I often think that I should have been a man.
Since as early as 1600 BC women have been experimenting and cursed with the burden of contraception, and all of the dangerous physical and mental side affects that come with it. In the Ancient World women would go to extreme lengths to avoid pregnancy, including methods using stones, sodium carbonate, honey and a flower known as ‘Queen Anne’s Lace’ (which is still used as a herbal contraceptive method today in India). Since the rise of contraception in Britain in the 19th century, millions of women have faced side effects causing heart attacks, stroke, blood clots, and liver tumours due to hormonal contraceptives.
They told you that you weren’t beautiful and that made you angry. Then they had the nerve to call you manly and that made you angrier. Next, as if that weren’t enough, they chastised you for being angry, berating you with appellations such as attitudinal and bitter, and that sent you into a rage. It was a rage that you have every right to be in, because you are, essentially, a victim who has been disrespected in every way. But, while before mentioned folks might be causing you quite the angst, quite the annoyance and are factors you could certainly do without, in all totality, they are actually correct.
As a journalist, I realize that everything has nuance. Nothing can be understood from just one single perspective. This leads me to my potentially controversial opinion that while having children is a gift, it is also a burden that many of us do not want to have. And women are tired of being shamed for knowing ourselves well enough to understand what types of lives we want to lead.
A friend of mine and I were talking about politics, social injustice, and a lot of other current events, and he asked me, "Why do women try to portray themselves as very strong? Why do they do so much? Are they trying to prove themselves? Do they feel as though they must prove themselves? I need to know." Now me being a male, I am, of course, the wrong person to ask those types of questions, but I'm glad he brought it up so I could tell him what I thought. Til this day, the matter is still circulating: "Do women still have to prove themselves?" Through statistics and many real-world workplace experiences, sadly, it seems the answer is yes. There are many stereotypes/cultural norms regarding women in the workplace that may even justify why women feel as if they're obligated to prove themselves more, stereotypes such as: They're less equipped and experienced than men in the workplace, or that they'll leave or become distracted at work for family reasons. There are some stereotypes outside the workplace, like women are just people with crazy mood swings who are also always on their period, they can't fight cause they're women and fragile, they're needy, or they can't amount to anything substantial. Through it, all women rise and defy the odds, and show that women are just as high, if not far greater than, the man next to them and so on.
We all know the girl code. Regardless if it was taught to us or we simply learned it as we grew up and heard "Don't you know the girl code?"or "It's part of the girl code." An internationally known code that was never written in stone, and never truly verbalized, but universally followed. And the girls that broke the girl code? Shunned and isolated. A code created to protect us from getting hurt or betrayed. One based on the ethics of the young girls that created it and followed it.
Blessings to whatever pair of eyes may be reading this. If you identify as a feminine being, this message is directly for you. If you lean more to the masculine side, feel free to keep reading, as I'll be describing what embodying the feminine means to me in a nutshell, and going over the masculine's (equally powerful) role in that as well.
Hello Boys. I think I get you more than ever. These past couple of years must have been horrible for you. I mean this. I’m assuming I’m talking to men who are completely flabbergasted at how many of their peers have had to learn not to rape, assault and overlook women for work. No, I’m not being facetious. I know more decent men than I know indecent men. A very decent, funny and smart man raised me. I’m the sister of one of one of those decent, funny and smart men. I’m talking to those men, right now. I’m talking to the guy who, even by the recent discovery of what women have known forever, still don’t fear going on a date, because if he was wondering about his past own behavior on dates, maybe he shouldn’t be dating, at all. If you’re a man who says that you don’t want to date now, because you don’t know if you might do something wrong, don’t date.
Women are bitches and not bosses. That is the patriarch. It is oppression of women on a societal scale. Roles conditioned by demographics like: finances, education, culture, family. As a mother, I want more for my girls. I want them to know that you, a woman, can absolutely run your world.
A simple image, yet it was something that grabbed my attention instantly—it was stuck onto a dingy lamppost somewhere between the Haggerston canal and Dalston junction. My memory fails me as to where exactly I took this picture so long ago (as you can probably tell by the snapchat format, a dying app), still, I come back to this image constantly. It's saved on my phone as well as my laptop, in which I can count on one hand the pictures I have.
I do not mind the idea of chivalry. However, I do think society has put such an emphasis on men being chivalrous that it has lost its value and can be annoying. Most of the time men do not realize they are acting in a way that makes women feel less valuable because they "are trying to be chivalrous."