The Phrase 'Women And Femmes' Makes Me Want To Fly Away And Die

The Phrase 'Women And Femmes' Makes Me Want To Fly Away And Die

Femininity is not a category of oppression. It's a tool of the oppressor.
1214
views

Those who talk to me on a regular basis know about my psychological struggle with the new leftist norms surrounding gender. I’m a gender-nonconforming woman. The women who raised me, the women I admire most, are also gender nonconforming — but still decidedly female. A lot of the discussion of gender leaves me puzzled, annoyed, and bothered by the people who claim to be the most accepting of people like me. But I don’t want to talk about them today. I want to talk about the left’s newest way to refer to female people. Not women, no — women and femmes.

I’m declaring war on the phrase "women and femmes."

My first attack is on the stylistic front — it sucks! It’s an ugly phrase, clunky and full of sounds that don’t necessarily belong in the straight, English-speaking lexicon. Tagging onto that, it’s not a word for people who aren’t lesbians! Femme is a term created by and for lesbians to describe women who prefer traditionally feminine presentation but do not do so for the sake of attracting and pleasing men. It has a long history that, once again, doesn’t involve people who aren’t lesbians.

For the love of God, it’s cultural appropriation.

Believe it or not, those are my minor concerns with "women and femmes." My main problem with "women and femmes" is that it creates a category of oppression that just straight-up doesn’t exist. Femininity is not a category. Femininity is not some kind of soul-based essence that’s totally out of your control. It’s not fate, it’s not destiny. It’s a socially constructed category that some people (women) are expected to participate in for the sake of other people (men).

Femininity is not oppressed. Women are. And enforced femininity is one of the tools of women’s oppression.

I’ve been over this before, in various articles I’ve written; femininity is a stumbling block that only exists for women. Being expected to constantly worry about, check up on, and buy products to improve our appearance slows women down. It’s an added financial burden, and it’s yet another front on which women are open to public critique.

Want to know the first thing someone calls me when I cross them on an issue of politics, religion or — God forbid — gender and sexuality? Ugly. They call me ugly, sometimes with "bitch" tagged on for emphasis. Enforced femininity is a hammer used to crush women, not a goddamn category of oppression.

A headline of an article I found while Googling: "50 Ways People Expect Constant Emotional Labor from Women and Femmes."

I’m sorry, who?

Wearing lipstick does not automatically opt non-female people into a thousand-year-old system of oppression that requires female people to cater to male concerns.

Putting on nail polish doesn’t drop a man’s paycheck or make everyone in the boardroom stop taking them seriously.

Femininity isn’t a category of oppression. Femininity is the problem.

So the next time you start typing ‘women and femmes,’ just don’t. Hit backspace around, oh, 10 times. The category of oppression we’re talking about in this day and age is just women. Femininity has nothing to do with it.

Cover Image Credit: Pxhere

Popular Right Now

This Is How Your Same-Sex Marriage Affects Me As A Catholic Woman

I hear you over there, Bible Bob.
325391
views

It won't.

Wait, what?

I promise you did read that right. Not what you were expecting me to say, right? Who another person decides to marry will never in any way affect my own marriage whatsoever. Unless they try to marry the person that I want to, then we might have a few problems.

As a kid, I was raised, baptized, and confirmed into an old school Irish Catholic church in the middle of a small, midwestern town.

Not exactly a place that most people would consider to be very liberal or open-minded. Despite this I was taught to love and accept others as a child, to not cast judgment because the only person fit to judge was God. I learned this from my Grandpa, a man whose love of others was only rivaled by his love of sweets and spoiling his grandkids.

While I learned this at an early age, not everyone else in my hometown — or even within my own church — seemed to get the memo. When same-sex marriage was finally legalized country-wide, I cried tears of joy for some of my closest friends who happen to be members of the LGBTQ community.

I was happy while others I knew were disgusted and even enraged.

"That's not what it says in the bible! Marriage is between a man and a woman!"

"God made Adam and Eve for a reason! Man shall not lie with another man as he would a woman!"

