Where Have All The Gentlemen Gone?

I am constantly baffled by women’s perception of the “men” of our generation. The generalizations put forth these days almost makes me embarrassed to be a millennial, member of Generation-Y, or whatever you want to call it – simply because I might get grouped together with them and assumed to be similar.

On the flip side, women who are perpetually jaded and only talk badly about men are making themselves look worse than the guys they are bashing. No man wants to fight an uphill battle with somebody who automatically vilifies him simply because of his gender or age. Men need to work to become better, and women need to know that there still are good men out there.

gentsgone1

Though, it does make me wonder, what is the basis for these widespread, consistent accusations? Could it be an exponential worsening of the modern woman’s taste in men, that they are only choosing broke, uninterested, commitment-phobic, unambitious slackers? Or is our generation of “men,” really becoming what they are accused of being?

I refuse to sit back in silent discontent and believe that the devolution of the male race is a plague-like epidemic that we are witnessing first hand. This is the reason why I have created this website and the Facebook community that goes along with it – to stand up and make the statement that we can overcome these stereotypes by working to do more and become more.

But, lots of men are really making my job of defending them (us) increasingly difficult.

Anytime I post an article about what men want or how men act, I am met with dual responses from women. Many women are uplifted and encouraged by my statements, while others show a skepticism justified by their lack of experience actually finding these men.

They tell me while the sentiments are nice to hear, that they are just not realistic. That men really are not looking for mature, well-adjusted, successful women. That men do not want the companionship and equality that I assure them that we do [I am glad to have found it, after all].

And while all of these discussions are going on between myself and these women – the men are nowhere to be found.

There is silence.

I am defending men to the women who are discouraged by them, but I sometimes wonder if these men are deserving of the defense they are getting if they are not willing to speak up for themselves. Where have all the gentlemen gone?

gentsgone2

It’s a modern-day version of “what came first, the chicken or the egg?” Do women choose the wrong men, or are there so many wrong men out there that the odds are just making the cards fall that way?

Fellow men of the world — learn from our predecessors who carried themselves with dignity and class. They were providers, protectors and a support system for their women. Even though society has evolved and men no longer have to be the sole breadwinners in a relationship, we should still have the ability to be if it were needed, that hasn’t changed.

Some of us call it having honor. Dignity. Integrity. Qualities which so unfortunately seem to be sorely lacking in our generation.

I understand that some men feel these qualities they do possess are going unappreciated. We can easily see how the cycle begins: Men do not think women appreciate good guys, so fewer guys act in this way, causing women to become convinced there are no good men left. Rinse, repeat.

The fact of the matter is that good men and women are out there – but they feel as though their attributes go overlooked and therefore stop displaying them to the world. We should never allow someone’s lack of appreciation of us alter our nature. Our value and self worth comes from within, not from the approval of others; that’s why it’s called self worth.

Women want to believe you still exist. They want romance, courtship, chivalry, and respect. They want your love and your loyalty. And they want to give you all of these things in return.

gentsgone3

Do not allow lesser effort put forth by your counterparts to tarnish your own reputation. Do not fall in with the crowd. Do not blend in with the shadows. Do not take the path of least resistance under the presupposition that striving to be better will get you nowhere.

It is true that good men [and women] are difficult to find in today’s society, but that makes them so much more appreciated when they are. And don’t worry about how few there are in the world:

If you can’t find one, you can still be one.

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21 thoughts on “Where Have All The Gentlemen Gone?

  1. I feel online dating has made men and women lazy. It seems they feel courting is too much effort and why bother when they can just go online and find another date. I see this more with men than I do with women. Seems like things are more temporary.. no long term thinking anymore. I get bored, we break up/divorce.. I find another. There is no value in long term relationships and “making it work.” It’s almost like you are forced to settle for less if you want to be in a relationship. Seems like most of the men around me are “bored” with the non-drama girls. They prefer to have the drama so it gives them something to talk about and maybe “fit in” with their married friends. This is just a guess and observation from past relationships. We single girls are about to give up on relationships all together. I have hope, but being an independent strong woman, I’m more of a threat to a guy rather than an asset to a relationship.

  2. As I read this, being one who agrees a lot with you James, here’s my perspective.

    My childhood was in the 60’s where men, mostly provided for and took care of the family from the financial end up till the late 60’s early 70’s when women started working to help make ends meet. There I feel was sort of an adolescence if you will that developed with relationships where women were becoming more independent and I feel men were becoming confused about their role.So if the woman is independent, do I still behave chivalrous, since some women began frowning on that as I feel they too were confused, saying if I’m independent, do I still need the man to do that? The Answer was and is yes.

