Image: The Guardian

'I Just Can't': Awkward Yet Intimate Moment Men Need To Accept

This one hits hard...

Life is full of potentially intimate moments. Thanks to various cultural hangups, we often like to wave at them as they pass by.

Case in point? Saying goodnight to a mate before you go to sleep, for many of us, feels awkward.

This is something you may not spend your nights worrying about, but when you stop to think about it, probably resonates.

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Enter: Oops the Podcast, and its two hosts, Francis Ellis and Giulio Gallarotti. Not ones to leave any social quirk unturned, the two recently broke down the aforementioned icky moment.

 

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A post shared by Francis Ellis (@francisccellis)

In an Instagram video entitled, “Guys hate saying goodnight to their bros,” Francis recently posted a snippet of their latest podcast to Instagram.

“I was splitting a hotel room with my friend,” Francis says in the video. “Here’s my question – do you say ‘goodnight’ when you’re splitting a hotel room with another guy?”

“The answer is yes,” Giulio replies. “But there are different ways to do [it]. It’s funny… when I was in Alaska with our friend Andy, before we’d go to bed we’d say goodnight and, like, laugh because of how insane it is to say goodnight.”

“It’s insane,” Francis confirms.

“He’d be like, ‘night’ and then we’d just start fucking laughing our asses off.”

“That’s the only way,” Francis asserts.

“You guys do that?” Giulio then asks.

“No, all of a sudden the conversation ended and we would fall asleep,” Francis admits.

“Women,” he then wagers, “I’m sure have no problem saying ‘goodnight’ to each other. It’s such a sweet normal thing right?”

“Like ‘alright, good night, see you tomorrow, sleep well.'”

“For a guy to say that to another guy, even though they’re not sleeping in the same bed, is way too intimate.”

“We can’t handle it.”

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Giulio then linked it to “being at a party and talk[ing] to somebody and like you have nowhere to go when the conversation stops and you just like awkwardly shift 25 degrees.”

“And you’re like, ‘yeah man I guess I’m going to make something up to do now so that we don’t have to stand here.'”

“I’m going to get another drink.”

“Going to the bathroom is always my call,” Francis says.

“Just go to the bathroom 80 times for no reason.”

Comments left beneath the video include: “yes” and “facts.”

Though some dudes said it was not an issue for them (“See ya in the morning…simple as that 🤷‍♂️”) there was an abundance of guys agreeing with the post and tagging their mates, suggesting they related to the sentiment.

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Finally, one commenter suggested there was actually a set of unwritten rules around saying goodnight to a mate.

“Pillow talk with the Bros is the best. And you end it with a snore and a goodnight, but never 2 goodnight.”

Though this example might seem frivolous, it comes in a context where men are increasingly waking up to the constraints placed upon them by traditional expectations.

Though viking principles serve us well in some domains, as psychologist Dr Lars Madsen has told DMARGE on many occasions, it is a mistake to think toughness or stoicism will work for every aspect of your life.

“Stoicism is not helpful really, the whole harden up, suck it up kind of mentality,” Dr Madsen told us.

Even though, yes, “If you want to pursue any kind of goal in your life… We need to be able to be gritty to achieve those things that mean so much to us, and gritty means being able to stick it out and get through the challenging times.”

“However, [when this is] a blanket approach to [everything in] your life… then that’s when it becomes problematic. That’s when it’s toxic.”

“Getting gritty when you need to put in that last 2km because it means so much to you is great, it’s important, we need to be able to do that. But if we apply that harden up, don’t feel your feelings, don’t feel vulnerable, don’t feel any kind of self-doubt across the board all the time, then it’s dysfunctional and doesn’t work.”

“It’s not me saying that because you’d be a nicer person if you just talked about your feelings… People end up having all kinds of physical and medical conditions when they ignore that kind of stuff, that’s well documented within scientific literature. People end up burning out and ultimately having mental health problems, anxiety, unravelling because they adopt that kind of robotic, ‘I have no feelings and I don’t need to pay attention to my feelings’ approach.”

“I would say that historically, men have been encumbered by expectations that probably don’t match reality. In terms of them being able to cope with things, be unbothered by things, be unemotional, be stoic.”

In other words: though independence, persistence – and even pig-headedness – may be great tools in your kit for helping you run a hundred metres faster, or get that promotion at work, carry the same stoic attitude into other areas of your life (mental health, relationships etc.) and it could do more harm than good.

There’s your Friday morning real talk, hot off the press.

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