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My Dad and the Wounded Masculine

This morning I was meditating and praying for an answer to a question about whether I should sign up for a training course which would bring me into close proximity to men and my sexuality. A little later my Dad who died over 7 years ago popped into my mind. Now I don’t often think about him these days and, to be honest, it is more likely to be my Mum that comes into my memory. But I knew he had knocked on the door of my consciousness for a reason and in answer to my earlier question.


Dad’s generation of men were born just after WW1 and lived through WW2. Dad was in the RAF and posted to Rhodesia (now Zambia) and was just that little bit too young to be in amongst the fighting. But he carried the fear and trauma in his genes. As a young boy he had no Father and no real role model of what it meant to be masculine. He was brought up by a mum who had to be strong and was unable to give him much love as all her energies were taken up scrubbing other people’s door steps to earn money for food. He had step dads, half siblings and often told me how the whole family would have to do a ‘moonlight flit’ in the middle of the night because they could not pay the rent. A generation that saw the men going out to work and the women at home looking after the children, cleaning the house and keeping the bed warm.

Unsurprisingly, Reg, my Dad, was very distant and unemotional as a father and a husband. He had no idea of how to be as a man. And this was my role model of what a man should be. Added to this my mum who was also a strong woman, would often belittle Dad and call him weak. That’s what I grew up on. Men are weak and a waste of space. Women are strong and don’t need men. This permeated my relationships with men who I would either despise for being too weak and soft or hanker after those who seemed strong and virile but were emotionally distant and didn’t want a committed relationship.


Many years later, I realised that the men who I thought were ‘weak’ were in fact those who often did have an emotional repertoire and were loving, compassionate and kind. I had been taught to see these qualities as feeble and wimpy.


A year or so before he died, Dad started talking and sharing his vulnerability more. He was scared, scared of what would happen to mum as her dementia progressed, scared of how it would effect him, but most of all scared of dying. He told me things that he had never told another living soul. He told me how much he loved me. It was like looking through a window into another life. A life that he could have chosen but did not. These little chats were a precious time for us both. He was able to unburden himself and be seen; I was able to see him more as a man than a father. These are the moments that matter in life and feed our souls. That moment of alchemy when years of despising weak dissolve effortlessly and transform into a gentle knowing that we are all human, all trying our best with the cards we have been dealt in life and that underneath it all my Dad, the wounded masculine, was a loving, caring and compassionate Soul who was doing his best in the only way that he knew how.


It feels good to be reminded of this. I have noticed how my Dad has been slightly written out of my memory. And, coincidentally, masculine energy is also relegated to a back seat in my life. I spend a lot of time with women which I love to do as it feeds me and who I am as a woman. And I think that Dad is now nudging me to spend more time with the masculine.

Listening to the Call of My Heart means allowing these kinds of issues to surface. The more I meditate and pray, the more my heart answers. Sometimes it is an immediate response and sometimes it is days later but there is always a signpost. I just have to ensure that I am listening.


Back to the training course….. I am still not clear whether this is the route I want to take but what I have identified is that desire to let the masculine in. Perhaps a little more meditation is called for as to exactly how!

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