What Determines Manhood?

Haronamas Walton

A man is not defined by his muscles, his facial hair, what he wears, what he drives, or by how much money he makes. The common assumption a lot of guys have is that being male automatically makes them men. Don't get me wrong a person must be male to be a man, but it is not the sole qualification for becoming a good man. A real man is one who takes care of life's responsibilities. Such responsibilities may include obligations to family, friends, career, and community. A real man is a role model and he respects women.

Negative media that degrades women does not influence a real man. Real men don't measure themselves by the success of other men. Real men don't quit. Real men are mentally strong as well as physically strong. Real men are open-minded; they are not racist, sexist, or homophobic. Real men respect the opposing viewpoints of others even though they may disagree with them. A real man values education and is always ready to learn. A real man is confident in himself but he is not arrogant. A real man knows himself and his limits.

A boy grows from a teenager to a man when he reaches certain milestones in his life. When a teenager graduates from high school he is no longer considered a child. He must go and make a productive life for himself. When a guy gets a job, starts college, earns his drivers license, opens his own bank account, starts paying bills, begins to date, and he begins to make his own decisions in life, he should be considered a man.

Some kids grow up quick; therefore I believe that a man cannot be defined by age. A boy becomes a man as soon as he is successfully able to handle adult responsibilities. Some kids are not only expected to attend school and get good grades but they also have to deal with chores, run errands, and act as the man of the house because there is no father around. These kids learn the importance of family early and are often put under more physical and mental stress than the average adolescent is.

Family is the foundation of our society and the father is a major part of the family foundation. Having children scattered across the country doesn't prove a person's manhood. A man should love his wife, but if for whatever reason they are unable to stay together, he should not hold his children responsible. A real man would never desert his family. Any guy can have a child but only a real man can be a good father to his child. Many children are negatively effected when there is no father present in the home. A father must provide guidance, support, and love to his children.

The man is also responsible for at least fifty percent of the family income. He should make sure that all of the family's needs are met. A man is responsible for keeping food in the fridge and clothes on his children's backs. He has to pay the utility bills, which include, water, electric, gas, the phone, etc. A family needs a good house to live in; therefore the man needs to keep the mortgage paid. The family car has to stay gassed up and in good working order. The car note and the insurance need to be paid. The wife and kids will need health insurance, and so does the house.

Friends are also an important part of family. People cannot lead healthy lives without friends who they trust and are able to confide in. A good man is loyal to his friends. Not only does he hang out with them and go to parties but also he is there for them in times of need. A good friend listens and gives practical advice when it is asked of him. Friends do favors for each other. A real man is a good friend.

If a man expects to financially support his family he must have a career that will allow him to comfortably do so. There are not many options for good employment available to men that don't have a college education. Most men who do not have a good education must settle for menial labor jobs, which require little skill and education. The average menial labor job pays small