A friend of mine once commented on how I take my coffee. (It’s actually quite comical, because Martin asks if I want any coffee with my milk in the mornings) And when I asked my friend, “Are you judging?”
He said, “Yes. I take mine blackkkkkk.”
I responded appropriately, “Gross.” (Because, I mean, really… Ew.) And then he said something that really got me going:
“I’m a man.”
The idea slapped me in the face. Is putting something in your coffee womanly? Is it because it weakens the caffeine? The bitterness? The pow-factor? Therefore making it weak, and womanly? Suddenly, somehow not even drinking coffee is not safe from a gender stereotype! I let my feelings fly, and again responded appropriately with,
“Fuckkkkkkkkk that noise. Fuck the “man standard” fuck the “woman standard” fuck all the gender stereotypes they make me so mad I could scream.”
And he laughed. Because he got me.
Of course he was kidding, he said it to yank my chain, because that’s the way our friendship goes. He gave himself a point, and I was reminded why he and I have been friends for so long. We’ve known each other for more than half our lives, and he’s certainly not one to stereotype. But the idea remains:
Literally ANYTHING we (man/woman/other) do, on a daily basis, can be manipulated and put into a gender stereotype and that is infuriating. Does it infuriate you? Because it should. If it doesn’t, please tell me why?
I read a most excellent interview with Margaret Atwood in TIME Magazine the other day, where she was asked about her stand on Feminism. She said, “When we use that word, Feminism, I always want to know: What do you mean by it? What are we talking about? If the person can describe what they mean by the word, then we can talk about whether I am one of those or not.”
She has a point.
You hear folks spout off about Feminism all the time, on social media, on the news, online and in print, but to me, Feminism can be different for every person.
Here’s what Merriam-Webster has to say on the matter:
I’m a Feminist because I believe that women are not treated equally, and that’s why we need a movement. I’m a Feminist because I don’t think there should be a difference in standards, in pay, in status, in trajectory, in education, in acceptance. I, as a woman, want control of my own body. I, as a woman, want to be able to do what I want, when I want, and not be judged because it’s not “Lady-Like” or “Appropriate” for a woman to do it.
I marched in January for those beliefs, and I continue to be active in the Women’s March Movement to continue my stand.
I want to wear my hair short. I want control of my own body. I don’t want to wear makeup unless I feel like it. I want to drink my coffee with milk, and not be deemed “Less Than” by anyone, anywhere, anytime. I want to express myself in whatever way feels good. Luckily, my inner circle has surrounded me with friends, and a husband, who support, encourage and share in this one million percent.
If it feels right and good, and enhances the best version of you there is, then do it. Screw the gender stereotypes. ❤