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Therefore, I really had to take my own inventory when I found myself, like most, chuckling at and judging men who wear pantyhose. We as humans are funny— the last thing we ever want to be is judged or humiliated for our own personal choices yet, given the first opportunity to do it, we are happy to jump on the bandwagon to laugh at others for theirs.
The way I see it, this is a form of protection— better to laugh at others than to be laughed at. I admit I was one of the laughers when I first found out that there was a group of men who wear pantyhose. Yet, that Voltaire quote kept resonating loudly in my mind and I realized I was being a tremendous hypocrite. I decided to find out more by exploring this topic on my radio show last Friday.
What was shocking about booking this show was the fact that getting men who wear pantyhose to speak out on this topic was incredibly difficult. In fact, we had an interview scheduled to tape with the owner of a major mantyhose website and he never showed up for the interview. In fact, there are many reasons why men wear pantyhose that are utilitarian and, quite frankly, boring. I could go on and share with you some interesting statistics like mantyhose makes up 2. Undoubtedly, the fact that there are cross-dressers and people who wear them for fetishistic reasons that has created a huge stigma around men in pantyhose, with which my guests Rob and Kevin wholeheartedly agreed.
Yet, the second, less obvious reason the stigma exists is that many men who are wearing pantyhose for whatever healthy and harmless reason are doing it shamefully. Yes, the world can use a little more tolerance and less judgment towards those who choose to wear pantyhose but until the actual wearers do it with pride, the stigma will always be there. As a woman, there are many freedoms I enjoy in my fashion choices today. I can wear pants, I can cut my hair short and if I choose to dress in a more masculine manner, I can. While this seems like an incredible double standard against the freedom of men and their fashion choices, I realize that it is because of the women who came before me and went against the grain that I get to enjoy such freedoms like I do.
Nothing changes in society until those who want to change things decide to accept themselves and their choices no matter how bizarre others may find them. This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed. I just listened to the radio show this morning and now your blog post and have to commend you for airing one of the best, most open-minded, segments on the mantyhose trend to air in quite some time.
Despite the ostensible equality with which women and men are viewed today, you have to ask yourself why there is such a noticeable difference between the way people view it when a member of one sex strays into the fashion territory of the other. You noted that a woman can wear clothing ranging from the ultra feminine to jeans, t-shirts, boots and a short haircut and hardly anyone even takes note. But if a man wears even one article of clothing that has typically been associated with women, not only do other men get worked up over it, but women may give him even more flack over it.
Is it because a woman who co-opts a certain fashion item from men is seen as elevating herself? BTW, not too many of us are old enough to remember the days when women wearing pants was considered scandalous. Some—many—men are wearing mantyhose for very legitimate reasons and knee jerk reactions against it have to be examined for what they really reveal about the people making them. Thank you. Hi Steve, First of all, thank you for your kind words about how I handled the interview.
And, I want to be clear with the readers, it was not your site that neglected to show up for their interview…just in case anyone is wondering. While it is liberating as a woman that I can embrace a more masculine look, what does it say about women when a man embraces what is perceived as a more feminine look and gets called things that are negative? Lastly to your point about the inequality that is so blatant yet often not acknowledged and also the negative reactions that people have when they hear that men wear pantyhose, this I realized while taping the show: What stymies me is how enraged people get when others do things that make them uncomfortable.
Why do we care so much? Why do we get uncomfortable, angered, judgmental, twitchy??? Why do we care? What is it in us that causes that reaction? I mean, when you look at it on the surface, men are wearing pantyhose…is this really something that should elicit SUCH a reaction??? Not really…yet it does. Your reply is dead-on, Bridgette. If you would like to go there and paste it in, be my guest, or, I could do it for you with your permission. My apologies for only replying now to this. I was dealing with a major spam issues and a lot of good comments got caught up in it.
Of course, feel free to post my comment!!! Thanks Steve! I want to thank you for this informative show. A of years ago, I had a very serious case of varicose veins. It had gone to the point where I was having ulcers on my legs. After having my initial procedures I was quite leery to wear my compression stocking out of fear of being thought that I was a pervert. My doctor had to talk with me several times to convince me that it was to my own personal advantage to wear them for my health.
