The NYT recently did an article about a new book called “Deep Secrets: Boys’ Friendships and the Crisis of Connection,” by Niobe Way, a professor of developmental adolescent psychology who explores the nature of friendships for boys and young men. Way argues that while teenage boys are often stereotyped as “grunting, emotionally tone-deaf creatures who bond over sports talk and risk-taking,” “their need for intimate friendship is as potent as it is for girls.” Despite this need, “as the boys grew older, the intensity of those relationships faded. Boys feared being seen as “too girly” or even gay for expressing attachments to one another, even just for feeling them.” Way believes this breeds depression in young men (around 15 or 16, the suicide rate for boys becomes four times that for girls), and grown men alike. She argues that adult men struggle to make close friendships, and rely on their wives as their only support person, which can take a toll on their relationship.
Read the whole article: Allowing Teenage Boys to Love Their Friends (NYT)