2nd Meeting

MEN'S GROUP SENTENCE COMPLETION FORM

(for distribution at the second meeting)

Complete each sentence stem as fully as you want.

  1. What I like about men
     
  2. I get really irritated when
     
  3. I am proudest of
     
  4. Women are
     
  5. The difference between a boy and a man
     
  6. What I most want people to notice about me
     
  7. What I don't like about men
     
  8. When people ignore me, I
     
  9. Those who really know me
     
  10. I am at my best with people when
     
  11. When I am in a group of strangers, I
     
  12. When people first meet me, they
     
  13. I feel lonely
     
  14. I envy
     
  15. When someone is affectionate with me, I
     
  16. My father
     

Theme: Finding Out About Each Other

Preparation:

  1. Talking in pairs through sentence completionsTime: 2 hours

    In this activity you have the opportunity to talk personally, one-on-one, with all the other members of your group. You use your answers to the sentence completion form as a way to break the ice. You can choose how "deep" or "shallow" you want each interaction to be.

    1. Step 1

      Distribute 1 copy of the sentence completion form to each member.

      Members complete the sentences in any way they wish. Take about 20 minutes to do this.

    2. Step 2

      1 Member volunteers to be time keeper.

      Each member of the group pairs up with one other member. Once in pairs, men share some of what they have written on their sentence completion forms and then let the conversation go from there. After a designated amount of time, everyone switches, finds another partner, and once more shares what's on their sentence completion forms. You keep doing this until everyone has been in a pair with everyone else

      Each pair should have about 10 minutes before switching. To figure out how long it will take for all the pairs to complete the activity:

      If you have an even number of members, subtract 1 from the number of group members and multiply by 10 [i.e., 10(N-1)]. If you have an odd number of members, add 1 to the number of group members and multiply by 10 [i.e., 10(N+1)].

      If you have an odd number, 1 person will be left out each round. As well, there will be a few pairings left to go after the majority of members have been in a pair with everyone else. This is OK. Do not spend a lot of time trying to figure out an elegant way to sequence the pairs. Just plunge in and trust that everyone will look after everyone else and it'll all get done as well as possible.

    3. Step 3

      Men will want to discuss the similarities and differences they noticed in people's responses. Some may want to ask others more about something they said. Allow this conversation to take place as long as it has energy and everyone's interest.

      As you talk about what it was like to share your sentence completions with others, encourage the group to talk about the process itself. Did you notice that sometimes your discussion was "shallower" and at other times it was "deeper"? What made the difference? Think about your own behavior over the past hour or two and be curious about other people's thoughts and feelings. As a group see what you can learn about how to make it safe and enjoyable for people to talk deeply about themselves in this group.

  2. More Beginning to Organize (OPTIONAL)Time: 20 minutes

    If you have 20 or more minutes left in your meeting and the energy from the discussion has died down, suggest that now is a good time to have a free flowing discussion of possible ground rules for the group. Again, it is too early to make decisions. Instead, make a list of "Do's" and "Don'ts" people would like to see group members adhere to. Remember, this list is just for discussion. Just because something is on the list doesn't mean it is an agreed on ground rule. Bring this list to your fifth meeting when it will be time to decide.

    SOME DO's AND DON'Ts TO CONSIDER

    DO's:
    • Start meetings on time
    • Tell your own story
    • Fully participate in the meetings
    • Strive to be open and honest

    DON'Ts:
    • Give other people "advice"
    • Interrupt and talk over others
    • Make fun of others or use putdowns
    • Tell others what they should or shouldn't feel

  3. Preparing for the next meetingTime: 10 minutes

    Decide where and when you will meet next. For the next meeting it will be helpful (but not essential) to meet somewhere with wall space that people can use to tape sheets of paper to the wall.

    Decide who will facilitate the next meeting.

    You will need to secure the following materials for the next meeting. Decide who will bring what:

    • 2 Sheets of flipchart paper or similar (approx 2X3 foot) paper per person
    • 1 Large tipped felt marker per person
    • Masking tape

    At the next meeting you will talk about key events in your lives that have shaped your sense of your own masculinity. Between now and then, think about what these have been.