I eventually conceded to the thought. Since then, I have gotten over the fear of what others may think. I now wear often with shorts, especailly during the warmer months. Once in a while I will get an eye drop, or a swivel head, but thats ok. My main thing is showing others that it is ok to wear hosiery no matter the reason.
We all know that an item of clothing does not make a person gay any more than swiming makes us a fish. How many homosexuals want a person of the same sex to look like a member of the opposite sex? Once the stigma is reduced or gone, there will be more sitings and many more will be open to the idea of wearing for health or fashion style.
Keep your tights on! Happily married man with 4 wonderful children, MarK C. Do such men secretly want to be seen, is this some sensual trip they are going on? Equality, yes, but feminized men? Even on discussion boards where the oddball community is moderated away, the sensual element is not far from the surface. Who are you directing your comment to? That was the reason for my broadcast, to shed light on the topic and call out the behaviors of some who choose not to understand it or who need justification in order to accept it.
I am thankful your 2 guests had the courage to come on the show. Should a guy let it be known that he likes to wear pantyhose, he is automatically stigmatized. Go screw yourself. I started wearing at 4 or 5 years of age. I would wear in bed under the covers. I just liked the way they felt so good. When I reached puberty I was aroused by the feeling.
Since I reached my thirties I no longer consider them a sexual thing. I wear everyday and to me they are the most comfortable piece of clothing I wear. They give me warmth in cold weather, support for my achy legs and finally the sensation of wearing relaxes me. Nick, I completely understand that any person on planet earth is and should be entitled to their opinion. I wear my running tights underneath a pair of shorts whilst running in the morning, right up until perhaps lunchtime if I choose to do any errands thereafter.
There is a level of modesty that is required if so however, I believe it should apply to everyone choosing to wear form-fitting lycra in public and if anyone shows any s of judgement: positive or negative, I might feel slightly self conscious just as much as I am flattered to think that they have taken the time to make any form of acknowledgement full stop.
You see, I have always suffered hugely from inificance and as a result trained myself not to take negative attitudes on board…. It only took me 39 years. Bridgette has it right on. The fault lies with those of us who conceal the fact that we wear this garment. By doing that we automatically invoke the reaction that we are doing something secretive and behind closed doors. However having said that being open and honest about it is very difficult to do in this society.
For many many years I concealed the fact that I wore pantyhose from the one I love for fear that she would reject me if I told her. I absolutely did not want to upset her in any way. However that fear was completely unfounded. She had known for years and was wondering why I had not told her. She does not wear pantyhose very often but if she sees the brands that I like on sale she will often purchase for both of us.
While I have not worn pantyhose with shorts as Steve is frequently pictured doing it no longer bothers me if my leg wear is visible or not. As any woman knows, wearing pantyhose with leg hair looks ghastly — even worse for a man as the hairs cause the pantyhose to slide down the leg — so I regularly have my legs waxed professionally by women and most surprisingly get very positive comments.
I have noticed more and more men with hair free legs and it is becoming normal to the point where neither women nor men give a second look. When more men show their leg wear it will become normal which is Brigettes major point. The problem lies with the wearers. Just wear what you like and society will adjust — it always does. Thanks for a very thought provoking article and comments from all above.
It has made me reconsider my reluctance to wear pantyhose without pants over the top of them. I would make one final point that there are major health benefits to wearing pantyhose. Mostly I wear the type that has a graduated compression feature and these are great for long flights or sitting in the car.
So live longer — wear tights. My name is Charlie and I like wearing pantyhose. To tell you the truth pantyhose is not enough for me, I love wearing skirts and blouse. It is such a fantastic feeling…. This has nothing to do with crossdressing, though it does border it to a certain degree.
As an open minded individual, I have nothing against crossdressers, but in this instance, respectfully, crossdressing has nothing to do with what the main topic is about. No one needs to know what you are wearing, most people would rather know as to WHY you are wearing. This is something we in my community are trying desperately to break.Why do men like to wear pantyhose
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A woman’s view on men in hosiery by Nohealani