Heartbreak gets a bad rap, especially with the more masculine aspect of the human species. Hollywood has us coined out as a bottomless black hole of emotion, benign of empathy and emotion. It couldn’t be further from the truth.
Men, like women, come in a variety of emotional shapes and sizes. While there are some stone cold fellas walking around out there, for the most part women should realize that men are just as susceptible to heartbreak as women.
And not all breakups are created equal.
The pivotal difference between men and women in the heartbreak chapter of a relationship is not necessarily what they do, but what they are expected to do. Women confide in their friends, reminisce about the good times (and the bad) and sometimes sulk over ice cream. Instances of retail therapy and late nights out of spite are not out of the question either. Not all women deal with heartbreak the same way, but these are the broad generalizations for women in their late teens and twenties.
Men? There might as well be a field manual that you’ve got to follow unless you want you boys dogging you and her friends laughing at you. Don’t worry, I’ll explain.
After a long bout of heartbreak, it’s not uncommon to see a girl’s social media showered with a bout of sappy “3 AM, don’t make me call you” Drake lyrics and ominous odes to the lost lover. Guys are usually shunned from such behavior. Keep it movin’, they’ll say. On to the next one! There exists a double standard here that I feel needs to be commented on.
Guys are expected to relish in the opportunity of the freedom from a relationship, as if man’s natural state is a philandering journey from one girl to the next. Contrary to popular belief, most men do not see girls and parking spaces as synonymous.
This is not a call for men to brood and despair, but rather for those to understand that in the aftermath of an apocalyptic end to a relationship it’s okay to embrace your loneliness.
We’re not as heartless as the world might make us out to be.
We still look at our phone, wishing you’d be the one to have the courage to start the conversation this time. We miss you when that song comes on and every lyric is stamped with your name. We’re just not supposed to show it.
We’ll be sad when we go through our phone to delete the memories, the makeup free selfies you sent us and the.. other ones too.
The diagnosis is the same and the medication is all different. Men have been told by the world at large that we must turn the cold shoulder to loneliness and heartbreak and I wish it weren’t so. We’ve avoided the grieving process and subtracted closure from an otherwise simple equation.
So many times for men, we refuse emotion when pride taps us on the shoulders and reminds us that like in all other things, men must be strong. Men must not fall. I might be wrong, but I think sometimes it’s okay to fall, because it makes us even stronger when we finally stand back up.