Man Up Monday: A Real Man

My Dear Son,

When it comes to being a man, we will work together to develop an idea of what we think a man is. Our ideas will, of course, be informed by the images in the media. But as we are free thinking, intelligent beings we are able to seek out those examples that are most in line with our values and refuse or analyze those that are not. We will start with my and your dad’s ideas and build from there. We will add Daddy’s later. For now, this is just my list. These are the most important qualities that I believe a man should have. But, they are not reserved only for men. These are qualities that a woman should have as well. As you get bigger, you will hear people describe something called a “real man.” This is what they feel is the ideal of a man. There is no one definition of a real man. In fact, one person’s ideals might change over time. The reality is that there is no definition of what a real man is. If you try to act like someone else’s idea of how a real man should act then you are probably not being true to your own self and heart. As Daddy likes to say, “To thine own self be true.”