Canis lupus familiaris, also known as the domestic dog have long held a valuable place in our culture both for work and for pleasure. From Lassie to Benji, dogs are our loyal, unselfish companions. Dogs can help us see, keep the herds in check and even sniff out bombs. For men, dogs can provide a sense of companionship that few other relationships can provide. They don’t nag you about anniversaries or for leaving the toilet seat up. In fact, they appreciate when you leave the seat up because it allows them easy access to water.
However, dogs can only do so much. Don’t get me wrong, I love Bodhi, the Wonder dog more than most people on the planet. He is a solid, kind, beautiful presence who deeply enhances my life. However, he does not and cannot replace human-to-human contact.
For men, it is essential to have other men to count on in a genuine way. There is no way around it; you need your dudes, homies, bros and buddies for many more reasons than just being your wingman. A lot of men have superficial bro relationships (if they have friends at all) where there is no emotional accountability. They sit around and talk sh*t with each other without ever really getting into the meat of each other’s lives. Intimate male relationships are still considered foreign in our culture. Some men even fear these relationships will somehow lead to homosexual behavior. Can we get over this already? Being open and transparent does not make you gay; it makes you emotionally available and probably healthier because of it.
What would it be like to have one or two guy friends who you could count on to call you out on your bullsh*t? How would it change your life if you had other men you to give you the support you need? You are not a rock, you are not an island. You are a human being with complex emotions and feelings and sometimes, it is essential to get advice and wisdom of another man to help you steer the course. It sure makes life a lot easier if you have people to share it with.
In my book, I talk about way to develop the all-important bro-friendship. There are men’s groups, warrior trainings and legion halls that support deep male bonding. You can even set up your own men’s group by getting a few chosen men together once a week or month to consciously check in with each other. If it feels foreign, use booze as a social lubricant (in moderation). It goes way deeper than sitting around watching the football game on a Sunday night, eating fried food and feeling empty. Real men need the comfort and companionship of other men.
In fact, the deeper I go into my manly research; I realize the magnitude of deep male relationships. Men can provide other men with a uniquely male perspective that is different than a woman’s eye, potentially one that is more rational and less emotional.
Ask yourself, are you lonely? Do you crave authentic, deep interpersonal relationships where sex is not an issue? Do you want someone to call you on your sh*t? Sure dogs are great, but it is in the depth of human relationships where you can honestly and authentically grow as a person. Connect with a male friend and see how much richer your life can be.
*This blog is dedicated to Bodhi who I love truly and continues to be a shining light in my life*