Monday, 5 July 2010

The sacrifices of femininity

I must admit I'm not a feminist, I like all those gentlemanly details, like opening the door to let us through or the feeling that you're protected, even if it's only an illusion and your man would probably run away while you hit muggers with your 45lb bag full of cosmetics, books, cards, pens, notebooks, toys and no money.

I'm obviously quite a selective sexist because I'll defend women's rights and freedom to act and decide, or whenever I think it convenient for my objectives, but there are still things I expect a man to do, like DIY things, mow the lawn or kill spiders so I have a guilt-free conscience.

Women have fought for equality, but I find I don't want all of the package that equality entails. I'd much rather stay at home without working if I've also got to look after kids and cook and fill up washing machines and clear up and race around like a maniac to pick up the children from school on time... Unfortunately I can't do this if I want to keep a certain lifestyle, so I have to be a modern woman who works and does those things too.

And then there are all those image sacrifices. I often think about the people who discovered things or implanted traditions. One of those things, for instance, is beauty trends. Like who on Earth decided to shave for the first time? Didn't they realize the consequences that would have in the future? The long-life commitment to suffer that involved? What's wrong with looking like a cuddly orangutan? I'm sure we'd save on heating and warm clothes in the winter. In fact, women do tend to go back to the furry look sporting minx coats in the winter.

Then of course you get the "you need to be thin to be beautiful" fashion. Whoever decided that? Did they really think about the hunger and lack of breathing and all other thinning sacrifices that this trend would mean to women's nature? If I'd met that person in time, I'd have smacked them on the head and say, "think very carefully what you're going to say, you're about to change the life of lots of happy bulgy women".

So, next time I talk to the manager in charge of my rebirth, I will make sure they tick the "Man" box on my form before chucking back into the world.


  1. I understand - there is more than one reason my blog is called 'Damsel in a Dirty Dress' ;)

  2. Oh, I hear you. I like the door-opening thing and all that accompanies it. But when it comes to cooking and cleaning and the like... forget it!

  3. I always expect a man to open the door for me and put down the toilet seat, but not because I'm lazy. It's simply common courtesy.

    I was watching Hitchcock's Vertigo yesterday and it made me think about body image for women. The sex symbols of the golden age of Hollywood were voluptuous and had meat on their bones, as opposed to most sex symbols now who are too thin. In other words, women like Kim Novak were HEALTHY, and they looked amazing. Does anyone really think the runway models of today are pretty? They look like zombified scarecrows!

  4. I hope men still do those things, and women don't discourage them to do it.

    Amanda, I like to think women should have curves (that's my comfort).

  5. En México, la mayoría de los hombres hacen esas cosas... vamos, yo jamás me hubiese subido a un coche si mi acompañante no me abre la puerta! Mi marido no lo ha hecho NUNCA. Eso sí, en México yo tendría una cornamenta más grande que la del abuelo de Bambi... unas cosas por otras!

    Ahora, lo del peso... lo que está mal es enfocarlo a tener que estar delgado (o MUY delgado) para verse bien. Uno debe estar en su peso para estar sano, porque es más saludable que estar gordo... o demasiado flaco. Lo de los pelos si es un coñazo (con perdón!)... jajaja!!!

  6. I never had a choice about working and household chores because when my kids were young I was a single Mum. Now I can choose and I choose to do both especially as there's less of both now the kids have left home and I can choose my own working hours.

    I'm not fussed about this door-opening malarkey and I think that Size 0 is ugly but I don't want to walk around like a cuddly orang utan. I want to dress up when I go out and feel fabulous (even if in truth I look a bit over the hill). If I feel fabulous then my spirits will be lifted and that's all that really matters, don't you think?


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