“I wrote this for us, for our health, our longevity, and our children,” said Dr. Rob Garfield, family psychiatrist, author, and CCAF faculty member of his new book, Breaking the Male Code: Unlocking the Power of Friendship.
CCAF faculty, friends and family gathered at Dr. Garfield’s home this evening for a celebration, the theme of which was the power of friendship, particularly for men.
This is an important book; as a feminist family therapist I work with gender issues, specifically, the ways in which gender shapes relationship. All too often I observe the dire costs of traditional masculine gender norms on family relationships. The inability to identify and express emotion and the rigid gender rules that police masculine behavior inhibit and constrain the capacity for intimacy. Thankfully, my colleague and friend Rob Garfield has written a book that is accessible, and provides an alternate map for men to navigate their most important relationships:
“For much of the past century, men have operated under the rules of Male Code, a rigid set of guidelines that equate masculinity with stoicism, silence, and strength. As men’s roles have changed over the past few decades, this lingering pressure to hide their emotions has wreaked havoc on men’s lives. Lacking the ability to communicate their needs, desires, and feelings effectively, they are more likely to suffer from depression, anger, and isolation, and their relationships often suffer.
Noted psychotherapist Rob Garfield has worked with men struggling with emotional issues for more than forty years. Through his “Friendship Labs,” clinical settings in which men engage in group therapy, he teaches men how to identify inner conflicts, express emotions, and communicate openly. According to Garfield, traditional therapy has largely marginalized men since many lack the tools to properly engage. But when men learn to open up to other men who share similar experiences, backgrounds, and perspectives, they not only build lasting bonds but learn the skills necessary to thrive in all aspects of their lives.
Writing with empathy and authority, Garfield examines the unique challenges men face and urges them to abandon male code in favor of a masculinity that integrates traditional male traits with emotional intimacy skills. He urges men to connect with other men using the Four C’s of intimacy—connection, communication, commitment, and co-operation—to form meaningful bonds. Drawing on real-life stories and original research, he shows how their friendships can serve as the foundation on which men can build and sustain deep relationships with all of their loved ones—including spouses, children, and parents—and in turn lead to happier, healthier lives.”
Congratulations, Dr. Garfield! We are so fortunate to have you on our faculty, and to collaborate with you in our work with couples and families.
To order the book:
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