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A Generation of Male Commitmentphobes?

A recent Marie Claire trend piece takes on a certain species of man: the commitment-phobe. Lest you think this is but one unavoidable type of man, the writer suggests that there's a whole generation of 30-something men having early midlife crises:

These guys are part of a cause-less generation. They didn't grow up burning their draft cards or fighting the Nazis. They weren't part of the Civil Rights Movement, the Women's Movement, or any other movement. They were spoiled as kids and now they want to spoil themselves as adults. The old cliché was that a man would wake up one morning and realize that he wanted his youth back. The new version is that he never reached adulthood in the first place.

This type tends to be drawn to Type-A women who can bring home the bacon, fry it up in a pan, and never let him forget he's a man . . . but the writer wonders if part of what the male commitmentphobe is thinking is that this type of woman doesn't need him at all. (Hmmm. So it's her fault?)

I don't think many would argue for a return to old-school gender roles and the suffocation that went with them, but do you think there's a whole generation of young-ish men who don't know how to commit?

Image Source: Getty
Join The Conversation
justanerd1975 justanerd1975 7 years
I agree kcmosinki, your words say it best.
kcmosinki kcmosinki 7 years
I don't buy that argument hypnoticmix, men and women are able to make choices to commit. People don't stop being attracted to others the minute they commit, commitment is a choice; you choose to not flirt with the hot guy at the bar, you choose to nurture and take care of the relationship, you choose to not cheat on each other, lets stop using biology (ie. we're not genetically/ evolutionarily made for monogamy) as an excuse for selfishness.
Smacks83 Smacks83 7 years
I think the biggest trend is people today not willing to grow the hell up and be adults. Everyone is trying to stay 15 much longer than they should. Our generation was raised where everyone got a trophy, everyone was the most special person on the planet and you got things for doing nothing. Now that reality wants to b*tch-slap you in the face, people are hiding out so they don't have to face living life on their own two feet. I see this with both men and women (although in truth, my own experiences says its slightly more men than women) and i see it highest in Hispanic families just because many hispanic mothers rasied their daughters to work hard to please, and their sons to expect everything to be taken care of for them. I've seen it with alot of my relatives, and most kids I grew up with. If the woman WANTS to be the breadwinner, thats great! But that means the guy will be the homemaker, and not the guy who sits at home playing video games not doing anything because he still thinks he's 13 and his wife/gf is his mom making sure things get cleaned, food gets cooked and his life gets taken care of.
alexask alexask 7 years
i know at least one!
staple-salad staple-salad 7 years
My boyfriend doesn't seem too keen on rushing into marriage (which is kinda a blessing and a curse, lol). But he's most certainly an adult in every other sense. Both having to do with how he was raised, and how he grew up.
zeze zeze 7 years
Totally agree with Jazzy, we are raised this way it is way to hard to break out of it. The thing that gets me is, how do women perfect being pleasers more and more while men have not perfected being breadwinners...its become okay for men to not bring home the bacon, while its still no where near okay for the woman to not be a housewife (even when she has a full time busy job).
nyxmoxie nyxmoxie 7 years
I don't blame men for being afraid of commitment. A lot of women are afraid as well. Its unfair to single out men.
RoaringSilence RoaringSilence 7 years
Hah, the quote almost sounds like what Tyler Durden said.. "Man, I see in fight club the strongest and smartest men who've ever lived. I see all this potential, and I see squandering. God damn it, an entire generation pumping gas, waiting tables; slaves with white collars. Advertising has us chasing cars and clothes, working jobs we hate so we can buy shit we don't need. We're the middle children of history, man. No purpose or place. We have no Great War. No Great Depression. Our Great War's a spiritual war... our Great Depression is our lives. We've all been raised on television to believe that one day we'd all be millionaires, and movie gods, and rock stars. But we won't. And we're slowly learning that fact. And we're very, very pissed off." But anyway. I do think that men are more immature now. And so are women. The deification of youth, you see.
GMarie GMarie 7 years
