On the first Saturday of November representatives of the stronger sex celebrated Men's World Day.
This holiday is relatively new. It was conceived by Austrian author George Kindel and inaugurated in November 2000. A central motivation for Kindel was his understanding that "the testosterone influenced brain of men" is the main reason for men's violent nature. Due to the male propensity for violence Kindel proposed that Men's World Day not be conceived as a day to celebrate men but rather a day of introspection and self-criticism. He also wanted to show that there are some males who have had a positive, nonviolent influence on our world and to award them as role models.

USSR president Mikhail Gorbachev liked the idea and offered to act as co-founder and president of the event after an invitation by Kindel who had described it to him as a 'men's health' initiative. Men's World Day consisted primarily of a world awards event to recognise and honour men who exemplify the best attributes of mankind. Men recognized and awarded at this event include Michael Douglas, Morgan Freeman, Plácido Domingo, Christopher Reeve, the Bee Gees, Yusuf Islam aka Cat Stevens, Sir Paul McCartney, Sir Richard Branson, Steven Spielberg, Luciano Pavarotti, Christian Barnard and Ted Turner.

Due to the perceived inequity of having a day devoted to honouring males alone, the 'Men's World Day' event was terminated and replaced with a new gender neutral event named 'The World Awards' which now permanently includes the honouring and awarding of women.

Apart from Men's World Day, there are also International Men's Day, celebrated on November 19, and Father's Day, celebrated on June 19. Ukrainian women traditional congratulate men on December 6 - the day of Armed Forces of Ukraine, and on February 23 - Defender of the Motherland Day.

What are boys made of?

For women to understand their men, scientists from all over the world waking or sleeping hold various researches and studies. On Men's World Day ForUm decided to reveal the most interesting experiments for the last years. Dear ladies, attention please.

British scientists are as usual ahead of the globe. Oxford professors have established that men feel just as women the responsibility for children. In the course of experiment, professors studied the reaction of male brain to baby cry - it appears to be the same as of female brain. US Michigan University have established that when a man hears baby cry his level of testosterone increases, meaning he is ready to defend his offspring against potential danger.

Professors of Hertfordshire University have come to less comforting results. They established that men lie more often than women do - on average three times per day, while women - two times. At the same time, men are more naive and trusting in social networks. According to American companies on development of anti-virus software, men are more open for the contact with mysterious women and easily give in personal information, including phone number and address, which may be used by criminals.  
The same British scientists consider the men to live a more difficult life: the life expectancy among men is shorter, and the risk of being killed is higher. The stronger sex is more susceptible to stress as men are at the forefront of career and material wealth, while women can escape from financial problems and plunge into relationships. Moreover, the beauty of women, as it turned out, is not the safest thing for a man's organism ... Thus, the Spanish scientists have found that being next to the beautiful Carmen, a stress hormone cortisol exceeds its limit in the blood of any caballero.
The criticism from women, who dream of the perfect life partner, also inflicts blow at the male psyche. Last year, the British Daily Mail newspaper journalists conducted a survey among its female readers, which showed that their partners only 69% match their ideal ... The British female respondents said that the most important things to them are good character, sense of humor and visual appeal.
In this respect, ForUm has decided to hold its own studies and find out what Ukrainian women appreciate the most in men. Dear gentlemen, attention please.

Anna,17, a student:
- Perfect man must be fond and understanding. I believe understanding is the most important in relations. The true man will take care of his woman and family. I also believe that appearance matters for Ukrainian women. Personally, I don't care about height or face, but the build and how a man treats his body.

Viktoria, 18, a student:

- I believe the most important is man's soul. He must be humane and must respect women.

Olena, 28, bank worker:

- The perfect man must be self-sufficient, independent and not hysteric, to be a Man, in other words.  Appearance does not matter much. As for social status, the practice proves that the higher the man stands the more confident he feels. However, he should exaggerate and must understand the line between "I am God" and "I am Man".

Valentyna, 44, a manager:

- The true man must the head of the family, protector and fond husband. I believe it does not depend on where he works. But the man must be clean and orderly.

Natalia, 52, chief accountant:

- The true man should drink, as nowadays we have many alcoholics, especially it concerns older generation. And the man must work, the rest is bearable.

Valentyna, 63, children's doctor, professor of the postgraduate Academy: 

- The true man is a man who thinks about family, children and country. The true man does not nickel and dime. In fact, the number of true man is the same as before, we just don't see it for some reason. We must learn to see good sides in people and learn to find a happy medium. I am telling you this as a woman who has 41 years of marriage experience. Moreover, for men to be better, women must change first.

Macho is out of fashion

Having leaned the opinion of Ukrainian women, ForUm went to ask psychologists to give estimation to women's requirements to men. Social psychologist Oleh Pocalchuk agrees with the opinion of children's doctor Valentyna and declares that women's expectations are overstated. "Perfect man is a number of qualities woman want to have themselves. Early in life, a girl expects a prince, but then she grows up, gets children, and daily routine puts everything in its place," Pokalchuk says.

Psychologist Bohdan Babich is convinced that the image of 'true man' depends on social conditions. "In primitive society the things were easier. The strongest was the best. In modern world, the criteria have changed. Now we do not need strong, but intelligent," she notes.

Moreover, women also contribute into the formation of man's image. And this contribution is not always positive. "In the course of the fight for women's social and political rights, women became more and more independent and choosy. Instead of cooperating with the stronger sex, as the nature says, women compete with men, and as a result, the roles change and the classic stereotype of a true man - strong and aggressive macho, is replaced with the image of soft and understanding man," the psychologist says. 

Anyway, both experts agree on one thing - conception of "perfect man" is individual for every woman, thus there is no simple answer to who is 'true' and who is not. ForUm congratulates all men of Ukraine and wishes them harmony in relations with their soulmates.

Alina Yeremeyeva, Tetyana Matsur


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