A Manifesto for Men
Women initially find being in relationship with their friends easier and deeper than men often do with their friends. As the founders of Men Corps we want to support our brothers in creating their own groups so they can reap the benefits we see every week. Here’s our call to men:
Who do you call when you need something fixed? Really, who do you call? Traditionally it has been men.
Where are these MEN? Some would say these white men created the problems we are dealing with… where are they now? They aren’t showing up… the women are stepping up. That is great. We need them. Women show up in amazing ways – from starting businesses in the most depresses reaches of the planet to graduating ahead of men from grad school.
As Jacqueline Novogratz, the founder and CEO of the Acumen Fund said in her TED talk even with all the recent talk of how investing in women in the third world produces a better return, Jacqueline champions the need to support men and boys. “Monsters exist in all of us – maybe it is broken parts of us… it is easy for demigods to pray on those parts. Young men are the most vulnerable. We have to remember… where men and boys are disempowered… where they feel there is no possibilities…status comes from a uniform and a gun.”
We are not going to change this planet without changing men!
As men we aren’t broken or bad… we never learned how to be the men we wanted to be… or the men we need today. So how do we change this?
We change this by supporting men to learn to be men. We do that by supporting men to teach each other to be men in free men’s group that don’t cost a dime. These ‘micro-communities’ of support have men teaching each other what they weren’t taught.
These new men will change the world… the world will not change without men changing. This change can only happen when men start teaching each other how to be the men they haven’t yet learned to become.
We formed Men Corps to tackle this issue. With the right support, running a group can be easy and fun. The founders of Men Corps have over 50 years of collective mistakes and wisdom from running groups. As entrepreneurs, somatic therapists, program developers and men’s group founders we know how to work with young men and older men… how to use their collective wisdom to create a group that changes men.
Men have not had a place to experience mature masculinity. They have not had a place to try out new behaviors, such as expressing their emotions and they have not had a place to develop their empathy. It’s not that men don’t care… it’s that they don’t know it’s ok to express it. And they don’t know how to express their empathy in an empowered manner.
These are a few of the simple benefits to what we are doing with Men Corps groups:
The groups are free. And since there is no therapist/leader, the men get to work together to resolve their issues.
There is a proven template to create and run a group
Men have a safe place to discover what it is to be a man, and that trust is synonymous with safety.
Men have other caring men to hold them accountable.
Men have there own ‘micro-community’ watching their backs.
Men learn how to be emotional in a ‘masculine way’ – the resistance to being emotional like a woman is transcended. This is about learning to access emotions, but equally important, how to best use those emotions.
Men get the support to change – impacting their partners, family, work and community
Some men get to experience for the first time the benefits coming from other men caring about them. Most men develop authentic friendships for the first time in their adult lives. When a man’s life falls apart, he has someone to call who cares about him. That’s huge progress for most men. Lone wolfing it no longer seems necessary.
There is no other entity offering free men’s groups. There are for profit and nonprofit companies offering men’s trainings that have optional groups. To join one of those groups you usually need to do their trainings. With Men Corps’ groups there are no such requirements. We put the responsibility for change on the men, and what we offer them is tools for change.
Men Corps groups are open source groups – meaning as men participate they contribute to refining the protocol along with support the development of Men Corps. Men are encouraged to adapt the protocols for their community and their individual needs. It is not about doing it our way. It is about creating successful groups… it about changing the planet – one group, one man at a time.
There will be regional, educational, economic and racial differences, and no two groups will look exactly the same. That’s the strength of our program, that we give men the responsibility for figuring out how they want to resolve their issues together.
Men don’t live in isolation. We live in a community with women and children. For Men Corps to truly succeed we need support from women. We need wives, partners, and mothers to back men. We are in this together; women have a hug stake in having men mature as men so they can be the lovers, husbands and fathers they want.This doesn’t mean we feel women have any responsibility to help men, but rather they will enjoy the benefits.