I recently connected with a man who proudly says he is a feminist. He is truly concerned for the women in his life and his actions match his word; yesterday he brought dinner to a friend who was working two jobs and had no time to get food, and then when he found out she wouldn’t be able to put gas in her nearly empty tank until 11:30 pm, took her car himself and filled the tank. We talked about what it’s like for women to move through this world – the men who shoulder check us when we are walking in opposite directions, women having to always think about how we are going to survive a trip to the grocery store without being hit on or hit over the head; how unsafe it is for a woman to travel alone to a majority of other countries (not to mention going a few miles away from home).
Of course, men are also hugely disconnected in interpersonal relationships when they label feelings as feminine and therefore without value. Some of the men I encounter on OKCupid have been on there for six years now, and claim that any blame lies with the women they meet on the site. However, they are terrible at self-examination (and most likely don’t have the first clue about how to learn it), and they will ALWAYS be single if they have shut down all possibilities to meaningful relationships complete with love and communication.
Hello dear reader(s)!
“Man up!” “You hit like a girl!” “Don’t be a little bitch!” “You’re a pussy!”
Put 3 year old kids in a room together. Chances are there will be a lot of crying, a lot of laughing, a lot of playing, a lot of running, a lot of fighting, a lot of hugging. Take away the gender specific outfits and haircuts and try to tell the difference between the boys and the girls. I bet you can’t.
Women aren’t the only ones hurt by the devaluation of traits incorrectly labeled and deemed “feminine”. The refusal for people of a certain gender as sharing some of these human traits strips men of their humanity.
Men, when was the first time you were told that crying was a sign of weakness? When was the first time someone told you to “man up?”
Beyond what this says to women…
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