Masculine Phrases Some People Don’t Understand

Reading Time: 8 minutes

Men have their own language. That is we have a way of talking to each other that many women and some “enlightened” men view as damaging and that men should stop saying to each other. Now I see where some of these enlightened people are coming from when they criticize how men talk to each other. We are often rough with how we talk to other men, and sometimes the words we use  

Now I will also point out why we say these words to counter the miss information many people express about how men talk to each other. I also want to talk about where many of us men actually apply our words in damaging ways.

Now WebMD likes to call how men talk to each other as Bro-manclature and in the article, he talks about how men actually like to connect with each other. Now they use the bromance word for how men connect. Yet, it’s supposed to be a sort of tongue and cheek which is how men often relate with each other at the start.

Yet there are a few words that are misunderstood and often damned because so many people want to say that talking to each other like that is harmful. Yes, they can be harmful just as even words like love can be harmful. but as a whole, these words I am talking about aren’t. 

Man Up

Often told to men so they will stop complaining about a situation they are in. Common times are when a time looks dire and a brother in arms is about ready to give up, he will hear a friend tell him he needs to man up. Stop feeling sorry for yourself and get the job done.

Now, this is used by those who believe that toxic masculinity is a thing because we are telling men to bury their feelings. This is the farthest from the truth. Men understand there is a time and a place for everything and in the heat of a battle crying over something isn’t the time.

Toxic Masculinity supporters like to say that phrase tells men to bury their feelings, and I think that is because women are way more emotional in their communications, and men simply don’t open like that. Men do share their feelings and thoughts but we don’t do it with a glass of chablis and with a group of guys.

Now there are times that this phrase can be miss internalized. This goes back to how men communicate. We don’t share our feelings with just anyone we have to have a band of brothers who we trust. Now that could very well be the problem. Many men especially when we are married give up our friends for our family. 

Yes, the family does take a higher priority over friends but not at the expense of friends. This is often a huge mistake men make. We are often all in on something, and with family going all into the expense of our friendships is to our detriment. We often need to seek the knowledge and advice of our masculine friends. This is the same as women needing support from other women. It isn’t a means of forsaking our spouse; we just need the insights and a man’s point of view. We look to our wife to get a different perspective of a problem. 

When a man doesn’t have a band of brothers to turn to he can often not have the pressure valve that he needs. That is when Manning up can be a problem because when a man internalizes everything it is like a pressure cooker it can give way and cause some massive destruction.

So When you hear a guy tell another man to Man Up you see it is a means of spiritual support to encourage a man to get over an obstacle that’s in their way. It’s not mean. It isn’t cruel. It is a form of support.

Suck it up

This is another phrase that can be often missed understood by both men and the enlightened is the term Suck it up. Travis Howse talks a lot about how he used this phrase as a weapon and also had that phrase used on him. Yet this phrase is most often used in emotional times. It is commonly used when the stress levels are through the roof and a man starts to think he can’t handle it.

Now You will often hear Suck It Up as a means of motivation. All men have the ability to stuff their emotions down or Suck the emotions up. Yet much like a vacuum bag you have to empty that bag from time to time. It gets full of crap. That is where again men can overdo it. They don’t want to be perceived as weak, and a band of brothers that you can trust to talk to comes into play. 

The stoicism that men are able to perform is great but as I have said before resisting emotions in a time and place that you are able to process them is always needed. You can store the emotions away but you have to let them out. When you don’t and you resist the emotions that need to be processed you are actually creating your own suffering

So when it is time to suck it up, you need to be able to rely on your friends to clean out that emotional bag and you can process the emotions at a time that is safer to do so. 

Grow some Balls

Now, this is often a phrase that is used in jest. We use it as a means to rib our friends but is also used when we come across a person who is being cowardly. Now people scorn this phrase because boys will use this as a challenge to each other. 

That type of talk is normal and actually good for boys to have in their life.  Boys grow by being challenged. They learn to jump curbs and test each other to see how far they can fly. Can they jump off the roof of the house and not get hurt? Don’t know many times they will use this phrase to learn one of the best phrases anybody can use. The phrase is “Let’s See”.

Yeah, growing some balls is crude, but it is a challenge that is meant to push each other to be better. 

Now can it be damaging if it is being used by boys who don’t have a strong male influence in their life? If they are trying to get another kid to shoplift or some other immoral challenge. While seeing if they can go down a hill faster than the other kids on the block is good.

