" SpiritofSaltSpring:BC:Canada:GulfIslands:SaltSpring:Salt Spring:

March 11, 2011

Young, Male and Just a Shell of his Boyhood Self

Nothing makes me sadder in my day job than when I see young people - more often than not they are young guys - who are without a high school education, direction, support and positive role models as part of their lives.

I know how low self esteem can dramatically alter your reality and dampen your life energy making your future less than it might have been.

I've always wondered what the difference is between those people who take difficult backgrounds and use them as the reason to succeed, and those who can't seem to overcome what I have decided to call the intergenerational consciousness of scarcity, as if generations of low self-esteem get handed down, over and over, and become a genetic component of a family.

In my job, when I see a young guy who seems lost, I wish I could take him aside and speak to him really honestly about what I'm seeing, but I really can't do that because I'm not a counsellor so even though I believe I have the wisdom to do it, it's not really within my realm to go there. But then, I ask, whose realm is it within?  

If it takes a village to raise a child, what does it take when the child, now grown, has lost his way?

I hear from an employer about why this person didn't work out and (although I take everything with a grain of salt highly aware of who the messenger is), there is some information that an already superfragile ego might not be able to hear. So, instead of directly communicating that information, I just encourage the person to keep going or to seek support from Salt Spring Community Services when I know that their lack of self esteem is the wellspring of ongoing problems that, unless addressed, will haunt them for life.

There needs to be some sort of Big Brother support group for young adult males facilitated by men who aren't getting drunk every weekend, who aren't zoning out in a pot haze on a daily basis, and who can find a way to re-ignite the enthusiasm that existed before these young guys must have been made to feel that they didn't matter and in turn believed it and have been living it until they have actually almost, made it so.

If there was an ongoing support group that incorporated reflection on self esteem, and included spiritual and physical components, it could be a really significant focus of behaviour change.

I can even think of three men I know who would be perfect candidates to facilitate such a program.

Globe and Mail Article on Boys Falling Behind


Susan said...

That would be so great if you encouraged those three men to get together, then referred these guys to the group. I know a young guy who could really use this sort of program as well, lacking the types of role model that could really help.

Gayle Mavor said...

I know. There's a ton of people out there (guys and gals) who could benefit from this. In addition to everything else, I'm definitely going to approach one of them to see if he's interested in working on building a workshop.