The biggest threat facing middle-age men isn’t smoking or obesity. It’s loneliness.

Culturally men have often found it difficult to reach out and connect with other men. No more so then when they reach middle age. Whilst women tend to keep their friendships alive and even discover new friendships in later age. Men tend to disconnect, shut down and allow friendships to completely dissolve. This recent article in the Boston Globe talks about the dangers men isolating themselves from others and shows the importance of keeping a solid circle of friends around, especially in later life.

read on….

LET’S START WITH THE MOMENT I realized I was already a loser, which was just after I was more or less told that I was destined to become one.

I’d been summoned to an editor’s office at the Globe Magazine with the old “We have a story we think you’d be perfect for.” This is how editors talk when they’re about to con you into doing something you don’t want to do.

Here was the pitch: We want you to write about how middle-aged men have no friends.

Excuse me? I have plenty of friends. Are you calling me a loser? You are.

The editor told me there was all sorts of evidence out there about how men, as they age, let their close friendships lapse, and that that fact can cause all sorts of problems and have a terrible impact on their health.

I told the editor I’d think about it. This is how reporters talk when they’re trying to get out of something they don’t want to do. As I walked back to my desk in the newsroom — a distance of maybe 100 yards — I quickly took stock of my life to try to prove to myself that I was not, in fact, perfect for this story.

First of all, there was my buddy Mark. We went to high school together, and I still talk to him all the time, and we hang out all the . . . Wait, how often do we actually hang out? Maybe four or five times a year?

And then there was my other best friend from high school, Rory, and . . . I genuinely could not remember the last time I’d seen him. Had it already been a year? Entirely possible.

There were all those other good friends who feel as if they’re still in my lives because we keep tabs on one another via social media, but as I ran down the list of those I’d consider real, true, lifelong friends, I realized that it had been years since I’d seen many of them, even decades for a few.

By the time I got back to my desk, I realized that I was indeed perfect for this story, not because I was unusual in any way, but because my story is very, very typical. And as I looked into what that means, I realized that in the long term, I was heading down a path that was very, very dangerous.

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Vivek Murthy, the surgeon general of the United States, has said many times in recent years that the most prevalent health issue in the country is not cancer or heart disease or obesity. It is isolation.

I TURNED 40 IN MAY. I have a wife and two young boys. I moved to the suburbs a few years ago, where I own a fairly ugly home with white vinyl siding and two aging station wagons with crushed Goldfish crackers serving as floor mats. When I step on a Lego in the middle of the night on my way to the bathroom, I try to tell myself that it’s cute that I’ve turned into a sitcom dad.

During the week, much of my waking life revolves around work. Or getting ready for work. Or driving to work. Or driving home from work. Or texting my wife to tell her I’m going to be late getting home from work.

Much of everything else revolves around my kids. I spend a lot of time asking them where their shoes are, and they spend a lot of time asking me when they can have some “dada time.” It is the world’s cutest phrase, and it makes me feel guilty every time I hear it, because they are asking it in moments when they know I cannot give it to them — when I am distracted by an e-mail on my phone or I’m dealing with the constant, boring logistics of running a home.

We can usually squeeze in an hour of “dada time” before bed — mostly wrestling or reading books — and so the real “dada time” happens on weekends. That’s my promise. “I have to go to work, but this weekend,” I tell them, “we can have ‘dada time.’ ”

I love “dada time.” And I’m pretty good about squeezing in an hour of “me time” each day for exercise, which usually means getting up before dawn to go to the gym or for a run. But when everything adds up, there is no real “friend time” left. Yes, I have friends at work and at the gym, but those are accidents of proximity. I rarely see those people anywhere outside those environments, because when everything adds up, I have left almost no time for friends. I have structured myself into being a loser.

“YOU SHOULD USE THIS story suggestion as a call to do something about it.”

That’s Dr. Richard S. Schwartz, a Cambridge psychiatrist, and I had reached out to him because he and his wife, Dr. Jacqueline Olds, literally wrote the book on this topic, The Lonely American: Drifting Apart in the Twenty-First Century.