Don’t Be Such a Girl

When I hear this I instantly think of the classic Sandlot. When Ham Porter gets in a putdown fight with Phillips. The ultimate slam is when Ham tells Philips that he plays baseball like a girl!

Now, this often goes alongside boys don’t cry, I’ll get more into this one here a bit later. Yet this is often used as a jab at a boy’s ego. This phrase actually can be used to push boys and help them get past a place of fear. Challenging them to get out of their comfort zone and try something that will ultimately show them more skill and confidence in themselves.

Tired stressed male worker taking off glasses, person massaging nose bridge suffering from headache and trying to relieve pain. Despaired man frustrated after reading company collapse or failure news

Now yes this phrase can cause thoughts of inadequacy but in most cases, this is a rare event. It is used between friends and does the opposite. It poles the boy’s pride in himself and edges him out into his masculinity. 

While there are those who want people to believe it is to say girls are weak, and physically speaking men are stronger. Most girls who hear this will roll with it. They don’t break down in self-pity. With Tomboys they are right in the middle of the same scrap as their boy counterparts. They will use it in just the same way. They know they have different body parts and can often give a boy a run for his money. 

When you are a boy you have to show your value and yeah when they are younger and haven’t noticed girls yet you have to earn the respect of your friends. If you are a girl who is wanting to hang with boys you are held to the very same standards as the rest of the boys. If you can hang then welcome to the club. Taught girls often have just as much respect in a boys group as the other boys.

To be a girl means that you are not worthy of being in the group. So if you are offended by this phrase stop being such a girl.

Boys will be Boys

Now if you really want to get a feminist’s panties in a bunch, use this phrase around them. Now they like to think it means something about the rape culture and that is the farthest mean possible for this simple truth. 

The phrase isn’t anything sexist at all it points to the fact that boys will do dumb things. They do something that will often lead to a laugh through practical jokes at another guy’s expense. They will do something odd at the spur of a moment. Just to let loose and have a good time. 

Example? Do you say?

Take it like a man

Here is another term that is meant to push men beyond their comfort zones. Does it encourage stereotypes? Yeah and in that line of thinking it is a good thing. Now it can be heard from time to time in a hazing instance and that can often lead to problems but many times it is used to push guys out of their comfort zone.

Now there are those that want to say that it limits all genders and that is absurd. Does it exclude women? Well yeah, it does because men and women process discomfort differently. It Is said as a way to challenge men because again would you rather hear take it as a girl? 

Hey Ladies!

This is often a fun joking way to greet a group of men. Now there are those who take offense to this because again you are supposedly singling out men from women and saying that these guys are weak and that is a false narrative all around.

This phrase is used often between guys who have respect for each other. It is meant as a joke and it is taken as a joke. It is how men talk to each other and sorry the people of the fairer sex will often not understand how men talk the same as how men don’t always understand how women talk.

Boys don’t cry

Now, this is a huge one these days. People want to imply that when this phrase is used it is conditioning men to not share their feelings. Nope, you are just proving that you don’t understand men, and that is fine. You don’t have to understand. 

Sadly many of the enlightened people who bash this phrase for perpetuating gender stereotypes want to point a finger and say see toxic masculinity in action. This is completely false too. As I have said many times there is a time and a place for everything. 

Image by Michal Jarmoluk from Pixabay

There are many times that you have seen men cry and what are they? Ridiculed for showing emotions. This tells me that those enlightened people are pointing a finger because they point away from their own inadequacies.

If a boy didn’t get the position on a team he wanted and he starts crying does that mean he deserves the position? No, He doesn’t need to be crying about it then. If he put his all into a race and lost. If the game is over then sure that is the time and the place. I have known and seen plenty of men cry. 

Men and boys do cry, they just don’t cry as a means to manipulate others. That is a smarmy way of manipulating others and is very dishonest. So when a dad tells his son that men don’t cry, that is a dad telling his son crying on the field isn’t the time.

Now maybe this helped those who were a little confused as to the misdirection some folks like to think. Men have their own way of speaking. We have our own way of handling stress. We are not like women and women are not like us. We do turn to women for understanding.  Men who are emotionally mature even seek out the knowledge that women have. The same as how Emotionally mature women will seek out the knowledge of men.

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About Bryan Goodwin

I like being able to help people find their "why" and achieve the personal freedom they desire. Besides writing for Relaxed Male I also am a life coach. By helping men find the leader that is found in each and every one of us. I do this by encouraging men to get outdoors and find the balance they are missing. Realize that they need to be in contact with the outside as often as they can. It is not only good for them but for their families and relationships.

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