The Feminist Pub (continued).

(1000 Posts)
UptoapointLordCopper Sat 23-Nov-13 20:02:19

Been busy. Came back today to have a look but the Pub thread was full! shock Shall we continue here?

Third episode of Borgen on tonight. smile

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Sat 23-Nov-13 20:22:19

Evening. wine

I'm drinking some nice prosecco and watching the Doctor smile

TheDoctrineOfWho Sat 23-Nov-13 21:07:11

Ooh, well done, I was just coming on to start a third thread as I think LRD is still AWOL!

I am NOT watching DOTD (harumph) as I didn't want it interrupted by bedtime and guilt, so I am catching up on work and will watch it later. So hoping to avoid spoilers - better get off the internet for now!


SabrinaMulhollandJjones Sat 23-Nov-13 21:16:33

My lips are sealed Doctrine tardis

TheDoctrineOfWho Sun 24-Nov-13 00:31:12

Watched it all alone snuggled under blankets.



UptoapointLordCopper Sun 24-Nov-13 10:43:52

I don't watch Doctor Who. I watched one episode once and had nightmares. blush

I watched Borgen. smile

TheDoctrineOfWho Sun 24-Nov-13 10:54:21

Which Doctor was it, LordCopper?

UptoapointLordCopper Sun 24-Nov-13 11:05:41

Doctrine - David Tenant. He exudes energy, doesn't he? I watched the one with Katherine Jenkins, and sharks swimming in the air. Bit like Sharknado. hmm grin

TheDoctrineOfWho Sun 24-Nov-13 15:51:50

Oh, that one was quite pants.

UptoapointLordCopper Sun 24-Nov-13 16:08:59

So I have been told. But I enjoyed it. And it gave me nightmares.

TheDoctrineOfWho Sun 24-Nov-13 18:00:53

So, is Doctor Who a feminist show?

Pros - companions are usually female and strong characters with lots of screen time
Cons- the doctor has never been a woman, despite it being clear in "The Doctor's Wife" that some time lords did change sex when regenerating.

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Sun 24-Nov-13 18:42:38

I'm happy to be corrected, but I've never found myself sucking in my lips in at anything sexist while watching the modern ones. Strong female assistants - who frequently save the day and aren't scantly clad...definitely an equal to the Doctor.

I do wonder that Russell T Davies didn't introduce a female doctor with a fit male assistant though - that would be right up his street - maybe too progressive for the beeb. grin

TheDoctrineOfWho Sun 24-Nov-13 19:03:39

There was a big thread on here a while ago about whether doctor who could be a woman - which is why I went, "Hah!" In my head when I re watched the Doctor's Wife.

I agree Sabrina, certainly wrt the reboot. I think most episodes fail the Bechdel test but they probably also don't have two men discussing something that isn't a man often - part of the dynamic.

TheDoctrineOfWho Sun 24-Nov-13 19:09:17

I think after starting with CE and then setting up the dynamic between CE and Rose, Russ had to have another guy, really.

UptoapointLordCopper Sun 24-Nov-13 21:10:45

OK so I watched DOTD because I channel-hopped to it this evening by accident. I must say, it is very exciting, and not nightmarish. smile

I think there should be a female Doctor. The assistant is good and strong and everything but she's not the one in the title though, is she? Happens all the time. Eg, in the Harry Potter books, they would all have been annihilated without Hermione, but she's still not the lead character, is she? You can have strong clever women, as long as they are only sidekicks. sad

AntiJamDidi Sun 24-Nov-13 22:33:26

Oh, I'm glad there's a third pub. I was quite distressed when the second one filled up but not quite distressed enough to start a third one myself.

I love Doctor Who, but I do think there should be a female doctor, I love the assistants but you're right LordCopper they aren't the lead. It does annoy me that ALL of the Doctors have been white middle-class men.

SplitHeadGirl Sun 24-Nov-13 23:01:02

Can I come in even though I am not a Doctor Who fan?? I'm more of a Star Trek kinda gal!

TheDoctrineOfWho Sun 24-Nov-13 23:27:00

Yes, we are an open minded pub grin

though JaaJaa Binks will be given the Vulcan death grip AND exterminated if he enters the pub

TheDoctrineOfWho Sun 24-Nov-13 23:27:47

It would have been COOL if the War Doctor had been a woman.

SplitHeadGirl Mon 25-Nov-13 00:00:48

Haha Doctrine...Binks is in Star Wars, not Star Trek!!!

But I love Star Wars too especially Han Solo

TheDoctrineOfWho Mon 25-Nov-13 00:07:11

I know. Thought I'd chuck in another scifi reference for fun!

SplitHeadGirl Mon 25-Nov-13 00:15:45

It is funny because ordinarily i hate scifi...But I LOVE Star Trek and Star Wars....Doctor Who I can't be bothered with!!!

Just sticking my head in not to rant for a change. I love Dr Who! Good female characters. But still far from being a feminist show as it's all about women playing second fiddle to the central male. And they need frequent saving and rescuing too.

MummyBeerest Mon 25-Nov-13 00:22:38

Hi all...been away from the pub for awhile. I seem to always be a beat behind in the convo.

But I really need a drink and to ask some perspective from feminists such as yourselves.

Can I have a Corona and a listening ear?

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Mon 25-Nov-13 01:40:10

Listening ear is always here, mummybeerest. Whassup?

MummyBeerest Mon 25-Nov-13 03:37:36

Sorry for the delayed response. ..had a long discussion with DH.

So, I'm a SAHM to a 15 mo DD. She is still bf though we are slowly weaning. Dh works long hours at a job 45 minutes away from home. Most of the mum and baby friends we made have all gone back to work after their mat leave.

I love being at home with DD. But I'm bored. When DH is home, he just wants to eat and go to bed. On the weekend, we run errands together. Unless we go to weddings, DH and I don't go out. My friends are scattered around and all have busy lives.

I want a hobby. One just for me so I can feel like an individual, not just mummy.

He said "But you're so busy with DD. You won't have any time."

I am pissed. I've struggled this year with PND, moving, and general toddlerhood craziness.

Instead of being supportive, he tells me not to even bother because "being a parent is a full-time job."

Well fucking duh, but does that mean I can't do anything for myself ever again?

So I ask you...AIBU?

TheDoctrineOfWho Mon 25-Nov-13 06:13:24

If being a parent is a full time job, when is he doing it?

He has a full time job, but not a 24/7 job.

If you don't go out at weekends, can you do something on a Saturday morning after the morning feed. Just go to a cafe and read to start with, if you can't find a class or something,

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Mon 25-Nov-13 07:31:49

Gawd, mummybeerest, Yanbu. I know how time consuming a 15mth old bf baby is - I remember it well! But you are entitled to some time for yourself.

MummyBeerest Mon 25-Nov-13 08:19:38

Thank you!

The most frustrating thing is that whenever I say I'm going to do something, just myself-I.e. go for a walk to pick up something-it's always "oh, we can do that as a family.

I don't even get to go pee by myself! It always amazes me that whenever I'm in the bathroom, he and DD are "just playing in the hallway."

I feel like I'm being selfish as he clearly wants to do things together, but for ffs.

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Mon 25-Nov-13 11:33:01

I think you need to have a nice conversation with him, mummy.

You spend all your time with your dd - but you do need some time to yourself. He goes off to work and probably doesn't realise just how draining it can be looking after a toddler all the time. He should also be used to looking after dd on his own...actually, do you think that's the problem?

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Mon 25-Nov-13 11:37:30

Just posting this for a laff: What happened when an MRA tried to play with the big girls

Thought the feminist pub-goers might appreciate it grin

UptoapointLordCopper Mon 25-Nov-13 15:11:34

MummyBeerest You need some head space. smile Did you see the hobby thread a while ago? What do you like doing?

TheDoctrineOfWho Mon 25-Nov-13 17:20:06

"No, I want to go by myself" is a complete sentence....

What's the longest he's ever been in sole charge, mummy?

MummyBeerest Mon 25-Nov-13 18:41:18

Thank you again all! Sabrina I actually laughed out loud at that!

He is soo used to me being the one doing all the childcare. He's a good dad, just different in parenting style. He's more of the "kids are kids, let her be" type whereas I probably chat her ear off way too much. He often tells me I'm too soft on her, but seriously, whehn I'm the one with her all day, what would he do better?

