We spend a lot of time talking about the toxic aspects of masculinity, but there's so much more to being "manly" than anger and weird smells.
Reddit user Acolyte_000 asked:
"We hear a lot about toxic masculinity, but what are your favourite examples of positive masculinity?"
There's stuff like figure skating, tea parties, and warm hugs - take a look at what we mean.
"Gym bros randomly appearing to spot or encourage is hilarious and positive."
"I was trying to figure out a machine at the gym, when I was 19. I was chubby, female (still female, fyi) and wearing glasses. My gym clothes was just sweatpants."
"I did NOT look like I belonged, and I didn’t feel like it either."
"So yeah, I’m standing there looking all confused when this huge gym bro comes over and asks me if I need help. I say yes, and he proceeds to explain to me how the machine works. He is not condescending or anything, just real nice."
"Gyms still freak me out, but it meant a lot to me that this dude saw I looked confused and went out of his way to help me. Small things like that always make me feel like humanity is alright."
- simulatislacrimisWorking Out Lifting Weights GIF by Chance The RapperGiphy
"I feel like I owe it to the world."
"I was once an overweight 19 year old trying to figure how to gym. I've had so many random people help me along the way including professional strongmen, bodybuilders, elite powerlifters, and people with decades of experience."
"90% of the people I've interacted with at the gym have been extremely helpful and thankful."
"Over a decade of training and it's apparent to most that I can lift some big weight. I make it a point to help the younger lifters. Most of the time it really makes their day, they learn something new and are appreciative."
"I’m a woman who usually lifts solo, and a good guy friend is a hardcore gym bro who texts fantastic advice (bonus - usually only when I ask for it!) and encouragement. That’s awesome by itself."
"But once I joined him and his friends for leg day and witnessed super positive masculinity that struck me as so cool - the way they hyped each other up, encouraged/spotted each other to 'give me one more, come on you got this!!!' and congratulated each other after was just so pure and cool to watch."
"It’s not that women don’t do something similar, I think what made me really notice this was just that it was the different masculine style of doing it? It was awesome."
"My husband switching seats on an airline with a teenage girl being harassed by an old creep."
"He's very large, bearded, and wears metal t-shirts. He plopped down next to creeper and said 'you said you were buying drinks?' "
"F*ck yeah! Metalheads might look scary, but you'd be hard pressed to find a more friendly and welcoming bunch!"
"As a mom of 2 daughters, I appreciate this so much. What a great guy!"
"I fell asleep on the sofa after a really hard day, but I was sort of dozing, not fully asleep."
"My 16 year old son came into the room, saw me sleeping, and started tiptoeing around, shut the blinds, turned the lights off and covered me in a blanket because he was going to use the backyard gym which required a window to be open for an extension lead and he didn't want me to get cold."
"It was just so thoughtful and did surprise me a bit because he normally has tunnel vision."
"He's also really stepped up the last few weeks, I've been on sick leave, I'm a nurse and got attacked by a patient so have my hand in a soft cast for ligament damage."
"He's cooked pretty much every evening. He has also been meal planning for the week. I am married, but it's turned into a bit of 'us time' and he's really enjoying learning to cook."
"I'm so proud of him and told him this the other day and we had a huge hug. I love him so much."
Figure Skating Fans
"I’m a figure skater."
"We share the ice with hockey players, and I cannot get over how nice it feels when hockey players get rowdy and bang on the glass and cheer when you’re doing something cool, the same way a hockey fan would at an exciting hockey game."
"It’s hilarious but it’s also confidence inducing."
"When it first happened, I thought they were trolling me. I just rolled my eyes and continued my practice. But when I got off the ice, I was swarmed with questions like:"
“ 'HOW DO YOU DO ALL THAT WITHOUT PADDING OR A HELMET?!' ”
“ 'HOW DO YOU LAUNCH YOURSELF INTO THE AIR LIKE THAT?' ”
“ 'AREN’T YOU AFRAID OF FALLING?' ”
“ 'DON’T YOU GET DIZZY SPINNING THAT FAST?'"
"It’s wholesome as f*ck. They’re genuinely intrigued by this sport."
