During the early stages of embryotic development, the new life-form, without any inclination towards the sex it is to become, can be considered female. Only after sexual dimorphism do noticeable changes begin to distinguish males from females. From the advent of life in the womb, both sexes invariably develop nipples – clearly one gender makes better use of them than the other – but then what’s the reasoning behind male nippitalia anyways? After birth and throughout the rest of men’s lives, I believe those little growths on the breasts may suggest that males are more female than we tend to believe.

Despite the often-bombastic masculinity of some of the greatest male heroes throughout history, we tend to forget that behind every strong man, there is a strong woman. Alexander the Great‘s greatest ally was his mother Olympias of Epirus – it was foremost through her undying dedication to him that he grew a desire for conquest and greatness. Almost every U.S. president had the explicit and implicit support of the first lady (and I’m confident the roles will be reversed in the near future). Be it behind closed doors or exposed to the public eye, first ladies arguably have the greatest influence on a president’s decisions.  Even in the world of sports, Michael Phelps’ number one fan is his mother Debbie. During the 2008 Summer Olympics, the media placed great emphasis on this mother-son relationship.  One would be hard-driven to find a male without some female in his life for inspiration and guidance… in fact, it’d be nearly impossible to find such a case. Just as the nipples are ever-present on men, so is their internal tendency towards femininity. With this, men embrace compassion and service, just as a mother may have done for him during infancy. Striving to imagine a world of men without any sort of female characteristics may conjure mental images of lumberjacks, pirates, and ‘Chuck Norrises’ – not a fructuous one filled with world leaders, architects, and poets.

We live in a time when it is acceptable for men to manifest their duplicities to the world. Contrasted to only a few decades ago, it is encouraged that men express their innermost feelings and insecurities. No longer are they expected to be invulnerable and staunchly non-feminine in demeanor. When men manifest overtly metrosexual tendencies, they may attract some wary stares, but it is by no means blasphemous anymore. The definition of masculinity is constantly shifting to encompass more female characteristics. Rather than a complete shift on nature, this recharacterization process acts only to make more acceptable that which already lies beneath the rugged shell of the classically masculine man.

Despite appearances, men and women may be more closely related than imagined. In all general respects, the two sexes are equal and share full capabilities (okay, maybe men can’t bear children). Unlike women however, men can always look down and notice those titillating reminders of just how ever-present the opposite sex is inside of them. This is their purpose. This is their definition.