This is my generation, and I dated some commitment-phobes JUST like this article describes. I married an "old fashioned" guy though, because I, myself am old fashioned. I think that while this may be a trend (an annoying one, to me), there are as many different kinds of men as there are different kinds of women. When you are looking for the right partner though, it feels awful to continue running into the wrong one. As women, I think that we have to be strong and refuse to stand for behavior that takes advantage of us. If you don't mind a selfish man, go for it. If your goal is commitment though, don't waste time trying to change a man who is phobic about it.
jazzytummy jazzytummy 7 years
I think in general men tend to be more selfish than women. They are raised from birth having their basic needs taken care of primarily by women, and women are raised to be "pleasers". Put that together, and you get men expecting to be taken care of....emotionally, sexually, physically, and nowadays financially, and women jumping through hoops to keep them happy. Think about all of the posts on this site of women wringing their hands about their relationships and overanalyzing every single text, phone call, comment, etc. I am not judging, as I have been there too many times myself, but frankly, it is exhausting. Now you all don't have to write in and say that I am over generalizing, I know not all men are like this, but many are, especially in that generation. It's almost as though we have made it so easy for them in so many ways to act like babies, we have enabled them and created this monsters. Until we expect more from men, we will not see any significant change soon, IMHO.
mix-tape mix-tape 7 years
I couldn't agree more with what this is basically saying. I've met lots of guy in my age group (younger than the mid thirties they discussed) who have a tendency to be wishy washy in all areas of commitment. I'm not talking about just relationship commitment either (though God knows I've experienced that with a recent ex), but all forms of commitment. Most guys my age can't hold down even a part time job for more than a couple months, commit to doing an activity/hobby for more than a week, let alone decide to stay in a relationship for the long haul. AND when they are in a relationship they expect the woman to do all of the work. I'm definitely a Type A woman and apparently all I've dated are these "commitophobes." BLAH!
notinthemood notinthemood 7 years
I'm a traditionalist. As far as monogamy goes, I think there's a reason human babies take the longest to mature than any other mammal, and require the most work from the parents. And I think men are energy conservationists by nature. If you require little, they will get used to doing the minimum to get by. I had an ex like that... long story short, he's an ex. And I believe there's a good reason women are so good at multitasking... doing housework and raising children is difficult to do, especially for those who focus on one task at a time.
briglass briglass 7 years
i didn't say a home maker is a gold digger. anyway, i don't see a problem with females taking breadwinner roles. i think it is cool. and i was being lighthearted by thinking about the possibility that a boy could be raised with the goal to marry and create a family as opposed to seeking higher education and a career, similar to the way many girls were (and some still are) raised
hypnoticmix hypnoticmix 7 years
True I do agree that many men have an issue with commitment. IMO it has a lot to do with nature. Monogamy is not natural it is a conscious commitment which has nothing to do with nature IMO and that's fine I don't have a problem with monogamy but I don't think a man has any business making that commitment if he doesn't truly feel this is it. Society needs to stop grooming and pressuring every one to get married and just let people be. It's all that pressure and prodding that's part of the problem IMO. There are also other forms of commitment that work quite well for couples straight and gay and that is to play together. I know a few couples who love each other just as much as any monogamous couple but just happen to play together. I believe one popular term is swingers.
justanerd1975 justanerd1975 7 years
a home maker is a gold digger? hmmm, probably reading too much into this.... I think that when we raise boys we need to keep in the front of our minds that they will be future husbands, fathers and family leaders in their life.
briglass briglass 7 years
i support this trend. i hope that if i have a son i can be comfortable grooming him to be none but a gold digging homemaker!
GlowingMoon GlowingMoon 7 years
Hmmm, my husband is in this age group, and he's not that way. He's content being married and he brings home the bacon. This article suggest he's in the minority?? Incidentally, I'm NOT the said Type-A woman. I'm a strong Type B woman.
karlotta karlotta 7 years
oh my god, yes, brilliant! this is exactly what I think too!
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