Men In Tights: What’s Sex Got To Do With It?

The 80’s flashback brings leg warmers, tights and leggings back into fashion for women. In not one but two articles, tights and leggings are announced as making their way into men’s fashions.

It’s no different than the bicycle short craze, really. Oh, OK, it’s like they tugged on the bike shorts and brought them down past their knees — in length, not to bare their bottoms lol But others are freaking out about men wearing tights.

Men like Eugene, who blogs about his life in tights, welcome the trend but object to being called cross dressers. Instead they argue for the freedom to dress and they choose. It seems this sort of freedom is about making a fashion statement and going for comfort, and has less (if any) sexual connections.

Author Vernon Coleman, who has written the book Men In Dresses, also believes in the need to fight for fashion freedoms. Here he writes:

Women seem to regard the freedom they now enjoy as a natural right. But a mere century or so ago women did not have these rights. Women had to behave daintily; as ‘women’.

Today’s men are in a similar but contrasting ‘mirror image’ position to the one women were in a century ago; they have to behave firmly and aggressively – as ‘men’. A man still has to be tough if he wants to be regarded as a man. If a boy or man exhibits feminine qualities he will be described as ‘girlish’ or as a ‘sissy’ – and there is no doubt that the words are being used in a pejorative, condemnatory sense.

Many men, when faced with the fact that they cannot safely exhibit personal feelings and emotions which they know to be genuinely held, feel concerned that there must be something wrong with them. It is this dichotomy which often leads to alcoholism, drug addiction and mental illness.

I’m new to pondering much of this (I know you’re sick of hearing this, but I must state it for newbies), but in working on the CD book for Gracie, I am beginning to see patterns myself which indicate some of these gender fashion prison rules as speaking to a deeper cultural issue in which sex isn’t as much a part of the issue as many have told us.

While I won’t say cultural notions which prevent men from wearing dresses or tights lead to drinking problems or mental health issues of a clinical nature, I’m sure like women just decades ago who were not to wear pants they feel they’ll go crazy.

Those involved in the book Q & A now know where my research has been. *wink* New questions to hit you this week!

The image of Ballet Superman was found here.

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