• Emily Coralyne

A Dream of The Wounded Masculine


[TW: Violence]

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The other night I had a dream where I was on my old college campus… It had clearly been converted into a military base. I was walking around and noticed a large group of many men I know file into a shipping container that had been converted into a gathering space. I filed in along with them and found myself in the back corner. The light, fun atmosphere of gathering immediately changed when a large, uniformed, drill sergeant slammed and locked the doors, all lights out.

Small lights above the tables came on and there were weapons everywhere. I immediately sunk back, covered my face with my black scarf, and hid in the shadows. They were instructed to beat each other until one was standing.

I was frozen. Terrified. I thought and fought with myself about what it would take to stop them but knew that if I tried, I myself would be pummelled. I had to protect myself.

So I sat back and watched all the men I knew take whatever weapons they could find and start beating each other. I sank further back, grateful that the noise of violence hid the sound of my tears and involuntary but quiet wails escaping my chest. Fearing deeply that the last man standing would find me and be instructed to destroy me.

I woke up to International Women’s Day… in mourning of all the men who have been poisoned with Toxic Masculinity, who have been raised in a society that teaches them that they have to be the last one standing at any cost, where they fear violence and can trust no one, without opportunities for them to cultivate their ability to hear the voice of the feminine.

I mourn for all the women who, like me, have attempted to love and develop relationships with care and then give up because the men we love are intoxicated with a form of power that needs to make us small and wrong. And it is fucking hard to make the decision to love them anyway knowing that it is NOT THEM but SOCIETY that has conditioned them while protecting ourselves from violence AND rising up in our power as women.

I acknowledge that the more we have the courage to say what we feel and to ask for adjustments, the more men will. As I would hope for… but how can us women feel and express fully, honouring our pain and wisdom, and honor the pain & wisdom of men as well in a healthy way that doesn’t perpetuate the violence I’m speaking to? I wonder if men have the capacity to truly hear us… I wonder if women have the trust to fully express… and vice versa.

I pray that we can figure out a way.


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