I went out in the evening twice last week. He came straight home and took over. But he was very incredulous about doing so TWICE IN ONE WEEK.

As cliche as it is, I love writing. I used to write for hours. I'd do it daily, go to parks, museums, wherever and enjoy the views and write. I'm just asking for his help to find time to do so.

"We have a baby. We don't have time for much anymore. "--> actual quote.

Really? When you can go through an entire t.v. series on weekends, I can't go out for a fucking walk?

Sorry.I'm just so pissed off.

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Mon 25-Nov-13 19:02:43

It's great isn't it mummy? V funny - the marvellous Gia Milinovich pwning a painfully young Mra (makes me sad that someone so young can have such hateful ideas already - you should see the rest of his twitter feed).

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Mon 25-Nov-13 19:03:50

Oh, and yes, you should be able to take some time to walk and write at the weekends - you should have roughly the same amount of 'leisure' time as your dh.

Blistory Mon 25-Nov-13 19:22:52

I've had it with blaming the patriarchy. Can I just name my problem and admit that it is actually men ? It's all very well blaming a system for how we all are but how about men accepting responsibility and recognising that the systems continues to exist simply for the fact that it suits them for it to do so and that it's not in their interests to change it?

Can you tell I've just come from a meeting that I chaired and despite the agenda clearly setting out my ideas and proposals, not once was I listened to by the other parties present (8 men, 2 women incl me). Talked over, ignored, was handed a coat with a 'hang that up won't you pet', my ideas ignored and then some bright spark with a penis points out that several of MY ideas might have merit and all of a sudden he's congratulated for his vision and innovation. I have several of these stakeholder events this week - I'm sick of it after just one.

No, I'm not going to take your coat - there is a coatstand beside you
No, I'm not going to get you a coffee - I believe the machine is equally capable of being operated by a man
No, I'm not here to take the minutes
No, I don't have golf umbrellas to hand out, they are too big for me to handle so not surprisingly I bought corporate umbrellas that can be operated by all - it won't make you less of a man to use a sensibly sized umbrella.
And yes, it is my name over the door, there is no husband/father/chairman ready to walk in and take credit.

I want the credit but heaven forbid that I, as a woman, can say that out loud.

Anyone else for vodka ?

TheDoctrineOfWho Mon 25-Nov-13 19:34:14

It's not a cliche, it's part if who you are and what you love.

Yes, there is less time, but not no time.

UptoapointLordCopper Mon 25-Nov-13 19:53:50

" about men accepting responsibility and recognising that the systems continues to exist simply for the fact that it suits them for it to do so and that it's not in their interests to change it?"

I accused some of my colleagues of that recently ...

It felt great! I'm sick of being fucking nice. No more. I'm simply not going to be the only one who is upset. I'm going to spread it about a bit. wink

TheDoctrineOfWho Mon 25-Nov-13 20:25:27

LordCopper, POAT are busy reclaiming "strident" to mean passionate, forceful, unapologetic. I like it.

UptoapointLordCopper Mon 25-Nov-13 20:47:06

What is POAT? confused But I'm definitely all for passionate, forceful and unapologetic.

So my book talks about gender schema: our intuitive hypotheses about the behaviours, traits, and preferences of men and women, boys and girls. In our gender schema, women are generally considered nurturant, and men considered instrumental. She tried to come up with a reason how this came about, and thought that it is possible that because women have babies and physically nurture them (this is a sex difference between men and women), we make a mental leap and consider women as therefore metaphorically nurturing. One single sex difference leads to and amplifies others.

What do you think about that?

It is profoundly depressing - that means that if we start from scratch, we would probably end up like this again ...

grimbletart Mon 25-Nov-13 22:11:41

Blistory - I think you have just been a living example of this….

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Mon 25-Nov-13 22:40:24

Ok wine all round.

I have a spanking new twitter account - with zero followers - please help me not be a sad feminist and follow me!! I've asked MN of anything before - follow me pls!! So I don't look like a norma-no-mates. grin Ta.

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Mon 25-Nov-13 22:45:23

Oops sorry - here's he link... Here!! Follow me! Get me some friends!! Ta.

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Mon 25-Nov-13 22:49:21

I've got a follower! Thank you! Hurrah! <mwah mwah> twitter's more scary than FB...

scallopsrgreat Mon 25-Nov-13 22:49:27

I've followed Sabrina wine

MummyBeerest, nothing you've said sounds remotely unreasonable. He is assuming childcare is to be done by you, even when you are both there. And how can you be too soft on a 15 mth old? It sounds like you are just more attuned to her.

Blistory, that sounds horrendous, but familiar. Although I haven't had it all happen in one meeting, thankfully.

scallopsrgreat Mon 25-Nov-13 22:50:16

Does this pub have cheese? Cheese and wine mmmmm.

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Mon 25-Nov-13 23:11:30

<whispers> and another! Thank you - more please - anyone on twitter please follow me. I'll follow you back, and I've done a spiffing storify of Gia Milinovich's Oppression Olympics - it's all good smile

scallopsrgreat Mon 25-Nov-13 23:14:05

Oh cool! I loved that. The guy didn't know what had hit him!

TheDoctrineOfWho Mon 25-Nov-13 23:15:23

POAT is poster(s) on another thread.

At least, I think it is...

kickassangel Mon 25-Nov-13 23:52:00

Just marking my place. Getting back to normality after a surprise appendectomy last week.

I'll have a large pint of anything, even though in real life I would probably pass out from just looking at a bottle.

On Thursday we're going to thanksgiving at a female couple's house along with one of the partner's large Memanite family, and the baby they are fostering. I love being invited to thanksgiving as obviously it isn't the same for us, and I get to be mosey about other people's families.

scallopsrgreat Mon 25-Nov-13 23:58:56

Appendectomy! OMG! Hope you are OK kickass.

kickassangel Tue 26-Nov-13 00:03:58

Sorry, just totally crashed the convo. Following Sabrina but I never tweet.

Yes, 50 % of weekend time is for you. Just get up and leave. If it makes you happier, leave thing like food ready, but just say you're going and go.

And if someone talks over you at a meeting just keep going but louder. I hope you dropped the coat on the floor. Don't stand by the door and be welcoming. Sit at the head of the table or walk oblate and loudly start the meeting while you are standing and they are sitting. Don't even offer coffee, and next time someone suggests your ideas congratulate them on being able to read. I'm sure you know all this, but it is perfectly reasonable to do any of these things.

kickassangel Tue 26-Nov-13 00:05:01

Appendectomy not as bad as a c-section, but strangely people seem more impressed by it! Wonder why

MummyBeerest Tue 26-Nov-13 00:49:09

Twitter scares me Sabrina. You're a brave soul!

Hope you're ok kickass!

Scallops, it's really, really frustrating. I lost it on him tonight. I had some dirty dishes out and told him not to use the spoon, it needed to be washed.

He sighs and says "dirty dishes shouldn't be out."

I said to him "Nope. So put it away."

He rolls his eyes and I said "For fuck's sake, everything has to be done for you doesn't it?"

He gets all huffy and says I'm unfair, making a big deal of nothing, etc etc.

When I say I've been busy with a teething baby who's had shots today, he tells me she needs to learn to wait.



Sorry. Again, so fucking pissed with him.

Zhx3 Tue 26-Nov-13 01:06:49

Mummy, his response is terrible. When this started to happen in my marriage (after dc2), I upped and left him to it for 3 days. Told him I was going out after work and left him to deal with pick-ups, bath, bed and his own food. it was a turning point, I wish I had done it sooner, would have saved a load of resentment. I think it opened his eyes and he's been much fairer since.

Your h needs to realise, as my delightful friend said, "you' ve got 2 arms and 2 legs, use them!"

kickassangel Tue 26-Nov-13 01:41:09

Oh, Beerest, that sounds so terrible. I'm sure that arguing over a spoon seems like such a small thing, but when you're living in the moment, it can feel so horrid. You are not on the earth to take care of him, he should be there to take care of dd alongside you.

MummyBeerest Tue 26-Nov-13 05:19:16

If I'm being totally honest, I often worry that we may split up. We're so different and the day to day seems to take a toll on the both of us.

That's a whole 'nother thread though...

