Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Father Hunger

It is not only women that end up being used by men. Men do as well. This tends to stem from a syndrome known as "Father Hunger". I have had to struggle with this through my life as well. How this works is that if a boy does not have a strong and reliable father figure (not necessarily the biological father himself) in his life at a very early age, then he unconsciously hungers for the attention of the father. Most women will understand this very well, having dated and married their own fathers. But there are very interesting twists involved in when a man feels father hunger.

For example, in my particular case, I found myself craving male friendships through my early years, teens and even into my upper twenties. My father was mostly absent, and when he was around, he tended to be raging. So with the rage, I would distance myself as much as humanly possible. This then created more absence. So then I would do almost anything to establish and maintain friendships with other guys. This put me into a precarious and powerless position. My "friends" would use me, then they would neglect me, then they would abandon me altogether and often betray my trust when it came to interacting with other guys.

Once I figured out that I was experiencing father hunger, I realized that I don't want friends who never call me to go out and do stuff. I also did not want friends who thought it was completely okay to not communicate for 2 years and then expect the friendship to just pick up where it left off. I decided to no longer be their "boy bitch" and get some self-respect.

When I made that decision, I found myself no longer taking crap from the male friends in my life. I also found that I quickly had no male friends. This no longer scared me. I knew that I was looking for a "father" and decided that life dealt me the father I had and that there was no replacing that. So then what I was looking for was solid and reliable male friends who honored me and enjoyed being with me and who would actually pick up the F@#$ing telephone and call me for a "date" to go out and do stuff together. Once I narrowed my focus, I was able to draw into my circle of friends the men who have character and conscience. I absolutely love these men. I know, that is weird to read from a man, and weirder to hear when I say those words. But it is very true. There are so many forms of love, and the real love that one man can feel for his male friend cannot be replaced with the frilly romantic stuff we tend to equate with love. It is deep and loyal and impenetrable by anything and anyone who would want to destroy it. We are comrades and I know that if push came to shove, they would stand up for me and fight if necessary, just as I would for them. I am honored to have them in my life.

Blessed Be




Gail said...

I appreciate how you cut through all the crap, get to the point, and shine the light of a thousand suns upon the truth.
So many men fear expressing their deep and abiding love for their male friends - unless they're absolutely "faced" and the words "I love you, man" can quite easily be said through slurred lips. For a man to tell one of his male friends he loves them, without being this inebriated, opens the door to - horror of all horrors- their buddies casting aspersions upon their sexuality!!

Trent Deerhorn said...

Takes strong men to express actual love to other men without it having to be sexual.

Ann said...

I have experienced similar unacceptance of my loving relationships with my female friends. I dream of a world in which each of us can develop deep committed relationships with whomever we like, male or female, sexuality or for that matter sex aside. I love you isn't attached to I want you sexually. I believe this openness and acceptance brings maturity to our relationships. I know that my life would be a barren place without my friends, who I love deeply.