He agreed that my story was very typical. When people with children become overscheduled, they don’t shortchange their children, they shortchange their friendships. “And the public health dangers of that are incredibly clear,” he says.

Beginning in the 1980s, Schwartz says, study after study started showing that those who were more socially isolated were much more likely to die during a given period than their socially connected neighbors, even after you corrected for age, gender, and lifestyle choices like exercising and eating right. Loneliness has been linked to an increased risk of cardiovascular disease and stroke and the progression of Alzheimer’s. One study found that it can be as much of a long-term risk factor as smoking.

The research doesn’t get any rosier from there. In 2015, a huge study out of Brigham Young University, using data from 3.5 million people collected over 35 years, found that those who fall into the categories of loneliness, isolation, or even simply living on their own see their risk of premature death rise 26 to 32 percent.

Now consider that in the United States, nearly a third of people older than 65 live alone; by age 85, that has jumped to about half. Add all of this up, and you can see why the surgeon general is declaring loneliness to be a public health epidemic.

“Since my wife and I have written about loneliness and social isolation, we see a fair number of people for whom this is a big problem,” Schwartz continues. But there’s a catch. “Often they don’t come saying they’re lonely. Most people have the experience you had in your editor’s office: Admitting you’re lonely feels very much like admitting you’re a loser. Psychiatry has worked hard to de-stigmatize things like depression, and to a large part it has been successful. People are comfortable saying they’re depressed. But they’re not comfortable saying they’re lonely, because you’re the kid sitting alone in the cafeteria.”

I’m not that kid. I’m gregarious. I have family around me all the time, or I’m around “friends” at work or elsewhere. I comment on their Facebook posts. They comment on mine. My wife and I also have other couples we like and see often. It’s easy to fall into the trap of believing that’s good enough — and for many men it is, at least until their spouse gets the friends in the divorce.

I’m hesitant to say I’m lonely, though I’m clearly a textbook case of the silent majority of middle-aged men who won’t admit they’re starved for friendship, even if all signs point to the contrary. Now that I’ve been forced to recognize it, the question is what to do about it. Like really do about it. Because the tricks I’ve been using clearly do not work. I’ve been on “guy dates” with people I like — maybe I met them through my kids or on an assignment or whatever — but all too often those are one and done. It’s not that we don’t hit it off. We’ll go have that beer, and we’ll spend that beer talking about how we’re overscheduled and never get to hang with our friends, vaguely making plans to do something again, though we both know it’s probably not going to happen — certainly not the grand “Let’s hike the Appalachian Trail” ideas that start getting thrown out after the third beer. It’s a polite way of kicking the ball down the road, but never into the goal. I like you. You like me. Is that enough? Does that make us friends?

MARIO ZUCCA FOR THE BOSTON GLOBE

IN FEBRUARY AT A CONFERENCE in Boston, a researcher from Britain’s University of Oxford presented study results that most guys understand intuitively: Men need an activity together to make and keep a bond. Women can maintain friendships over the phone. My wife is capable of having long phone talks with her sister in Virginia or her friend Casey (whom she sees in person almost every day), and I kind of look at it with amazement. I hate the phone. My guy friends seem to share my feelings, because our phone conversations seem to naturally last about five minutes before someone says, “All right, I’ll catch up with you later.” Dudes aren’t going to maintain a bromance that way, or even over a once-in-a-blue-moon beer. We need to go through something together. That’s why, studies have shown, men tend to make their deepest friends through periods of intense engagement, like school or military service or sports. That’s how many of us are comfortable.

When I was talking to Richard Schwartz, the psychiatrist told me something that had me staring off into the distance and nodding my head. Researchers have noticed a trend in photographs taken of people interacting. When female friends are talking to each other, they do it face to face. But guys stand side by side, looking out at the world together.