"Homosexuality is a sin! It's bad enough that they're all going to hell, now we're letting them marry?"

Alright, Bible Bob, we get it, you don't agree with same-sex relationships. Honestly, that's not the issue. One of our civil liberties as United States citizens is the freedom of religion. If you believe your religion doesn't support homosexuality that's OK.

What isn't OK is thinking that your religious beliefs should dictate others lives.

What isn't OK is using your religion or your beliefs to take away rights from those who chose to live their life differently than you.

Some members of my church are still convinced that their marriage now means less because people are free to marry whoever they want to. Honestly, I wish I was kidding. Tell me again, Brenda how exactly do Steve and Jason's marriage affect yours and Tom's?

It doesn't. Really, it doesn't affect you at all.

Unless Tom suddenly starts having an affair with Steve their marriage has zero effect on you. You never know Brenda, you and Jason might become best friends by the end of the divorce. (And in that case, Brenda and Tom both need to go to church considering the bible also teaches against adultery and divorce.)

I'll say it one more time for the people in the back: same-sex marriage does not affect you even if you or your religion does not support it. If you don't agree with same-sex marriage then do not marry someone of the same sex. Really, it's a simple concept.

It amazes me that I still actually have to discuss this with some people in 2017. And it amazes me that people use God as a reason to hinder the lives of others.

As a proud young Catholic woman, I wholeheartedly support the LGBTQ community with my entire being.

My God taught me to not hold hate so close to my heart. He told me not to judge and to accept others with open arms. My God taught me to love and I hope yours teaches you the same.

Disclaimer - This article in no way is meant to be an insult to the Bible or religion or the LGBTQ community.

Cover Image Credit: Sushiesque / Flickr

Related Content

Connect with a generation
of new voices.

We are students, thinkers, influencers, and communities sharing our ideas with the world. Join our platform to create and discover content that actually matters to you.

Learn more Start Creating

Bisexuality And Pansexuality Are The Same Thing

A suitable rant for today's society

JordynL
JordynL
394
views

Before I begin, I do have friends that identify as homosexual, bisexual, heterosexual, and transgender. They all know how I feel about this issue and understand. The majority happens to agree, which I think is interesting and fantastic.

-----------------------------------------------------

In today's society, it seems that everyone needs their own title to feel special and significant. They don't want to be caught in a loop that isn't "theirs" or be associated with something that they are, in fact, definitely associated with. Sexual identities, sexualities, and genders are a GIGANTIC factor with this issue because people are finding more obscure ways to explain things so they are able to feel like an individual.

Back in the less complicated days, there were homosexual, bisexual, and heterosexual people; plain and simple. One was attracted to the same sex, one was attracted to both men and women, and the other was attracted to the opposite sex. But now, there's all these different sexual categories that are honestly unnecessary and just cause meaningless confusion. Confusion arises when most sexualities are literally the same thing, but people don't want to see it that way. Examples? Bisexuality and Pansexuality.

By definition, bisexuality is the romantic, sexual, and emotional attraction/sexual behavior toward both males and females, or romantic and sexual attraction to people of any sex or gender identity; the latter aspect is sometimes alternatively termed pansexuality.

By definition, pansexuality (or omnisexuality--i.e. also the same thing by the way) is the sexual, romantic, and emotional attraction towards people regardless of their sex or gender identity. Pansexual people may refer to themselves as gender-blind, including people that are outside the gender binary; a branch of bisexuality.

Both have attraction to any sex or gender identity; men, women, transgender. Literally the only difference is that pansexual people can be attracted to non-binary people, which still are biological men and women, and/or recognize more than two genders. But after all, THERE ARE ONLY TWO GENDERS.

Yes, trans people have their own title and I won't argue that. But where this is concerned, they are transitioning from one biological sex to the other.

Same concept.

Bisexuality is the overall term. Pansexuality is an unnecessary branch of bisexuality. They are the same thing.

JordynL
JordynL

Related Content

Facebook Comments