HomeLatest ThreadsGreatest ThreadsForums & GroupsMy SubscriptionsMy Posts
DU Home » Latest Threads » Forums & Groups » Topics » Gender & Orientation » Men's Group (Group) » The biggest threat facing...

Sun Apr 16, 2017, 01:36 AM

The biggest threat facing middle-age men isn't smoking or obesity. It's loneliness.

LET’S START WITH THE MOMENT I realized I was already a loser, which was just after I was more or less told that I was destined to become one.

I’d been summoned to an editor’s office at the Globe Magazine with the old “We have a story we think you’d be perfect for.” This is how editors talk when they’re about to con you into doing something you don’t want to do.

Here was the pitch: We want you to write about how middle-aged men have no friends.

Excuse me? I have plenty of friends. Are you calling me a loser? You are.

Read more: http://www.bostonglobe.com/magazine/2017/03/09/the-biggest-threat-facing-middle-age-men-isn-smoking-obesity-loneliness/k6saC9FnnHQCUbf5mJ8okL/story.html

6 replies, 7371 views

Reply to this thread

Back to top Alert abuse

Always highlight: 10 newest replies | Replies posted after I mark a forum
Replies to this discussion thread
Arrow 6 replies Author Time Post
Reply The biggest threat facing middle-age men isn't smoking or obesity. It's loneliness. (Original post)
TexasTowelie Apr 2017 OP
furtheradu Apr 2017 #1
TexasTowelie Apr 2017 #2
LakeArenal Apr 2017 #3
Buckeye_Democrat Apr 2017 #4
smirkymonkey Feb 2018 #6
Name removed Aug 2017 #5

Response to TexasTowelie (Original post)

Sun Apr 16, 2017, 03:06 AM

1. Well now, that's kinda sad!

Dear middle aged Men:
I'll be Your Friend.
I said FRIEND!

Don't be 'spectin' no benefits.

PS. republikers need not reply.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to furtheradu (Reply #1)

Sun Apr 16, 2017, 03:27 AM

2. Kudos for volunteering!

I think what makes it rougher is if middle-aged man loses a job and can't find a way to reenter the workforce without taking a drastic salary cut. That cuts in two different ways: 1) it results in a loss of camaraderie with the other associates and in some severance agreements it actually stipulates that you are not supposed to have any contact with current employees of the company, and 2) it also strikes at the ego when men place a certain value upon their earning capacity and they have to reduce the amount of socializing because of that loss--be it going to church less often because of the requests for donations or going to bars less frequently to spend money.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to TexasTowelie (Original post)

Sun Apr 16, 2017, 08:08 AM

3. I think loneliness is at t he root of a lot of problems for men and women..

I love all Beatle songs, but Eleanor Rigby rings particularly true to me...

All the Lonely People. Where do they all come from...?

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to TexasTowelie (Original post)

Sun Apr 16, 2017, 08:16 AM

4. I expect it will continue to get worse.

Most people don't live on family farms anymore, and economic needs often rip apart families too.

Here's something Kurt Vonnegut wrote in A Man without a Country (2005), some of which seems to be tongue-in-cheek.

Okay, now let’s have some fun. Let’s talk about sex. Let’s talk about women. Freud said he didn’t know what women wanted. I know what women want: a whole lot of people to talk to. What do they want to talk about? They want to talk about everything.

What do men want? They want a lot of pals, and they wish people wouldn’t get so mad at them.

Why are so many people getting divorced today? It’s because most of us don’t have extended families anymore. It used to be that when a man and a woman got married, the bride got a lot more people to talk to about everything. The groom got a lot more pals to tell dumb jokes to.

A few Americans, but very few, still have extended families. The Navahos. The Kennedys.

But most of us, if we get married nowadays, are just one more person for the other person. The groom gets one more pal, but it’s a woman. The woman gets one more person to talk to about everything, but it’s a man.

When a couple has an argument nowadays, they may think it’s about money or power or sex or how to raise the kids or whatever. What they’re really saying to each other, though without realizing it, is this: “You are not enough people!”

A husband, a wife and some kids is not a family. It’s a terribly vulnerable survival unit.

I met a man in Nigeria one time, an Ibo who had six hundred relatives he knew quite well. His wife had just had a baby, the best possible news in any extended family.

They were going to take it to meet all its relatives, Ibos of all ages and sizes and shapes. It would even meet other babies, cousins not much older than it was. Everybody who was big enough and steady enough was going to get to hold it, cuddle it, gurgle to it, and say how pretty or how handsome it was.

Wouldn’t you have loved to be that baby?

I sure wish I could wave a wand, and give every one of you an extended family, make you an Ibo or a Navaho—or a Kennedy.

Now, you take George and Laura Bush, who imagine themselves as a brave, clean-cut little couple. They are surrounded by an enormous extended family, what we should all have—I mean judges, senators, newspaper editors, lawyers, bankers. They are not alone. That they are members of an extended family is one reason they are so comfortable. And I would really, over the long run, hope America would find some way to provide all of our citizens with extended families—a large group of people they could call on for help.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Buckeye_Democrat (Reply #4)

Sat Feb 10, 2018, 06:33 PM

6. I like that. I really think there is something to it. To the isolation we all feel these days.

Even if we have families, most of us are so spread out we don't really have the day to day support like they did back in the day. I remember when I was a child, going to my grandmother's house with her large extended Italian family feeling so safe and protected and warm. I love my independence, but it has definitely been a trade off. I sometimes long for that feeling back in my grandmother's kitchen.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to TexasTowelie (Original post)

Reply to this thread