One of the best descriptions of male pathology ever was someone's description of an unlamented prime minister of Canada named Brian Mulroney (a scummy bastard). He was once referred to as a "fragile father" -- the kind of male who had a front, which if it ever broke, he would fall to pieces like a guy with glass legs. I think this is part of what makes some men wary of tinkering with their fathers' emotions -- they suspect that so much energy has gone into holding the front up that there would be nothing, or an avalanche behind. But there are reticent fathers who are not fragile, just wary of expressing any emotion that isn't absolutely honest. They grew up in a world where talk was cheap, and they watched buddies die for other people's rhetoric. They may drive extroverts crazy, but ---
I don't know about the current middle aged generation of men, being one myself, but by and large they don't seem to me to be as confused as the newspapers and the chatterers seem to be making out. Or what are they being compared to -- who isn't confused? After a lifetime of hating men (everyone I grew up with I despised), and loving women (still clearly the best, not to mention the fringe benefits), I have grudgingly come around to the position that they are human, by and large. I have no idea why women are attracted to them, which is completely mysterious to me, but who I am to complain?
yours, Peter T.