I bloody love the F word. No, not that that one, you filthy buggers – feminist. I’m happy to bang on about being a FEMINIST and how everything is offending my FEMINIST principles at the top of my voice, no matter how inappropriate and disinterested the audience.
In fact, I was shouting this at great length and volume on Saturday night when I was being coerced into going into a pub filled with topless ladies (but that’s a whole other post).
I’ve never had an issue with being called a feminist, because I know what the phrase means to be personally. I also know what it doesn’t mean – that I hate men.
I don’t think all men are bastards, or that each and every man I ever meet is subconsciously trying to suppress me with the sheer weight of his misogyny and ego (when I was younger, I thought ego was another word for penis so…tee hee!).
Yes, some men are little shits, but so are some women, and I sometimes feel that we (I) spend so much time fixating on all the bad things (some) men do, we forget about all the good things.
So lets remedy that. Send me a picture of yourself with a good man, explaining why they’re so great and we’ll do a gallery of our favourites – email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Apropos of absolutely nothing at all, here are some of the song title headlines I considered for this feature:
Lets hear it for the boyA good man these days is hard to find Boys, boys, boys Where have all the good men gone?
That’s my afternoon playlist sorted, then…
But first – FIRST – some of your favourite xoJane UK writers are going to tell you about the good men they know. Prepare to get a bit emotional - even I did, and my heart is, medically speaking, 84% stone.
DanielleThis is my brother Mike. We are super close and have a fantastic bond, which as you can see from this pic seems to have been passed on to my offspring.
My brother is my daughter's favorite person in the world. He can do no wrong, he is absolutely her idol. If the husband and I died tomorrow, i'd leave Georgie to my brother, because I know they'd be the making of each other.
Phoebe It would be insufferably smug to talk about Nick aka Mr Phoebe in the context of our relationship, so instead I will extoll his virtues as a strident feminist and a fantastic pseudo-bro to my best friends.
I know he’ll always be there for them, whether it’s with practical assistance or emotional support and it’s the care that he shows to my loved ones that makes him a Very Good Man Indeed.
MariYes, my 5 year old brother is sometimes a big ol' grump. But truth be told, he is the most considerate little man I have ever met.
I slept in his bed one Christmas morning, and our 8-year-old sister ran screaming down the stairs excited for presents. As I pretended to be asleep, (hey, it was 6am, and we had stayed up all night watching a trilogy of Home Alones), I noticed his eye peeking out at me.
Groggily, I wondered why he didn't run downstairs and follow suit. Why was this little boy just lying here beside me on Christmas morning when there were presents to be unwrapped? After 5 minutes of pondering, I decided to open my eyes.
He looked at me, relieved and excited, and whispered, 'I didn't want to wake you but, but sis, is it okay if I go downstairs?'
He also wipes toilet seats when he thinks no one is looking.
NikkiThis is Phelim, my GBF. For a while there a year or so back, I was surprised he didn't take to visiting me in a wetsuit, I cried so much on his shoulder. I'd call in hysterics and there he was.
He gives the BEST hugs. He's an amazing listener, a fiercely protective friend and he makes really great sloe gin.
I love that we can make each other collapse into hysterics by doing impressions of George Michael as a kind of gossipy East End housewife, singing Born This Way to the tune of Express Yourself, oh - and that we absolutely 100% don't have the same taste in men.
Phelim, I love you to bits. X
Oh, and I know he'll cry at this. The big, gorgeous softie...
RebeccaMy dad stayed at home and brought myself, my brother and sister up while my mum went out to work.
It was a pragmatic decision based on the fact that my mother probably had more earning potential in the long run, but it was definitely not THE DONE THING in the early ‘80s.
It also meant my mum was able to put the time and energy required into the highly successful career she’s cultivated over the last 30 years.
And once he’d made sure we were all brought up good and proper, dad decided to have a career of his own - working with teenagers and young adults with learning difficulties, something he’s totally fantastic at.