    There was always the case of women being attracted to the “bad” boy as they were fun, adventurous, etc. However their treatment of women was usually not good. Those men perceived that behavior as what women liked, though really they only tolerated it as SOME did want to be treated nice.

    The reality is that most men are into sports, talking about their conquests with women (most of which are either exaggerated or outright lies) referring to the anatomy of those women in less that respectful ways, They usually didn’t and don’t talk about, if they did, how they pay respect to their women. Not that they don’t, they just don’t talk about it with their peers. It is perceived as “boring” or “sappy” both of which are good, not boring or corny.

    I can remember even as a boy growing up in the 60’s hearing men talk about women and often especially wives in a disrespectful way to say the least. Women were referred to as the ball and chain or other ways indicating the wife restricted their freedom, not about their love and cherishing of them. At least most of the time. I found myself as I got older much preferring the company of women to that of men.

    This has seemed to result in current times of what you speak of, women complaining about there not being any good men out there, though the reality is they tend to confuse men with what they want, vs what they don’t want and complaining about the men behaving badly when sometimes really men aren’t really sure what the woman wants. The REAL key is communication and being honest, mostly with one’s self. If you can’t be honest with yourself, who else can? Actually if you’re connected with the right partner, that partner can feel it and know you without saying a word. A truly loving connection is key, you really only have to allow. It helps to know what you want and be ready to accept it (him or her) when they show up. They WILL show up.

    Some say a relationship is A LOT OF WORK. My lover and I totally disagree. When we’re together it is magic. There is no work, our togetherness results in a blissful appreciation for each other. There are some friends who get us, though many do not. Those who do not are a reflection of where society is. We had both done online dating sites in the past before we met. We both found that it is unlikely you’ll find your life partner there though its not a bad way to experience your way to the one who is. We both realized before meeting that the best way to connect was through being involved in like feeling people (Vs Like Minded People), When you know what you want and can open yourself up to that, they will show up.

    1. Very good post Rick, and one that James should read several times before berating men again. I too am a product of childhood sixties. Lines were clearer then, but as you pointed out, not all men behaved well. (I hope you meant to say SOME men talked disrespectfully of women.) My father set an excellent example as did most neighbors. Some did not (spousal abuse and child molestation were more common). So, the times weren’t as idealistic as James imagines.

      Go to a club today and watch the young women dancing sexy with each other and screaming like drunken sailors, playing with their phones while with their date or dressed like they want to be the next reality TV slut.

      Note to James: Men today or yesterday don’t need your defending. Maybe you need to talk with a better class of women.

      My father taught me this order to life success and I’ll share it here. Any woman seeking a “good man” would do well to first figure out where she is on this success ladder too:

      1. Good education
      2. Good job
      3. Economic independence
      4. Serious relationships, marriage, children (in that order).

      I know that James has his star hitched to this gentleman thing, and is trying to shine his ego-inflated light on the world in this regard, but gentlemen have and will always exist. They haven’t gone anywhere. Just as some classy women can be found, but not in a bar discussing their personal life with an amateur-sociologist blogger.

      1. Hi Walt! Thanks so much for your detailed thoughts and response to what you saw as my berating of men, even though I am one myself.

        One question I do have is where your assumption is rooted that I spend time with some lower-level of women who give me these ideas, or that I spend any time at all in a bar claiming to be anything other than a normal guy who writes his opinions down on his personal blog?

        I am fortunate enough to have found an amazing woman who shares my values, likely because we grew up in similar atmospheres. I don’t romanticize the past, but you yourself discuss the example your father set.

        I’m sure you and I are not the only men who saw our fathers set good examples for us and helped us shape ourselves as “gentlemen,” so I do believe there is a bit of extra integrity found in older generations than the one I am part of.

        While I can easily overlook your passive-aggressive tone, I would be more appreciative if your accusations actually made sense in relation to my personality as a human being.

        But, I suppose I shouldn’t be surprised about their inaccuracies, since you know nothing about me.

        Have a fantastic rest of the day, and thank you for visiting my website to help keep that star rising. 🙂

        – James

      2. Rick, your father was only partially correct. Having accomplished three of the four goals, I’m happy with my choices in life, yet Number Four remains all too elusive.