To go back to what Blistory was talking about, somewhat; would you agree or disagree that some men (er, chauvinists rather) rely on women being "too polite" so as to get away with sexism? This is something I've always wondered.

TheDoctrineOfWho Tue 26-Nov-13 07:01:51

I think some people in positions of power rely on other people being too polite/meek/fearful to contradict them.

The people in power are more likely men than women still.

UptoapointLordCopper Tue 26-Nov-13 07:56:52

Mummy ask him: if "being a parent is a full-time job" who does he think will be putting away dirty dishes? Last time I look dirty dishes didn't have a parent. hmm

UptoapointLordCopper Tue 26-Nov-13 07:58:45

And I agree that some people do rely on people being too nice to put up a fight. People are sometimes frankly cowed if you show some strong emotion (like fucking anger). I like the look on their faces when that happens. grin

UptoapointLordCopper Tue 26-Nov-13 07:59:03

And where is LRD?

BelleCurve Tue 26-Nov-13 08:03:38

Early for drinking but a large latte would be nice!

Isnt LRD doing her viva? checks feminist spreadsheet

UptoapointLordCopper Tue 26-Nov-13 08:17:31

No no no. LRD has done her viva (it's Dr LRD now) and has gone on holiday. A pretty long holiday. Perhaps she's had a taste of RL and decided to ditch us. grin

BelleCurve Tue 26-Nov-13 08:49:17

Real life sucks! She will be back grin

UptoapointLordCopper Tue 26-Nov-13 09:20:00

Real life sucks!


I was talking to someone in RL recently and we both agreed on that. We'll continue to live with our heads in the clouds for the time being.

People tried to tell me that I shouldn't be so idealistic because RL sucks. But I think that's all the more reason why you should be. At least then you'd have the moral high ground. hmm grin

UptoapointLordCopper Tue 26-Nov-13 09:20:19

Back to RL. Need to rejiggle some graphs.

TheSmallClanger Tue 26-Nov-13 12:19:10

People who throw their weight around completely rely on others being too scared/nice/apathetic to challenge them. It is a complete mirage of strength.

It is a variation of the dynamic we talk about so much on here, where women end up doing the bigger share of the shitwork, because the aggro that comes from refusing to do it, or even trying to negotiate, is too much.

It is often easier to challenge in a work situation. A bit of perseverance is sometimes enough to convince others to stand up to the dominant ones. In the home, it's harder.

UptoapointLordCopper Tue 26-Nov-13 12:30:15

Agree it's much harder at home. sad

BelleCurve Tue 26-Nov-13 13:16:13

Money is power. If you are SAHM, is it difficult to challenge when your and kids livelihood is under threat. The partner has ultimate sanction of just walking away and everyone knows this.

BelleCurve Tue 26-Nov-13 13:17:20

At least at work it is less likely to be the whim of one man.

BelleCurve Tue 26-Nov-13 13:17:43

More likely a committee of them smile

Blistory Tue 26-Nov-13 14:24:21

It's more difficult at home because men tend to put less value on work done within the home.

So you end up with Mummy's argument about the spoon and then you're forced to explain that it's not the spoon itself, it's the principles behind it all. Whereas the poor man's out all day working hard at a real job whilst the wee woman's complaining about dishes.

Even men who don't think themselves sexist, often show their sexism at home and it's difficult to challenge because it's so ingrained, because they don't put a value on domestic work and because the default position remains that it's women's work.

And as for work, today's meeting was pretty much the same in as much as who did the majority of talking, who took credit where none was due. Any attempt to directly challenge it would simply result in them disregarding me as being strident etc etc. Much easier to smile politely and point them in the direction of the coffee machine and direct the conversation how I wanted it to go. It meant repeated attempts at redirecting things but we got there in the end. Sometimes quiet persistence achieves more but I'm pleased that I'm aware of how the dynamic works against women and remain determined not to bend to men's way of doing business even if it would be easier.

How fecking difficult is it for men to show female colleagues and their wives courtesy and respect ?

TheSmallClanger Tue 26-Nov-13 14:57:45

I am of the opinion that most of the work done within the home does not need to be done half as frequently as we are told it does.

It's a bit of a feminist no-no these days, but I have to say that I don't place a huge value on housework, and do as little of it as I can.

Well done on your meeting at work. It sounds as if your observation and strategy is starting to pay off.

MummyBeerest Tue 26-Nov-13 17:12:44

I wonder this too-surely if men are to be "all business" and not take things personally- -like us wimmin-- then they'd be able to appreciate the work of a colleague regardless of male/female?

MummyBeerest Tue 26-Nov-13 17:13:41

Shit, delete fail blush

kickassangel Tue 26-Nov-13 17:59:19

I find though that I really hate having a messy house and I do want it clean & tidy. I grew up in a house that wasn't tidy, and I find it really depressing to sit in a room with a mess. And cos I'm the one who notices more, then I'm the one who ends up doing it.

DH was pretty good when I had my appendix out. But now we're in that recovery time and he just isn't doing enough. There's a ton of stuff I cant do, and I have to point out to him that it needs to be done. Still, I am refusing to do it, even if I could manage it painfully, so it si just sitting there.

e.g. he did all the laundry, I only had to ask once, but it is in the laundry room in a basket. There is no way I can pick it up. What does he think is going to happen to it?

TheDoctrineOfWho Tue 26-Nov-13 18:28:45

Mummy, I think for some men, it's a default that a woman's POV is of lesser value. Just as a child might say something smart, you're not expecting it so you don't notice it. This is all part of "othering"

This is the POV that enables some men to say, "I'm not sexist, I think XX is as good as any man, if not better." - yes, you are sexist because you are starting from the default of men as standard, women as "other" who have to be exceptional, in your eyes, even to register.

TheDoctrineOfWho Tue 26-Nov-13 18:30:11

DH gets far more depressed by mess than me, kickassangel. I know it's not great for him because he's made tense by a level of disorder I haven't even noticed.

BelleCurve Tue 26-Nov-13 19:58:52


I thought this was amusing

TheSmallClanger Tue 26-Nov-13 21:29:01

DH's mess tolerance is much lower than mine. Just before we moved in together, I reminded him what my own place looked like, and warned him that I wasn't going to turn into a domestic goddess, ever. He was a bit put-out, as I don't think he quite understood why we were having the discussion. He does understand now.

Mess doesn't depress me. I might find it irritating from time to time, but I would rather live with a degree of untidiness than sacrifice my non-working, non-DD-wrangling time doing stupid, faffy cleaning tasks. I'm not talking about basic required stuff like washing up after meals or hoovering up after the dogs. It's polishing sinks and doing endless little loads of laundry and dusting shelves (shelves get attacked with the hoover occasionally).

UptoapointLordCopper Tue 26-Nov-13 21:43:02

I like things to have their place. They don't have to live there all the time, but they must have a home address. So we have Lego boxes and boxes for trains and cars and soft toys. But they are allowed to travel and go abroad. Once a week they go home, aided by DC. wink

TerrariaMum Wed 27-Nov-13 12:02:02

Can we rant about trivial media things in this pub?

I am v. cross about a development in Holby City which mostly I love. They seemed to be setting up to have Serena Campbell (a character with an MBA from Harvard and an excellent surgeon for those who don't watch) become the new CEO of Holby which would have been awesome. This week a neurosurgeon man waltzes in and announces that HE is the new CEO. Because not even in a fictional show could we have a woman at the head. Some would argue that he has to be the CEO because how else to introduce this new character? Erm, he's a neurosurgeon. Use that.

Sorry for hijacking, but this is the only place I think people would understand why I am grumbly.

I found you, I found you grin

Back laters x

kickassangel Thu 28-Nov-13 14:02:18

Media stuff is not trivial. Rant away.

Gosh, I feel a bit very stupid because I just kinda thought the old thread had died and didn't notice that it was full blush.
Do you have to be intelligent to be a feminist because if so, I'm clearly not one...

I had to stop watching Holby City some time ago because of the stupid clichés banded about, the horrible acting and the weird story lines, and yes, quite a lot of gender stereotyping. I am not at all surprised at the CEO thing, sadly.

