10 Reasons Why International Mens Day Matters

International Men’s Day takes place every year on November 19th. Women have traditionally been seen to have needed more support and equality, but men also must have a voice. Here are 10 reasons why International Mens Day matters:

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#1. We shouldn’t just celebrate celebrities

It’s important to promote not just movie stars and sportsmen but also everyday men who are living decent, honest lives.

#2. Men as positive role models

There is also a desperate need around the world for more positive male role models. Many boys today do not know what it means to be a man because they don’t have a man in their lives. Many children will go to bed tonight without saying goodnight to their father because he just isn’t there.

portrait_screen shot_imd_2013If a positive male role model is not present in the life of a child there is a void in this area. Children who live in this environment are more likely to be involved in criminal activity, premarital sexual activity, do poorer in school and participate in unhealthy activities.

Studies have shown that involvement of a father or a positive male role model in the lives of children has profound effects on them. Father-child interaction promotes a child’s physical well being, perceptual ability and competency for relating with others. These children also demonstrate greater ability to take initiative and evidence self-control.

#3. We should celebrate men’s positive contributions

Men make positive contributions to society, community, family, marriage, child care, and to the environment every day.

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#4. It helps focus on men’s health and wellbeing

Not just their physical health and wellbeing, but their social, emotional, physical and spiritual health.

#5. It helps improve gender relations

We want the world to be safer and better, where people can grow to reach their full potential. We want to promote gender equality for both men and women.

#6. Many parts of the world are suffering from an epidemic of fatherlessness.

This is particularly the case in America where nearly one-fourth of USA’s children live in mother-only families. Of the children living with their mothers, 35 percent never see their father and 24 percent see their fathers less than once a month.

These children live with a woman and more than likely, they are taught by a woman at school. Where do they see and interact with positive male role models? Or, if they are a boy how do they learn what it means to be a man? Television? Movies? On the street?

#7. It’s important for fathers to be present

Even in homes where the father is present research shows that the average father spends less than 10 minutes a day one-on-one with his child.

Many of today’s fathers did not have positive role models to show them what it means to be a father to a child, so encouraging them to be present with their children for more than the average is only a good thing. “Presence not presents”.

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#8. Fathers balance mothers

landscape_poster_imd_2013_a4_lrNo matter how great a mother is, she cannot replace what a father provides to a child. Irrefutable research shows that mothers typically are nurturing, soft, gentle, comforting, protective and emotional.

Fathers tend to be challenging, prodding, loud, playful and encourage risk taking. Children need a balance of protection and reasonable risk taking.

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#9. Men have issues that society needs to address

Men have a number of issues that we still need society to address:

  • men die younger on average than women;
  • in the UK each day 12 men take their own lives while Ireland has one of the highest male youth suicide rates in Europe;
  • the majority of the prison population in most countries is male.

Every boy needs to be encouraged to take care of themselves, their health, their well-being, and be encouraged to fully participate in society. If there is no personal role model, we need to find ways of giving them role models to emulate.

#10. Men are a big part of our lives

At the end of the day, we all have fathers, brothers, cousins, uncles, grandparents. Some are better at relating than others, but men play an important part in everyone’s lives. So give a tip of the hat to the men in your life, especially the ones that are positive and contribute positively to your family.

Over to you now. What do you think of International Mens Day? Tell us your thoughts in the comments below.


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Jill is one of the co-founders of Mykidstime and a mum of 2 girls