The Other Glass Ceiling

We have long heard the definition of the ‘Glass Ceiling’ aired by feminists. There is definitely a glass ceiling aimed at men around children but what would one call a collective of men seeking to destroy this world view? Manism just doesn’t sound right.

Before I became a father, if somebody had told me that society viewed fathers as sex fiends, I very much doubt that I would have believed them and would have thought they were either paranoid or exaggerating. I became Dad in April, 1997 and it was when my daughter became old enough to start exploring playgrounds independently as a toddler, I personally found that this view of men is true.

I was living on the Redcliffe Peninsula when my then only child aged 2 years old loved exploring the Council playgrounds. I would sit back and observe her, look at the ocean, read a book or whatever as she played. I soon recognised a pattern. Every time I took my daughter to a park alone and there were middle aged woman(my daughter attracted young women to strike up conversations with me) about, they would approach my daughter and ask her questions like; “Are you alright…do you need us to call the Police…you don’t have to say you’re with him if you’re not…”. I am confident in my belief that these very same women who viewed all males are sex offenders against children, would be the first to savage Dads for not having anything to do with their children.

In 2000, I studied Cert III in Community Services(Yth Wk) at TAFE. I was also volunteering at a local high school as a tutor for students behind in their reading levels. No male was ever left alone with a student yet women were allowed to be left alone with their students. Once again, I felt as if I was made to feel I was about to grab a child and have my wicked way with them.

In 2001, I enrolled at University to study, B.Human Services(Yth Wk).  I also had completed my first stint as a paid Santa at a shopping centre and I loved it. I was looking forward to my second stint as a Santa which I enjoyed just as much. I never completed the first year though. Despite the course offered at the University being useless and full of nothing but Marxist drivel for which I was going to seek to change my choice of University, I quit for personal reasons.

It was during my first year and only year of study at University that I found that people often were approving that I was studying to improve my lot. I had to do something as I could no longer perform physical labour intensive employment. All such approval kept disappearing when I shared what I was studying. Every single frown followed by accusations of having sinister intentions for the only reason a male would want to work with children of any age, is for perverted reasons.

So I took it upon myself to ask women studying the same discourse as I to see what they thought of this mindset. All expectations of sympathy was quickly demolished as about two thirds admitted to distrusting all men who work with children. That was the final nail in the coffin for me. Were I find myself falsely accused or just facing words of innuendo, what chance would I have of proving innocence?

Then on cue, a Queensland high school teacher, a male, was accused of some kind of sexual offence against a high school girl. He was suspended pending the result. This girl who made the accusation admitted to making up the accusation for revenge against her teacher. The school and the Education Department accepted him back but the parents, mothers mostly, objected to him returning as they preferred to believe that the girl was bullied out of the accusation. So he was given a transfer but the parents sniffed out he was coming to their children’s school and they also objected with threats of withdrawing the attendance of their children. This man left teaching, his career destroyed by a spoilt brat and by male distrusting parents. Luckily, this man did not commit suicide. Thankfully.

Prof. Charles Areni

(December, 2012) Enter, Professor Charles Areni. Professor of Marketing at the University of Sydney who as a single parenting father, sought to purchase underwear for his three year old daughter, Jacqueline, only be fronted by a Security Officer wanting to know why he was in the children’s section. Story as told in the Sydney newspaper, Sydney Morning Herald on Dec 26, 2012.

Charles Areni, along with fellow scholar in behavioural sciences Stephen Holden, are writing a book together based on their experiences as sole parents, as fathers. They also have a blog page, The Other Glass Ceiling which is the title of the book they are writing.

So what does it take to fix this ill view of single fathers and men in general?

I believe that it will take leadership. It will take pressure on politicians to show some guts to end this socially divisive mess. Just look at Government Department websites and you find words of advice telling parents that children must never be left alone to play. Never left outside alone. I am surprised they haven’t declared it dangerous for a child to breathe. This is something we have to stop.

The media is another major draw back, ever keen to impress on every person’s mind that there is a child molester on every street corner. And sadly, I have personally found myself amongst people who agree with labeling all men as child molesters if that’s what it takes to protect children but in reality, it does not protect children, it harms them and it harms society as a whole as everybody has come to view every male as suspicious.

To protect children, society must allow men to be around children without everyone having to view them as perverted. Children need both gender role models in their lives be it as parent, cousin, teacher or whatever. If we are going to continue to push all men as perverts, then I move that we make it illegal for men to work as Politicians, Police Officers, Fire & Rescue Officers, Paramedics, Doctors, Teachers, Bus Drivers, Nurses, the list goes on indefinitely.

5 Responses so far »

  1. 1

    Velody said,

    Unfortunately you are so correct. When my oldest was born I spent some time on Mommy forums and heard similar things. Some were against any male teachers for anything younger than middle school. I heard mothers say they wouldn’t let any man but the child’s father watch them.

    My husband is the stay at home parent in our house. Thankfully he hadn’t seem to run into this yet but honestly I’m a bit surprised by that. He’s run into shock more because people here expect very little of fathers it seems. So one being active in their children’s lives surprises them.

    • 2

      Jim said,

      I would like to say that your just being paranoid, but I am a father of four children aged from 3 – 13 and I got the same kind of reaction when I used to drop my 3 year old daughter at nursery. I have commented in the past about the looks I get when I wait for my wife out side her place of employment so we can go shopping when she finishes. My wife is a lunch time supervisor at a primary school.

      It seems its not just an anti male or all men are perv`s thing in your country, I live in the UK.

  2. 3

    ssholden said,

    I have so many stories like this… being asked to move when on Virgin & QANTAS when they decided to seat an unaccompanied minor next to me (on one occasion, they replaced me with a tatooed, pierced gothic girl who watched an R-rated movie – hmmm!), being assailed by women in public places questioning my approach to parenting, being confronted with allegations of child abuse, being ignored when I tried to get an au pair (until they had a male au pair that they wanted to place!!!), etc. Read about this and more at http://www.theotherglassceiling.com as suggested within this blog.

  3. 5

    Kieran said,

    At last!!! Women & men arn’t as different as people. Great to hear the discussions been started. Cheers


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