Orlando Owen

When Does A Boy Becomes A Man: The 7 Stages Of Manhood

An article written by Constanza Villalba in the New York Times entitled, “The Seven Stages of Man” outlined the physical stages a male progresses through in his life. The stages are:

  1. Infancy
  2. Boyhood
  3. Adolescence
  4. Young Adulthood
  5. Middle Age
  6. Early Old Age
  7. Later Old Age

Under each stage, Villalba also listed a summary of what happens to a males body at that time. For instance, under the Adolescence stage he writes, Testosterone’s effects on boys’ development become most obvious during adolescence. As their soprano voices morph into…”

Understanding those seven stages of physical evolution is useful for you to understand why certain changes to your body happen when they do…

However, within those seven stages there is one defining moment that directly impacts how effectively you’ll relate with women. This moment is also when men are most vulnerable to develop the “blocks.”

Initiations: Graduating From Boy To Man

In ancient (and few recent) cultures, elders of a tribe initiated boys into manhood through processes designed and implemented over hundreds of generations. These initiations are also called “rights-of-passage,” or “masculization rituals.”

The rituals are important because they define the specific moment a boy becomes a man, and is expected to act like one. Once the initiation was complete, the community recognized the new man for his accomplishment. The specific steps a boy had to endure in order to gain his rights-of-passage vary from one community to the next.

However, generally initiations followed these steps:

  1. A group of elder males separate the boy from the community.
  2. The boy is required to overcome certain tests that are often physically, mentally and emotionally challenging to endure.
  3. The ‘new man’ is re-entered into his community and celebrated for gaining his manhood.

I wrote a report called The BIG 7 Initiation Rituals. If you’d like a copy, you can get the report here:


“When was your initiation to manhood and what did your male elders do?”

When I ask that question to a group of guys in a seminar audience, the room goes silent and majority of them look at me with blank stares. That’s because in North America we don’t have any formal initiations (other than for certain niche groups like universities, for instance).

I then change the question to: “In North American society, what could be viewed as rights-of-passage from boyhood to manhood?”

A voice calls out from the back, “Being able to vote!”
Another voice says, “Losing your virginity!”
Another says, “When you buy a house!”…
“When you get married!”… “
When you get your first career job!”…

When you have your first child!”

Does having the ability to legally vote or drive a car really make you a man?
Does having a job, or sex, or a child separate boys from the men either?
What do those stages have to do with masculinity?

After all, can’t a woman do all those things too?

Furthermore, if you get your career or have a child when you’re 37 years old, does that mean you were a boy every moment before that?

In addition to not having a formal process to initiate our boys to men, our society doesn’t recognize an initiation process as significant to a man’s growth or personal development. In fact, the largest percentage of our culture views these topics as regressive education that promote hate and violence against women, which is the very definition of “misogyny.”

Popular news media also demonizes anyone who’d propose a boy should be separated from women and taught how to be a man by the elder males in his community. I’ve personally been ridiculed in front of millions of viewers on talk shows in Germany for expressing my opinions on the topic.

If you bring up initiation or masculization, you better be prepared to face shrill cries from hyper-vigilant liberals and feminists who call you things like “Woman hating, misogynistic, scumbag, filth…” I believe some sort of initiation rituals are mission-critical for guys to experience because if you don’t: it’s like going to purgatory. It’s like remaining in limbo between boyhood and manhood forever. When a woman looks in your eyes she sees a scared little boy.