The only things us men can't do is gestate, give birth, and breast feed the child, none of which is really our fault. Our 50% of responsibility can be made up of other things, and we are more than capable parents whose contribution is hugely important to family life.
So many of us go about our lives hiding behind masks of decaying stereotypes and redundant expectations. We pretend to be something we're not and live a lie due to the fear of being judged for being different.
Modern entertainment inundates us with choice of male identities. Most interestingly in comedy, we often root for the lovable loser, who inexplicably beats all the odds to win the affections of a woman through some shared experience or misadventure.
In elite sport, for many coaches and athletes it is now routine to have proper professional support, psychological and psychiatric, to get the best out of the mind; but in business and politics, where the work is much less physical and more evidently requiring of intellectual prowess, such support would be seen as a weakness, something not to admit to, and therefore not to have. This of course is how stigma develops, and with often catastrophic consequences.
Men are far less positive about getting formal emotional support for the issues outlined above. Worryingly, in response to these difficulties, men are more likely to take risks such as drinking, fighting or gambling, trying to show that they are 'manly' when faced with adversity. In fact, this is likely to make their situation worse. The masculine ideal suggests that men should never be depressed, anxious or unable to cope. It is vital that we overcome this and encourage men to access informal and formal support earlier on, before they reach crisis point. With all this in mind, where do we go from here?
I had believed to be a real man you needed to fight, be tough and intimidate others around you in to respecting you, it was the only way to assert your masculinity. It was only when I was around 13 I discovered my father was a Paratrooper who had seen active service and was also a decorated boxer.
A question that keeps running round and round in my mind is - how many other young men like myself are out there worried, not wanting to go to the doctors and unsure what they're checking for/how often do they need to check and what to do if they find something.
As it turns out International Men's Day focuses 'on men's and boy's health, improving gender relations, promoting gender equality, and highlighting positive male role models.' Which is fine. Count me in. What becomes alarming is what 'promoting gender equality' actually means in this context.
With so many male voices screaming their opinions into their keyboards, it's easy to see important issues get lost in the cacophony of nonsense. Serious issues become buried in self-important retorts and pissing contests. However, some issues are slowly managing to creep out into the daylight.
Our gender is merely a social construction: a set of ascribed characteristics, values, ideas, concerns and expectations that society links to our biological bodies. It is a construction that suits capitalism and consumerism - for those who don't know - just watch an episode of Mad Men.
Labelling events as 'crises' is politically convenient as it deflects responsibility. The absolution of responsibility exists as an absolution of blame and guilt. When considering masculinity (and drawing a parallel to austerity) the discourse of 'crisis' become the focal point of blame. It can be nobody's fault but that of the situation.
The whole idea of duty seems grounded in a societal and even religious notion of 'self sacrifice' and putting other people before ourselves. It seems a common message is that others needs are always more important than your own.
What does it mean to be a 'modern man' in a world that gets more politically correct with every opinion that's tweeted? Society is breaking down so many barriers when it comes to equality, so if we're moving in the right direction, why are we feeling more insecure?
Take in the experiences of all those who identify as women. Reflect on the ways that men perpetuate gender imbalances. If a female feminist friend labels you an ally or indeed a feminist, then I am not in any position to dispute that. I just won't be calling myself one any time soon.
Some men are put off before they even start. Because screening can reveal issues about future fertility, current health and the health of any existing, or future children, men are, quite rightly, advised to think very carefully before they decide to donate sperm.
Being a man in society, it feels like you mustn't talk about emotions. Well I say f*** that. You're a human. You can do what you want (if legally correct...) You don't need to conform to the cake-cutter world that says men build things and women cook things. Men eat steak and women have salad. You don't need to be sad and quiet. Be sad and be loud. Be unhappy and be in a doctors' clinic demanding professional help. I don't know how, but I demanded it. I found strength in myself and didn't let anyone tell me that "you'll probably just be fine, you know?" Find someone who will listen.