I have been on my own since Monday morning and it has been lovely smile. DH away on a conference (or so he tells me, he seems to be having FAR to nice a time...) in the Big Smoke, so DSs and I can just please ourselves. You'd think that having a pair of hands less would make getting up and ready for school x3 + nursery x1 + work x1 would be harder, equally bedtime, but, amazingly, NO. Much calmer, less noise, less fighting (not none, just less), it's all working swimmingly. I cannot even put my finger on what exactly is different.
I am sure it's just a honeymoon period/novelty that would soon wear off, I am certainly not looking to be a single parent in the longterm. But it was an interesting experience.... He's back tomorrow night, so normal madness will resume again grin.
I wonder whether it was calmer just because I had not choice but to be much more organised than usual, I knew what had been done and what hadn't (DH is not good with the old verbal exchange, plays his cards close to his chest) and everything just got done MY way rather than having any kind of debate or even conversation about it.

No alcohol here though - I never drink on my own, just does not feel right smile.

kissass, glad you've feeling better thanks

kickassangel Thu 28-Nov-13 21:26:35

I find when dh is away that I do have more to do but it runs smoother. I get to be a benign dictator rather than trying to consult with somone. But there are definitely long term bigger things that having two adults would be easier, and I wonder how I would cope with those by myself. Having my appendix out without a dp to look after dd would have been a nightmare .

TheDoctrineOfWho Thu 28-Nov-13 22:16:45

My industry is male dominated and I seem to have recently started a role that will become even more male dominated.

Grr! Aargh!

You go, girl grin - you'll whip them into shape grin

TheDoctrineOfWho Thu 28-Nov-13 22:26:38


On the upside, DH just brought me booze and ice cream in the bath!

CaptChaos Thu 28-Nov-13 22:33:47


I have been doing a new job for the last 3 months in a male dominated role in a department which has been failing for the last year at least. I was brought in because I have a reputation for taking no nonsense from people and being able to see what problems are and finding solutions. I was really enthusiastic about the role, it was a promotion and I was told I would be backed up all the way, as this department is pretty crucial to the company cynical laugh

Ever since I started, I have been undermined in small ways by other managers. My decisions have been questioned at every turn and promised upskilling hasn't happened. I also failed to bring my fairy wand in to work to sort it all out within a moment. Today, I finally had a meeting with my regional manager who asked me how I felt about how things were going. Once I'd finished telling him, he spent about 2 hours mansplaining away about why I shouldn't feel like that.

While it was gratifying to hear that we're making progress, I really didn't need him to tell me that I am wrong to feel the way I feel. ARGH!

TheDoctrineOfWho Thu 28-Nov-13 22:35:14

<ice cream?>

I've just popped in after a good rant on that survey linked to on the home page about why women aren't better represented at "The Top".

I didn't do the survey, but the comments, in typical MN no-holds-barred style have given me the flavour of it.

I have loudly pointed out that there's not much really that needs changing for women except men's attitudes towards family responsibility combined with a career.

Anyone else seen it?

TheDoctrineOfWho Fri 29-Nov-13 00:54:55

It doesn't open properly for me!

Do you mean the survey or my link, Doctrine?

scallopsrgreat Fri 29-Nov-13 08:48:44

Oh I saw that survey earlier this week. Unfortunately I am too old (not by much) to answer it. Although from the remarks I'm not sure I want to be adding to the inevitable women-blaming when it is so much more than that. I thought MrsBach's post was very good.

scallopsrgreat Fri 29-Nov-13 08:50:21

Not MrsBach, MyBachisworsethanmybite (great name)!

UptoapointLordCopper Fri 29-Nov-13 09:53:42

CaptChaos I have been told recently "I don't think you should feel that you have made the wrong decision", "I don't know where you got that from", "I don't see why you should feel you do not have the support" etc. I wrote a long email about not dismissing my judgement and detailing the "unsupport" I got ... I own the project and I own my own mistakes and I will not be dismissed or patronised. Makes me angry just thinking about it. angry

Next thing I'm going to list the "support" I expect, in black and white and in triplicate. smile

I am in two minds about the 'being told how you feel' thing: I've recently had to make a fast call, made it, and it was not the right one (nothing bad, called a 999 ambulance when none was needed, but it will have cost the NHS £££ when with the benefit of hindsight it was not needed).
I felt stooooopid although I did not have all the relevant information when I made my call.
So, it was quite nice to hear colleagues (male and female) being supportive and saying 'You could not have known, don't feel bad'.

I think the 'I don't know why you feel you don't have the support' is quite underhand and nasty, isn't it? 'We are all supporting you, you are just not able to feel it'. Yeah, right hmm

Putting it in writing is probably a good idea, LordCopper.

DH is back after his jolly away and life is again more complicated - he was helping tidy leaves out of our garden this afternoon (we all were) but he does it with a noisy leaf-blower/sucker which takes all the Zen enjoyment out of gardening for me. I am more a rake and bucket kinda girl.
OTOH, he is doing bath/bedtime, so I am MN and having wine grin

kickassangel Sat 30-Nov-13 21:45:48

I am at an aquarium and was just looking at sea horses. Them am next to me was taking care if 2 kids, and doing the thing of speaking ou loud to keep them engaged. Then he said about sea horse makes having the babies and added, "that needs to be sorted out"! shock

youretoastmildred Sat 30-Nov-13 23:36:43

Hi all

kickass, that sounds scary. I wonder what he has planned?!

That reminds me... when I was in my 20s and didn't have any children I found myself explaining to a 5 year old girl at a party that snails were hermaphodites. (We were outside, and looking at one) She pointed at it, and said in wonder, "so... she.... is a boy AND a girl?" I was thrilled that she said "she" as the default.

youretoastmildred Sat 30-Nov-13 23:50:35

have been appalled on the step-parenting threads recently. so many women being horrible about their dh's exes and children because they will do anything other than expect a man to take responsibility for his children. it is terrifying to see how effectively, in some contexts, women have been set against each other. I think it comes down to that thing again, of the crazy prioritisation of romance: the woman must do anything other than break the code of compliance that keeps her In A Relationship. some of the stuff on there is totes bonkers actually

Which reminds me, on another thread we were talking about MILs, and Scallops tantalised us with a theory about how or why they are so often perceived as narcissistic (was that what it was about?) and now I am dying of curiosity... come on Scallops!

kickassangel Sun 01-Dec-13 04:21:21

The scary thing is I do think my MIL is certifiably bonkers, but then I know people in rl who hint as much.

CaptChaos Sun 01-Dec-13 11:35:28

LordCopper, I think your manager and mine must have been working from the same script. I think I'll take a leaf from your book and write an email about it all, partly because it needs to be said and partly so I have a paper trail.

DS said that he's glad that his mum is a feminist, because he's been able to see the world differently from his mates. I love that boy, he may have ASD, but in a lot of ways he's more perceptive than his NT friends, he has to really think about things IYSWIM.

kickassangel Sun 01-Dec-13 13:43:12

Capt, I was just reading an article about how ASD kids may have more empathy than NT ones, not less. They can be overwhelmed so they just retreat as they can't deal with it.

Oh, you've gotta love a good MiL stereotype, don't you? hmm
My MiL is now dementing, but has always been rather difficult to her own family. I used to get on best with her grin, probably because she had not installed my buttons, so couldn't press them...

And yy to women being set against each other.
There's a thread in Relationship where the wife has actually managed to compare notes with the ex-wife with results that strengthened her resolve, so the sisterhood worked there.

Good luck to the seahorse man - it'll be a struggle to change their biology but I am sure with enough persistence and mansplaining to them were they go wrong he'll sort it out.

My boys have shocking gender prejudices that I challenge all the time - DS2 was kicked in the face recently during a Tae Kwon Do lesson. He has a bruise above his eye (did not develop a shiner which he was v disappointed about) and a small scratch; I think he'll live. The problem was that he had been kicked by a girl shock!! He really struggled with that. The fact that she is 2 grades above him, v good at TKD and also taller than him, did not console him. He totally has this 'males are physically superior to females' internalised. Many more conversations to follow, me thinks...

UptoapointLordCopper Sun 01-Dec-13 20:22:58


Been away. smile Will read later.

