Expectations. Upon hearing the word, thoughts and feelings immediately present themselves such as opportunity, prospect, and anticipation. As our society has developed, it has created high expectations for both genders but especially for boys, as they grow older. Boys, usually when they’re younger or in their early teens, tend to act out more. They don’t always think about the consequences, and just act without reason or the “id.” To society, this behavior is ‘just a phase.’ In today’s culture besides becoming physically strong, young boys are expected to mature mentally by being able to provide an income and suppress their emotions.
One of the most common expectations of men is that they are physically powerful: robust, muscular, more powerful than a locomotive, and able to leap tall buildings in a single bound. This is seen everywhere: in movies, on TV, video games, all over advertising, worn like a cheap suit. And yet, men only have a limited degree of control over their physique. They can work out and gain muscle, but to a degree. Society’s expectations of the male figure are unachievable for a portion of the male population.
As boys enter adulthood, they are expected to be able to get a job and make money for themselves. Society creates the definition of masculinity with the help of what lies in a man’s bank account. Though women’s income is on the rise and a two-income household is become standard, men are expected to be wealthy if at all possible, to be good providers for their families at a bare minimum. Failure to do so catapults men directly into the disappointments of society. This particular gender role ties men into some uniquely convoluted knots. On one hand, a man is supposed to be independent, to pursue his own vision and forge his own path. And yet, if he chooses a path that isn't paved with gold, if he chooses job satisfaction or a happy home life over financial gain, he is a letdown.
Another expectancy of society for men is to be...