        Now in my mid-30s I’m actively seeking a life partner in every essence of the word–someone to share all the good, bad and crazy-in-between that life can hand out. Even living among a highly educated, highly successful populace as found here in Greater Boston, I find most male contemporaries either intimidated by my strong independence or unable to hold even a 10 minute conversation, let alone commit to growing a strong, healthy adult relationship. Rather, most are of the ‘Next…’ mindset, content to bounce from girl to girl (and yes I said ‘girl’, not woman), without ever really engaging in a true relationship. Your father’s wisdom is by no means a guarantee a ‘Good Woman’ will find her equally ‘Good Man’; it is merely a good place to start, at best.

        And I’d beg to differ with your assertion that classy women cannot be “found in a bar discussing their personal life with an amateur-sociologist blogger.” You Sir, have apparently been to the wrong bars; we do exist, tucked in a cozy corner sipping a 16yr Mortlach neat I’d expect. At least that’s how you’d encounter me in said bar. Do stop by and say hello if you’d like, I may even buy you a dram.

      3. I would also be one of the women who accomplished the first three steps on your “success ladder”, and have been looking for the past 10+ years for a “good man” without any luck. My definition of “good” is not extreme; all I ask for is a guy who works hard, is able to support himself, has a good career path, preferably some education, and is not addicted to some substance. And yet I am still looking for one. So far the men who express interest in me are usually impressed by my accomplishments and basically are looking for me to take care of them, because they themselves have not accomplished any of those 3 steps. The few (2!) men that I have dated in that time frame who have already reached those goals, ended up having other interests (i.e. smoking pot) that were more important to them. I am not looking for “good” men in bars… I am trying to use other means such as taking classes, socializing with friends, church, and online dating. So why am I having such poor success in finding someone I can genuinely say is a “good” guy? I will not say there are none out there, but they sure are hard to find!

  3. I’m hoping, I’m one of those good men out there.
    I’ve got my life going, I have my goals straight.
    I honestly think the generations coming both women and men are getting worse.

  4. This article could not be more well stated. I really believe leading a quality life is always bettering yourself no matter what everyone is else is doing. Being a good man and woman with integrity and purpose brings self fulfillment. Thank you James!

  5. I absolutely agree that there was a mix of ‘good’ men and ‘bad’ men throughout any generation; however, the younger generation coming into adulthood scares me. Boys who are old enough to fly across seas and fight for our country are currently video taping girls beating on other girls. They seem unable to type or form coherent sentences.. I’ve been lucky enough to find a good man, and I don’t envy my single friends. Some of the propositions they receive on social dating sites is repulsive. Its not just a problem with the men, though. Some women just have no self respect and then they end up with the guys who cheat, forget their birthdays, refuse to make commitments, and act like jerks. All I can do is make sure my daughter is a good woman and that she knows a good man when she sees one.

  6. Hi James, hi All,
    I really appreciate your blog and what I think and imagin,e you are trying to achieve by expressing your thoughts, ideas & opinion…
    That encouraging the finer aspirations of male giving presence, confident experience of eros-self, and openness to communication in all Men, (amongst other intentions I am sure—) is a gallant, & worthy task–!! Thanx…
    I sent a link to my Step-Son, who I know, aspires to continue his journey of understanding what it is to be a young Man, esp in contemporary society….

    Which brings me to my point—there has never been a time in Ourstory (rather than History..!!) before, that media and media driven interaction and impact has been greater on our inner & outer lives.

    I think we are all finding our way, we are all buffetted about by various superficial distractions appealing only to our baser selves. I think many of us come from places where relationship to the other gender wasn’t favourably modelled; so good to grow towards what one’s understanding of that is, for oneself. I think you assist in this quest.