Just popping into the thread and settling into a corner with a coffee. smile

pacific that sounds a thoroughly healthy (if humiliating) experience for your DS! grin

youretoastmildred Sun 01-Dec-13 22:36:32

good evening
just wrote some really nasty things on another thread, didn't mean them to be, just was thinking aloud in a theoretical way and forgot I was talking to / about a real person. will ask for them to be deleted
it is a warning sign of.... something, though. when I get all wrapped up in my head like that.
sorry that was feminism related but I can't say how because I don't want to say the nasty things again

nice to see you LRD. Hope you are well.

I'll just have a quick Earl Grey for the road, i think

hope you have all had a good weekend

Oh, that sounds tricky.

I think it is quite easy to do, though - to forget it's 'real' people or to get nastier than you meant. Hope you are ok in yourself.

(And nice to see you too.)

youretoastmildred Sun 01-Dec-13 22:39:32

sometimes wonder what it would be like not to be mentally ill and afraid all the time that everything that I do wrong is pointing to some big apocalypse.

youretoastmildred Sun 01-Dec-13 22:40:18

thanks yes I am probably ok just a bit wobbly tonight but didn't realise it till just now
how are you?

TheDoctrineOfSanta Sun 01-Dec-13 22:41:16

Welcome back LRD!


TheDoctrineOfSanta Sun 01-Dec-13 22:41:46

/womanly pat on back>

Delete as applicable!

How come it would be against a man's human Rights to castrate him for raping a baby ....

But a woman can have her womb cut open and a baby removed with out her permission?

What part of being able to get pregnant makes you not human and deserving of human Rights

MooncupGoddess Sun 01-Dec-13 22:49:24


Sorry thought you would have seen article, being discussed in a few places on mn

Welcome, LRD, hope you had a nice holiday smile

Please, I am not sure I understand - I don't think either of those scenarios are legal in this country?

mildred, I can totally understand how you (or anybody else) could do that: theoretise about something, forgetting the v real people behind the issue. I am sure you'll judge correctly what you can let stand and what MNHQ can get rid of for you.
I do think though that sometimes it is quite difficult to talk to people who will always only see exactly what happened to them, to their situation, when there can be wider issues. I tried to hint at that in the recent BFing thread, but tiktok ended up understanding that we are all 'trapped' in our own experiences and I don't think that is true.

x-post, Please.

I gather this will have been done under the Mental Health Act?

It's getting a bit late for me know, but just to mention that many years ago I had been involved in the care for a woman who refused CS which would have been required to save her baby's life, psychiatry were involved as were the courts and it was deemed that she had capacity to withhold consent. The baby died.

Upsetting all round - both these cases sad

youretoastmildred Sun 01-Dec-13 23:18:26

Pacific, no I don't think we are all "trapped in our own experience" either.
In fact, in my case, I think my getting things wrong is more the opposite in that I am always trying to take a sort of "out of body experience from the corner of the ceiling" view of things instead of inhabiting my experience properly
this can be very mistaken. Trying to synthesise things that, if they can be unified at all, should be done by making a rough twiggy bundle of disparate things and leaving them discrete

I blame the Enlightenment

I am going to go to bed but I would like to ask a (not very feminist) question (only because you are all so clever)

dd1, who is 4 and a half, went through a short phase of nightmares, and was very anxious for a while afterwards that she would have another one. she knew they were dreams, she knew they weren't real, but they were horrible experiences and she didn't want to have one. I told her I would do some "spells" to help prevent them and we got into a habit where every night I recite some rhythmic poetry and do a guided meditation for her. She likes it and she hasn't had a nightmare for a while.

Tonight she said "are these real spells? Are they magic?" I said "in a way" and said we'd talk about it later.

Please can you help me talk about "magic"? I can't pretend I do magic (so I can't say "yes") but I do think that meditation techniques are powerful and have actual effects, and I want her to know that as a truth, and also to bolster her confidence, so I don't want to say "no" either, if no means"it's just a game, and I'm just pretending and not really doing anything of importance".

I don't want to get into a whole "well what do you mean by magic?" thing but I want to say more than "no, it's not magic, so it is by implication trivial"

My mistake for using the word "spell" in the first place.

Well goodnight everyone and thank you for listening to me ramble

Could you say "Well, they work, so that's good enough for now" - kind of evading the question?
Or say "The only magic is the one we make ourselves" (which I happen to believe is true smile)?

Nightmares are horrible and very frightening and v real at the time.
Although I prefer them to night terrors - I wish there was a spell for them!

Sleep tight.

TheDoctrineOfSanta Sun 01-Dec-13 23:52:42

Would you be happier talking about spirituality than spells?

TheDoctrineOfSanta Sun 01-Dec-13 23:54:00

So... "They are words that tap into our spirits/selves/souls and that makes them magical because they can calm us and make our lives better" kind of thing?

Is it possible to sidestep by saying 'they work, don't they?' and letting her conclude that if they work, they must be 'real' whatever you call them?

(And btw thanks for the welcome in, pacific.)

kickassangel Mon 02-Dec-13 02:16:49

hi again LRD.

(I know we've moved on, but I did wonder just how the man was going to sort out the seahorses so that they didn't have the babies, or maybe he meant that every other species on earth needed to be sorted out so that the men did have babies? In fact, what is the definition of 'male'?)

We just had a great weekend of museums, pretty much 3 days solid of sciencey stuff - science & tech museum, aquarium, natural history museum - all for the benefit of dd, who is NOT a girly girl, but IS very definitely a girl.

btw - girls don't tend to fall behind boys for strength/height until puberty. They often fall behind earlier than that due to society. I don't think it's right to hit/kick anyone except in self defence, but if you're going to do it, then it should be like boxing - defined by similar weight categories, not genitalia.

youretoastmildred Mon 02-Dec-13 10:48:41

Thanks everyone.
I just don't want to seem evasive. When I was younger I used to hate answers like "we'll see" and "never you mind" and "it is what you make of it" (I guess the last one is the one that was a real killer as while it is true of a lot of things for adults with a reasonable amount of agency, children who don't have much that they can influence or change being blamed for things that they hate as if the hating them is the problem is really unfair) I would like to give a straight answer although of course calling a spade a spade is actually misleading when it is a shovel.

kickass, gsounds like a great weekend.
btw I can remember beating boys in fights at primary school blush (I didn't pick fights, but I was ginger, come on, what can you do?) (It helped. I was well liked when I left primary school and I didn't have a good start)

Oh, I was fairly... ahem... physical in primary school - I was amongst the tallest/strongest in the class and certainly a match for any boy (or girl) with regards to speed and strength. I did not fight that much, it was all about playing tig and play wrestling with the boy I liked blush.

That all came to a stop when we changed schools...

I always did well on sport's day etc, but was always, always hopeless at throwing a ball. Don't know what that is all about?!

"Never you mind" is a horribly dismissive thing to say to anybody, worse so to a child and I agree "It is what you make of it" requires a bit of life experience/maturity to see that it has truth.
I did not mean evading the question as such, but I feel a yes or no answer is not really appropriate (unless you actually believe in magic grin), so ment to imply there are things we cannot necessarily explain or cannot explain so a 4 year old understands meditation and how mind and body work together (let's face it, lots of people don't understand that), yet they still work.

DS1(10) has a great fear of spiders (I am trying not to label it a phobia at this point yet), he is a very clever cookie and we have really good conversations about how his head knows that our house spiders are totally harmless and that there are lots of spider we share our house and garden with and that they eat insects we want rid of etc etc. His mind however gives quite a powerful response to any spider (even cartoon ones...) which in turn makes his body react (shaking, hyperventilating etc). I am trying to keep it as low key as possible (except for when I come done like a ton of bricks on DS2 who has discovered he can reduce his older brother to a quivering wreck by going on about spiders hmm. Charming child!) and be a reassuring as possible the odd time that he loses it.
He is a lot older than your DD, mildred, so it's easier to have more abstract conversations with him.
How did last night go?

youretoastmildred Mon 02-Dec-13 13:09:51

Fine - she hasn't had a nightmare for a while and is pretty relaxed now but the "spells" have become part of her routine and she likes them.
She goes to a C of E school but my memories of religion at school (RC) are that they don't really teach the experience of worship or prayer or the value of such practices to you as a person. I remember a lot of guilt about the requirement to pray and apart from prayer, a lot of social stuff about being unselfish, but nothing about any of it being good for you.
I have come back to the church (or "a" church! as my parents would think) late because despite being very well taught and very dutiful it took me a long time to realise that the church offers some solutions to a lot of my personal problems in terms of a practice of spirituality. I don't want my dds to miss out on this!

