Since Joji released his new single Glimpse Of Us, listeners have been in shambles as they decipher the lyrics.
”Cause sometimes I look in her eyes / And that’s where I find a glimpse of us,’ Joji sorrowfully sings on the lead single of his upcoming album. The melancholic 4-minute track goes on to depict the internal struggle of what it feels like to be in a ‘perfect’ relationship while simultaneously reminiscing and longing for a past partner.
While Joji isn’t the first to sing of the remorseful experience of wanting someone else, he’s certainly managed to get the kids talking about men’s emotional stability (or lack thereof?) and how often women find themselves facing the consequences of this fear for vulnerability.
Joji really said "men do not know how move on" and nothing has been okay since glimpse of us. pic.twitter.com/AZfoQfdJIu
— umaymaah (@_umaymaah) June 17, 2022
Without discarding the fact that other genders certainly aren’t exempt from yearning for a past lover, these conversations on men’s emotional health have been a long time coming, considering how normalized emotional repression is among them.
If you pay close enough attention, it’s not that difficult to see the way men have been made to believe that expressing feelings is synonymous with weakness; that to be emotional taints ‘strength’ and masculinity.
Culturally, men have been expected to maintain a tough identity for centuries, and this reveals itself in the way they interact not just with women but within their groups, too.
Even if they did care that their friend is heartbroken, it would be an uphill battle to show it, and an even harder climb to admit they were hurt in the first place.
What can men do, we must now ask, to take steps away from emotional constriction and towards openness for our very natural ability to harbor strong emotions?
‘To run from vulnerability,’ author David Whyte writes, ‘is to run from the essence of our nature.’
If we continue to chronically repress our emotions, then we fail to understand how to handle them or identify why they surface in the first place. When we fail to sit with our feelings, each time a strong emotion comes up will have us as ill-prepared to deal with it as the last.
It’s a lot easier said than done, but it is on men to identify the cycle of toxic masculinity that has both harmed and benefitted them if they want to even begin to learn how to foster healthy relationships with other people (and themselves).
Of the many impressions that Joji’s new track has made, giving us a glimpse into the long-term impacts of men’s emotional repression is the one we must hold on to the most – even after everyone decides they’ve moved on from the Tiktok trend.
There is a general consensus that desiring someone else despite being in a relationship is indeed on the list of Shitty Things You Can Do To Someone, but the real takeaway we must continue to shout from the heavens is that situations like these can always be avoided if only we took the necessary steps to sit with our hurt, bask in it, and let it reveal to us what we can make better.
You can love someone as hard as you want, but if deep down you still haven’t processed an emotion you’ve spent years repressing, know that it will always show up in ways that can surprise you.
Just do yourself and the people you love a favor and don’t wait for that to happen.