He’s also one of the funniest, and brightest people I know, does a frighteningly good Chaz and Dave impression when the mood takes him, and he will inexplicably pose for photos with xoJane merchandise when asked, even if he doesn’t really know why.
Plus, babies and old people LOVE him.
HattieThis is my best friend Alex (everyone used to joke that we were having an affair, so we played up to it).
He's the best because he is hands-down the most socially awkward person I know (or you are ever likely to meet ever)- he's really quiet and unsuspecting but occasionally he'll make a joke that causes you to do a double take.
A maths nerd and computer geek, we have literally nothing in common except thinking each other is a super mega turbo person.
Our relationship proves that When Harry Met Sally is wrong - men and women can just be friends (although he did once tell me that he would "totally do me"- completely devoid of intention though).
We rarely get to hang out but we email all the time and most importantly he's single-handedly informing all of Sheffield about the awesomeness of xoJane.
SiamThis is me and my dad Steven, aka. Stevie G (his recently self-appointed nickname).
I know I'm a little biased, but if there was a best dad Olympics I wouldn't hesitate to enter him.
Stevie G is a bit of a legend. He lives as the lone male voice with his wife (Mummy G), three 20-something year old daughters, and female cat; as you can imagine Stevie G's life is anything but chilled.
Yet he is endlessly patient, loving, caring, always tries to see the best in people, and is without a doubt the single most hard working person I have ever met.
What's more he has a picture of a topless Brad Pitt as his facebook profile pic. See? Ledge. The other men in my life have a lot to live up to.
Alisande This is a photo of my Grandad Eamonn and I on his birthday in 2007. As well as being hilariously funny and giving wonderful advice, he was a an all-round brilliant man.
He met my grandmother when she was a 27 year old widow struggling to bring up four kids under the age of six, married her and never treated those children any differently from the two they went on to have.
You don't get much of that anymore.
Veronica My boyfriend has got a lot of flak over the two years we’ve been together. From my friends, from me, sometimes on here!
But he is, at heart, a good man. Not perfect, no. He has after all, left me twice after massive man freak-outs - but being with me isn’t easy. Because it’s not just me, there’s Gabe, my four-year-old son, who was a demanding two-year-old when Jon and I met.
My friends have raged and called him every name under the sun following our break-ups but what they don’t realise is that having a relationship with me is HARD.
My friends are amazing but none of them have children and none of them can understand what having a relationship while you have a child is like - that’s not their fault it’s just a reality.
They tell me that Gabe and I are a package and that should be seen as a good thing. And while I agree that having a child is a wonderful privilege that doesn’t stop it being bloody hard work. Emotionally and physically.
So yes they can rage at him hurting me but none of them have been there on the nights I just couldn’t take hearing ‘mum’ one more time, or helped me in the middle of the night when Gabe got up for the fifth time for no apparent reason other than to test my ability to survive on four hours sleep per night.
Our nights out drinking cocktails may have become rarer for me but have not been infringed upon by said small child who is safe at home with a babysitter, but Jon and I have never had the opportunity to do the things normal couples do in a relationship.
We haven’t spent all weekend in bed naked, in between drinking and eating copious amounts of food. Or spontaneously met up after work for dinner and drinks (spontaneity is something you can wave goodbye to with a child in tow).
Gabe has always had to come first and it takes a certain kind of man to accept that he comes second for 99% of the time. But he’s still here. Yes, there have been tough times and I don’t think for one moment they’re all done.
But whatever happens in the future I hope he knows that I think he is ten times the man he thinks he is and being with him as a couple or as a family complete with ready-made son, fills my little heart with joy.
Becky Cope[who has taken my shout out for brothers/husbands/dads/brothers/friends/charismatic male dogs literally --Rebecca]
My dog Max is a great guy. Not only does he never forget to call me (he's always on the blower) he also never disses what I'm wearing, or checks out other girls.
Max is great at hugs, and isn't shy with his affection or his feelings (especially if those feelings involve hunger). THANK YOU MAX FOR RESTORING MY FAITH IN THE MALE OF THE SPECIES.
Send us your good men (not actually....well ok, if you insisit) to email@example.com.