The Masculinity Detox


The Masculinity Detox


Identity - February 4, 2023

Willing (to wonder, to change, and to be wrong)

The Detoxing Man is Willing (to wonder, to change, and to be wrong)

I am often wrong. About small things like the whether or about if a particular aging celebrity is in fact dead. I am also wrong about big things, like when my son’s soccer game is, which causes a mad scramble as I check the calendar 15 minutes before it is set to begin. I am also wrong about massive things like believing in “color blindness” as a viable solution for institutional racism.

I am willing to admit to being wrong about all of it. And yet, because when I speak, my male voice carries inherent and unearned authority, it is not enough to be willing to admit when I am wrong. I must not claim, as Kate Manne put it, Epistemic entitlement. I am not the one holder of knowledge, the only one capable of doling it out. I am not the truth teller, the mansplainer, or the voice of authority.

When I speak about the weather before I look up the forecast, I should be willing to state it as a guess rather than a fact. I should be willing to change the way in which I speak because it is a better representation of both my intentions and my understanding. When I am unwilling to change, I cause others, my wife included, to doubt themselves and their own lived experience. My perceived certainty becomes my loved ones’ doubt, even when I am proved wrong. It reinforces a strength I do not possess, and creates distrust that I do not want.

So I am willing be both wrong and to change how I am wrong, but I also must be willing to wonder openly about possibility, about what might be rather than what is. When I wonder about what this summer will hold or how we should plan my youngest son’s 9th birthday, I invite others into my willingness, I make them a part of the story. Rather than holding on to what little truth I have, I ask others to help me make it bigger to envision all of what it might someday contain. When I am willing to wonder without the fear that I will be wrong or authoritatively say what will or will not happen, I become open to surprise and delight. I am open to tomorrow rather than merely yesterday, all because I am willing.


The Detoxing Man is Willing (to wonder, to change, and to be wrong) – 10 of 30. Masculinity is not one thing, and yet so many treat it as if it were. This series is about redefining masculinity to be more than just a set of toxic behaviors that men perform for and with one another. How can we be more willing to be wrong and to remove some of the authority in our voice when we don’t know the right answers? #toxicmasculinity #masculinity #patriarchy #willing #masculinitydetox #positivemasculinity #heartonmysleeve #feminism

♬ original sound – The Masculinity Detox