"A bunch of dudes who make their own sport even more entertaining by beating the sh*t out of each other have no shame in getting rowdy to hype up their figure skating counterparts."
"I know how skating works and just jumping and spinning like you do is voodoo, at least to me."
"I get pucks shot at my head, but what you do seems a lot more dangerous! And you make it look good, it's really impressive."
- figaaroCelebrate Ice Hockey GIF by NHLGiphy
5 Minutes To Get Some Pants On
"Using pickup trucks to help others out."
"Need help moving? In the Ditch? Stuck in the snow? 'Gimme 5 mins to throw some pants on and I'm there.' "
"A lot of guys around me just drive around in their pickups during snowstorms to pull out people who are stuck. Or they carry chainsaws with them to cut trees that are blocking the roadways."
"That's my circle! I've had to leave in the middle of the night several times for random... 'dude I need help.' "
"My favorite to date was 'You're not going to believe this but I am stuck, bring your floor jack and chainsaw..' "
"He was literally stuck on top of a tree stump."
Lift Like A Leader
"I had a boss that was a real muscle head, but in a good way. Every time someone was having a bad/rough time he'd suggest we take a long lunch and go with him to the gym."
"He did this with multiple co-workers, taught a lot of us how to properly squat and deadlift."
"This was like 7 years ago, and I still squat and deadlift regularly, where as before I would simply just use the treadmill and maybe the circuit room at the gym."
"Not saying I'm in peak physical condition, but certainly in a better spot after him helping."
"That's not a boss dude, that's a leader."
"Exercise really is meditation."
"You get so focused on the movement, on the exertion, that it takes your focus, and your thoughts are no longer on what was previously stressing you."
"That is dope. Exercise is such a great stress reliever and there’s no reason that 'work' needs to only take place in the office."
"If a manager needs to talk something through with their worker, why not do it on the bench or at the rack?"
"Me and my former boss might have had better discussions if we’d done that rather than sitting 1:1 in his office with me uncomfortable as hell."
"Manly dads who patiently sit on the floor and have a tea party with their toddler daughters."
"Speaking from experience, it's relaxing as f*ck."
"Lets me forget that the world is on my shoulders while I just sip some tea with My daughter, Barbie, and the LOL dolls."
"I’m 6’3 200lbs but I have a toddler niece that loves tea parties."
"If she puts a tiara on my head and tells me we’re having a tea party , you bet I’m going deep into character as Mrs. Nesbitt!"
"It'll be the best tea party of your life. Trust me."
"Also it helps when there’s young men around. I have little brothers and I think it’s important to show that you can do things not perceived as masculine. And vice versa for women."
- Sammsquanchhyou need to calm down queer eye GIF by Taylor SwiftGiphy
"In high school one time, a guy gave his guy best friend a birthday gift. Guy 2 loved it so much he gave guy 1 the biggest hug in the middle of class."
"I think everyone’s hearts melted. All guys should be that confident / allowed to be that confident."
"Positive friendships between men are SO important. Men being able to share their feelings and navigate their experiences with other men is too rare."
"I got my homie a succulent for his birthday!"
Hairy Sweaty Guardian Angels
"A long time ago in a galaxy far far away, I was a 13-year-old girl alone on a Greyhound bus from Florida to Georgia."
"I was on that stupid bus for 2 days. For the first 4 hours, the creepiest hobo in the universe sat next to me, randomly trying to grab me - who was 13 years old and alone on the bus."
"Then these two guys who were going all the way to Washington State and were going to be on that bus for 4 days to get to a logging job, boarded the bus. One was a 17-year-old kid and the other one was a 45 year old man."
"They ousted the hobo and sat with me the rest of the way, the 17-year-old sharing stories about growing up in Miami in a very intolerant Latino household, and the 45-year-old Man spent that time showing me pictures of his daughters and telling me all about them and how hard he was working to make sure they had everything they needed."
"They made sure I got dinner that night, they made sure I got breakfast the next morning, and they made sure that I safely made it from the bus to the main campus of Georgia tech University, for the stupid 'Future Engineering' teen conference I had to go to."
