Thursday, March 8, 2018

So You Say You Support Women?

Hey everyone!

It is international Women's Day! I am so grateful for all the amazing women that influenced me throughout my life. You are all amazing.  

Today I want to briefly talk about feminism, double standards, and sexism. Do you consider yourself a feminist? Even if you don't think you are, you probably are one. If you believe in equality and freedom of choice, then congratulations, you're a feminist! Now, that being said, I 100% understand why someone wouldn't want to openly identify as one and I'm going to explain why.

I have seen far too many women who call themselves feminists hate hard on other women due to the fact that those women don't fit said feminists' narrative. That is not okay nor is that what it should mean to be a feminist. That is why other women are afraid to identify as such. 

If a woman wants to work full-time, whether or not she has kids, then that is awesome for her. If a woman wants to stay home with her kids, then that is wonderful too. I see so many people hating on stay-at-home moms for "lack of ambition," and so on. Working moms get hate too, I know. The world needs more amazing moms so why not support women who choose to stay home? Support women who have to work despite wanting to stay home. Support women who choose to work. If a woman tells you she doesn't want kids, then leave it at that. Being a mom and or CEO might not be for everyone and that is completely okay. If a woman wants to surgically alter her body or wear a butt-load of makeup, that's great, as long as it is on her terms. If a woman doesn't want to wear makeup or shave that's fine too. There are too many strictly cultural pressures that we need to get over.   

Now lets talk about that nasty slut/hoe/whore/bimbo. 

In high school people would say, "I hate so-and-so because she's a slut." Okay, but do you say that about men? I know a guy who's "number" is in the triple digits and even he once called a woman a whore *facepalm.* We have countless terms to define a woman who has multiple partners but no one says those things about men. We don't even have the words to do so. I thought society was growing past this slut-shaming point, but the other day I heard women, who consider themselves feminists, calling a certain woman a "gold digging whore." I don't care if someone has a different political view or lifestyle as you. If you say you support women then you can't pick and choose. You can't say you are "sex positive" and then call someone you may not like a whore. You can't have it both ways. Calling women prudes or criticizing them in that regard is also not okay. If a woman wants to sleep around, and does so responsibly, then hold your judgments. You don't believe in premarital sex? That's great. Then don't have premarital sex, just don't hate on someone who does. In addition to that, if a woman wants to wait till marriage, support her. It is really not that hard.    

In my opinion, I wish feminism was more like this (in addition to equality, etc.): If a woman is living her life to the best of her abilities, on her terms, not hurting anyone, and making decisions based on HER OWN reasoning then we need to support that. Her culture, sexuality, career, lifestyle, religion, race, appearance, reproductive choices, political opinion and so on should not effect your ability to stand with her.   

Lastly, I want to talk about subtle biases that I see come from people, even those who consider themselves open-minded and progressive. Gendered biases stemming from our cultural upbringing are sometimes hard to see and even harder to break. We are all guilty of making assumptions. Here are a few examples I've seen in my personal life. They are small. There are bigger problems in the world. I just want you (me too) to be more conscious in the way we think and speak about women. 

Telling a woman, "wow you have brains and beauty," is kind of sexist. You assume because she is attractive that she cannot also be intelligent. We don't have a phrase like that for men. I know when people say this they really mean no malice, but when you break it down, it's not a compliment. The assumption that pretty women hold no other merit is sexist. I see women (even the ones who think they are progressive) make harsh assumptions about other women based on appearance alone far too often. I wrote more in-depth on this topic last year here.  

Some of you may know I run an Instagram account for my dog. He gains hundreds of followers per week (despite that horrid algorithm) because people think his captions are funny. I cannot tell you how many people have assumed my dogs account manager was a guy. I get messages all the time where people ask if my husband runs his account and makes his captions. I do not get offended because they obviously don't realize they hold minor gender biases. According to society a blond with double D's is simply not capable of being clever on her own. Lastly, assuming that because I drive a truck that it must be my husband's is also a little sexist. If you ask me if you may borrow my husband's truck I will say no. He doesn't have a truck.  

Anyway, in honor of Women's Day please be aware of double standards, subtle gender biases, and non-feminism feminism. I know it is not intentional or malicious in most cases, but we can all be better.  

If you got through my rant, thank you. If you disagree with something let's kindly talk about it! I wrote this rather quickly and on a whim, so I may not have expressed my opinions very well and I would be happy to clarify anything.  


1 comment: