Thank you, Caitlin Moran: men’s wellbeing needs a lot more attention | Men

“Finally!” I cried, when I read Caitlin Moran’s article on whether feminism can help to save men as well as women (Caitlin Moran: what’s gone wrong for men – and the thing that can fix them, 1 July).

For many, including council housing administrators, I’m a bloke with no worries because I’m heterosexual, white and middle‑aged. On paper, yes. Off paper, I’m a 5ft-eff-all welfare recipient, still pandemically pudgy, often with pink hair and always emerald green toenails. To some I’m obviously gay or confused (yes, but that’s ADHD and I’m still waiting for new meds requested a year ago).

I don’t like being lumped into the “all men are shit” category simply because I am one (a man, sometimes a shit). I’ve seen very few articles in mainstream media concerned with men’s welfare. We’re not supposed to complain, because successful men of the past somehow mean our contemporary struggles are invalid. A few years ago, a popular female media personality tweeted that all men were essentially Boris Johnson. Later, I quit the town square. I don’t aspire to be like Andrew Tate or lobster-botherer Jordan Peterson.

I’m lucky I have friends who are highly educated, skilled, creative and empathic. They inspired me to be the first person in my family not only to go to university, but to reach the lofty heights of a postgraduate art history degree. Without my friends, I’d be in prison or dead. Some of us don’t care about being a man. We just want for you to listen instead of reminding us how rubbish we are.
Andrew Reeve

I read with interest Caitlin Moran’s nuanced article. Many years ago, the school in which I taught was visited by a researcher who was investigating the “gender gap” – the extent to which boys in general attain lower than girls. It was part of an international study that was nearing its end, and I asked whether they yet had any conclusions.

The tentative conclusion was that the “gender gap” varied between countries, and between schools in the same country. There was a correlation – the gap often disappeared in those boys who had had a reasonable proportion of men teaching in their primary schools.

The mechanism being suggested was that when young boys are taught almost exclusively by women, they subconsciously regard education as a “girl thing”. If they have a reasonable proportion of male teachers when young, this effect disappears.
Michael Hurdle
Send, Surrey

Have an opinion on anything you’ve read in the Guardian today? Please email us your letter and it will be considered for publication in our letters section.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *