Frank Pittman quotes

  • Bad marriages don't cause infidelity; infidelity causes bad marriages.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Marriage #Infidelity #Causes

  • Love is not something people feel, but something people try to express no matter how they feel.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Marriage #Love Is #People

  • The secret to having a good marriage is to understand that marriage must be total, it must be permanent, and it must be equal.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Marriage #Secret #Good Marriage

  • Fidelity is the single most important element in solidly enduring marriages.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Marriage #Important #Elements

  • The more things we can laugh about, the more alive we become: The more things we can laugh about together, the more connected we become.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Marriage #Laughing #Together

  • Marriage, like a submarine, is only safe if you get all the way inside.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Marriage #Submarines #Safe

  • The guys who fear becoming fathers don't understand that fathering is not something perfect men do, but something that perfects the man. The end product of child-raising is not the child but the parent.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Children #Father #Parenting

  • Marriage isn't supposed to make you happy - it's supposed to make you married.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Marriage #Married #Make You Happy

  • Fathering makes a man, whatever his standing in the eyes of the world, feel strong and good and important, just as he makes his child feel loved and valued.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Strength #Strong #Children

  • Happy people learn that happiness, like sweat, is a by-product of activity.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Sweat #People #Happy People

  • . . . in the end, there is nothing a man can do that a woman can't, except be a father.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Marriage #Father #Men

  • Each generation's job is to question what parents accept on faith, to explore possibilities, and adapt the last generation's system of values for a new age.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Jobs #Parent #Age

  • Family love can be a bore, but only when you are hearing it, never when you are relating it to the ones who will be carrying it out for you. A family without a storyteller or two has no way to make sense out of their past and no way to get a sense of themselves.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Family #Past #Two

  • A real man doesn't have to run from his mother, and may even have to face the reality that no great deed is going to be great enough for him to ransom himself completely, and he may always be in his mother's debt. If he understands that . . . he won't have to feel guilty, and he won't have to please her completely. He can go ahead and be nice to her and let her be part of his life.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Running #Mother #Nice

  • Nothing is quite so horrifying and paralyzing as to win the Oedipal struggle and to be awarded your mother as the prize.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Mother #Struggle #Winning

  • Parents have to get over the idea that their children belong just to them; children are a family affair.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Family #Children #Parent

  • Masculinity varies from time to time and place to place. But it doesn't exist just in the mind of a single guy: it is shared withthe other guys. It is a code of conduct that requires men to maintain masculine postures and attitudes (however they are defined) at all times and in all places. Masculinity includes the symbols, uniforms, chants, and plays that make this the boys' team rather than the girls' team.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Attitude #Team #Men

  • All those tough guys who want to scare the world into seeing them as men . . . who don't know how to be a man with a woman, only abrute or a boy, who fill up the divorce courts; all those corporate raiders and rain-forest burners and war starters who want more in hopes that will make them feel better; . . . are suffering from Father Hunger. They go through their puberty rituals day after day for a lifetime, waiting for a father to anoint them and say "Attaboy," to treat them as good enough to be considered a man.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Father #War #Divorce

  • The mother must teach her son how to respect and follow the rules. She must teach him how to compete successfully with the other boys. And she must teach him how to find a woman to take care of him and finish the job she began of training him how to live in a family. But no matter how good a job a woman does in teaching a boy how to be a man, he knows that she is not the real thing, and so he tends to exaggerate the differences between men and women that she embodies.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Mother #Real #Teaching

  • However patriarchal the world, at home the child knows that his mother is the source of all power. The hand that rocks the cradlerules his world. . . . The son never forgets that he owes his life to his mother, not just the creation of it but the maintenance of it, and that he owes her a debt he cannot conceivably repay, but which she may call in at any time.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Mother #Children #Home

  • Mothers who are strong people, who can pursue a life of their own when it is time to let their children go, empower their childrenof either gender to feel free and whole. But weak women, women who feel and act like victims of something or other, may make their children feel responsible for taking care of them, and they can carry their children down with them.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Mother #Strong #Children

  • Every boy was supposed to come into the world equipped with a father whose prime function was to be our father and show us how tobe men. He can escape us, but we can never escape him. Present or absent, dead or alive, real or imagined, our father is the main man in our masculinity.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Father #Real #Boys

  • Family life in Western society since the time of the Old Testament has been a struggle to maintain patriarchy, male domination, and double standards in the face of a natural drift towards monogamous bonding. Young men have been called upon to prove their masculinity by their willingness to die in warfare, and young women have been called upon to prove their femininity by their willingness to die for their man. Women have been asked to appear small, dumb, and helpless so men would feel big and strong, brave, and clever. It's been a trick.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Strong #Clever #Struggle

  • Once women invented farming, and began to keep and breed animals, they discovered the crucial function of the rooster and the henhouse. Fathers suddenly gained a function, and could do what only women had been able to do for all those millions of years--point at a child and say, "That is my son," "That is my daughter." Patriarchy quickly followed, beginning about five thousand years ago; a very short time in the development of our species, but covering all of recorded history.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Daughter #Children #Father

  • To insult a friend implies that you respect his masculinity enough to know he can take it without acting like a crybaby. The swapping of insults, like the fighting between brothers, becomes the seal of the male bonding.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Brother #Fighting #Acting

  • In colonial America, the father was the primary parent. . . . Over the past two hundred years, each generation of fathers has hadless authority than the last. . . . Masculinity ceased to be defined in terms of domestic involvement, skills at fathering and husbanding, but began to be defined in terms of making money. Men had to leave home to work. They stopped doing all the things they used to do.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Father #Home #Men

  • The men who are messing up their lives, their families, and their world in their quest to feel man enough are not exercising truemasculinity, but a grotesque exaggeration of what they think a man is. When we see men overdoing their masculinity, we can assume that they haven't been raised by men, that they have taken cultural stereotypes literally, and that they are scared they aren't being manly enough.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Taken #Exercise #Men

  • In time, after a dozen years of centering their lives around the games boys play with one another, the boys' bodies change and that changes everything else. But the memories are not erased of that safest time in the lives of men, when their prime concern was playing games with guys who just wanted to be their friendly competitors. Life never again gets so simple.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Memories #Boys #Men

  • It's not that we have too much mother, but too little father. We can't forgive our mothers for taking the place of our fathers until we are ready to see that the point of a man's life is to be a father and a mentor, and we can't do that because we don't know how we would be a father or a mentor when we never had one.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Mother #Father #Forgiving

  • We perversely see mother love as the problem--when it is all we have to sustain us--rather than blaming the fathers who have run out on our mothers and on us. We seem willing to forgive fathers for loving too little even as we still shrink in terror from mothers who love too much.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Mother #Running #Father

  • Most of us have felt barriers between ourselves and our fathers and had thought that going it alone was part of what it meant to be a man. We tried to get close to our children when we became fathers, and yet the business of practicing masculinity kept getting in the way. We men have begun to talk about that.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Children #Father #Men

  • At the heart of the matter of masculine excess is a great longing for the love and approval of a father, a man who can tell another man that his masculinity is splendid enough and he can now relax.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Father #Heart #Men

  • What we men share is the experience of having been raised by women in a culture that stopped our fathers from being close enough to teach us how to be men, in a world in which men were discouraged from talking about our masculinity and questioning its roots and its mystique, in a world that glorified masculinity and gave us impossibly unachievable myths of masculine heroics, but no domestic models to teach us how to do it.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Father #Men #World

  • As a guy develops and practices his masculinity, he is accompanied by an invisible male chorus of all the other guys, who hiss orcheer as he attempts to approximate the masculine ideal, who push him to sacrifice more of his humanity for the sake of his masculinity, and who ridicule him when he holds back. The chorus is made up of all the guy's comrades and rivals, his buddies and bosses, his male ancestors and his male cultural heroes--and above all, his father, who may have been a real person in his life, or may have existed only as the myth of the man who got away.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Father #Real #Sacrifice

  • Early on, girls begin to menstruate, which is dramatic but not obvious to their playmates. They grow taller and rounder, but underneath their makeup they are still recognizably themselves. For boys it is far more disorienting. Puberty comes later, sometimes much later, and its delay is humiliating. While the tall round girls are getting themselves up like grown women, the prepubertal boys, with their featureless, hairless bodies, are just dirty little kids who could pass for the children of the hypermature girls.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Girl #Children #Dirty

  • I'm not suggesting that all men are beautiful, vulnerable boys, but we all started out that way. What happened to us? How did we become monsters of feminist nightmares? The answer, of course, is that we underwent a careful and deliberate process of gender training, sometimes brutal, always dehumanizing, cutting away large chunks of ourselves. Little girls went through something similarly crippling. If the gender training was successful, we each ended up being half a person.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Beautiful #Girl #Cutting

  • At the heart of male bonding is this experience of boys in early puberty: they know they must break free from their mothers and the civilized world of women, but they are not ready yet for the world of men, so they are only at home with other boys, equally outcast, equally frightened, and equally involved in posturing what they believe to be manhood.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Mother #Believe #Home

  • We long for our father. We wear his clothes, and actually try to fill his shoes. . . . We hang on to him, begging him to teach ushow to do whatever is masculine, to throw balls or be in the woods or go see where he works. . . . We want our fathers to protect us from coming too completely under the control of our mothers. . . . We want to be seen with Dad, hanging out with men and doing men things.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Mother #Dad #Father

  • Our father has an even more important function than modeling manhood for us. He is also the authority to let us relax the requirements of the masculine model: if our father accepts us, then that declares us masculine enough to join the company of men. We, in effect, have our diploma in masculinity and can go on to develop other skills.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Father #Men #Relax

  • We become male automatically because of the Y chromosome and the little magic peanut, but if we are to become men we need the helpof other men--we need our fathers to model for us and then to anoint us, we need our buddies to share the coming-of-age rituals with us and to let us join the team of men, and we need myths of heroes to inspire us and to show us the way.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Father #Team #Hero

  • The great passion in a man's life may not be for women or men or wealth or toys or fame, or even for his children, but for his masculinity, and at any point in his life he may be tempted to throw over the things for which he regularly lays down his life for the sake of that masculinity. He may keep this passion secret from women, and he may even deny it to himself, but the other boys know it about themselves and the wiser ones know it about the rest of us as well.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Children #Passion #Boys

  • In considering the ledger equal, understand the greatest gift you have given your parents is the opportunity to raise you. The things a child gets from parents can't compare to the things a parent gets from raising a child. Only by experiencing this can you understand the degree to which children give meaning to parents' lives.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Children #Opportunity #Giving

  • Becoming Father the Nurturer rather than just Father the Provider enables a man to fully feel and express his humanity and his masculinity. Fathering is the most masculine thing a man can do.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Father #Men #Humanity

  • Fathers who compete hard with their kids are monstrous. The father, for a throw-away victory, is sacrificing the very heart of hischild's sense of being good enough. He may believe he is making his son tough, as he was made tough by a similarly contending father, but he is only making his child desperate and mean like himself. Fathers must let their sons (and daughters) have their victories.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Daughter #Children #Father

  • Our ability to fall in love requires enough comfort with our masculinity to join it with someone's femininity and feel enhanced. .. . If our mother made us feel secure and proud in our masculinity, then we want to find that again in our wife. If we are really comfortable with our mother, we can even marry a woman who is a friend rather than an adversary, and form a true partnership.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Mother #Falling In Love #Fall

  • Parents offer an open womb. More than anyone else in your life, mothers, and sometimes fathers, can kiss it, and make it well whentheir grown children need to regress and repair. More than anyone else in your life, mothers, and sometimes fathers, can catch you when you start to fall. When you are in disgrace, defeat, and despair, home may be the safest place to hide.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Mother #Children #Father

  • When the masculine mystique is pulling boys and men out into the world to growl manly noises at one another, the only power with astronger pull on the male psyche is maternally induced guilt. The guilt is quite necessary for our moral development, but it is often uncomfortable.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Boys #Men #Guilt

  • We never really are the adults we pretend to be. We wear the mask and perhaps the clothes and posture of grown-ups, but inside ourskin we are never as wise or as sure or as strong as we want to convince ourselves and others we are. We may fool all the rest of the people all of the time, but we never fool our parents. They can see behind the mask of adulthood. To her mommy and daddy, the empress never has on any clothes--and knows it.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Wise #Strong #Growing Up

  • The child who would be an adult must give up any lingering childlike sense of parental power, either the magical ability to solveyour problems for you or the dreaded ability to make you turn back into a child. When you are no longer hiding from your parents, or clinging to them, and can accept them as fellow human beings, then they may do the same for you.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Giving Up #Growing Up #Children

  • When it comes to little girls, God the father has nothing on father, the god. It's an awesome responsibility.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Girl #Father #Responsibility

  • The problem is simply this: no one can feel like CEO of his or her life in the presence of the people who toilet trained her and spanked him when he was naughty. We may have become Masters of the Universe, accustomed to giving life and taking it away, casually ordering people into battle or out of their jobs . . . and yet we may still dirty our diapers at the sound of our mommy's whimper or our daddy's growl.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Dirty #Naughty #People

  • Parents can fail to cheer your successes as wildly as you expected, pointing out that you are sharing your Nobel Prize with a couple of other people, or that your Oscar was for supporting actress, not really for a starring role. More subtly, they can cheer your successes too wildly, forcing you into the awkward realization that your achievement of merely graduating or getting the promotion did not warrant the fireworks and brass band.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Cheer #Couple #People

  • Parents have subtle ways of humbling you, of reminding you of your origins, perhaps by showing up at the moment of your greatest glory and reminding you where you came from and demonstrating that you still have some of it between your toes.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Parent #Moments #Glory

  • Parents vary in their sense of what would be suitable repayment for creating, sustaining, and tolerating you all those years, andwhat circumstances would be drastic enough for presenting the voucher. Obviously there is no repayment that would be sufficient . . . but the effort to call in the debt of life is too outrageous to be treated as anything other than a joke.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Effort #Parent #Enough

  • Some parents were awful back then and are awful still. The process of raising you didn't turn them into grown-ups. Parents who were clearly imperfect can be helpful to you. As you were trying to grow up despite their fumbling efforts, you had to develop skills and tolerances other kids missed out on. Some of the strongest people I know grew up taking care of inept, invalid, or psychotic parents--but they know the parents weren't normal, healthy, or whole.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Growing Up #Kids #People

  • A man doesn't have to have all the answers; children will teach him how to parent them, and in the process will teach him everything he needs to know about life.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Children #Men #Parent

  • A boy is not free to find a partner of his own as long as he must be the partner to his mother.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Mother #Boys #Long

  • Fathering is the most masculine thing a man can do
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Father #Men #Masculine

  • Infidelity flows from a belief that women have the power to make you feel like a man if you only find a woman that thinks you're perfect; if you can only find a woman that you haven't hurt or disappointed yet.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Marriage #Hurt #Men

  • The end product of child raising is not the child but the parent.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Children #Parent #Ends

  • For most people, a life lived alone, with passing strangers or passing lovers, is incoherent and ultimately unbearable. Someone must be there to know what we have done for those we love.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Marriage #People #Done

  • No one, however powerful and successful, can function as an adult if his parents are not satisfied with him.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Powerful #Successful #Parent

  • As boys without bonds to their fathers grow older and more desperate about their masculinity, they are in danger of forming gangs in which they strut their masculinity for one another, often overdo it, and sometimes turn to displays of fierce, macho bravado and even violence.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Father #Boys #Violence

  • It is necessary but insufficient to stay married for the children's sake. It is also necessary to stay happily married for the children's sake. I'm so glad someone noticed that marriage doesn't have to make you miserable. It is just so easy to be happy I don't understand why it isn't more popular.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Marriage #Children #Sake

  • Common courtesy plays a big role in happy marriages. People who are permanently married are polite to one another. They don't want to hurt one another's feelings, and they don't try to make the other one feel humiliated. People who are married for life are extremely kind to one another.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Relationship #Hurt #Play

  • The most likely cause of a man's depression is his failure to be the man he thinks he should be
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Men #Thinking #Causes

  • Mother love has been much maligned. An over mothered boy may go through life expecting each new woman to love him the way his mother did. Her love may make any other love seem inadequate. But an unloved boy would be even more likely to idealize love. I don't think it's possible for a mother or father to love a child too much.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Family #Mother #Children

  • If fathers who fear fathering and run away from it could only see how little fathering is enough. Mostly, the father just needs to be there.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Running #Father #Needs

  • We know how powerful our mother was when we were little, but is our wife that powerful to us now? Must we relive our great deed of escape from Mama with every other woman in our life?
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Mother #Powerful #Wife

  • Fathering is not something perfect men do, but something that perfects the man.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Men #Perfect #He Man

  • Men who have been raised violently have every reason to believe it is appropriate for them to control others through violence; they feel no compunction over being violent to women, children, and one another.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Children #Believe #Men

  • Parents can make us distrust ourselves. To them, we seem always to be works-in-progress.
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Parent #Progress #Distrust

  • Why do otherwise sane, competent, strong men, men who can wrestle bears or raid corporations, shrink away in horror at the thought of washing a dish or changing a diaper?
    -- Frank Pittman

    #Strong #Men #Diapers