In one of our readings (Coming to Terms by Gerschick) we focused on the intersection of masculinity and disability and this started me thinking how this reading can be applied to men I know in my own life. In the reading Gerschick outlined that most men approach their own disabilities in three ways one of which is called reformation. In this approach the hegemonic masculinity is still the main focus, but it is reformed so the man’s abilities can fit the masculine ideal. My friend’s father had to have some of his vertebrae fused several years ago and recently had to get more fused. At the same time he retired since the pain would not allow him to work. When he got back from the hospital he started to be very controlling of everyone in the house. He would also completely ignore people’s wishes such as taking the remote from people even though they were already watch something or drinking all of someone’s favorite drink even though he doesn’t even like the drink, all while saying that it’s his house so he can do whatever he wants. While these are all relatively mild things he also started taking money from his children’s wallets to pay for his cigars (both of his children are over 18). I think that this is his way of being in control and reaffirming that he is the “man of the house”/ still masculine. Luckily my friend is moving out soon so she doesn’t have to deal with this. This is obviously a very toxic example of how disability and masculinity can intersect, but in relation to the article his actions can be understood better.
I also wanted to add that if anyone has or knows anyone with emotionally abusive parents this has a lot of useful information: