Small things that make you angry and you feel you can't mention elsewhere

(584 Posts)
MalenkyRusskyDrakonchik Tue 11-Jun-13 17:08:20

I was thinking that maybe we need one of those threads that reminds us we all have much more in common with each other, than any of us does with the misogynistic bigots. smile

I don't know what the feministy equivalent of 'first world problem' is, but I bet there are loads of things you've been itching to point out annoy you, but don't start an AIBU about, or don't moan to your colleague/DH/mates about because it feels insignificant.

Maybe we can all have a good moan here - and maybe back each other up that these things typically aren't so small and insignificant really!

I will go first. I noticed the other day how, when I'm walking down a pavement, I automatically move to the side out of the way of busy men striding along with briefcases. Even when I'm busy. confused Why do I do that? And how come I feel rude - and do get funny looks - when I don't do that?

UptoapointLordCopper Thu 27-Jun-13 09:18:38

Mr and Mrs DH first name surname angry angry angry

I said to serial offender: my friends call me my_firstname and the rest of the world address me as Dr my_surname.

Startail Fri 28-Jun-13 00:57:23

Yes Mrs DH Surname makes my blood boil. Especially on Christmas cards from my NCT group.

FFS you hardly ever saw DH as I was the only second timer and he was minding DH. You are all educated career women, why do you conform to such an old fashioned form of address.

Startail Fri 28-Jun-13 00:58:25

DH was minding DD1 clearly not himself.

Quangle Fri 28-Jun-13 14:16:49

Something I just saw in Next. And maybe I've been on this thread too long but, in the boys' section, a t-shirt with the words "Born to Rule" on it. Really? I mean I actually have a lot to say on the subject of boys being born into the patriarchy but I don't think Next would understand.

TheSmallClanger Fri 28-Jun-13 14:24:54

DD had the best response to letters addressed to "Mrs DHFirstname Oursurname".

"Mummy! This letter is from a silly person who thinks Daddy is a girl!"

themaltesecat Sat 29-Jun-13 17:05:06

I took my husband's surname for practical reasons (to do with immigration and obtaining residence in our chosen country) but my family assumed my husband had "insisted." That was the very word my aunt used. As though I would have shackled myself to a man who presumed to dictate to me which name I bore! The funny thing was, he was a rather sad when I decided to change my name, as though the woman he'd met and fallen for had disappeared. Sentimental sod.

I got annoyed when I told the midwife we'd been married the previous week and she grabbed my hand to see what jewel-festooned engagement ring he'd got me. And looked really, really disappointed for me when I told her all that engagement ring shite gave me hives. She clearly thought I was putting a brave face on it. I do have an engagement ring- one which belonged to my great-grandmother, is over 100 years old, and means something to me for very personal reasons (she died when I was seven, but I remember her well). I wear this on the other hand... which my cousin told me made me look like a "lezzer."

My family...

SuffolkNWhat Sat 29-Jun-13 21:17:12

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

MalenkyRusskyDrakonchik Mon 01-Jul-13 11:11:38

themaltese ... your cousin thinks an engagement ring makes you look like a 'lezzer'? confused

Is she, um, none too bright?

I don't wear rings much either - I like them and all, I just find they annoy me so constantly take them off. One of these days I will put my wedding down somewhere stupid and lose it.

SconeRhymesWithGone Mon 01-Jul-13 16:09:43

Oh yes, the Christmas thing. It's the same in the US. I have become such a Scrooge over the years; why is Christmas a woman's responsibility? Starting right after Thanksgiving, everywhere I go, people ask, "Are you ready for Christmas?" DH says no one has ever asked him that. Bah, humbug!

schooldidi Mon 01-Jul-13 21:29:26

Yesterday I was out with dd2 (3) and her little friend kept wanting a cuddle but dd2 didn't. My first instinct was to say "go on dd2, it's only a cuddle, he's being friendly". I really had to check myself and remind myself that that's a bad message to be sending to both of them. If she doesn't want a cuddle it's perfectly ok to say no, and he needs to learn to accept that not everybody wants to be cuddled on his terms.

LRDLearningDomHome Mon 01-Jul-13 21:33:33

But you did remind yourself! I mean, that's good. I was sitting right on my hands the other day with a FB conversation about 'aww, but he's so cute he keeps wanting to kiss her'. Erm, no. If she doesn't want to be slobbered on she doens't want it.

And he's not her 'little boyfriend' FFS.

(Reading in too much? Me? Never!)

AmandaPandtheTantrumofDoom Mon 01-Jul-13 21:36:21

You're back as LRD LRD. Welcome back!

LRDLearningDomHome Mon 01-Jul-13 21:38:44

Thank you.

The plan is to keep updating with new Russian words every week or so, as I discover my useless MN habit does help me memorise trivia. 'Dom' means 'home' (yeah, ok, could probably manage that), so I'll go on from there.

smile

AmandaPandtheTantrumofDoom Mon 01-Jul-13 21:45:09

Good luck!

schooldidi Mon 01-Jul-13 22:00:07

Yes, it's good that I stopped myself, but it shocked me that my first instinct was to tell her to disregard her own feelings so her friend could have his own way. It's just so ingrained that so many people don't even think about it.

I hate the "little boyfriend" thing with small children too, they're children, they're just friends, you don't have to make it something it's not. And yet, I was guilty of doing it with dd1 when she was younger blush. I cringe when I look back now.

vladthedisorganised Wed 03-Jul-13 15:22:03

Oh I can't bear the 'little boyfriend/girlfriend' thing either. I had problems with this as a teenager too - I've had good male friends all my life and it took till I was about 20odd for this to be seen as in any way normal.

