There’s a cultural belief that we, as men, can and are supposed to pick ourselves up by our bootstraps, not relying on the aid or advice of another. This is a dangerous idea. Our society is increasingly fragmented and scores of men are plagued by depression, anxiety, and loneliness. Friendship and camaraderie is less important nowadays because it’s easy for us to live comfortable, pampered lives without ever leaving home. And frankly, men have a much more difficult time making friends and opening up after they graduate from college.
However, there is an antidote to this. It comes under many different labels – that each man needs a tribe, his community, his band of brothers – and all of it is a vital rallying cry. It’s not an easy thing to come by for it takes effort in this day and age. Like any manly task though, it is worth it.
Men need brothers. They need people to challenge them, to call them out and hold them accountable, and offer tried and true advice. As important as these is the additional need for other men to grab drinks with, aid each other through personal struggles, and to undertake manly tasks alongside. Friendship and brotherhood are skills; as we begin to become more complete men, we need other men to join, support, and encourage us along the path.