My struggle to define masculinity

Last week I had the privilege of being a guest on the Man Under Construction podcast. The conversation that took place reminded me of this post I wrote a year and a half ago. I thought this would be an appropriate time to share it again.
Also, here is a link to the Man Under Construction podcast.

John Eli Garay, MBA/MS, LAC

I held the doll in my hand and sniffed her hair. “Wow,” I thought to myself, “This smells great. I wonder what the other one smells like?” My little cousin had left her Strawberry-shortcake dolls unattended while she ran off to the other room. I had heard that they had fruity scents, so I thought I’d take a whiff while I had a chance. Just as I picked up one of the other dolls, a male family member stepped into the room and stopped me. “What are doing with the doll John?”, I heard him say. I remember getting ready to apologize for touching my cousin’s toys without permission. However, I was never given a chance to. “Dolls are for girls! You aren’t supposed to play with those!”, he shouted, “Are you a girl?”“No”, I answered, in a confused voice. “No!”, he said, “you are…

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Published by John Eli

I am a self-awareness coach (coach for humans), life strategist, blogger and speaker. I’ve spent over 21 years mentoring individuals in life skills, career transitions, relationships, and life recovery. My resume includes pastoral care, behavioral health, and higher education. From an early age, I realized that God created me to bring hope, healing and encouragement to others. I am currently living out my purpose by creating a space where people can rediscover and become all that they were created to be. I currently live in the beautiful state of Arizona with my wife, two dogs, and an antique piano whom I call, “Betty.”

6 thoughts on “My struggle to define masculinity

  1. Thank you for your vulnerability. I was tearing up reading that. I’m sure there are soooo many men who can relate to your story. Thank you for opening up, so that they too can see its possible for them. God bless you!!


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