men spent their childhoods in the rough Southie neighborhood and can,
therefore, relate on a personal level. This tie between the two men is
important because it contributes to Maguire's ability to see through
Will's tough-guy persona and enhances his ability to understand Will in
order to figure out how best to relate to him and make their relationship
blossom so that men benefit. Through this act, Maguire is also seen as
a nurturer since the process of nurturing includes the mentor’s capacity
to understand the ability, experience, and psychological maturity of the
mentee (Anderson and Shannon 40). Despite this commonality, though,
Will still pushes back at first, as expected.
The early phases of growth and development between the
mentor and mentee are marked by the mentee’s preoccupation with
personal survival, safety (both physically and perhaps more importantly;
emotionally), self-esteem needs, and belonging (Hayes 444). Will he has
built up an emotional wall that protects him from getting hurt by others,
and opening up to Maguire is a potential threat to his safety. As a
defense mechanism, Will attempts to use his intelligence to evaluate the
therapist’s mental state by analyzing a work of art Maguire has painted
and hung on his wall. This moment expresses Will's motive to be the
individual in charge and to create that safety net necessary for emotional
survival. In this way, it becomes apparent that his accusatory notions
upset the therapist and serve as a means to try and push Maguire away
and while gaining power over his mentor. When Will tries to assume
power over Maguire by arrogantly picking apart his painting, Maguire
lashes out and exposes a more aggressive side not only to Will, but also
to himself. From Screenshots 17.1 17.2 , it is clear by each man’s facial
expression that Will and Sean are taken aback by Maguire’s hasty action
of putting Will in a chokehold. Thus, mutual learning begins. Although
a little rattled, Maguire's determination and investment in this young
man remains ever present, which is one of the driving forces behind
what defines a mentor and makes them mentor successful.
Even the mentee pushes back against the mentor, Maguire uses
this time to learn more about Will. He analyzes the way Will interacts
with authority and then figures out how to establish trust with his
180
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