"That trip could have been a horror story for me at the tender age of 13. I do not know how in the world my mother thought this was safe in any way, to send me to Georgia by myself on a Greyhound bus at 13."
"Those two dudes were, to put it simply, my hairy and sweaty guardian angels."
"Norwegian blonde dude and Latino kid, it has been decades since this went down, but I still remember you both and always will."
Reddit loves a good man and now we have examples of just what that means.
You've heard their stories, now it's your turn. Tell us about your brush with positive masculinity in the comments!
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There's nothing more unsettling than waking up in the middle of the night.
Particularly if what woke you up was a loud, unsettling creepy sound.
The only thing that could make the experience more nightmarish is opening your eyes and seeing something that makes you jump out of bed.
Most of the time, what ends up scaring the living daylights out of us is nothing more than a pile of laundry we forgot to put away or a cat's shadow, and find ourselves laughing about it weeks or even days later
Others however, haven't been so lucky, waking up to discover they were actually in legitimate danger.
Redditor SpaceHubYT was eager to hear the most terrifying things people woke up to in the middle of the night, leading them to ask:
"What’s the scariest thing you’ve woken up to in the middle of the night?"
Keeping an extra close eye...hopefully?
"My grandmother just standing there in the dark by my bed, quietly wringing her hands and staring at me."- fryinpaskettimobster
Terrifying no matter when
"My mom saying I needed to get up and go with the cop."- abletable342
An experience no one deserves
"My mom screaming up the stairs 'get out of the house now!!!' and my brother swinging my door open to get us out."
"The house was on fire."- stoneytopaz
One hundred little fingers...
"Centipede crawling on my face."
"I still shiver thinking about when that happened."- Slight_Librarian_399Bug Insect GIF by AquariumMeGiphy
A lesson well learned?
"A cop walking into my Airbnb at 4am in Tennessee."
"Somehow he had the code and just.. walked in."
"I was sleeping on the couch right near the front door."
"He yelled at me and asked my name and what I was doing there."
"I was dazed and said 'ugh, I’m sleeping here man' and he’s like 'we were called about a B n E at this address'." - Reddit
"And I said 'I dunno man' and he was like 'well, sorry to disturb you'."
"And he walked out."
"Found out later that the call came In from a different address and the cop still had the door code from a previous call that was put in at this building before."
"This is where I learned if someone breaks in to where I’m sleeping In the middle of the night, I ain’t gonna do sh*t."
"My reaction time is about 5 minutes."- ReferHvacGuy
Sharing a midnight snack?
"Cat dropping a giant a** spider on my chest, then giant spider disappearing in my panic."- lady_of_the_lacattack spider GIFGiphy
One can only imagine...
"My wife sitting straight up out of bed and screaming while pointing down the hallway."
"She talks in her sleep, usually it’s hilarious."
"That time it was not."- BrotherOfTheOrder
Nature's alarm clock
"8.8 Richter scale earthquake at 3am."- sparkdaniel
There's a first time for literally everything.
"Lived in an old building in NYC."
"Had a neighbor across the hall that would seldom have night terrors."
"1st time it happened, it was about 4am and I was pretty sure she was getting murdered from the piercing screaming and loud thumps from her flailing around and the sound of glass breaking."
"I grabbed a meat cleaver and went into the hallway in my underwear to see that everyone else in the building was also awake and poking their heads out into the hallway wondering what to do."
"Me and 2 other neighbors eventually knocked on her door and when she answered she looked pale like a ghost and was dripping in sweat."
"She didn't remember any of it, apologized and explained to us her condition."
"That was some blood curdling sh*t."
"She was very apologetic about it and bought us all six packs of beer for freaking us out."
"Me and the two neighbors that decided to take action were all 100% sure that she was getting murdered at that moment."
"I lived there for 2 years and I think she only had 2 episodes during that time."- azninvasion2000
Be it over nothing, or something incredibly serious, being woken up at all hours of the morning is never a pleasant experience.
As the place everyone should always feel safest of all, is in the comfort of their own bed.
Bullying seems to be a concept that has always been around. It comes in all forms, and in varying degrees.
