What’s being described as “toxic masculinity” is just a lack of emotional intelligence, which is something that women can lack as well. Emotional intelligence is the ability to turn one’s intelligence back in on itself, and to use intelligence as a guide to navigate one’s feelings. Creating the erroneous label of toxic masculinity misdiagnoses the issue by basing it on a superficial character trait, sets women against men, which in turn makes men defensive and emotionally polarized, reinforces women’s victim mindset, and lumps emotionally intelligent men in with emotionally unintelligent men. It’s essentially encouraging Karpman’s Drama Triangle of victim, villain, and hero, rather than providing the easy solution, and there is definitely an easy solution—to encourage emotional intelligence.
Additionally, like attracts like, so an emotionally unintelligent woman will attract and connect with emotionally unintelligent men (and vice versa), and they will go through the drama and toxicity that accompanies such relationships. Emotionally intelligent people also seem to meet and prefer each other’s company; I know that I prefer to hang out with emotionally intelligent people, and that emotionally unintelligent people prefer to avoid me, just as I prefer to avoid interacting with them and the toxicity that accompanies their company. Encouraging emotional intelligence is the easy cure, but why do that when it’s more politically expedient to shame and guilt people for superficial character traits?
Excerpt from the book “The Miniature Guide to the Human Mind” by Richard Paul & Linda Elder