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10 Challenges of Being a Man in the 21st Century

Updated: Aug 1





Men have always been considered the privileged sex – we get the best jobs, we get paid more, and we are spared the pains of childbirth. Yet many men today are broken mentally, physically, and financially. We are told our masculinity is toxic, to get in touch with our feminine side, and to be vulnerable and emotional. We don’t have access to our kids. We are either unemployed or stuck in bullshit jobs.


Here are 10 reasons why now is the worst time in history to be a man.


1) We are Expendable

Men are taught their lives are expendable. When there is a war, who is sent out onto the front lines? When terrorist planes plowed into the World Trade Centre in New York in 2001, who hurled themselves into the collapsing building? More than 90% of deaths in the workplace are suffered by men. Men put themselves in harm's way in law enforcement, in the building of high-rises, on the oil rigs in the middle of the ocean. In the face of this harsh reality, it is easy to come to the conclusion that as a man, your life is cheap, and that sacrifice is a natural part of existence. This affects us emotionally and mentally. It strips away our value and makes us question our purpose.


2) We are More Suicidal

Between the age of 9 and 11, boys and girls are equally likely to take their own lives. By the time boys have passed through puberty, adolescence, and are young men above the age of 25, men are almost 6 times more likely to put a pistol in their mouths and pull the trigger. According to stats from the World Health Organization, almost 1 million people commit suicide every year in the world – the vast majority of which are men. Suicide is the single biggest killer of men under the age of 45. A big contributor to the gap in suicide rates between the sexes is the propensity for men to bottle up their emotions and ignore the causes of depression and anxiety. We like to keep all our shit inside! We are taught that boys don’t cry, and this inability to communicate is disastrous.


3) We are Told Our Masculinity is Toxic

Feminism has moved past the fight for equality. It is now focused on power. So, when did they cross the line? The moment they labeled masculinity as toxic. They took the gloves off and started playing dirty. Women no longer wanted to be the "same" as men – they now wanted to inflict as much pain on masculinity as possible. They are attacking the essence of our being by saying that certain “traditional” masculine traits are linked to aggression, misogyny, and negative health outcomes. Toxic masculinity is what keeps the lights on in our cities and is what gets the crops harvested on our farms, but we are being forced to be ashamed of it. Inherent male qualities, such as strength, courage, independence, leadership, and assertiveness, are not toxic. We need to embrace and nurture them.


4) We are Told the Future is Feminine

Boys want to go out and wrestle with their friends, climb trees, strip their bikes and get their hands dirty, but they are taught that the future is female. When these boys grow into young men, we are told to get in touch with their feminine side, to be sensitive, to be agreeable, and not to take risks. This softness flies in the face of their natural male instincts. Men are supposed to be men and women are supposed to be women. The problem is that men are being told to be more like women. We are breeding a generation of pussy men who are losing touch with their masculine strengths.


5) We are Battling with the Transition from Muscle to Microchip and Mental

Robots and automation are eliminating blue-collar jobs. For example, over the next 10 years, 1.7 million truck drivers will be replaced globally by self-driving trucks. We are having trouble making this technology transition. Good honest blue-collar labor is being displaced by robots and technology and men are being left out in the cold. The global economy is also tilting towards services where the mental side is more important than the muscle. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, there are now 109,000 more women working than men. It's believed by experts that this trend will continue and gain more momentum as the number of working women increases, while the number of men in the workforce declines. The continued growth in employment for women parallels the economic shift away from so-called traditional male-dominated jobs, in sectors such as manufacturing, toward a service-based business model. Sectors that employ more women are growing, whereas jobs historically associated with men are in a decline.


6) We are Facing a Crisis of Sexuality

Young men between the ages of 18 and 30 in the US are abstaining from sex. Ten years ago, the percentage of men in this demographic that had not had sex in the past year was 10%. Today, this number has spiked to almost 30%. There are several reasons for this sex drought. Young men are withdrawing into the online world and are consuming more pornography. They are also living longer with their parents, which is a real boner killer. But possibly the strongest reason is that women are becoming more selective about who they drop their panties for. They are focusing more on their careers, and delaying marriage plans or canceling them altogether. As women progress in their careers and start to unlock their economic potential, they also see how their sexual market value increases. Women are hypergamous by nature – they only want to hook up with people on the same socio-economic level or higher. Given that men are in a throes of a crisis, this pool of dateable/fuckable men is declining.


7) We Have less Testosterone

A study has shown that men’s testosterone levels (T levels) have been falling by 1% per year since the 1980s. This means that a 25 year today has the same T levels as a 50-year-old man had in 1997. That is a terrifying statistic, especially given that low T levels can lead to mood swings, irritability, stress, anxiety, and depression. There are numerous reasons for declining T levels – more sedentary lifestyles, the lack of strong father figures for young boys, tight underwear, and even an increase in climatic temperatures. Obesity is also driving T levels into the ground. Men these days are less likely to follow their caveman-like instincts (being outside and wrestling saber-toothed tigers and terrifying the local villagers) and more likely to be indoors playing video games and jerking off.


8) Boys are Growing up Fatherless

It is becoming more common for boys to grow up without fathers. Divorce rates have been on the increase for decades as the stigma of divorce disappears. The global COVID pandemic has also increased traffic through the divorce courts. Family law almost always favors the mothers. Many boys are now being raised with minimal or no father involvement. Boys with less-involved fathers are more likely to drop out of school, drink, do drugs, become delinquent, and end up in prison.


9) We are Facing a Crisis of Purpose

In the old days, men had clear sense of purposes: being a warrior, a leader, or a sole breadwinner. These purposes are fading. Many young men these days are experiencing a "purpose void," feeling alienated, withdrawn, and addicted to immediate gratification. Compounding this issue are addicting video games that lead to distraction and ADHD.


10) We are Getting Less Educated

Young men now account for only about 40% of recent university graduates. Likewise, boys drop out of high school at nearly double the rate of girls. Traditional boyhood pursuits have been curtailed in schools, with a significant decline in activities such as physical education, sports, woodwork, metalwork, and break times. This prevents boys from letting off steam and expending natural energy, leading to inattentive boys in the classroom. In addition, the vast majority of teachers in high school are women, again creating an environment void of male role models. As men get less educated, so to does their market value in the workplace decline. They are less likely to find well-paying jobs, and the velocity of their downward spiral accelerates.


So what is the solution to all this mayhem? The first step is admitting there is a crisis. The second step is building a community that is obsessed with finding solutions, and not with wallowing in self-pity and self-destruction. Million Man aims to create a million high-value men. We want to reverse this trend of masculine decay, and through coaching, mentorship and community help young men lead meaningful and valuable lives.


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