5: from http://what3words.tumblr.com
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mage 6: from http://247moms.com
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mage 7: from http://www.womenofchina.cn
Image 8: from https://queerguesscode.files.wordpress.com
Image 9: from http://www.theguardian.com

Fathers in today’s modern families can be so many things…

“Fathers in today’s modern families can be so many things.”

Oliver Hudson

From http://www.wrightsmedia.com

“My friends Katie and Scott… are both Silicon Valley entrepreneurs who work full-time. About a year ago, Scott travelled to the East Coast for work. He was starting a late-morning meeting when his phone rang. His team only heard one side of the conversation.

“A sandwich, carrot sticks, a cut-up apple, pretzels, and a cookie,” Scott said. He hung up smiling and explained that his wife was asking what she should put in the kids’ lunch boxes. Everyone laughed. …

There’s an epilogue to their story. Scott went on a trip and discovered that Katie forgot to make the kids’ lunches altogether. She realized her slipup midmorning and solved the problem by having a pizza delivered to the school cafeteria. Their kids were thrilled, but Scott was not. Now when he travels, he packs lunches in advance and leaves notes with specific instructions for his wife…”

From ‘Lean in’ by Sheryl Sandberg

lunchbox-dad-1From Lunchbox dad

“The may be an evolutionary basis for one parent knowing better what to put in a child’s lunch. Women who breast-feed are arguable baby’s first lunch box. But even if mothers are more naturally inclined toward nurturing, fathers can match that skill with knowledge and effort…

We overcome biology with consciousness in other areas. For example, storing large amounts of fat was necessary to survive when food was scarce, so we evolved to crave it and consume it when it’s available. But in this era of plenty, we no longer need large amounts of fuel in reserve, so instead of simply giving in to this inclination, we exercise and limit caloric intake.

We use willpower to combat biology, or at least we try. So even if ‘mother knows best’ is rooted in biology, it need not be written in stone. A willing mother and a willing father are all it requires… As women must be more empowered at work, men must be more empowered at home.”

From ‘Lean in’ by Sheryl Sandberg

lunchbox-dad-4
From Lunchbox dad

Lunchbox Dad
From http://www.lunchboxdad.com/

Let’s appreciate such truly amazing dads!

🙂

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The Scare of Giggle Monsters

From a special report about giggling girls,
written by an adult man.
😉

From http://jdstonetalks.wordpress.com

“It starts innocently enough: a chortle here, a guffaw there. We’ve all had a chuckle or two in our lives, resulting from biological and social pressures that most of us outgrow, or at least learn to suppress. However, an increasing number of adults are coming forward to express their concerns about a dangerous trend that appears to be infiltrating the lives of teenage girls across the nation—fits of giggles that, in the eyes of this reporter, are no laughing matter.

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From http://knowyourmeme.com

I wouldn’t have believed it if I hadn’t seen it with my own eyes just last week at the movies. A pack of teenage girls sat behind me, remaining quiet through the previews and the first four or five minutes of the film—until someone on screen told a joke, and they broke out in laughter. Laughter! At a film! I was appalled, so I gave them a look, but they continued to laugh at every joke in the film. It was like they thought they had the right to have fun. In public!


From http://www.liesyoungwomenbelieve.com

Apparently, the movies aren’t the only place where teenage girls have been laughing up a storm. The giggle fits have infiltrated our malls, our restaurants, our amusement parks, and even our schools, where they’re hidden from teachers on their cell phones through the usage of clever, adult-proof textual codes like “LOL” (an acronym that means “laughing out loud”).

Teenage girls are laughing with alarming frequency, and experts aren’t quite sure how to pinpoint the cause—or the cure for—their happiness.

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From No Laughing Matter: What is happening to our teenage girls

Are you scared of giggle monsters?

😉

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