But in the middle years of life, those side-by-side opportunities to get together are exactly the sort of things that fall off. When you have a gap in your schedule, you feel bad running off with the fellas and leaving your partner alone to look for the shoes. And the guys I’d like to spend time with are all locked in the exact same bind as me. Planning anything takes great initiative, and if you have to take initiative every time you see someone, it’s easy to just let it disappear.

That’s why Schwartz and others say the best way for men to forge and maintain friendships is through built-in regularity — something that is always on the schedule. This worked well for me over the past year (however unintentionally) with a college buddy named Matt. We signed up to run last April’s Boston Marathon together, and even though he lives in Chicago, we were in regular contact about our training, his trip to Boston, etc., and our relationship became stronger than ever, even though our best and deepest conversation occurred during the four-plus hours it took us to get from Hopkinton to Boston, side by side. We repeated the process with the Chicago Marathon in October, this time in less than four hours (thank God for the flat Midwest), but we haven’t had much contact since then, because we’re no longer going through anything together. I texted him to congratulate him after the Cubs won the World Series. He did the same for me after the Patriots won the Super Bowl. But I can’t remember the last time I talked to Matt since. We have no further plans. That would take initiative.

WHENEVER THE POWERBALL or Mega Millions gets over $100 million, I’ll buy a ticket. My wife thinks I’m nuts, that I’m just wasting our money. I tell her she’s missing the point. I know I’m not going to win, but in that time between when I buy the ticket and the TV news trucks do not show up outside my home, my fantasy brain answers a question for me: What would I really do if I didn’t have to do all this other stuff?

For a while, this was an escape fantasy that involved loading my family into an old Volkswagen bus, hitting the road, and setting off to look for America. That ended when I actually managed to save up enough money to buy an old Volkswagen bus, an endeavor that did not lead to a tour of this country’s national parks but of its auto repair shops. The bus is gone. And so is the escape fantasy. I’m very happy in my life. If I need someone to confide in, I have my wife. All the pieces are here, except one — the guys. I’d like to think they’re also missing me and are just locked into this same prison of commitments. But I don’t want to wait until we’re all retired and can reconnect on a golf course. It feels silly to wait that long, and thanks to this stupid story, I know it’s quite dangerous. So I’m ready to steal a simple concept that doesn’t require lottery money.

A few years ago, shortly after I’d moved from the city to Cape Ann on the North Shore, I took a kayaking class run out of a shop in Essex. At some point, the man who owned the place, an older guy named Ozzy, said something in passing about how he couldn’t do something because he had “Wednesday night.” Slightly confused, I asked him what he was talking about, and he explained an idea to me that was so simple and profound that I resolved one day to steal it . . . when I got older. I think it’s time to admit I’m there.

“Wednesday night,” Ozzy explained, was a pact he and his buddies had made many years before, a standing order that on Wednesday nights, if they were in town, they would get together and do something, anything.

Everything about the idea seemed quaint and profound — the name that was a lack of a name (such a guy move); the placement in the middle of the week; the fact that they’d continued it for so long. But most of all, it was the acknowledgment from male friends that they needed their male friends, for no other reason than they just did.

I tried to reach Ozzy, but he takes the winters off to go skiing in California and the number I had was disconnected. When I tried to get an e-mail address from a mutual friend, I was told he didn’t do e-mail. This guy seems like he has some things figured out. So, Ozzy, I’m stealing Wednesday night.

Obviously, it’s not going to work every time, but experts say that even the act of trying to increase your friendships can benefit your health, so consider this the beginning of that. I’m OK with admitting I’m a little lonely. Doesn’t make me a loser. Doesn’t make you a loser.

 Fellas, what are you doing this Wednesday? And the one after that? And the one after that? Consider it a standing invitation. Let’s do something together.

Toxic Masculinity – It’s not a good time to be a man”

Toxic Masculinity  – “It’s ‘not a good time to be a man”

2016 may well be remembered for the term “Toxic Masculinity”. With US President elect Donald Trump coming to power, many believe he brought with him a kind of masculinity that we all thought the world had moved on from. His misogynous comments about woman which he called “locker room” talk once again raised the ugly side of masculinity by a man with little understanding of the damage he was causing.

