Let’s break that down a bit: 63% of men agreed that the stereotype being ‘unemotional’ was harmful and offensive. And lots of these lazy stereotypes play out like a bad 90s sitcom. ‘Being a player’ and ‘sex obsessed’? And 44% of young men found the stereotype of ‘being a lad’ detrimental and dangerous. Men aren’t Inbetweeners characters (Or Men Behaving Badly characters for the, er, more discerning reader here) – we’re real, 3-Dimensional people (but yes, OK, a lot of us watch Inbetweeners) and these cliches about what men are interested in can do real harm.
Your ethnicity and sexual orientation will also lead to you being lazily and offensively stereotyped. Men of colour face specific stereotypes about being angry, lazy and rude, while gay, bi and queer men face stigma around being ‘perverted’, promiscuous or camp. Which, and we’re stating the very obvious here, is complete rubbish.
The way we get our information these days isn’t helping: 70% of men said that social media is making it harder to be psychologically healthy – doomscrolling through hundreds of pictures of airbrushed versions of reality can be overwhelming and dangerous.
It’s clear all of this is doing damage and putting pressure on a lot of us, leading to insecurities and self-doubt and is causing real psychological damage. But there is hope – and things are (slowly) changing…