Ridicule which is being defined here as the experience of being made fun of by others is very rarely spoken about in the context of men’s mental health. Many men have learned to say that what others say doesn’t mean anything to them or ‘I don’t care about what others people think of me.’ however that is rarely the case. All individuals have a need to be loved and ridicule is the opposite experience of that. Men can be ridiculed for their lack of physical ability, their poor intellect, their lack of hair, being overweight, being effeminate, being too quiet or too loud, always wanting attention, being arrogant, etc. The list of items to be ridiculed about is essentially endless.
Generally men are ridiculed or made fun of about a few consistent items. For example, a man could be made fun of as a result of always wanting to be the centre of attention. This particular ridicule is usually consistent over time and when the man meets new people someone may once again call him out on that particular ridicule. Most men respond to ridicule with anger and resentment and if possible will cut the individual from their life. However, some times the individual doing the ridicule is a family member or co-worker and it becomes impossible to cut that person out. Often times the individual doing the ridicule is projecting. This means that they see in a person something they don’t like about themselves and so they ridicule. However, if the person being ridiculed is having a reaction to the ridicule there is most likely something there. For example, if a tall man is ridiculed by another individual for being short the tall man will have no reaction to the ridicule. Reactions take place only when the ridicule actually touches something inside.
If a man is having a reaction to someone else’s ridicule it becomes important to go inside and help uncover what this reaction is all about. Many times the individuals doing the ridicule are correct however rather than being supportive they ridicule. For example, maybe a man is often excessively loud in social gatherings. If someone generally cared about this man they would pull the man aside let him know about how his being loud is potentially affecting others and himself. This would be done from a place of love and care.
The most powerful antidote to ridicule is acceptance. Rather than explode in anger or fester in resentment there is deep power in accepting that potentially the ridicule is accurate. Being ridiculed is always inappropriate but the content may in fact be true. This acceptance frees a man to focus on why they need to behave in whatever way that is being ridiculed about. To explore what fear or limiting belief is driving their need to behave in certain ways. Once again is important to note that being ridiculed is inappropriate but it does not negate the fact there they may be something to look at what regards to what is being ridiculed.
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“If a man is having a reaction to someone else’s ridicule it becomes important to go inside and help uncover what this reaction is all about.”