... And Really Should Not Be
The male psyche can be a dark, repressed, tragically pathetic yet interesting rabbit hole. If you need any proof that male insecurity is an epidemic you just need to take a casual look at the internet - ads for penis enlargement pills, snake oil solutions for hair loss, tips to get your abs as manufactured and glossy as your favorite film stars, loom all over the place.
In India, the insecurities lie pretty starkly on the surface. A need to match up to societal notions of machismo and male identity can just about explain all the vagaries of our culture. However, if men realized the rather fickle and superficial nature of insecurities there'd be hope. Here's a look at some of the insecurities that men face, and what they could possibly do to get over them.
Body Image: Men and women both are exposed to increasingly outlandish ideas of the ideal body. Among the litany of absurdities that pass off as eye candy are, mechanically sculpted abs, comically Popeye like biceps, bulging chests etc. It's not as though men shouldn't exercise and stay fit (everyone ought to) - it's just that our image of the ideal man is rather grotesquely perfect. While you may never end up being a Brad Pitt, it's rather safe to assume that NOBODY expects you to be. So, go easy on the whey protein and work on something else instead - like personality.
Receding Hairlines: The process of balding or even the fear that is attached to the vague potential of balding has a great sway over the male psyche. Men are conditioned to feel that balding is the worst possible humiliation they could suffer. The truth is, balding is rather common and prevalent. And hell, some men even look great bald. The trick is not to get too worked up about something so commonplace, the world is used to bald men, and nobody is going to hold you against it.
Your Sexual Ability: OK, let's get this straight. While porn has been something of a rite of passage for teens discovering their sexuality, it's done a lot more harm than good. While some men actually look at porn for guidance, others are subliminally informed about sex through porn whether they like it or not. And porn sure does promote silly notions about sexual ability: that men last hours and hours in the sack, that they have a great command over complicated sexual position and the most damaging notion that women actually enjoy the things done to them in a porno. Truth is, nobody expects you to be superman and most women wouldn't appreciate you trying to emulate the moves you've seen.
Penis Size: The epicenter of all male insecurities revolve around the size of their instrument. However, the average erect penis maxes out at 5 inches across cultures. Nevertheless, men still hang on to the notion that bigger is better. What they often miss out on is that in most cases size doesn't really matter. While porn does contribute to this historic misunderstanding it has also become deeply embedded in our culture. What men ought to do is get over the notions of size, talk to their partner and find ways they can actually manage to use their organ for the mutual benefit of both parties.
Written by Rheea Mukherjee. Rheea spent most of her life moving between the US and India. In 2011, she decided enough was enough and moved back to Bangalore for good where she founded Write Leela Write with her friend Kala. Rheea writes awesome blogs and other things for Lovetreats. She loves dogs, attempts yoga and fantasizes about becoming vegan. Rheea also just published her first book, "Transit For Beginners"!