Mard ko dard nahi hota.

Hey dude, man up. 

Don’t cry like a girl.

If you are a man who grew up in India, chances are you heard this way too often in your life. You have been conditioned to believe that you are the ‘man’, you shall be the ‘provider’, the man of the household. Stereotypes that are fed to you since childhood, ideas that you grew up believing, notions you grew up adhering to. 

What’s the problem you ask? EVERYTHING.

This powerful slam poem by a young man is challenging this very notion of manhood, and honestly, it is brilliant.


Simar Singh, founder and curator of UnErase Poetry, made headlines some time ago with his poem on marital rape, and now his poem, ‘How to be a man’ is raising pertinent questions with regard to the concept of masculinity in India. This poem is “for every father, every brother and every son, who wets his pillows so many times and yet he’s woken up just fine.”


This unnecessary pressure on being a ‘man’, on being ‘strong’, ‘independent’, ‘tough’, more often than not ignore the real person within. Aren’t we all allowed to be vulnerable? To lose direction? To cry? 

Time to ‘UnMan’ yourself, to rid yourself of these ridiculous notions of masculinity. Time to talk, about your insecurities and your dreams, and just smile. You can hear his entire slam poem here: