The greatest health risk facing America youth in a changing culture

Mine was. Work to be done, and when we weren’t working we played hard. Only bonding with boys my age was during hunting or fishing with my friends…and then of course later it was all about girls.

What about presently? Do you have close platonic relationships with one or more men now?

Yes. Couple of em.

It’s about accepting individuals as they are. Sadly that isn’t the norm in today’s environment.

That’s a good thing, you should feel fortunate.

I think the article talks about two different sorts of circumstances: males who had close relationships with other males in their youth, and those males who never experienced it even when they were young. It’s that latter group that seems to face the greatest challenges to their physical and emotional wellbeing if they remain isolated.

I don’t agree it’s to a detriment.

But yes, now. I have Brothers at the church. I work with men 60 hours a week.

I have a grown son who is my best friend.

I have neighbors on both sides who will help if I need it. I have two male dogs and a roosters and bulls. I won’t count the gelding.

I am a man, if I need the company of a man, I’ll do quite nicely. I rarely aggravate myself.

I think the problem is more one of locus of control. IOW validation by “society”. Normative morality. The need for approval.

That’s a razor.

No answer?

Ironically those friends of my youth have stayed with me even thou our paths went on separate lives. We may not share the same values or ideas that we once had but that’s not what bonds us. We learn to accept each other as individuals. Older you get harder it becomes for many people.


Did you read the article? Many are squeamish about male connections because during the Victorian Era, homosexuality was first regarded as a perversion and threat to the values of that era. Young teenage men, in particular, don’t want to be perceived as anything but heterosexual.

The linked article, btw, was interesting but long winded.

Yes, I read every word of it. And it’s bs.

It’s not a new idea–that isolation can be detrimental to the health of all from animals in experiments to human beings. This article just happened to focus on young men.

However, I’m a little skeptical, too. Not everyone is extroverted or needs a lot of people around them. Some have no choice but to move around a lot–for example, U S Military families–and kids I’ve known who were raised with active service fathers tended to adapt very well to living in a number of different places.

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I have two male friends I’ve known since high school. We still keep in touch but they live on opposite coasts and with their own families.

I have male friends within the social group we belong to, but I don’t seek them out. By which I mean, outside of the group we don’t really interact.

@Janet_Miller brings up a relevant point - not all men are extroverts, and that’s certainly been my experience. I enjoy social outings and the company of other people, but I don’t seek them out the way some seem to. The more interesting takeaway from the article for me was in regarding those males who never experienced close relationships (male or female) and how it may negatively affect their health and mental wellbeing.

My best friend I’ve known for most of my life. I don’t see him often as we should but when together we really don’t even need to talk, it seem like we know what each other is thinking most of the time. It’s weird because we have taken different paths over the years.

Now having said that the author of this article in OP doesn’t address the circumstances. What she is describing doesn’t reflect anything about my life growing up. Again it may be because the difference between rural American verse urban America.

Now once I hit my teens all that changed. It became all about girls and conquest.

It doesn’t reflect anything about my life or the life of any boy I ever knew. Including my son.


This board is cool as hell.

What’s interesting is the author of the article sees women as constantly forming new friendships. If one alliance ends, women, unlike men, are encouraged to build new ones, as if we’re just, as the mother in Tennessee Williams’ The Glass Menagerie, sitting by the phone and waiting for those “gentlemen callers”, or, in this case, for contact from friends.

Some are, some aren’t, but instead are more independent and maybe enjoy pursuits that don’t necessarily require a partner or group to pursue. Such individuals will feel uncomfortable in more social venues.

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I moved a lot, at least every 2 years when I was younger, and never made a lasting friend. Granddad’s farm being the one constant was a definite positive, but also not a socializing experience.

So being somewhat alone, to me, has never meant loneliness nor anything negative except . . . that in my rip roaring twenties I did not have the street smarts most of my fellow hell raisers did and I got snookered like a Johnboy more often than once.

must be some other SF guy who teaches pistol combat, using several Lat Am dialects of Spanish.

I wasn’t raised in Latino machismo and I didn’t retire.

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This is what my therapist, doctors, and dad keep telling me. Though, I’m finding it to be better off alone and have no flowers in my friendship garden than a bunch of weeds who stab me in the back. I tried socializing, got rejected, so now I’m not going to do it anymore. I’m better off by myself. Society consists of hateful, hurtful people.

I have nothing else to say since I am guilty of this. To do otherwise would mean that I’m a hypocrite.

not everyone is the same, some people can deal with isolation other find it crippling.