Sunday school is all about the "about". None of it is about being in the presence of god or what have you. I don't know how you expect the children to find out about this, when adults worship and children are taken out to draw pictures of Lazarus or something. An RE lesson is a different thing from an act of worship.

Sorry about all the rambling but I am trying to say I suppose that I am confused too but don't want to gloss over the whole thing in a way that leaves them without something important

Oh, I know what you mean. I don't have faith and I cannot imagine ever 'finding' it again (although I grew up in a church going family) and the main thing I miss is the meditative aspect of going to church and being part of a community.
I don't want to be preached at and I find I cannot just follow the liturgy because the meaning of the words bother me, but I find the actual process of a service v soothing.
I've never bothered to find out about meditation or made an effort to do it - maybe I should smile

PenguinsDontEatPancakes Mon 02-Dec-13 14:02:41

It depends on your child I think.

DD1 is very serious and likes serious explanations. To her I would say "No, they are not real magic. But your brain is a very strong and your mind can help protect you from bad dreams even while you are sleeping. So we do these spells as a little reminder to your brain to look after you when you sleep. It's your own body looking after you, but we're just reminding it".

rosabud Mon 02-Dec-13 16:09:21

I think it depends on you, your child, the relationship you have and your family experiences - and that goes for everything from "magic" to belief in Father Christmas or the tooth fairy. For the sort of thing you are describing (meditation/bedtime ritual), I would have told my children at the age of 4 that it absolutely was magic and that I certainly could do spells! As they got older, and their own understanding of the world evolved (including, of course, their understanding of me!), I might have said it with more of a teasing tone (or outraged tone if they professed not to believe me!) and I would also have done a bit what LRD suggests with the old "well, it's working, make up your own mind!" Once they get much older you can actually analyse it with them and the way such things were appraoched by or worked for your family.

I think your comments about Sunday School, that is an RE lesson are interesting. That is quite an old fashioned way of doing things these days, perhaps you need to find a Sunday chool that offers a more spiritual approach.

UptoapointLordCopper Mon 02-Dec-13 16:10:30

I'm inclined towards Penguins' explanation. fsmile

UptoapointLordCopper Mon 02-Dec-13 16:11:30


With father christmas and tooth fairies etc I've always answered the question with "What do you think?"

PenguinsDontEatPancakes Mon 02-Dec-13 16:12:51

That's what I say too LordCopper. I don't want to be a killjoy, but at the same time I refuse to out and out lie to them about imaginary people!

Oh, I like that explanation, Penguins, v good.

Wrt to Santa etc my big boys absolutely insist that he must be real, so who am I to disagree grin I know they are just greedy beggars hoping for lots of presents, but still

youretoastmildred Mon 02-Dec-13 16:22:29

I like Penguin's answer.

We do have some blurred lines, but only for fun when the stakes seem lower... I invented a totally random reward fairy the other day, who was waiting downstairs with a clip board to see how cooperative they could be on x, y, z as they were "up for an award!!!". dd1 automatically threw herself into complying and then at some point realised that she had never heard of this particular fairy, from anyone else ever, including me.
"Is she real?" she asked.
"Do you want her to leave you the award?" I said. "How can she do that if she's not real?"


rosabud Mon 02-Dec-13 16:23:09

I know what you are saying.........but I can't help it, I love Father Christmas so much that I have out and out lied on his behalf over the years. In fact, once when my son came downstairs on Christmas Eve and caught me in the act of putting a large toy together, I fabricated a whole novel of lies about Grandad telling Father Christmas to ....... oh I can't remember it all now but it was priceless. Ny eldest, now 16, and I still talk in code about what we think Father Christmas might be likely to afford this year. Actually, I think I have been so convincing over the years that I do actually believe in Father Christmas myself..........after all, who else could it be who polishes off that large scotch we leave by the back door?? smile

youretoastmildred Mon 02-Dec-13 16:23:19

rosabud, interesting, I didn't know it was considered to be old fashioned. I will look into this - do you know a lot about it?

PenguinsDontEatPancakes Mon 02-Dec-13 16:32:41

I don't go out of my way to break the spell or anything. When DD1 commented that the father Christmas at the school fayre wasn't real I said something like "Well wouldn't father christmas be a bit busy this time of year?". It's just I won't out and out say "Yes, he is real".

rosabud Mon 02-Dec-13 16:34:03

Err....yes I do as it happens! PM me if you want some more information!

I have to say, I can't stand traditional sunday school stuff, so good to know that there's more out there these days. I'm interested.

I do find for me there's a bit of a conflict in that I think 'woo' stuff is nonsense, but I do have faith and there's absolutely no logical way to justify one and not the other, which I'm sure children can and do grasp.

UptoapointLordCopper Mon 02-Dec-13 16:47:06

I don't go and tell them that everything is a lie. fgrin But we talk a lot about mythology (courtesy of the Percy Jackson books) and why people believe in these things. The 9yo is happy to discuss this. I'm not sure quite what the 7yo thinks about all this!

youretoastmildred Mon 02-Dec-13 16:50:21

I think there is a weird disconnect in that as parents we know children are little important people with needs, many of the same needs as our own but perhaps more intensely and more acutely felt because they are not empowered to meet them independently (by buying food or cooking it, or going out and proactively forging nourishing relationships if the people already around them are not inspiring or positive about them, etc). And yet religion, which according to one way of looking at it is all about meeting human needs for certain things*, is delivered to children in a way that completely strips it of that nourishment!

* I am not saying that is all it is

I have such great memories of Christmas and Easter etc and loved all the Santa/Easter Bunny stuff, that I just cannot not do it for my children, if that makes any sense.

I must have been about 8 or 9 when the conversation came up in the car whether they were real and I was told that they were not. I remember a feeling of loss but was not overly upset by it. It was more "Aw, that's a shame. Ah well <shrug>" kind of thing.

I don't lie to my children except for this. I know there are lots of people deeply disapproving of this approach and I understand (and don't even disagree) where they are coming from, but I just can't help myself.

I agree about 'woo' and 'religious' beliefs - and it was what ultimately made me the atheist I am now: how can one belief be faith and the other one superstition??
This is clearly something that never troubled my gran who was one of the most pious, observing women you could imagine, and also the most superstitious one. I used to tease her by walking under ladders blush.

You big meanie to your gran. grin

Sorry, not trying to change the subject, but I am going to moan a bit. I have horrible butterflies, the car's in the shop for its MOT and they were meant to give me a call with an estimate for work that needed doing by 'late afternoon'. I suppose it is late afternoon and they're still open for an hour, but I wish they'd hurry up!

I really hate car-related stuff, it's the one thing where I honestly do wish DH could drive and do it because I'm fairly sure he would get patronized less than me.

Oh, I hope you hear soon, LRD.

One of the compensations of being married to a petrol head (there are many down-sides, believe me) is that my car just magically gets serviced and washed and oil topped up and tires changed. 'Tis small compensation, mind...


I'm sure there are downsides but for now, no - pure envy.

Now I feel bad for mentioning it blush

Hope you hear soon.
AND you can officially sit on the Feminist High Horse for being empowered wrt the automobile situation in your relationship.
<clutches at straws>

Whereas I am a Surrendered Wife hmm

PenguinsDontEatPancakes Mon 02-Dec-13 17:14:44

Pacific - I don't disagree with or disapprove of your approach at all. Just isn't right for me smile I may change my mind when DD1 stops believing earlier than I would like.

LRD - My sympathies. I had to deal with a plumber today. He was lovely, but trades always give me the fear. Thankfully I knew the basics of our plumbing problem and had researched a bit so didn't sound too clueless. Thing is, FIL is in the building trade, so DH has grown up with it and knows how to sound vaguely knowledgeable even when he isn't. Result- he does all that stuff and I have never learned. Now I go to pieces when I have to do it.

PenguinsDontEatPancakes Mon 02-Dec-13 17:15:42

Based on our chats on here Pacific, I think if you're a surrendered wife you might be a bit of a shit one grin. Seriously though, that whole movement gives me the creeps.

I aided and abetted the reviving of a Zombie thread re Surrendered Wives (by mistake I hasten to add) and there was a link on it to a blog "Rape is a Gift" - you just could not make this shit up angry.

