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Men’s Spaces

(24 Posts)
catscan Wed 07-Feb-18 13:32:38

I’ve been thinking about men’s spaces and have come up with the following:

- Freemasons
- selective gentlemen’s clubs
- male saunas

Interestingly they all seem to be set up for pleasure, not support.

My first thought was ‘what’s to stop some women donning their manly trousers, declaring they feel like men today, and going in?’ It might highlight the inequality.

But the difference is these are private networks and membership is gained by personal recommendations.

Could a private women’s support network be established on the same grounds? I’d donate to its running costs.

Melamin Wed 07-Feb-18 13:44:36

Men in Sheds

Melamin Wed 07-Feb-18 13:45:46

I was reading about Men only mental health groups on twitter earlier (not suffering from transmen trying to force them to change their rules)

catscan Wed 07-Feb-18 13:51:13

I do think a bunch of women repeatedly rocking up to a gentlemen’s club and demanding entry would get attention. Or peevishly knitting every Friday night at a men’s sauna or in a strip club.

Mumsnut Wed 07-Feb-18 13:58:47

Can I wear spats and smoke a pipe? I identify as a PG Wodehouse character.

catscan Wed 07-Feb-18 14:04:18

If I can drink all the brandy!

The problem is they’re often exclusive and based on membership - are there any that are open to all men?

catscan Wed 07-Feb-18 14:12:37

It’s so frustrating because it’s not even really close to the same thing... A lot of women’s spaces exist because they have been hurt by men, not because they want to talk about art and business and sex and spend money.

Mumsnut Wed 07-Feb-18 14:16:44

I'd like to talk about art and business and sex and spend money. But i take your point.

RatRolyPoly Wed 07-Feb-18 14:18:34

I think a lot of support groups exist for men impacted by male cancers or predominantly-male mental health illnesses don't they? Or is that just in the movies?

They definitely exist though for male single parents, widows and men going through divorce or family break-ups.

Don't know if that's relevant.

catscan Wed 07-Feb-18 14:26:52

I guess I think if women entered men-only spaces for no reason but to satisfy their personal desires and prove a point, knowing they’re not welcomed, that’d raise awareness.

But in reality, I couldn’t access gentlemen’s clubs because entry is based on recommendations, and I wouldn’t want to access genuine support groups because I’m not an insensitive twat. hmm

OvaHere Wed 07-Feb-18 14:38:48

I get the impression TIFs don't require the same level of constant validation from men. They are just glad to leave the box called woman.

There are a few that occasionally try and berate gay men but it's very low level stuff.

deydododatdodontdeydo Wed 07-Feb-18 14:53:11

Good thoughts, but the spaces you list aren't open to all men anyway.
There are a lot of male support groups, but they don't seem that high profile. Men's shed seems to be the most.
Probably because men don't need men only spaces in the same way women do for support, and they don't need to be kept safe from women.
I just googled men's shed movement and it appears women are allowed so you might not get far with that one.

catscan Wed 07-Feb-18 15:01:19

I know they’re not open to all men, but I thought it might raise awareness. You’re right that men need less protection from women so fewer places of segregation.

LaContessaDiPlump Wed 07-Feb-18 15:04:31

I'm reminded of whatsherface in Fight Club, who sits in on a prostate or testicular cancer group and everyone is too cowed to kick her out.... let's do that (only not in support groups obvs).

catscan Wed 07-Feb-18 15:06:30

That’s my thinking Contessa!

Except none of the ones I’d want to go to would let me in... It’d be particularly successful if we could gain access to the men’s only spaces of the rich and powerful.

smellfunny Wed 07-Feb-18 15:26:51

I think we should all don speedos and bear our breasts (with nipple tassles for the prude amongst us) at Hampstead Heath's Men's Pond. If anyone tries to kick us out, we 'identify' as men.

Dinosauratemydaffodils Wed 07-Feb-18 15:40:04

Just as I was leaving our Local Authority was setting up specific support groups for men who were victims of domestic violence.

The Maggie's centre which is supporting my DF runs sessions purely for men. They do not have an equivalent women only group, only a monthly session for women with gynecological cancers. The men's group meets weekly and is for men with any kind of cancer. They also offer mixed support groups for most types of cancer, for example DF goes to a Lung Cancer one.

@catscan There is a female order of Masons ( however it's not on the same scale as the men's version (yet).

deydododatdodontdeydo Wed 07-Feb-18 15:57:50

Golf clubs seems to a bit of a cause celebre from time to time. While many do allow women, there are some that don't.
I'm not sure how they're allowed to. - surely anyone with a stick and balls can play golf wink

catscan Wed 07-Feb-18 16:04:24

Does anyone know if these male-identified spaces have refused entry to an otherwise eligible self-identified transman?

Jamiek80 Wed 07-Feb-18 20:43:22

I’m not one but know a few and the Freemasons is a fairly supportive group. I’ve never heard of a transwomen being turned away but then never heard or could imagine one trying to join. I enjoy the fact that every other thread in feminist chat is about transwomen or just men invading women’s spaces and the others are about how to stop men having men only groups or spaces.

Terftastic Wed 07-Feb-18 20:48:08

Men's spaces....until relatively recently - Houses of Parliament, Boardrooms... grin

One to seriously add to your list OP - Heredity peers/ inherited titles. Can only pass to the eldest living son. Funnily enough - exempt from the GRA. So women cannot identify as a man to benefit.


Terftastic Wed 07-Feb-18 20:50:26

*That's Inherited titles and inherited estates - primogeniture was the word missing from my post.

Maybe not a space so much, in the same way toilets are - but worthy of note, because it shows how deeply ingrained the patriarchy really is.

QuentinSummers Wed 07-Feb-18 22:13:10

The only place where I think that kind of action could work is Hampstead Heath Mens Pond. Especially as the women's pond is now identity rather than sex based.

mummybear701 Wed 07-Feb-18 23:21:10

Maybe some golf clubs. I remember the furore over Muirfield, eventually backing down under threat of losing the Open.

Mental health groups seem a legitimate case as male issues sound different. No idea what the score is with transmen joining.

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