The different expectations for what being a man entails can often leave someone feeling lost and confused about how they should act. Toxic masculinity is a term that has been gaining traction in the past few years. This term refers to the dominant form of masculinity wherein men use dominance, violence, and control to assert their power and superiority. In this article, we will define and explore toxic masculinity (unhealthy masculinity) versus healthy masculinity.
Toxic masculinity appears in many different forms. A few examples include telling boys to “man up” when they feel upset or justifying abusive and inappropriate behavior with the phrase “boys will be boys.” Toxic masculinity can be defined as “the need to aggressively compete and dominate others and encompasses the most problematic proclivities in men. These same male proclivities foster resistance to psychotherapy.”1