    Personally, my sadness is my sometimes, typical or too frequent, experience of the middle-aged Woman-in short: no eggs=invisibilty of me, from mostly younger men. I am not looking to be ‘hit on’—(ppfftt–! ☺ )
    More that the reciprocal and respectful interaction is one of Humaness, People-ness, simpe friendly Contact, and Openess and not driven by an agenda of ‘what I may get’ from this woman, be that momentary tittilation to the full nine yards of sexual contact…
    I think the proliferation of a materialistically driven existence in all ways, on all levels takes us away from our potential to be wayyyyyy more, so thanx for pointing the way back toward the reminder that we can be so much more, and really love & enjoy that so fully. Satisfaction/happiness/fulfillment/love after all is what will matter when we face the final days of our lives…

    Warmly, Sutara

  7. As a single gal by choice for quite some time (with trial runs here and there) I realized I was attracting the wrong type of men and took steps to ensure I was only letting in quality men I could see a future with. I stopped making excuses like “they are so sweet” or “so smart” or “so successful and good looking” (but I just didn’t get those butterflies) and literally wrote down my top 10 must haves in a relationship and do not stray from them. This keeps me on track and has been a huge success as far as I don’t date as much but when I choose to spend my time with someone, it’s quality time I enjoy whether we end up being a match in the long term or not, and leads to great friendships vs. anger and disrespect. My point is, if you focus on what you want and don’t let in anything less, you will actually start to be able to recognize those diamonds in the rough out there! I may have found one recently – only time will tell….. Stay true to who you are and surround yourself with quality friends and you will meet someone when you least expect! dont waste time being around anyone who is not a quality person and be respectful and truthful and you and your soulmate will meet someday. 🙂

  8. I agree with some on here. The latest generation of men & women are different. In general they seem more interested in connecting with their phones than real people who are right in front of them. Manners are different I’ve noticed. I was taught to give up my seat on public transit to the elderly, disabled or pregnant. I’ll even give up my seat to someone who has an abundance of bags. But I rarely see young adults these days doing that. There are always exceptions of which I am glad to witness. As for online dating, I actually used an online dating site to find my husband. We have been married now for almost 6 years & knew each other 3 years before getting married. So you get what you put into it. If you are the type of person just looking for a one-night stand, you can find that online. But you can also use it to meet people you wouldn’t normally meet in day-to-day life.

  9. Hi All
    As being a guy in his early twenties who has a good education, is in the midst of his blooming his career and his economic independence. There are always good and bad in most things around us, but it seem as humans we natural remember the bad and not the good hence why we listen to the news. You could imagine how boring that would be if ‘good’ was always talked. But men have been vilified by society for a decades as we put bad men’s actions on a podium thanks to the media.
    Most young people don’t have the role models they used to so ‘Chivalry is dead ‘is something that is quoted by many a people in society today, as men ‘are not men enough’, that is true because of the feminization of men. The roles of men and women have become blurred, what men used to bring to the table of economic success, courting for months on end and manner are not seen by women as the thing that in now, most guy believe this as they know the ‘Bad guy’ tactic works as all women love a challenge. Most of all the sexual revolution, women’s lib and shifting cultural attitudes have given us Seth Rogan, not John Wayne, as the ideal man. The comic loved not the serious guy, the the only role models modern men seem to have are the man-children of the movies and TV, as most people know that what you watch does affect you, a 30 second commercials can make you buy something you don’t need what can hours of media pour in to our heads?
    The traditional model of date, relationship and sex have been rearranged the last coming in first or second and relationships last. The think is women’s standards rise with her economic independence so have smaller pool to pick from and men’s stay pretty much the same. It doesn’t scary a man if you earn more than him, it is just that you look down at him and if you don’t believe me you just have to look at show’s where a millionaire is look for spouse. So men’s believe in equality and line are blurred on courtship you open the car door for her or pull the chair or hold the door, it’s kind of out of fashion and really seen now. We have a herd like behavior and copy the peers and star we look up to. Being single is cool not too long ago Clooney was too, what your thought is that long-term is for the old?
    Any comments to the contrary are welcome

  10. Question, James:

    If women are firm in their conviction that I as a guy can’t do anything right, why exactly should I fall over myself trying to prove them wrong?

    1. I am with you. Self-fulfilling prophecy. With all the man hating culture that has been filtered through, it is no doubt that we will follow new societical norms . They created it and now are complaining. Well I think the chivalrous man is on the decline and not like in reality where as the bad boy is, when the ‘lady’ is back i will wear the armor till then, treat as treated an equal but no better. What you say?

    2. I am with you. Self-fulfilling prophecy. With all the man hating culture that has been filtered through, it is no doubt that we will follow new societical norms . They created it and now are complaining. Well I think the chivalrous man is on the decline and not like in reality where as the bad boy is, when the ‘lady’ is back i will wear the armor till then, treat as treated an equal but no better. What you say?

      1. @Jack Roberts:

        You are so right. “Where have the gentlemen gone?” Out the door after the man-hating feminazis threw him out. “Nuff said.

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