This great article today By Hayley Gleeson from the ABC reminds of why we need to be even more conscious about how we now raise our young boys and the kind of language we use when around them…..

Toxic masculinity: Will the ‘war on men’ only backfire?

When news broke of singer-songwriter George Michael’s death on Christmas Day, social media was flooded with tributes to a man whose chart-topping music helped define the 1980s.

But the English pop star was also remembered for the way he “dared to do manhood differently”, and the license he gave others to express their gender identity on their own terms.

Michael’s death — just months after the passing of gender-bending artists David Bowie and Prince — was particularly poignant, some pointed out, because 2016 had been a year in which so-called “toxic masculinity reigned“.

In 2016 when toxic masculinity reigned, devastating to lose Prince, Bowie & George Michael, who showed there’s no one right way to be a man

The term ‘toxic masculinity’ has crept into the lexicon in the past 12 months, having appeared in mainstream news articles, popular feminist blogs and, as of November, the crowd-sourced online repository of slang words, Urban Dictionary.

Generally used to denote how some aspects of masculinity — such as entitlement, homophobia and sexual aggressiveness — can harm women and families and cripple men’s own health, toxic masculinity, at its most extreme edges, has been linked with acts of violence like mass shootings and university campus sexual assault.

(For this reason, some US colleges have recently introduced ‘toxic masculinity’ courses, in which male students can reflect on topics like rape culture, machismo and pornography.)

It has also been used to describe the behaviour of US President Donald Trump.

‘Boys will be boys respectful’

In the lead-up to the election, numerous media outlets around the world published articles suggesting Mr Trump’s ‘toxic masculinity’ — as exemplified by his “male privilege and excess” and his disdain for women — was symptomatic of a broader sickness afflicting American men.

For example, when Mr Trump dismissed as “locker room talk” his remarks about grabbing women’s genitals, the creator of TV series Transparent Jill Soloway lamented how “toxic masculinity” was perpetuating “man club” culture, allowing men to degrade and disrespect women.

“When people say, Boys will be boys and this is just the way it is,” Soloway wrote at TIME magazine, “I know that’s not true. This. Can. Change.”

Writing in the New York Times, Jared Yates Sexton of Georgia Southern University claimed Mr Trump’s toxic masculinity — “his macho-isms, his penchant for dividing the world into winners and losers, his lack of empathy for anyone but himself” — was preventing “especially the white men who make up a majority of Mr Trump’s base” from expressing their emotions.

As a result, Sexton argued, men were dying needlessly from lifestyle diseases and suicide.

And at the recent Women’s March on Washington, a rally for which hundreds of thousands of demonstrators gathered to express their concern that women’s and other minority groups’ rights will be eroded under President Trump, many carried placards emblazoned with references to ‘toxic masculinity‘.

“I came here to march against a toxic masculinity and years of misogyny,” Washington DC resident Andrew told TIME of his motivation for marching.

“After all, I got six sisters. I had to do this.”

Things I’d like to see less of in 2017:
– toxic masculinity
– Lena Dunham
– racism, sexism, homophobia
– dabbing

But while some experts say the term’s ubiquity represents progress in gender relations because it acknowledges how gender norms and inequality can impact men too, others argue it’s an antagonistic expression that vilifies and disempowers men.

How, they ask, could attacking masculinity possibly foster better relations between the sexes?

Surely crying ‘toxic masculinity’ will only alienate men and undermine feminism’s aim of recruiting mass support?

Teaching about toxic masculinity ‘turns men into women’

Dr Michael Flood, an associate professor in sociology at the University of Wollongong who researches gender, sexuality and violence, suggests the term ‘toxic masculinity’ has two main uses in modern discussions about men’s changing gender roles.

“The first is emphasising how masculinity is patriarchal — based on entitlement, based on power, based on dominance — and fuels some men’s violence and mistreatment of women or indeed other men,” said Dr Flood.

