5 Reasons Why Men Need To Stop Calling Women "Females"
Start writing a post
Politics and Activism

5 Reasons Why Men Need To Stop Calling Women "Females"

Come on, fellas, it's time to take this awful word out of your vocabulary for good!

5 Reasons Why Men Need To Stop Calling Women "Females"
She Knows

With the gender gap and the obvious disparities between men and women in the fields of wages, education, and job opportunities getting media attention, it seems petty to dwell on something as simple as vocabulary. However, we have to recognize that language is often drenched in inherent misogyny too—wait! I know that's a scary word. Misogyny, patriarchy—those words always seem to preface the bitter ramblings of some feminist diatribe. However, becoming aware of how language represents you and makes other people feel is just the first step to a more harmonious and respectful interactions. Therefore, calling women females has got to stop, and here's why:

1. "Female" and "woman" do not mean the same thing.

According to Merriam-Webster, a female, when used as an adjective, is "of or denoting the sex that can bear offspring or produce eggs, distinguished biologically by the production of gametes (ova) that can be fertilized by male gametes." And when used as a noun, it means "a female person, animal, or plant."

Interesting that there is no distinction between those three organisms. When referring to a female, you could literally be talking about a plant.

"Oh man, I just got talking to a fine little female."

Female what? Mountain goat? Cactus flower? Female is not exclusive to the human species. The word you're looking for is "woman."

2. When are men ever casually referred to as males?

Easy. They're not.

3. It's almost always used in a derogatory way.

Female, when referring to women, in its typical context can often be substituted by the "b word." That is how it sounds--that's why women cringe when men spew the word so hatefully.

"That is one rowdy group of females."

Read: "That is one rowdy group of b-----s"

When does anyone ever use female in a good way?

"Oh wow, that is one beautiful female."

What's wrong with this sentence? It starts with "that." That, which connotes an object, a thing. This person called the woman beautiful, but in an objectifying, and therefore unflattering, way.

You wouldn't say:

"I want to marry that female." It sounds all wrong! You'd say "I want to marry that woman." Why? There is a certain level of respect and humanity when referring to someone as a woman which is not present when referring to a woman as a female.

4. It's a HUGE red flag for a lot of women.

This point is best illustrated by Demetria Lucas D'Oyley of The Root:

"I had to explain that when certain women hear a guy say "female" (and its even crasser euphemism, "b--ch"), it's akin to a black person hearing a nonblack person drop an n-bomb. There would be a whole lot of automatic assumptions made about what that nonblack person thinks about black people. Most would automatically call that person racist through and through, and yet guys don't want to accept that the language some use to refer to women has the same effect on women. "

5. You sound completely misogynistic (and therefore stupid)

Look no further than the comment thread on a similar article discussing the inherent misogyny behind using female instead of woman:

In short, if you're about to call a woman a female, don't.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
the beatles
Wikipedia Commons

For as long as I can remember, I have been listening to The Beatles. Every year, my mom would appropriately blast “Birthday” on anyone’s birthday. I knew all of the words to “Back In The U.S.S.R” by the time I was 5 (Even though I had no idea what or where the U.S.S.R was). I grew up with John, Paul, George, and Ringo instead Justin, JC, Joey, Chris and Lance (I had to google N*SYNC to remember their names). The highlight of my short life was Paul McCartney in concert twice. I’m not someone to “fangirl” but those days I fangirled hard. The music of The Beatles has gotten me through everything. Their songs have brought me more joy, peace, and comfort. I can listen to them in any situation and find what I need. Here are the best lyrics from The Beatles for every and any occasion.

Keep Reading...Show less
Being Invisible The Best Super Power

The best superpower ever? Being invisible of course. Imagine just being able to go from seen to unseen on a dime. Who wouldn't want to have the opportunity to be invisible? Superman and Batman have nothing on being invisible with their superhero abilities. Here are some things that you could do while being invisible, because being invisible can benefit your social life too.

Keep Reading...Show less

19 Lessons I'll Never Forget from Growing Up In a Small Town

There have been many lessons learned.

houses under green sky
Photo by Alev Takil on Unsplash

Small towns certainly have their pros and cons. Many people who grow up in small towns find themselves counting the days until they get to escape their roots and plant new ones in bigger, "better" places. And that's fine. I'd be lying if I said I hadn't thought those same thoughts before too. We all have, but they say it's important to remember where you came from. When I think about where I come from, I can't help having an overwhelming feeling of gratitude for my roots. Being from a small town has taught me so many important lessons that I will carry with me for the rest of my life.

Keep Reading...Show less
​a woman sitting at a table having a coffee

I can't say "thank you" enough to express how grateful I am for you coming into my life. You have made such a huge impact on my life. I would not be the person I am today without you and I know that you will keep inspiring me to become an even better version of myself.

Keep Reading...Show less
Student Life

Waitlisted for a College Class? Here's What to Do!

Dealing with the inevitable realities of college life.

college students waiting in a long line in the hallway

Course registration at college can be a big hassle and is almost never talked about. Classes you want to take fill up before you get a chance to register. You might change your mind about a class you want to take and must struggle to find another class to fit in the same time period. You also have to make sure no classes clash by time. Like I said, it's a big hassle.

This semester, I was waitlisted for two classes. Most people in this situation, especially first years, freak out because they don't know what to do. Here is what you should do when this happens.

Keep Reading...Show less

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Facebook Comments