Let's talk about something that is taboo and get on the same page.
Despite your gender, race, religion, or culture, no one was put on this earth to get approval from someone else. No one was made to be lesser than you. We were all created equal.
Women weren't put on this earth for men. Men weren't put on this earth for women. Everyone who isn't white was not put on this earth to cater to white people's demands and vice versa. Let's all repeat this: we are ALL created equal.
This may seem slightly trivial because it may seem obvious, but it's not. Do you realize how many sexist and gender appropriation comments you make a day? Or how many "suggestions" are made about the other gender?
Boys will be boys. She'll be a great wife someday. Grow a pair. She must be on her period. You shouldn't wear makeup. I don't like you with your hair long/short. You should definitely wear makeup. My last boyfriend/girlfriend didn't wear or do or blah blah blah. Why are we having to compare everything to a previous experience? Why do we have to have an opinion on everything?
How many times has this type of behavior been tolerated by women or men?
Every day, we set standards to where we think they should go, which is usually way too low of a bar. We allow these people to treat us like gum on the sidewalk. I have many instances, just like many of my friends, of guys treating us like property or a "work of art." Just the other day, a friend told me that his previous girlfriends never wore makeup and I shouldn't wear bright red lipstick because it's distracting. What did I say to that? I laughed him off saying I love wearing this red lipstick. He continued on saying how it was distracting from my eyes.
Many of you know that I'm pretty straightforward with how I feel and I'll fight back, however lately I'm just trying to control my anger and be polite. I'm a hothead and I work on it every day. But here's the funny thing, whether I stand up for myself or laugh off what was said, I'm told I was either too harsh or I need to stand up for myself. I'll never win. The funny thing is the people giving me feedback for this is has always been a man.
I am so sick of men telling me how I need to live my life. * cue Bon Jovi* IT'S MY LIFE.
How many times have you walked away from a conversation just feeling like you were the worst person ever because you were polite and didn't shut them down? Or you did shut them down and you recount your experience proudly and your friend tells you, you were too harsh? Men how many times do you tell your female friends to stand up for themselves, but when they do you sort of belittle them and not support them?
I have experienced some of my male friends be hypocrites towards women. They'll tell their daughter, wife, sister, mother not to do or trust a guy because of certain things they say or do, but then they go out minutes later and immediately do that thing! I haven't even touched mansplaining and how the majority of the men in my life do it.
If you take away one thing from this, let it be that you watch what you say this week. Consciously watch what you say. Count how many times you're accidentally racist or sexist. Count how many times it happens on your favorite television show. It's become an every day thing that we don't notice it fully. But deep down it's hurting someone. Your comments cut deep into someone's life. We don't realize how much impact we have on someone, because to us it's a ripple, to them it's a wave.