#ContactForm1 { display: none ! important; }

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

I Want To Be A Woman

I was born in the 1980s. I went to girl scout troop where we were encouraged to think about careers first and foremost, because women weren't supposed to grow up in the shadows of men. We weren't meant to be tied to a house and babies, or spend our lives in domestic servitude to lazy, beer-swilling swine who didn't respect Girl Power.

Nope, our generation was told to rise up, put on our power suits, wear those shoulder pads, cut our hair, and we could have the corner office.

When I was in school "You're such a girl!" was a legitimate insult and no one questioned that.

When I was young, crying was unacceptable, emotions were dismissed because of PMS (which meant you could never have a legitimate feeling ever), and cutting your hair short was Butch but wearing it long made you weak. I actually went to a safety class once where girls were encouraged to chop their hair short because Rapists (TM) looked for long hair.

Afterschool TV specials taught me that spunky, not-girly girls were the cool ones and that girls who wore dresses, were cheerleaders, liked to dance, or general were Girly were bad.

It took me another decade to figure out what was so wrong with this.

What I learned as a child was that it was okay to be a girl, as long as I didn't dress, act, or think in a traditionally Feminine way. In other words, it was okay to be a girl as long as you looked like a man.

I don't want to be a man.

I don't think there's a reason I should be ashamed of having curves, boobs, or a vagina. I don't think I need to wear pink ironically. I don't see why I need to shun beautiful things, or things I enjoy, so that I can get ahead in the world.

What really drove the point home was a pop song from Japan that showed girls in frilly Milk Maid dresses and pastel colors fighting off alien invaders. I bet it's meant to be funny, but I watched and thought... Why? Why does the color of a dress, or the amount of lace determine how good someone is at military tactics?

Does the pink dye leach into your brain and poison you? No. Don't be ridiculous!

But that's what we're taught, isn't it? We're taught that someone wearing Traditionally Feminine colors must be mentally feeble. After all, she's a girl, or a girly guy. Bad girls! Bad for liking things that aren't Traditionally Masculine strong and aggressive colors! Bad for liking Spring! Bad, feeble-minded, woman-cow!

And I'm over it.

I don't want to be a man.

I want to be a woman. I want to wear flowy skirts sometimes, and sometimes kick back in jeans. I want to stay at home to take care of my kids while they're young without everyone I meet talking down to me because Stay At Home Parents are idiots. I want to live in a culture where someone wearing a pink skirt and lipstick gets as much respect as the person in the 3-piece-charcoal-gray business suit and no one stops to think about the gender of either person.

And that starts with you.

I can't force anyone to change, but I can ask you to change. I can ask you, please, to treat everyone you meet the same. I can ask you not to judge them based on their clothes or their gender. I can ask you not to talk down to someone because they aren't the same as you.

And I am.

Please, don't judge me.



  1. I always figured the motive behind getting girls to cut their hair short was because the guys who wore their hair long were being addressed as female until they turned around.

    Society always has weird concepts on what is "proper" behavior for girls. It seems to swing from one extreme to another.

    Having grown up on the end of "You're a girl, what can you do?" I've learnt over the years that a person's gender, sexual orientation, religion, language, skin colour, and age are all just elements of who they are and only define them when they let them. I don't and hope to never do so. My friends cover a wide spectrum and each one is an individual to me.

    Now I will joke and tell people "I'm a redhead :P" when I say or do something but that's just because red hair is a visual warning for people. A redhead will stand out and be unique. But that's still just a part of me, it isn't all I am.

    When asked to describe friends the first words you will get from me are "funny, smart, sarcastic, witty, kind, generous" etc. I might throw in a physical description. The words you'll never get from me are gay/transgendered/Christian/Jewish/Islamic/black/white/red/yellow/old/young etc. Those are elements of my friends but they don't define my friends. To me, at least.

    1. I think that's a healthy attitude to have. You shouldn't be penalized for being who you are and liking what you like. Or being born anything.