Letter: Boys don't have to grow up to be misogynists

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The Independent Online
Sir: Men feel rejected by their mothers at an early age and grow up looking for revenge? Angela Neustatter in her article ('Boys will be misogynists', 7 July) discusses psychotherapist Adam Jukes's theory, expressed in his book, Why Men Hate Women. 'Although it is male children who reject the mother and seek a man to model themselves on, they feel it the other way round'.

Come again? You might as well say that a man hits a woman but feels that she hit him. If men really reason like this, then there's not much hope of our reaching a rapport.

She also tells us that mothers give children less attention than they need, thus, she implies, causing men's misogyny. Sure they do - a child's need for attention is insatiable. But how is it that (a) only the boy children grow up wanting to punish their mothers, and (b) fathers are not equally censured for neglecting their children?

I dare say that Mr Jukes spends many hours each day, by virtue of his profession, in the company of unhappy, confused men, and he's bound to think they are all like that. Maybe most of them are, and I wish I knew why.

But I'm lucky enough to know one very nice, successful man who likes women and doesn't bully anybody, and he happens to have had a horrid childhood, being abandoned by his father at an early age, bullied at school, and utterly neglected by his devastated, poverty-stricken mum. Theories, anyone?

Yours faithfully,

POPPY HOLDEN

London, E5

7 July

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