“Overlapping with that is another use of the term to [highlight] the ways masculinity constrains men’s own lives, health, relationships and so on.”

Indeed, a recent study published in the Journal of Counselling Psychology found men who adhere to traditional masculine norms — for example, self-reliance, power over women, and sexual promiscuity (“Playboy behaviour”) — tended to have poorer mental health and were less likely to seek help than men who conformed less to those norms.

“It’s not new to have discussions in popular culture of what it means to be a man,” said Dr Flood.

“But this phrase ‘toxic masculinity’ is new, and its explicit critique of traditional masculinity is new as well.”

But as much as the conversation about ‘toxic masculinity’ appears to be uniting people, it is also dividing; the term is typically met with fierce backlash, often on social media, from those who find it offensive.

For example, a recent article about trends in men’s pet ownership (by this author) that mentioned ‘toxic masculinity’ drew hundreds of angry comments on the ABC News Facebook page.

Many people argued it was an “insulting” term that “infers that being masculine is a bad thing”.

“This war on masculinity will only backfire,” wrote one commenter. “Men built the roads, cars, buildings, elevators, stairs. We might go on strike. Build your own stuff.”

And, in response to the news that some US colleges will run courses to help students understand and “unlearn” toxic masculinity, Fox News journalist Todd Starnes claimed universities were “trying to convince men to grow lady parts”.

“Instead of a country full of manly men, our universities want a nation full of Pajama Boys,” Starnes wrote.

#NotAllMen

For John Macdonald, director of the Men’s Health Information and Resource Centre at Western Sydney University, the backlash is a matter of semantics.

“Why use that inflated language?” Professor Macdonald said.

“To say ‘toxic masculinity’ — it does imply … that all men are toxic.

“Clearly there is such a thing as toxicity in some of the ways that men are socialised, but to suggest that all masculinity is toxic and that all men are violent is completely wrong.”

Part of the problem, Professor Macdonald suggests, is that masculinity “has received such a bashing” in both academia and the media in recent years.

For example, the emphasis on curbing domestic violence in the community is important and “understandable”, he said, but when men as a whole are blamed for some men’s bad behaviour, it makes it “very hard to talk about non-toxic masculinity” and the positive sides of being a man.

Catharine Lumby, a professor of media at Macquarie University who researches gender and media, said she doesn’t use the term ‘toxic masculinity’ because it is “inflammatory”.

“It’s a term that describes a certain way of being male … it doesn’t describe all men,” she said.

Still, she thinks the backlash against it is symptomatic of a broader anxiety among white men, many of whom are currently grappling with challenges such as unemployment and the loss of identity that can trigger — issues Mr Trump has promised he will address as President.

“We are living in a world which is globalised and multicultural and diverse and [many white working class men in the US] are really struggling with a loss of power” and a sense that “they don’t own the world anymore”, Professor Lumby said.

“The light is going out for people of Trump’s generation”, she added, who have grown up expecting or assuming particular privileges, such as job security or “a life where a woman stays at home and raises their children”.

It’s ‘not a good time to be a man’

Indeed, research suggests many Trump voters are concerned about what they perceive as a ‘weakening’ of America.

A recent survey by the Public Religion Research Institute and The Atlantic, for example, found 64 per cent of self-identified white evangelical Christians — who are more likely to be part of the working class and make less than $50,000 a year — completely or mostly agreed that “society as a whole has become too soft and feminine”.

And a new poll about gender equality in postelection America found that Republican men in particular feel that women have it better than they do — that it’s currently a worse time to be a man in society.

Most respondents to the survey, conducted by the non-partisan research firm PerryUndem, agreed it was a better time to be a man than a woman in the United States.

But only half of Republican men agreed it was a good time to be a woman, and only 41 per cent thought it was a good time to be a man.

Mr Trump’s rhetoric about women may have appealed to these men. At his victory rally in Cincinnati last year, Mr Trump said of women, “I hate to tell you men, generally speaking, they’re better than you are.”