Other things that do my head in:
The division in children's clothing. BOYS RULE!! GIRLS ARE BEST!! Why force the gender issue?
The fact I can't eat anything in public without someone commenting on it. I'm sure men don't get the 'ooh, you're being good/ being naughty today!' because they decided to bring a salad or a cheese sandwich for lunch.
The way that music which is fairly questionable in terms of the message it sends out about women is bloody everywhere, and objecting to it is seen as 'prudish'. No, I just don't want to hear about some talentless rapper 'putting the bitch in her place' in the middle of an aerobics class or shopping centre.

AmandaPandtheTantrumofDoom Tue 09-Jul-13 19:59:11

It has been hot here today. I am an average mid-30s woman. Today I was wearing shorts and a sleeveless top. Plus very ugly but very comfortable old lady sandals. For various reasons I was walking with the buggy (sometimes plus DD1) for about an hour and a half today. As in striding along the road because I was going somewhere.

I have been honked at/had things yelled out of vans on three separate occasions.

I have no idea if what was yelled was positive or negative - busy roads, not listening, and they are rubbish at enunciating grin.

I told a friend how annoyed I was and her response was 'Oh, were they horrid?' I don't know and I don't fucking care. I bet rarely if ever in his life (except perhaps if wearing a rugby shirt for his team) has DH been yelled at in the street by sober people in the middle of the day.

What gives them the bloody right? And why have women accepted it so?

TeiTetua Tue 09-Jul-13 20:27:32

Irrelevant to this thread (or should feminists find a lot to say about linguistic gender, and we aren't attuned to it?) but "MalenkyRussky" has masculine endings, and I was wondering if that was deliberate or not. The feminine would be "MalenkayaRusskaya".

That is approximately the limit of how much Russian I know.

LRDLearningKnigaBook Tue 09-Jul-13 20:56:18

I don't know if I could fit MalenkayaRusskayaDrakonchika onto a MN name. smile

When I picked it, I could only work out the masculine on my own because the dictionary I have didn't tell me you could have a girl dragon. I don't really speak Russian, I'm just learning.

But it's as good a reason as any to have namechanged.

I do really notice grammatical gender, actually - if anyone has a view on this minor irritation, can you let me know? I'm writing about medieval scribes, who are usually men. It is reasonable enough to assume a scribe is a man unless you know otherwise, I suppose, except obviously this gets a bit circular, as everyone assumes scribes are all men because everyone refers to scribes as men, etc. etc.

So do I keep on writing 'he or she', which get clumsy fast, or do I do the slightly 90s thing of writing 'she' 50% of the time, which I find massively confusing as it sounds as if you're talking about two different people, or what?

I am inclined towards the first version but it makes me angry I can't simply write 'she' all the way through without risking being accused of having an agenda (as if that's a bad thing).

AmandaPandtheTantrumofDoom Tue 09-Jul-13 21:24:11

Ha ha. No solution. However, legal documents often have a clause at the end saying references to one gender also include all other genders (yes, I know it probably shouldn't be gender it should be sex, but we can't have the s word in legal documents). I used to wonder how the men would still feel if I turned all the he's to she's.

The lack of a gender neutral third person singular pronoun that you can use about people, or indeed about animals without sounding dismissive annoys the hell out of me on a regular basis. When talking about dogs/cats/etc with DD1 I try and use both he and she. But then I get the third degree on how I know it is a girl dog, and then the owner hears and I get corrected, and it just goes on and on. Similarly, I hate the fact that I very quickly have to refer to gender when talking about another child - "Calm down DD2. It is this boy's turn on the slide first and then I am sure he will move out of the way and let you have a go.."

LRDLearningKnigaBook Tue 09-Jul-13 21:27:50

I have seen people write whole books using 'she' as default pronoun. I rather like it. It's just difficult in a situation where I am 99% sure any reader of mine (all three of them, so I know who they are!) will get the wrong end of the stick.

We do need a neutral pronoun. According to a mate of mine (and this is ironic in context of my writing), there used to be one in Middle English but it died out.

It is fascinating how much language shapes how we can think, though. I've noticed how much more willing I am to use 'she' a lot since on MN it is the default.

AmandaPandtheTantrumofDoom Tue 09-Jul-13 21:30:58

I once read a fairly feminist book on childbirth or some such. Can't remember exactly which one. It earnestly explained at the beginning that babies were referred to as 'he' throughout to avoid confusion with the mother. That did make me smile because as if most people would have noticed or cared. But I liked that she'd bothered!

LRDLearningKnigaBook Tue 09-Jul-13 21:36:32

grin

Bless.

That just reminds me of the bit in Life of Brian '... because he can't have babies, not having a womb, which is nobody's fault ...'. I'd thought you were going to say they referred to the mum in gender-neutral terms.

BartyFottom Tue 09-Jul-13 21:54:50

Years ago I was working for a small publishing company, doing basically anything involved in turning manuscripts into camera-ready copy (I doubt they call it camera-ready copy now, I suppose it's all digital! grin). The books were mostly to do with farming and farmers, vets etc were inevitably referred to as 'he'. I took great pleasure in changing 'he' to 'she' occasionally. Nobody noticed my little act of subversion until the books had been printed - and possibly not even then.

TheDoctrineOfAllan Tue 09-Jul-13 21:59:20

Was it Libby Purves' book, Amanda?

I like (s)he.

I have had to be referred to in an anonymised profile as "they" because "she" would have been too identifying (I work in that kind of industry...)

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now