Yes, I'd implode if I were made to attempt to live as a surrendered wife. Otoh, DH would hate it too, thank goodness!!

PenguinsDontEatPancakes Mon 02-Dec-13 17:37:11

Rape is a gift?

Murder is a blessing. Famine has a silver lining.


I think DH would like some of it. He'd be quite keen on me always respecting his opinion I suspect wink. No, he'd go loopy.

grin at the idea of you being a surrendered wife, pacific! grin

They rang - it passed the MOT! With nothing needing doing! Whew. I've always owned old bangers and this is the first relatively new car I've had, so I'm really relieved.

penguin, I'm exactly like that with computers. It's what DH does for work, so I have no clue and I can hear myself going ditzy little woman. hmm

That is a truly awful quotation about rape, though. sad

PenguinsDontEatPancakes Mon 02-Dec-13 17:40:35

Ooh, I found the nutters - here. Seriously fucked up.

Yeah! Re car.

Booo and deepest dispair re The Boss hmm

PenguinsDontEatPancakes Mon 02-Dec-13 17:43:58

Yeay for cars that pass their MOT!


Some of the comments are very sane, though.

Thanks penguin. smile

UptoapointLordCopper Mon 02-Dec-13 17:47:27

Well done, LRD's car!

I take my car to a garage where they have professional-looking people at the front desk and always talk to you like a human being. But when I used to have an old banger I bought the Haynes manual and mugged up about constant velocity joints and got DH to explain everything to me before taking the car to the garage. grin

Being patronised is something that really really seriously raise my blood pressure.

UptoapointLordCopper Mon 02-Dec-13 17:49:38

shock at blog. WTF!?

Me too, upto. Not that I imagine anyone exactly likes being patronized.

UptoapointLordCopper Mon 02-Dec-13 18:51:51

True LRD. I just wish it doesn't upset me quite so much!

BTW what did you do on your hols?

kickassangel Mon 02-Dec-13 19:17:17

I refuse to click on that link.

I'm pretty good with dealing with people about plumbing etc, as I just have it clear in my head that they are here to do a job for me. So even if I don't understand something, I make them explain it to me, and won't agree to anything until they do.

Mind you, there was a garage in York that were terrible. Twice we were looking at buying a new car and BOTH times they pretty much refused to let me test drive a car unless my husband was there. One car was a joint purchase, but one of them was going to be MY car to drive to Leeds every day.

We don't have MOTs here, we just drive until it breaks down, then have to pay for rescue/repair.

Yes, me too upto. Ah well, at least we can come rant about it on here.

To be honest I was mainly on holiday from MN - not from here, just I was having an off patch with the site as a whole. Lovely to be back for Christmassy stuff, though.

kickass - gosh, that's scary (the driving until you break down). But I'm guessing rather nicer on nerves/wallet, at least in the short term.

kickassangel Mon 02-Dec-13 19:29:42

you can always get your car fixed before it breaks down, but somehow we always just keep putting it off, and off. At some time I need to think about getting a new car, but really cba atm.

AntiJamDidi Mon 02-Dec-13 19:33:04

I hate being patronized too. I use a garage where I either teach the kids of the mechanics or in the case of 2 of them I taught THEM for their gcse. They never patronise me grin I don't like having to deal with tradespeople in general though, so our house has more "quirks" than you would expect as we come up with ways to avoid calling in a plumber/electrician [tchblush]

I'm finding the discussion about faith and Sunday school really interesting. We have a Sunday school where small children go out to have an re lesson and it does annoy me because that's never been the part of my faith I valued most highly. I spent 4 months in a conventional in India when I was 18 doing voluntary work and it was incredibly peaceful spending an hour a day of prayer/meditation. That part of convent life almost had me considering becoming a nun. I don't have such a strong faith any more. In fact I think I might have lost my faith completely but I still go through the motions because I think it's good for the kids and I like being part of the community.

We totally do magic with the dcs. I love Santa and the tooth fairy and the Easter bunny. As dd1 got older I just adjusted my tone of voice but I talk about Santa to her now at 14, she just rolls her eyes at me. grin

CaptChaos Mon 02-Dec-13 22:29:30

Just caught up after a weekend of wonderfulness!

Kickass can you link me to the article about kids with ASD and empathy please? I'd be very grateful if you could.

We have done lots of magic with the boys. Both of them completely believed that the moon followed them because they were so special for years. And that the ducks in the park laughed because they were such funny kids along with the usual Santa/Tooth Fairy stuff. DS1 is doing the same with my DGD, it's rather lovely.

We put an offer on a house today (which is very scary) and the estate agent (female) asked if the house was going to be just in my husband's name or did he want it to be in joint names. Really?????

AntiJamDidi Mon 02-Dec-13 22:38:52

That's ridiculous CaptChaos, of course it should be in both names, that should be the default if you are married. It is scary enough buying a house without estate agents enraging people by their backwards ideas.

rosabud Mon 02-Dec-13 23:32:21

Glad the car passed.

Don't want to go on about the Sunday School thing, because it probably doesn't really belong in feminism, but it is disappointing to hear of churches which are still doing the 'children leave the main body of worship in order to do RE lesson' thing. Perhaps I've been very lucky not to have experienced this. I have friends who attend a number of churches and a range of different denominations and they all now seem to have children's sessions which centre around the act of worship/prayer or other aspects of the Christian message. I thought things had defintiely changed! (Where have all the trendy vicars gone....... confused )

Thanks rosa.

I see it doesn't belong in feminism, but I'm really interested, so thank you very much for saying it has changed in some places. I'm glad to know that.

kickassangel Tue 03-Dec-13 00:35:09

article about empathy/autism

This was sent to me by a friend, whose ds is my dd's best friend. dd is mildly asd, her best friend quite severely so. The mum sent the article round cos she thought it really reminded her of her son, how he is very empathetic and caring. Then I had to physically intercept him this afternoon as he was attempting to attack another friend, and the next half hour was him being rude, aggressive, mean comments etc.

I know why - he got upset & has no impulse control, but over the last few months I have noticed him getting more & more over-assertive, bossy, rude to his friends (I teach in the school all these kids are at, as well as them seeing each other for playdates a lot). He is aware of how others feel, and he does find it hard to cope, BUT atm he seems to be coping by being quite horrible to his friends.


I just needed to offload that as I have spent the best part of an hour dealing with it all this afternoon, instead of getting reports written, and I am increasingly struggling with seeing him with dd. Even she is withdrawing and spending less time with him at school, and I recently found some emails from a few weeks back when he was trying to email 'everyone be in MY gang, and play with ME' type messages, after he'd had an argument with a friend.

Really not sure how to deal with this. I don't want dd to lose her best friend, but nor do I want her to be best friends with someone who is so overbearing and control-motivated.

kickassangel Tue 03-Dec-13 00:35:31

I imagine some of you follow the Let Toys be Toys campaign. Did any of you see the link they posted to a survey done by Girl Guiding that found 87% of their girls thought women were judged more on appearance than ability?

This statistic is tragic enough in itself. But more so were the comments, hardly any of which addressed the issue raised, but were mostly whining that Guiding doesn't let boys in. Some were even blaming Guiding for causing the self-esteem problems suffered by women!

Women's issues just don't remotely matter to most people, do they? sad

UptoapointLordCopper Tue 03-Dec-13 08:50:32

I do follow the Let Toys be Toys campaign. I think it's really important that children should not be limited in the way all these stereotyping does. But the comments are often disappointing ... sad We attempt all kinds of equality positive action type things at work, but really, we need to start a lot younger.

And the stats make me angry.

BelleCurve Tue 03-Dec-13 13:23:01

how depressing, another brain study "reinforces stereotypes".

youretoastmildred Tue 03-Dec-13 13:34:12

Ok I am going to barge right in and be a right bloody curmudgeon about dd1's lovely Christmas show at school. HOW IS THAT EVEN POSSIBLE? You ask - yes - it was beautiful and sweet and lovely - but the bit that bothered me is that there were about 6 stars without names (all girls) and one Big Star (who was a boy). Poor old Big Star couldn't shine unless Generic Female Stars polished him up. why couldn't they have mixed up the sexes of the stars, to get away from this horrible dynamic of Central Male With Female Supporting Entourage? And if someone comes on here and says "it probably said that in the script" I thought it had been established that "merely following orders" is not an adequate defence! If it did say in the script that they should be 6 girls + 1 boy it would have been the easiest thing in the world to ignore it, without having to rewrite a word.
There were other bits of sexist casting too.

