In “Bros Before Hos”: The Guy Code, Michael Kimmel discusses the ways that today’s society expects guys (males between the ages of 16 and 26) to behave. He spends a lot of time on “Guy Code,” a list of values that all men are supposed to have that have been summarized by Robert Brannon, a social psychologist of the 1970s. The first rule is “No Sissy Stuff,” meaning that guys shouldn’t show their feelings, and if they do it is considered a sign of weakness. The second is “Be a Big Wheel,” an idea that masculinity is measured by wealth and power. The third, “Be a Sturdy Oak,” says that guys should be reliable in times of crisis. And the last, “Give ‘em Hell,” implies that men should always take risks and show aggression.
Kimmel also mentions the “Gender Police” in Bros Before Hos”: The Guy Code. The Gender Police are a guy’s peers. They are people who are always watching and judging to see if a guy does anything to damage his manhood. However, its not just men who are judging other men on their masculinity, many women judge men based on the values of Guy Code as well. While some women actually do look for a sensitive guy who is not afraid to share his feelings and is not aggressive, many women search for “Manly Men.” “Manly Men” are the type of guys that little girls are made to desire from the time they watch their first Disney movie. They’re strong, fighting off dragons, dependable, always arriving just in time, and always have a good (and usually very muscular) shoulder for their princess to cry on. Women looking for “Manly Men” want someone who will take charge and provide for them.
While Guy Code may have been meant as a guideline to make men stronger, it really can turn out to be to be self destructive in the end. Bottling up feelings can lead to depression or serious anger issues, and always trying to be a “Sturdy Oak” can get very tiresome and feel very pressuring. However hard it may be, it really is no wonder why men feel so pressured to live up to Guy Code when their being bombarded with expectations by women as well as other men.