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Sat, Oct 07



From Healthy Masculinity to Authentic Elderhood

The Male Search for Meaning and Purpose in the Second Half of Life

From Healthy Masculinity to Authentic Elderhood
From Healthy Masculinity to Authentic Elderhood

Time & Location

Oct 07, 9:00 AM – 5:00 PM CDT

Delafield, 612 Milwaukee St, Delafield, WI 53018, USA

Event Description

There is a common societal assumption that male fulfillment begins when a man launches his career, finds the right job, marries the "right person", buys the right home in the right neighborhood, and maybe then has children. This fulfillment scenario ultimately plays out with the man slowing down, enjoying the fruits of his labor as he ages, and then finishing his life in a comfortable retirement with lots of friends.

 If this is the path to fulfillment, why is it that so many men question their earlier choices as they slide into mild or serious mid-life crises between the ages of 35 and 70 years? How does this explain why men have significantly higher rates of loneliness than women, and why they are much less likely to seek help or support when depressed or anxious? How come men in our society account for almost three out of every four deaths by suicide or drug overdose?

Developmental psychologists have noted that the primary purpose of the first half of life for most men is to develop the survival skills necessary for modern-day success, e.g., making money, developing competence, projecting a self-image of importance, and adopting a persona associated with success. By the second half of life, however, it is all too easy for us and others to forget that a real person with a lot of emotional history resides behind the persona. Is it possible to live one's entire life as a form of role-playing or as a human "doer" versus a human "being"? Is it possible to live an entire life without ever scratching the surface in search of what lies below?

In this workshop we will experientially, conceptually, and playfully explore various models of healthy aging. Many men in their twilight years still cling to reputation, imagined security, self-image projection, material possessions, and unexamined habits of behavior and attitude which no longer serve them. The second stage of life is a critical time to retrieve parts of ourselves that got left behind while we were busy surviving, raising a family, or trying to live up to society's expectations. It also is our last chance to make sense of and to jettison baggage from the first half of life.

Is it time to recalibrate the trajectory of your life? This "happening" will entail "ripening" exercises, heart-felt discussion, meditations, optional role-play, self-assessment, humor, and practice in the art of blessing. Events will occur in a community room with breakouts in smaller group settings. All adult-age men are welcome -- including those still in the first half of life but interested in altering their future!!! There is no fee for this event; however, donations to Well House 1900 are always welcome. For lunch, please bring a dish to pass -- enough for four people so that we can all eat lunch together smorgasbord style. We will have water to drink all day long. If you prefer another beverage, bring it! Also, wear loose and comfortable clothing and bring a pillow and a sleeping bag or blanket for a floor meditation.

This is a joint venture between the Elder Community associated with the Wisconsin ManKind Project and the folks at Well House 1900. 

Workshop planners/facilitators: Craig Carlson, John O'Donnell,

Bob Bickner, Dick Silberman, & Erich Moraine.

Space is limited: Preregister: or by emailing: johnodonnell

Space is limited.  Preregister via email to Well House 1900 or John O'Donnell

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