“For some men who feel that they lack power, the classic thing is to find someone lower down the chain to kick,” Professor Lumby said.

“Gender is still a really powerful norm in our society. Along with race, it is a really structuring idea, and so the easiest thing is to turn around and say, ‘this is women’s fault’.”

Men don’t hear the ‘message of hope’ in toxic masculinity

Dr Flood is cautious not to exaggerate the extent to which the critique of toxic masculinity has traction because “a whole lot of people in the US” — including many women — “just voted for a man who was on the record speaking [about] behaving in sexually harassing and assaulting ways.”

Media player: “Space” to play, “M” to mute, “left” and “right” to seek.

VIDEO: Donald Trump recorded having lewd conversation about women in 2005 (ABC News)

He is also not surprised by the lashing out against it — it’s a predictable response, he said, to “any kind of critique of traditional masculinity or men’s mistreatment of women”.

But he also views it as an opportunity.

“I think some men push back [against the idea of toxic masculinity] because they don’t hear the message of hope and support that is in that critique … that men themselves will benefit from abandoning toxic masculinity.

“And so I think there is a whole lot more that could be done productively with the language of toxic masculinity and the insights it suggests,” he said.

“There have been bits and pieces of this kind of work going on” — for example, the Male Champions of Change program implemented by former sex discrimination commissioner Elizabeth Broderick.

“But it’s not at scale and there is nowhere near enough of a widespread community conversation around how we socialise boys and men.”

Best selling book “Raised by Our Childhood Voices” receives rave review in 2017

“Raised by Our Childhood Voices” receives rave review in 2017

2017 kicked of well with my best selling book receiving a rave review from world renown literary critic Christine Sun

Award winning literary critic Christine Sun

Award winning literary critic Christine Sun

Here’s her critique…..

 

Literary Critic Christine Sun

Literary Critic Christine Sun

Australian author Darrell Brown’s Raised by Our Childhood Voices: One father’s journey to raise confident, connected, compassionate boys is an excellent read. It has a voice like that of an old friend, who shares life’s numerous twists and turns and asks not for your judgement, but simply for you to understand.

Indeed, as Brown advises: “When someone hurts you, you have two ways to respond. The first is to get angry; the other is to simply get curious. The problem with getting angry is that it cuts off the opportunity for understanding. I find life’s richness comes from trying to understand why people do things they do rather than judge them for it.” (p.21) This is a brilliant tip, not only for parents trying to raise their children, but also for people at all ages who struggle to get along with their beloved family members and friends.

In Raised by Our Childhood Voices, Brown shares stories of his past in order to illustrate how we can listen to the voices of our distant childhood – both positive and negative ones – and learn to distinguish which to trust and which to ignore. “I really don’t think our role is to try to change people; rather, it’s to provide them with the opportunity to do so. Having the wisdom to know how to do this with love rather than judgement is, perhaps, our greatest challenge.” (p.25) The word “people” here may also refer to those different aspects of our own personality. Our task is to converse with our inner voices, not to distort or silence them.

And Brown’s is an absolutely sincere voice, very straightforward, with a great sense of humour. While all the details in Chapter Four about the IVF as a medical procedure may leave readers unsure whether they should laugh or cry, by the time they reach the chapter’s end they are left with a sense of awe and wonder. No, it is not those words describing how the birth of a child makes his/her parents the happiest people on Earth. It is this statement, this confident acknowledgement and acceptance of a man’s greatest responsibility to life in this world:

“As I walked through the doors, I remember thinking, the next time I see the outside world, I will be a dad. For many men, perhaps a daunting thought, but for some reason not me. I never for a moment doubted my ability to be a good father. Of course I knew there would be difficult times as well, but on the whole, I felt well prepared for the journey.” (p.33)

As a professional cinematographer and photographer (or “freelance cameraman” in his own words), Brown’s journey as a father may be the envy of many men who consider themselves horribly weighed down by the physical, emotional, psychological and financial burdens of supporting a family. However, Brown is no different from any father – or any parent in that matter – in any part of this world. He just loves his children and spends quality time with them. Instead of leaving his kids to be babysat by money and digital technology, he shows his love by being there with them.

