Every year, November 19 holds a special significance for men the world over. Why? Because this day has been earmarked as International Men's Day. It is an occasion that calls for a special focus on men's health, improving gender relations and empowering men.
It is universally acknowledged that women have a significant role in all spheres of everyday life. They are productive members of the community and society, strengthen the institution of marriage, are actively involved in giving birth and rearing children, all the while providing constant support to the men.
While taking nothing away from the enormous contribution women make, it is good to remember that men play an equally important part. That is where the need to celebrate a day for men arises. And, even though Men's Day does not get as much attention, it definitely should.
Here is why we need to acknowledge and show appreciation to the men in our lives:
Reasons why International Men's Day should be celebrated
Men can serve as positive role models: Children tend to look up to someone as their role model, in their growing-up years. Today, most children end up idolizing sportsmen, celebrities or movie stars, especially those who play superhero characters. While there is nothing wrong in doing so, it is infinitely better to have a regular man, for instance, a father who is leading a normal, decent life as a good human being considered as a role model. That way, children will also realize that you do not have to be famous or celebrated on social media, to be an example to others. What's more, the involvement of a father can have a positive impact on his young children. Remember, if you are honest, hardworking, and disciplined, you are also a hero.
A day to celebrate the positive contributions of men: Today, women are on equal terms with men and sometimes, even outshine them. This is vital for a more balanced society, but it is also important to celebrate the achievements of men. In their own way, men too make positive and essential contributions to society, family, marriage, and child-rearing. Hence, this should be celebrated.
Men's issues need to be discussed: Boys tend to be traditionally raised with the stereotypical notion that as a man you should be strong and not show any weakness. This is totally wrong. Men are also human beings and can face problems both on the personal and professional front. What's more, it is healthier to openly talk and resolve such issues, than to stay quiet.
It focuses on the importance of a father: Today, in our increasingly busy lives, either one or both parents struggle to balance work and home. Invariably, the mother chooses to take a break and look after the children. But what about the father? Often, the father is so preoccupied with work that he hardly has any time for his family. Having a day focused on men is a great way to encourage fathers to be present for their children and play an active role in their lives.
Gender equality: What is gender equality? In general terms, it means a scenario when both women and men enjoy equal opportunities and have an equal say in personal and professional matters. Often, boys are taught early that they have no choice but to suffer hardships in silence and to fulfill the role of the breadwinner or main provider for the family. This puts unnecessary pressure on men from an early age and some of them crumble under the strain.
Day to put a focus on discrimination: Yes, it is not a myth! Men are also discriminated against in various ways. In many countries, it is in fact compulsory for men to enlist in the military and serve the nation. There are also certain laws pertaining to alimony and custody of children that do not favor men. Men are also supposed to be masculine and strong, and not complain about discrimination. Perhaps it is time we take a deeper look at such sensitive issues.
Men help balance women and vice versa: A man cannot give to his child what a woman can. That holds true for women as well. While women are portrayed as loving, kind, gentle and nurturing caregivers, men tend to be seen as challenging and playful with their children. The truth is, both parents balance each other and bring different qualities to parenting. Also, they need to work together and be equally committed, to raising their children. That is when children grow up healthier and happier, both emotionally and physically.
At the end of the day, men are an equal and vital part of society. Just like women, they too don multiple roles father, son, brother, uncle and grandfather, so on. Shouldn't we celebrate men both for themselves and their achievements and also, for the manner in which they support the women in their lives? What better way to do that than by dedicating a day to all men!
Don't we all want to add to our 'things to do with kids at home' list? Here are some fresh ideas to keep kids occupied at home. If you have a board game lover kid, can you think of anything better than hosting an indoor board games party? Or how about a board game-themed birthday party?