I remember, in my first psychotherapy grad course, when the professor talked about empathy’s champion, Carl Rogers and his person-centered therapy. He explained how connecting with the client built trust, thereby aiding therapy. I remembered thinking, “This is obvious. Why didn’t I think of it?”
I later realized, one of the reasons I didn’t think of it was that the act of a man caring and connecting to another was not encouraged. In fact, the opposite was encouraged. As teenagers, we were admired for our ability to be nonchalant, if not cruel. You often hear in a man’s humor, a cut that shows everyone, not only does he not care, but that he is smarter and quicker, because he said the wisecrack before anyone else.
by Owen Marcus
Via Edwin Rutsch