AOH :: MALEMIND.TXT|
The Male Mind and his Body: a Relationship in Conflict
From: email@example.com (Alex Bruzzone)
Subject: The "Male Mind" and his "Body": A relationship in conflict.
Organization: Carleton University
The "Male Mind" and his "Body": A relationship in conflict.
"I have a dream sometimes that I'm lying
on the beach and these two big muscley
guys come over to me and tell me what a
great body I have. They stick around
talking for a while and then we take our
suits off and go swimming. I wake up excited
and feeling sexy." (Bell, 1980, p. 78)
Interpretations for this kind of experience are often vague and
offer little comfort, if any, to young males who truly feel and
want to differentiate as heterosexuals (see note 1, below). For
instance, the following advice is offered in Bell's manual for
"A fantasy may be about someone of your own
sex (a 'homosexual' fantasy). This may mean
that you are trying out feelings and possibilities
that you will never choose to act on. It could also
mean that you would like to have a sexual
relationship with someone of your own sex ---
anything from kissing or hugging to making love.
Many people have a homosexual relationship at some
point. For some it is a brief experience; for
others it is a way of life." (Bell, 1980, p. 78)
This kind of advice does not meet the needs of many teenagers,
leaving them with many questions unanswered. As this 19 year-old
university student reports:
"I really enjoy going for a workout with my buddy
in-between classes. We seem to like each other
a lot. But it scares me to look at his body
because I sometimes feel that he turns me on.
I don't know, I'm no queer. I know I want to get
married and have children. I feel I'm straight."
For most young men the possibility of homosexual differentiation
is a devastating thought. For this reason, men *must* understand
the meaning of homosexual imagery, which is so common in males.
Homosexual imagery is many times hidden, as reported in an
article which appeared in the journal "Psychological Reports":
"The contents of [heterosexual] pornographic
films emphasizes close-up views of penises.
Fellatio is prominent. All ejaculations are
shown and the semen visible... Aside from a
few views of the female face and breast, the
contents is very similar to that of homosexual
films, in which views of fellatio and
intercourse also comprise most of the film.
The Glasshouse Institute believes that men's psychosexual
development deserves special attention because of the constraints
that the "exposed sexuality" poses on the male psyche. (see note 2)
The notion of exposed sexuality refers to:
1. The external nature of the male genitals.
2. The observable characteristic of the male
sexual response (i.e. erection).
3. The observable characteristic of the male
orgasm (i.e. ejaculation).
The impact of the "exposed sexuality" has been conspicuously under
researched. Although very little is known of the effects that
this characteristic has on the male mind, it can be easily shown
that the feeling of shame (see note 3) plays an important role in
the way men relate to erections and ejaculations.
The Glasshouse Institute is offering an alternative to the
dilemma that men are faced with when confronted with
the "male body". Through self-awareness and the understanding
of their bodies, men can experience masculinity in a deep sense.
The male body will no longer be a threat or an obsession.
If you are interested in more information, please respond with
a short E-mail message. (Type 'r' if using _nn_ or _rn_)
1. Because in this new paradigm for sexuality the concept of Sexual
Orientation is rejected as invalid, 'heterosexual identity'
is used here to indicate a lifestyle (married, children).
2. Men's relationship with their bodies is filled with constraints
which men themselves discard as inconsequential. The main
source of these constraints is the erection.
3. The feeling of shame refers to the 'family of shame emotions',
such as shame, embarrassment, and humiliation.
Bell, R. (1980). Changing bodies, changing lives: A book for
teens on sex and relationships. New York: Random House.
Lester, D. (1984). Pornographic films and unconscious homosexual
desires: An hypothesis. Psychological Reports, 54, 606.
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