Man flu, a term used to address a flu-like illness exclusive to men. Often 'man flu' is a term that is subject to ridicule and scepticism, the actual existence of it doubted. It is often assumed by others, namely women, as a namby pamby excuse used by their boyfriends, fathers, male work collegues and sons to predominantly to get out of responsibilities.
It is not the female equivalent of the menstrual cycle, but that won't stop men afflicted with it to act like they need to be babied constantly or sympathised with. Men are expected to be strong and dependable: the stereotype of what a real man is. For men to claim to have a moment of weakness for one moment in the eyes of a woman, God forbid, will raise the Q - are you a man or a mouse?
MICHAEL and JULIE, in their 20s, sit on a sofa. Michael sneezes. Clutches his chest as he coughs. He slumps back and reclines on the sofa, feverish.
Michael: I've got Man Flu. Can't get up. Give me a piggyback up the stairs will you?
Julie: Didn't you already get me to bring you a glass of milk? Now you want me to carry you to bed? Do you want me to get into the shower with you and scrub your poor aching back as well?
Michael: My God. I only want to go sleep it off, what's with the pissy attitude?
Julie: Are you a man or a mouse?
Michael: What does it mean, to be a man? And is it wrong to show a moment of weakness, is it wrong to want sympathy, to be babied once in a while? Why is it wrong for men, and acceptable for women?