Do you tell your friends you love them? And do you say it like that, using those words? Is it easy for you to say? Is it fraught? Ricardo Jaramillo takes those questions on in this week’s essay. It’s read by Ncuti Gatwa, who stars in “Sex Education” on Netflix.
This is an unofficial transcript meant for reference. Accuracy is not guaranteed.
Modern love the pod cast supported by produced by the island at W B. You are faster. From the New York Times and W B or Boston. This is modern love stories of love, loss and redemption. I'm your host Mitch operability. Do you tell your friends, you love them and you say it like that using the
Those three words: is it easy for you to say? Is it fraught Ricardo Hiram each takes on those questions in this week's essay it read by shooting got what he stars in sex education on Netflix. I'm having our troubles, but my troubles don't involve a lover. There's no romance sex sexiness, no flowers candles are dancing. My or job was a whim, a boy my best friend kitchen, I've told him. I love him, be five or six times now, but he never says it back when people say I love you, especially for the first time,
for a number of things. They may be saying. Maybe it's do you love me the questions smuggled inside the confession or more urgently. Please love me with catchy. It's not like that. I know he loves me. I feel it all the time. I don't need to ask for his love. I don't need to wonder I tell him. I love him for a simple reason Nothing could be more true, but he doesn't say it back. Most out said it when we're leaving each other a couple of times over the phone. Once when I was drunk another time when he was hurt- and I was trying to be supportive. It is always silence for a moment and then Said says something like here: bro I'll catch you soon.
I don't need them to say those exact words to me. I wondered about what keeps him from seeing what heaps, nearly all young men, from being able to tell the male friends that we love them. When I was eight, I made my first best friend Pedro was take thin messy head and jittery brimming with the kind of untamed tenderness found only in children. When I moved to Philadelphia, he took me a nervous new. at school, in his arms and under his wings patronized. Then are weekends and walks with his mother through the forest trails near the house, he and I walked slowly
holding hands while we stepped into locking our fingers to this day. Whenever I participate in the sacred human practice of handholding, I think a petrol on one of our walks petrol and I were interrupted by another boy, Petros neighbor, who chopped his hands between our startling us you to hold hands. He said that's Kay I remember not knowing exactly what game ENT but sensing in the way other boys wielded the word that I meant something you didn't want to be. I had a terrible feeling that the outside world, that broken into are quite greenplace Pedro and I never held hands again. I still cared for each other, but that day we learned our care was something we needed to regulate sabji place in a chokehold and never let loose We learned this at the hands of another boy, our age, who probably had learned that.
Hands of another boy of whatever age. Page when I learned what man in America learned repeatedly that tenderness must be tamed in accordance with a set of course, we must become fluent in as if our survival depends on it. This lesson is learned over many years passed between generations and, like the best tote, lessons it close into you until you can hardly distinguish with the lesson ends and you begin Somewhere inside each man has a list of all the other man he's loved without ever finding the words to tell them. So I met Kiki in the middle of my freshman year when I was once again a nervous new kid. This time throwing the party have gone through life of a rotating set of it she takes that year. I become fond of swinging, my university lanyards, with my key in circles, wrapping and unwrapping it around my finger when
start flowing into my dorm room. I began my nervous swinging, not. in what I was doing until I heard a crack and saw that my key has struck a as Iphone screen, leaving a minor scratch that stranger is keychain. My first message to him was an apology said the next morning he was kind and forgiving. Dying out freshman years, an easy time attached to people aside with key more more almost every day, then several times a day when it was time to choose housing for sophomore year, we decided to room together
EL into each other's lies quickly, because we were both hungry for closeness in a new place. We stayed in each other's lies because nothing is ever felt more natural kitchen. I above makes race with white mothers, immigrant fathers and hard to pronounce names. We are from cities in Seattle me Philadelphia that we take pride in, but mostly we are different he's com. Cool rides, escaped board keeps a close neatly: folded, rights, poems and loves. You knowledge when he he said, doesn't stay sad for long. I I how quietly quietly deliberate teachers in the balance he brings to his life when I go to him of girlfriend writing problems or any other kind of problems. Some little he says, I'm notice is always stays with me for days. I appreciate his steadiness and he
appreciates how emotional I am I'm really balanced to collected at all, how I messy and clumsy. As we became closer friends, I start taking some of him with me and he Taking some a meal with him, he appreciates the mess of me, which is me how I know that he loves me. What else is there to love? Anyway, coats men. Follow in love are tricky. For example, Seeing a straight. I love you is frowned upon sometimes seem to another man. Much love or a lovely is ok. I love you might even be possible if it is quickly followed by Bro or man, These are the linguistic gymnastics mascot, its he asked us to perform. The negotiations we make through language to keep within the acceptable bounds of manhood a footnote should be added to the car.
Sometimes the most inconvenient or terrible circumstances can occasion an acceptable expression of love, but only That moment never to be spoken of again. two years ago, Keychain United Semesters off from college and spend that time. be over my father's from one day, while in the course of town of couple gun, I got so suddenly sick with fever and dizziness that dropped to my knees by walking on the beach. I was scared to be mysterious
ill in a place where I knew it could be hard to find help Keach. He searched all over town for a doctor when he couldn't find one. He decided his premed coursework would have to do and he tended to me he put his hand on my forehead. He whispered into my ear. He told me over and over the I was going to be okay until I was this was perhaps our most intimate moment brought about by my sickness and unthinkable that any other time. This is the code as intricate, as is far reaching.
