Dr. Helen

How Do Boys Cope with a Female-Dominant Environment?

I often think about this question, and I saw a letter over at Alphagameplan blog from a father wondering how his lone son in a family with four girls could deal:

BD emails concerning his son:

A comment on your post “The Danger of Fantasy” talked of separating the masculine from the feminine. My wife & I have 5 children & we home school. We have just one boy. What I’ve noticed for awhile is that I believe my son actually takes on some female traits. He’s somewhat petty. He’s very jealous. He’s very overdramatic at times. He very much cares what his sisters think about him and cannot stand when they laugh at him. To me these are feminine traits. He’s around girls all the time and the 5 girls in our family (my wife & 4 daughters)​ are exceedingly girly. Is there any advice that you have or things I can to try & steer him away from this feminization? I’m the family provider so there is no way I can spend as much time with him as my wife does and by proxy his sisters. He’s a big strong athletic kid but sometimes he’s the biggest baby in our family & he has shown LOTS of tendency to avoid confrontation, especially now that he’s playing contact sports.

I wonder if the society is sort of like BD’s family above for many boys. They go to female-dominated schools where most of the teachers are women, have fatherless homes or homes where dad is at work or gone, and the culture focuses on women such as the Kardashians whose needs and personalities are at the forefront while men and boys are overlooked or humiliated. Rob Kardashian has often been ridiculed by his sisters and even Bruce Jenner wants to become a woman; perhaps it’s too hard to be a man and it’s easier just to become feminized like BD’s son above. Or perhaps there are no role models for boys on how to be men and they are only exposed to the female point of view. What will our society become if younger men simply become feminine and never know the masculine? Is this a good thing? Is it terrible? I can’t help but think the latter.