International Men's Day frequently fades into the background in the global symphony of awareness days, eclipsed by the more dramatic crescendos of its counterparts. It's interesting to consider why this day isn't given more attention, given how much society values gender equality. Why is there silence surrounding this commemoration of the challenges and contributions of men? Is this a reflection of society's unwillingness to explore the nuances of men's experiences, or does it point to a larger unease with talking about problems that don't easily fit into popular narratives? Come along on a trip to uncover the hidden meanings underlying the quiet progression of International Men's Day in a world full of whispered tales.
Looking At The Anonymity Of International Men’s Day
Let's look at the reasons behind this day passing off in a hush.
Lack of Awareness
One of the primary reasons why International Men's Day goes unnoticed by many is the lack of awareness. In comparison to International Women's Day, which has been celebrated for over a century, IMD is relatively new. The first IMD was observed in 1992, while IWD dates back to the early 1900s. This historical disparity has contributed to a significant awareness gap.
IMD is often misunderstood or misconstrued. Some people mistakenly believe that it's a day to counteract International Women's Day or to undermine women's rights. In reality, IMD is not about taking away from women's achievements or rights; it's about focusing on men's issues, and mental health, and fostering positive masculinity.
Men's Day is nothing in response to the IWD, rather it is a separate day of separate but equal importance. As we know men's issues have been left overlooked for years and the concept of man is also changing as gender is becoming more fluid.
Men's Issues Overlooked
The day is intended to address a range of issues that affect men, including high suicide rates, poor mental health, workplace accidents, and societal expectations. These issues often receive less attention than those affecting women, even though they are equally important. The invisibility of these problems perpetuates the stigma surrounding men's mental health and other challenges they face.
Society has historically placed a burden on men to be stoic, unemotional, and strong. This leads to men being less likely to seek help for their emotional or mental struggles, further exacerbating the issues related to men's well-being.
It is a well-known notion that men must provide for the economic needs of a family to earn any amount of love. Yet, these works are taken for granted. IMD serves as an opportunity to break down these societal expectations, but the lack of attention it receives hinders this process.
Gender stereotypes play a significant role in the under-recognition of IMD. The notion that men should be tough and resilient can discourage open conversations about their struggles, making it harder to address issues like depression, anxiety, and high suicide rates. IMD aims to challenge these stereotypes, but it often struggles to gain a platform for this important dialogue.
Less Publicized Events
IMD events and initiatives are often less publicized and receive limited media coverage in comparison to IWD events. Consequently, the general public remains unaware of the activities and discussions taking place during IMD, preventing these crucial conversations from reaching a broader audience.
Lack of Advocacy
One key factor contributing to the hushed nature of IMD is the lack of prominent advocacy and support from governments, organizations, and public figures. International Women's Day has strong advocacy and widespread support, which translates to more significant visibility. Efforts to promote IMD, both at the grassroots and global levels, must be strengthened.
Changing Gender Dynamics as Gender is Becoming Less Binary
As society is accepting other kinds of genders except just men and women, the nature of understanding of the idea of an ideal man is also changing. Men might not be just macho ripped muscular men. Men can be gay, non-binary, bisexual, etc.
So all the traditional ideas of men need to be discarded and evolved in this changing new world. Nations are accepting these gender issues, so society also needs to accept and adapt to the new idea of man.
International Men's Day is a vital occasion for addressing issues that affect men's well-being, mental health, and societal expectations. Despite its importance, IMD often goes unnoticed or is met with misconceptions and misinterpretations.
It is crucial to raise awareness about IMD and promote discussions surrounding men's issues, just as society does for women's issues on International Women's Day. This will not only help reduce the stigma surrounding men's struggles but also contribute to a more equitable society that values the well-being of all its members, regardless of gender.
Written By: Indranil Mukherjee
Edited By: Chirajita Gupta