Chi Chi and I do not possess the flagship qualities of masculine college boys we aren't in fraternities or on sports teams. We have even talked more than once about masculinity in the illogical things requires of us, but still we have lived in this world we grew up as boys in America we learned this cold and we practice it. There's no immunity. there's a part of the story I haven't admitted yet. each time I say I love you to Kiki, it feels uncomfortable. I feel the weirdness of other, even in myself. The lesson is borrowed in that deep hesitate flinch, but in my conscious mind I know it I want to say so. I try to say it. I want to say I love you to CHI. Chi a mean just that I don't want to be.
Any desire or questioning or expectation lurking inside my words. I want to love in a way that surpasses the need for affirmation for return. This is I've come to know is appear, is kind of love expecting nothing back I remain hopeful is not that. I need to hear those words. I'm just ready to be free from all the forces, voices and gestures that keep us from seeing the still can't help but wish that one day Kiki will forgo all the masculine clatter. Look me in the eyes and simply say I love you too. that's shoot got while reading Ricardo, horror meters essay. Why?
and men say I love you to each other, will catch up with Ricardo after the break. Ooh I love selling my boyfriend and I often play spelling bee together by together I mean sitting next to each other playing individually and not cheating. Sometimes when I open a spelling bee- and I see that you have completed a few words on your own, I feel a little betrayed. Sorry, it may have happened again. I have one friend I will send screenshots from spelling bee of inappropriate words words. I I was nervous. I sent it to my parents or something like that. Me and my dad. We like to play fun together and I wish the out I forgot to see it. J, a c k, p o t Jack
Yeah yeah now run nice. I'm same as earth's sky. The digital puzzles editor for the New York Times. You can try, spelling bee and all our games at N Y Times, dot com, slash games record or a meters essay was a finalist in the two thousand. Nineteen, modern love college essay contest. We talked to him in May. And he told us that after his essay was published, you got a lot of messages from people telling him they loved him. Some of those messages were friends and some were from people. He'd had a class with once. As for whether CHI said it, there's a million dollar question. Is agriculture I don't I mean the short answer is no, but I don't think much actually hinges on him saying that in our relationship, I guess that sort of
how I wouldn't want people to misread the peace like he's, just someone that has loved me really well and like completely shaved, my life and, like, I hope, that's the made clear in the writing, and maybe one day I will just open the door and he will be there with some sort of love, actually type poster board situation. You know if he needed me tomorrow, like I would drive to Seattle, even though my license is expired and a that make like you know like whatever he needed like. I would do it and like. I know that if I caught him and he needed me like his license- it's probably not expired, the like he would Publix, I don't want to make any promises for him, but I imagine he would.
Ricardo says that language fails men in a lot of ways, not just around the phrase. I love you there's a poet ocean Vuong that talks like so beautifully about it or it's like so much of the language of that boys used to talk about victory is so connected to violence. Like you killed it, you kick the shit out of town all the stuff, so I think sort of cooked into the language that we have already sort of bounds. Like only go this far, and that's was there some sort of natural collision that occurs between Those bounds and then, where I love my ask us to go the two languages in my life. I english and Spanish in English, One word for love in Spanish, there's two words for the get it and on my He and I hope that in two hundred years we live in worlds. Where there's a lot more language available to us like. I hope that we have a thirty words available to us.
love, because I think that will mean as a society that we've worked to know it better. I feel like in a lot of ways the pieces about affection and like how we can sort of translate or communicate or lay barren. Words are affection and we are in like such a heartbreaking moment, and I think that one of the only responses to that is to sort of drop down into the human and like and participate in affection. Yeah. I think that's sort of like what can save us. That's Ricardo, heart of Micho he's a teacher, essayist and Fulbright scholar.
his latest essay will be published this week through W H. Why? Why Philadelphia public radio station more after the break? I love felling. My boyfriend and I often play felling me together by together. in setting next to each other of playing individually and not cheating. Sometimes, when I open up spelling bee- and I see that you have completed a few words on your own, I feel a little betrayed in ferry may have happened I have one friend I will send screenshots from spelling bee of inappropriate words. Then I was getting nervous. I sent it to my parents or something like that. Me and my dad. We like to play spy together and I wish color out. I forgot it see it J, a c k, p o t jack
yeah, yeah, I'm nice. I'm same as the the digital puzzles editor for the New York Times. You can try spelling bee and all our games at N Y Times dot com, slash games. Here's Daniel Jones, editor of the modern love column for the New York Times regardless they came in as part of our last college as a contest, and I thought it was such a brave exploration of toxic masculinity and its causes and effects and one line of particular really struck me where he talks about tender, This is something that must be tamed and and how much damage that goes on to cause In families and relationships. In the world it's sort of credible to me how how that starts.
You know in childhood through shaming and works at through our education system and ass, these I flung implications, To read regard, as I say, we should such a refreshing luck. Add where this comes from and how, hopefully, be undone and here's shooting got were on why he chose to read this piece. I think I was just drawn to how honest it was I mean I think in society were having a real rethink about masculinity. and what it means, and I think that this this piece kind of encapsulated. Like that kind of conversation- as a man myself as a boy, I'm very aware of all these codes. I grew up with them.
There really is like an unwritten code of masculinity that I think needs to be Broken- and I think we as humans need to not be afraid to say that we love each other and at not hold back from that, because I think the more love we can get in this world, the better. Thank you to shoot for recording himself at home. You can see him now in the Netflix show sex education Modern love is the production of the New York Times and W B you are Boston, NPR station is produced did an edited by Caitlin O'Keeffe, No scoring and sound design by Matt Reed I was Adler. Our executive producer, we're edited by Catherine Brewer, Daniel Jones is the editor of modern love for the New York Times and advisers. This show space thanks to Julia Simon, on your streamline and merely at the New York Times and to Michael Garth at W. You are the
Here for the modern love packaged was conceived by LISA Tobin, additional music, courtesy of a p m. I make the Chakrabarti see you next week.
Transcript generated on 2022-04-15.