Chris Jepson: Better fathers, better world

A new study says being a better father sometimes means being less of a man, anatomically.

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  • | 10:32 a.m. September 18, 2013
  • Winter Park - Maitland Observer
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The question for many women these days is concerned with what a woman “gives-up” when she becomes a mother. Career opportunities. Skill development. Professional relationships. Income. Economic security.

OK. Well, I’ll raise you one here, ladies. Men give up their manhood.

Associate professor of anthropology James Rilling of Emory University announced recent research results that, “…when men become more involved as caregivers, their testes shrink, environmental influences can change biology.”

Marriage shrinks your junk. Environmental influences? That would be marriage and involved fatherhood. They literally cause the Boys to — Gasp! — collapse in on themselves. What cold water does to Mr. Johnson, fatherhood, evidently, does to a man’s plums.

So, with all due respect to what women surrender, is not what men give-up of comparable sacrifice?

The Twins just naturally shrink once you become an involved father — The Boys in the Basement, sadly, just don’t seem to be quite the same ol’ handful. It gets complex, lads. The Emory study asserts that, “anthropologists found the smaller the size of the dads’ testicles, or testes, the more caregiving was reported by both parents. Men with lower testosterone levels were also more likely to be more involved fathers.”

This begs the question: are men with lower levels of testosterone born that way (smaller jewels) or channeled that way (by embracing fatherhood)?

Is there a correlation between your marble size and what kind of father you’ll become?

If your Giggle Berries are just short of — exactly that — perhaps you are more inclined to be a caring, stick-around father. Embrace your fate, Sir. Be a man. Many do.

So ladies, never wonder again what happened to that man who once so ardently courted. Perhaps, he’s the same boy… just changing diapers and walking the pram. Perhaps not.

Perhaps men should wear a number on their chest. It could be nicely tailored, tastefully done. Bejeweled, perhaps. I’m just thinking out loud here. Say, from one to a hundred. Fifty would be the baseline. Earn (wear) a 50 and every woman would immediately know that such a man was board certified as “average” as a Potential Lifemate Committed to Having Children (the peerless PLCHC Index).

Wouldn’t that greatly simplify dating? What you will settle for would no longer be a question among your girlfriends. Have you heard, “Molly sleeps with 60s.” Ooooooh!

You’ve always got Mr. Right’s number. However, Mr. Right Now might be this moment’s memorable weekend strategy. Think Annie Lenox singing, “I Want A Man.” What you are looking for, conveniently displayed.

Men as meat. Objectified. Poor babies. Sadly reduced to the size of their Love Spuds. Cruel fate is such a fickle mistress.

How much testosterone is enough? Of course, you need enough to move the rear end of 1965 Volkswagen Beetle in a pinch. But as a casual observer of the world, what the world needs significantly less of is too much testosterone. Kick it back a bit, boys. If male-kind could only dial it back. Maybe that is fatherhood’s intent.

So if evolution plays tricks (shall we say) with a man’s acorns perhaps it is to ensure that the trees he plants have a fighting chance. All men can be better fathers. Alright, nearly all.

And if kinder and gentler men make better fathers, would it not behoove society to foster that value? Better fathers – better world. Better still: better men – better world.

Jepson is a 27-year resident of Central Florida. He’s fiscally conservative, socially liberal, likes art and embraces diversity of opinion. Reach him at [email protected]


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