Thanks for tagging me and for your thoughts on this. What I asked was what is a better term for toxic masculinity, but what you answered speaks to a lot of the same thing.

From my perspective the problem is patriarchal culture — which does not mean men. It means a social system that is based on making people conform to gender binaries, rather than letting people be whatever natural mix of traditional masculine or traditional feminine traits that they are. Patriarchal culture is also about constantly measuring yourself against those around you. Women uphold patriarchy as much as men do.

On the school thing, I think that both boys and girls need more active physical time. It’s hard for elementary school kids especially to sit quietly at a desk for long periods of time, but in many cases girls do pull it off more easily than young boys do. My son went to an arts based charter school K-4 and they learned to dance geometric shapes, act out the life of a sunflower, and other things that had them learning while moving. It was great!

We need a society where everyone can be who they are, without artificial social barriers and where we do not constantly compare ourselves to each other to see who is higher or lower than us in the dominance hierarchy — where people can just be. Life is hard enough without all of this BS!

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Dispelling cultural myths with research-driven stories. My favorite word is “specious.” Not fragile like a flower; fragile like a bomb! Twitter @ElleBeau

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