Sometimes, the bullying can be mild and temporary. That doesn't make it okay, but it does make the bullying easier to deal with.
Other times, the bullying is harsh, and can even go too far. Sometimes, that can mean relentless teasing. Othertimes, it can mean that a bully took their torment to a new level, even proceeding into physical violence.
Whatever the case, when bullying goes too far, it sticks with you. Sometimes, you get revenge. Other times, you just deal with it until you can find a solution. Whichever method you choose, you will never forget it.
Curious about how far is too far, Redditor tylerboyzzz asked:
"People of Reddit, when did the bully go to far?"
"One of my friends had been getting bullied for crying after her mother's death. One day I got sick of it and shoved his head into a door. I know violence shouldn't be used in some situations but I felt like this needed it. He never bullied my friend again and I only got 1 detention."
"Kids are so dumb, making fun of someone for losing their mom is the stupidest thing ever, good on you."
"This guy bullied me for years, relentlessly. He saw another guy bullying me one day and lost his mind and beat the guy half to death. It was f**ked up. Not even that he beat the guy, whatever there, but in this ultra weird like "staking his claim" kinda way. Like I was his to bully and no one else. It literally made me fear for my life a bit. I got a restraining order."
"He took a thick piece of metal wrapped it with electrical tape and hit my friend in the head. He had to get stitches but wouldn’t say out of fear who did it."
"I ratted him out. A day later he jumped me as two of his friends held my arms. Then he stole my bike."
"My mom went to talk to his dad who was drunk and hit on her so she left frustrated."
"A few days later he tried to jump me again while on my bike when I was at the ice cream truck but my older (in high school) brother saw it."
"He literally jumped down three flights of stairs from the 3rd fl of our apartment complex and literally grabbed the back seat of the bike and picked it up as he tried to pedal away. He was freaking out screaming."
Bullying The Teachers
"My class was terrible. On multiple occasions they had managed to make teachers leave the classroom in tears. For the record; I never participated, I was bullied too in this class."
"One of the worst days; they were really taking it out on this nerdy teacher. Like, this was definitely the worst and the most direct insults they had ever given to a person and he broke surprisingly quick. It turned out that the day before he was diagnosed with testicular cancer..."
Bullied BY The Teacher
"Bullied by a teacher. I grew up in the 1980's and there was something wrong with my digestive system that doctors here didn't understand at the time. Parents and friends were aware that sometimes I needed a toilet without much warning for either vomit or poo. I could easily dose off sometimes and always had a crampy tummy."
"First week of high school, I needed to go, now. I asked the teacher if I could be excused. She said I was old enough to be able to hold it in. I tried to explain that I needed to go. She was all boo-hoo, the baby needs a nappy, the baby needs burping. Some friends tried to explain to the teacher that if I had to go, I had to go. Teacher said no. I couldn't hold anything in any more and made for the door, the teacher shouted something and I passed out, vomited and sh*t myself."
"From what I remember, dad had the teacher fired. School policy was changed so that if a kid needed a loo break, they got it. Ironically there was an increase of tp related thefts and bathroom vandalism."
"I spent a week in hospital being prodded and poked, and we found out what was wrong."
"I went back to school, some kids pointed and laughed at the kid who sh*t herself in maths but they were quickly silenced by my friends and some kids who I didn't even know."
"I had a huge crush on one of the "cool" kids, who was actually a really nice, down to earth guy who was always nice to me. We even played Magic: The Gathering together a few times."
"I overheard my bully tell my crush he was planning to wait until the last day of school and "f- me up real good." Crush grabbed him by the throat and said "Don't you dare touch her!" so of course, the bully had to do something."
"He stole part of my crush's cherished favorite deck and left it in my backpack with a really sweet (fake) note. Then he told my crush he'd seen me steal the cards. His plan worked perfectly, I was looking through the cards when crush walked over. The look of hurt and then anger on his face is still burned into my memory. I gave the cards back, apologized, and tried to defend myself, but he never forgave me and we never spoke again."
You Showed Her!