“Loving and attentive dads push the boundaries of their boys’ safety. They lead them to the edge of danger, then share with them the wisdom, courage, and resources to handle things. And when life gets too much, Dad is waiting with strong open arms to provide a trusting place for them to return to – to gather their thoughts, soothe their emotions, release their tears, heal their scars, and gather their strength for the next stage of their life.” (p.68)

Many brilliant passages like this combine to form a graceful, funny, honest and reader-friendly book, but Brown also tackles tough issues such as values, relationships, respect and sex/uality, especially when children and teenagers – and even adults – are exposed to different forms of interpretation of these issues online. “As fathers, we need to lead the way in how we show up in our boys’ lives. If we don’t have a way of expressing ourselves, there will be no hope for our sons. Right now, our boys need us more than ever, and they watch us closely in order to work out how best to behave,” Brown asserts. “The more men begin to speak out about matters of the heart, the more we will normalise the experience and begin to turn things around in society.” (p.82) And speak out he does – his musings while working at some of the world’s most beautiful and sacred sites are absolutely inspiring and thought-provoking.

As a writer, reader and translator, while reading Raised by Our Childhood Voices, I am delighted by Brown’s emphasis on the Power of Words. According to Brown, the language we use everyday helps to keep our beliefs in place, which in turn “end up forming our entire identity to the point that, as an adult, our beliefs about ourselves walk into a room about two feet before we do” (p.90). By becoming aware of our language and training ourselves to make a difference in our choice of words, we can help to change beliefs and how people related to themselves and the others.

Indeed, part memoir, part parenting advice and part reflections on life, love and the land – Raised by Our Childhood Voices offers a rare insight into the inner worlds of a man, his humble soul that hungers and is grateful for a connection to the universal wisdom, his sensitive heart dedicated to seeking and documenting the beauty of our world, and his intelligent mind that is keen to empower and enrich the next generation and beyond with the valuable lessons he has gathered and continues to expand through lifelong learning. I would recommend this book to all readers who are passionate about learning the nature and significance of not only childhood but also fatherhood and manhood.

More information about Darrell Brown’s Raised by Our Childhood Voices: One father’s journey to raise confident, connected, compassionate boys can be found here.

Award winning literary critic Christine Sun

Award winning literary critic Christine Sun

Warmest  Darrell Brown

Whats the Facebook mask that you wear?

Darrell Brown – Best Selling Author and Speaker on Fatherhood –  Video #1 2017

Whats your Facebook Mask?

Whats your Facebook Mask?

New Years eve 2016 I decided to film and post a video a called “Whats your Facebook Mask?” I spoke about the mask that a lot of us wear on Facebook and posed the question, who is it that we dont show the world. It was a very heart felt post filled with raw emotion about the pain that a lot of us go through but rarely show the world.

 

Obviously it struck a cord with quite a few people as it received nearly 2000 views in just 48 hours and was quickly shared many times over.

Here is the link to the video for you to watch —>   Whats your Facebook Mask?

I really hope you enjoy this short thought provoking video which I am hoping will become one of many this year.

Please feel free to leave any feedback

warmest

Darrell Brown

Guest Story teller at “Stories from the Heart “

Story telling is a wonderful way of getting your message across and no one knows how to do this better then the amazing Lisa Evans.

A wonderful evening with these very talented Story tellers

A wonderful evening with these very talented Story tellers

I was asked to be one of the invited story tellers at her big annual event in November 2016 “Stories from the Heart”.

Every story teller has exactly 5 minutes to get their story across and this means that it must be concise, to the point and impactful. Your story must have a message relevant o the evenings theme. Using various characters in your story gives people the opportunity to relate to each person and keeps the story engaging and the audience interested.

warmest  Darrell Brown