Adnan Malik Encourages Men to Discard Toxic Masculinity

"Trust your sensitivity," encourages Adnan Malik...
Published 06 May, 2019 01:59pm

Adnan Malik, widely known for his acting, and his directing, is also a WWF (World Wild Federation) ambassador for Pakistan. He joined it following the principles his parents raised him with. It is these same ideals that he wants to promote in our society. His recent post on his social pages, promoting sensitivity in men, is just a reflection of that.

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There are so many debates about the ethos of masculinity these days. Men, in general, are threatened by a rising tide of assertive, boundary-defining women who have had enough of the casual misogyny that has defined the gender politics of the 20th century (and of course much longer as well- but who reads history? And that’s another conversation) With powerful (and I say welcome) movements like #metoo and #timesup, I think we as men really need to reappraise what it means to “men” and “masculine”. —- While growing up I was teased for being sensitive. When my newly-testosterone-fuelled classmates in middle school went around stomping ants nests, I remember being so angry at their self-centered-ness, as if they had to express their dominance over everything around them to feel like “men”. I raised my voice at their thoughtless brutality but was teased (read: bullied) “here comes mr. Don’t kill the ants”. The teasing stayed with me for a few years but I survived because I had other things going for me. I was also an excellent sportsman, liked by the ladies because I was respectful (and goofy), had good enough grades and essentially had parents who were kind and thoughtful and raised me with the values of living in harmony with the world around me. They saw my sensitivity and nurtured it and supported me. They never wanted me to be the alpha, hyper-sexualised, mega-successful man that so many unfortunate young boys are pressured into emulating. I was told to be “me”, to find my “own truth”. I learnt to believe that being vulnerable, and having integrity and being kind and listening to other people and being respectful of women and seeking their consent in all decisions pertaining to them was the way that I could grow into becoming a “man” —- And as for “Mr. Don’t kill the ants?” Well, it came full circle and he was asked to be a @wwfpak goodwill ambassador last year. Stick to what you believe in. Trust in your sensitivity. It’s your strength. Don’t be so brittle that you ultimately break, because life is tough and when all’s said and done, you only really have yourself to live with. So make that person likeable. 🙏🏼 #masculinity #mentalhealth

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A headline, from an article published in “The Express Tribune”, was displayed in this post. And the “Cake” starrer went on to explain it, recounting how he was always looked down upon by the boys in school, for being too “sensitive”. What followed was a powerful message for everyone. He was raised with parents who supported “living in harmony” with the world around him. He was rightfully raised with believing that being “vulnerable and having integrity and being kind and listening to other people and being respectful of women and seeking their consent in all decisions pertaining to them”, was what it took to be a “man”. This is in strict contrast to what most boys are raised as. But so powerful and moving were his words, that they hit the core. They carried the blatant truth; the truth that all should give at least, give a minute to think about and consider.

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A star encouraging others to “trust your sensitivity”, and calling it one’s “strength”, was so refreshing a thought. A man becoming an advocate for such ideals just puts it in a totally different perspective.

He has definitely set an example; one that should be followed. In a world so full of intolerance and hatred, sensitivity, sympathy, and empathy, just might be the key to make it a better place.