"She bullied me for how I looked, would underhandedly called me ugly, and was the root of all my insecurities...A year later I won a major beauty pageant and she blocked me on IG"
"still kinda insecure cuz of her though"
"I befriended the problem girl in high school. Thought she just needed a friend. Anyway, she turned on me for whatever reason. Broke into my house while I was away on vacation and stole my cat and every item of clothing I owned. She ended up donating most of my clothes to goodwill, but the stuff she liked she wore to school. I called her out on it. That same day the principal pulled me out of class and said I “need to stop bullying X.” Anyway, she never did get in trouble but I did get my cat back after a few weeks."
Yes, He Did Fall
"6th grade. He sat behind me in study hall. He, an 8th grader, had been picking on me since the beginning of the year. I told my parents and my dad said next time he messes with me just stand up for myself."
"Next day he flips my ear really hard. I turn around and tell him don’t ever touch me again. I turn back around and then I feel something getting put into my ear. It was a pencil. I jumped up, grabbed my thick as hell math book, and hit him directly in the face. It ended up knocking four of his teeth out and broke his nose."
"The teacher was the gym teacher, who was also an assistant coach on my baseball team. He came over and said with great surprise…..what happened did he fall out of his desk? Needless to say he never messed with me again."
"Maybe im being simple here, but: every time. Any form of bullying is always too far."
Yeah, that's probably true.
Bullying is wrong, but you will never be wrong for standing up for yourself.
Here we are, decades into the life and journey of the internet.
And we still can't clean up all of the horrible spots.
The internet is a fantastic invention with many, many flaws.
Our screens have been exposed to things that will remain with our souls forever.
So let's talk about it.
***WARNING!! THIS IS AN NC-17 ARTICLE***
RedditorPowered_programmer wanted to hear about all the things that we've seen on the web that has left us shook. They asked:
"What is the creepiest thing that you've come across on internet?"
So let's all take a deep dive into the darkest places of the net.
"Rotten.com back in the day."
"Surgical footage and trauma footage look very different. Even if you know next to nothing about anatomy watching a surgery looks neat and clean."
"You can clearly see the boundaries of different flaps of tissue and stuff, and can kinda see how it would fit back together once the surgeon is done. Trauma just looks like chaotic hell. Nothing makes sense, it all looks like badly ground hamburger, and any recognition of parts only brings more horror as you realize the part is broken and relocated to somewhere it doesn't belong."
Too Far a Reach
"Years ago I came across a website that was just a collection of links to unsecured camera feeds. Webcams, baby monitors, security cameras… basically anything with a lens and WiFi capabilities. Apparently most people never set up their devices properly and just leave default passwords or none at all, and this website was just trawling through the internet finding them all."
"I watched Luca Magnotta kill his BF but when I watched it, it was uploaded to a horror site by him and everyone thought it was a really good special effects. I don't get spooked much but I stopped watching when he started stabbing the corpse with a ice pic or something. A little while later I found out he was on the run and that video was a real person he murdered, it messed me up for a while."
"A website that broadcasted millions of private security cameras of people houses who had no idea that their security camera was just on the Internet and they could be watched during all hours."
Why did we ever create the internet?
"That one video where the car was driving down that mountain road and you had to pay close attention and then it turned out to be a screamer."
"I’m going to go with creepy, not horrifying or even f’d up. I can’t remember who it was, but back in the day on YouTube a man posted LONG videos of himself just sitting and looking straight into the camera with a smile, not a single movement the whole time. Always a live feed."
"One day someone broke into his home DURING the live show, and actually ended up leaving without stealing anything because the guy didn’t react at ALL. Just sat there, wide eyed and smiling at the camera. Thinking back as a thief that would scare the heck outta me."
"This picture of mickey mouse that was added to my DSI's wallpaper. I have never owned or known someone that owns a Mickey Mouse plush. I do not recognize the area, wall, chair or anything in the picture. I have not lent my DSI to anyone. It just appeared one day when I opened it. It creeps me out and I still question how could this have happened."
Was it Real?
"Those 'ghost showing up in mirror' YouTube videos. To this day, I’m still scared to walk past mirrors at night sometimes."
"I could never find the video but i can never forget it. its about two boys who remove a talisman from a large stone and out of it a ghost pops out moaning, the boys immediately dart out of the cave and run at full speed screaming as they see that the ghost is following them even catching up to the boys. Never got to see the ending of the video. Was it fake? Was it real? Don't know, it was just creepy."
"When I used to browse the hellhole known as 4chan I came across a crazy green text story. Some kid ran away from home, found a place for the night and slept in his sleeping bag. Woke up to what he thought was homeless guy peeing on him and chased him off. When he stopped and smelled himself he realized that the homeless guy was pouring gasoline on him. Still creeps me out to think about what could have happened."
Well that is a lot of drama I never want to see.
Everyone always harps on the importance of first impressions.
But we also need to pay attention to all that follows.
I'm starting to believe a first impression can be a great fake-out.
People will allow their true colors to shine over time.
Redditor Xanax_Sprite wanted everyone to open up about what things people can do that immediately change one's opinion of a person's character, not for the better.
"What immediately makes you think less of someone?"
It's entirely too easy to turn me off. I admit, it's an issue. Maybe that's a thing people suddenly dislike about me.
Bad Behaviorrude bon qui qui GIFGiphy
"Intentional embarrassment. When someone brings something up in front of a group to humiliate someone else."
"Not taking responsibility for their actions."
"Even worse. people who make excuses for their mistakes, no matter how bluntly you point it out to them that this is their shortcoming. Man up and admit you make a mistake. Stop telling me A happened then B happened so C happened. we are here to work, not tell each other make believe stories."
"Someone who interrupts a serious conversation to make it about them."
"Being subject to that infuriating s**t was what eventually inspired me to listen to people more, especially regarding heavier topics. Sometimes people just need to be heard and held, and it isn't fair for them to expose their vulnerabilities only to have you dismiss them by trying to make their suffering about you."
Where are they?
"How they speak about a person who is not present in the conversation."
"One of the most important lessons my father taught me..."
"Don't speak about a person if they're not in the room."
"They don't have a representative in the room and especially if your words get back to them and they can't say 'I know, he already had that convo with me.' I've earned a rep for not speaking behind people's backs to the point where when someone claimed I did, that person called them a liar. Pops sucked but I thank him for that lesson."
Be ConsistentJennifer Lawrence Reaction GIFGiphy
"100. People can change their opinions, but not flip flop regularly."
I can't with hypocrites. My life's biggest pet peeve.
Be cleanSeason 4 Episode 22 GIF by The SimpsonsGiphy
"Yep, had a coworker once who spit on the floor inside."
"It was a warehouse-type building, but still. This particular guy also left cigarette butts on the floor inside and dumped a dog on the business property. Needless to say, he didn't last long here. Some people are just really rude and stupid."
"Had a friend who never, ever apologized for anything or really took any responsibility. Even in situations which were funny and non-serious, he’d always talk his a** out of it (in a jokey matter). But when some s**t hit the fan, that guy turned into one of the scariest, manipulative and aggressive people I’ve met that would rather die than take accountability for the things he’s done."
"And for which there were many witnesses and evidence against him. Moral of the story, if you know someone who won’t say sorry or admit they did something wrong for even the least serious things, run, because when they actually do something seriously bad it’s just gonna get real ugly."
Face 2 Face
"Lying to my face. There’s no going back in my eyes because I will never trust you. Secrets are fine and dandy. That’s not quite the same as straight up lying. A direct example is people lying about their family dying to get out of work or when this older woman in her 40’s tried to lie about cleaning up her work station when she left it for me to clean."
“as a joke”
"Being mean to animals."
"Even when people joke about being mean to animals. I have a cat I love dearly and the number of comments I get about harming cats because people don’t like them 'as a joke' is infuriating and not funny, Ken."
"I include poorly training their pets in this. It’s neglect/negligence and it’s abuse."
Eyes UpCall Me Lol GIF by Black PrezGiphy
"When they’re looking at their phones, not paying any attention to you when you’re trying to have a conversation with them."
It doesn't take much to change an impression. Let's do better.