Should I say anything?
If so, how?

PenguinsDontEatPancakes Tue 03-Dec-13 13:40:20

Hhhmm, hard to say. I wouldn't have liked the dynamic. But how old are they? What were the other bits of the play/parts?

I know only a couple of kids in DD1's reception class would have managed a 'big part' so it can be difficult.

What were the other bits of sexist casting?

youretoastmildred Tue 03-Dec-13 13:47:57

Big Star didn't really have a much bigger part. All the kids who could handle it had one or two lines, no one had more than that. It was really well managed actually in terms of all the kids acting to their abilities - no one child had to carry the show and all those who were up to it had a moment to shine (some were nursery children). It wasn't that he was the star of the show, but that there was a coterie of all girl stars with a male centre.

there were about 12 narrators, mixed sexes (good)
all boy shepherds
all girl stars except Big Star

I absolutely loved the show, it was so well done in so many ways, except this male star being polished up by girls

male star being polished up by girls grin

Sorry, not a v feminist sentiment, but you have a way with words, mildred.
Tbh it would've bothered me too and I would've expected any switched on teacher to mix it up a bit, even just for the hell of it. But I can be an awkward bugger like that...

I love the Let Toys be Toys campaign, but don't really look at the website much. I suppose the comments are no different from what you get here when you complain about the tyranny of pink or navy/camouflage and random people say 'but my little girl likes pink'. Gah!

I am aghast at that estate agent - I just cannot believe this kind of stuff goes on! Surely the default should be that you are both on the mortgage and if that is NOT the case either one of you can correct them.

I've got a stinking cold and there is only so much Lemsip I can stomach, so it's brew just now <sniff>

UptoapointLordCopper Tue 03-Dec-13 18:59:47

Belle I only heard it briefly in passing this morning about some study about "male and female brains". Will look it up later.

BelleCurve Tue 03-Dec-13 19:54:15

there is another thread noww. couldn't link on my phone. whatever the study actually says, the reporting just made my eyes roll back into my head!

Oh, the reporting drove me nuts too!

'Wired' differently, are they?

If I understand rightly, you can either study the brains (such as they are) of newborn babies and extrapolate results about differences between male and female brains (bearing in mind that even here, there is conditioning, it's just minimal compared to later). Or, you can study adults, in which case you are able to comment on the physical composition of the brain but you cannot be certain to what extent that physical composition has shaped itself according to the environment.

And that's leaving aside the fact that we do not know much at all about how the physical structure of the brain corresponds to the higher-level (or even lower level) thoughts it produces.

We are not so terribly different from Victorians who thought that since men's heads were on average bigger, they were on average brighter.

I know we all know this but it makes me so cross to see it not being said in the media.

Well, I am firmily of the belief that seeing we need our brains to study our brains, we'll never figure it out grin.

What study? Even the reporting passed me by - sounds like a lucky escape

Nicely put! grin

I dunno the study - it was reported in the Guardian and I couldn't be arsed to click the link TBH. It was something with a title about brains being 'wired differently' and that is enough to piss me off.

UptoapointLordCopper Tue 03-Dec-13 21:12:50

Pacific Thread on it. Very good posts there.

The study is on my FB newsfeed from the BBC. I don't dare look. Comments in the Beeb FB page tend to make me lost the will to live.

It's funny how everyone immediately seems to assume that "wired differently" means completely different levels of ability or liking totally different things, instead of us just being able to do the same things equally well, but by slightly different methods.

Ok, I am poorly, my nose is blocked and my feminism isn't working v well, so bear with me:
I read the abstract of the study (the full paper requires a subscription) and am I right in saying they looked at people aged 13 and older?? How does that prove anything about brain 'wiring'?
By the time your 13 surely lots of things have already happened to you and it's way too late to try and untangle 'nurture vs nature', non?

I am saying on the background of often looking at my boys and thinking 'a girl just Would Not Do That' - but then what do I know about girls grin?

I think we are all more similar and whatever differences there are, are more differences between individuals rather than between genders.
In my, slightly woolly-brained opinion.

I am having a Lemsip btw and off to bed v soon.

PenguinsDontEatPancakes Tue 03-Dec-13 22:21:21

I am off to bed, but is this another "Male and female brains look different = men and women are genetically pre-disposed to different skills" study. Oh, just set Cordelia Fine on them.

Taxi drivers have brains that are over developed in one particular area too. doesn't mean they were born black cabbies.

Causation, correlation. Exactly the same thing. No need to worry which you are looking at.

8 and older, pacific, but yes, of course.

And sorry you are not well - feel better soon!

TheDoctrineOfSanta Tue 03-Dec-13 23:15:01

Oh grr, just got out of drinks where someone I like was saying in good faith something about his 1 year old needing to be boisterous coz he's a boy .

TeiTetua Tue 03-Dec-13 23:41:51

News flash, female brains uniquely qualify little girls to Polish The Big Star! As proved by science, so nobody is allowed to argue.

UptoapointLordCopper Wed 04-Dec-13 08:38:53

Yes, women play a supporting role because their brains are wired so. Oh no, it's not because you are inferior, no no no. It's just that you are different! Don't you see? It's so important to have people doing the nurturing and supporting! So you are so very important! Not inferior at all! Just different.

angry angry

TheDoctrineOfSanta Wed 04-Dec-13 09:25:54

Love the word "different" in that context, when it so clearly means "different to the norm, the norm being men."

UptoapointLordCopper Wed 04-Dec-13 15:57:36

Yes doctrine. I think that's the problem.

PenguinsDontEatPancakes Wed 04-Dec-13 22:06:00

Just thought I'd pop in and say hi, since the topic of the pub came up on another thread. I'm in the corner with a large virtual glass of white burgundy!

I was just popping by to do the same!

I'm absolutely full of a cold so currently sitting by the fire with honey and lemon, but I'm (in real life) thoroughly enjoying the effects of too much medication, so perfectly content.

Except, you know, for the patriarchy.

<waves fist ineffectually in direction of patriarchy>

PenguinsDontEatPancakes Wed 04-Dec-13 22:20:26

Damn you the patriarchy. I blame the patriarchy for the fact that decongestants aren't allowed in pregnancy (also full of cold). It must be someone's fault. < waves fist half-heartedly>

Off to bed to snore loudly. With a stock of earplugs for when DH does. Oh the glamour of my life.

Oh, no, LRD, not you too - I hope you didn't catch my lurgie.

I am still miserable but will pull through <wan smile>

Otrivine nasal spray is my friend.

Where was Le Pub mentioned? I am intrigued...

PenguinsDontEatPancakes Wed 04-Dec-13 22:22:19

Oooh, I didn't update on my moment of feminist empowerment grin. As I was the one who was in the for the plumber on Monday, I am now the one who understands what he has done to the hot water system. I am now in charge of hot water. Go me, overcoming my fear of DIY and 'trades' one step at a time!

PenguinsDontEatPancakes Wed 04-Dec-13 22:23:03

Pacific - The feminists thread in AIBU. We were trying to convince a couple of people that FWR isn't scary...

TheDoctrineOfSanta Wed 04-Dec-13 22:25:22

I read the OP on that thread and Just Couldn't Be Arsed.

But I salute those if you that were.

Oh thanks.

I was trying to educate my rather lovely (male) colleague today on the subject of doulas, radical feminism, free birthing and lesbianism. All at the same time - poor guy looked a bit overwhelmed grin.
Don't ask how the subject/s came up, but it did.
I think he only coped secure in the knowledge that I was a. married to a man b. had had children in hospital with conventional care and c. he'd worked with me for many years and so far I had not displayed any alarming feminist tendencies.
'Twas v entertaining grin

Yeah, Penguins, Systems Manager of Hot Water - kudos!

Oh, sorry, pacific, I am absolutely fine really, just moaning, and sorry you are feeling rotten.

Okay. I'm here.

Entertain me!


I'm actually having a shit couple of days and could use some chat. And copious amounts of wine. Although maybe not at 744.

YoniMatopoeia Thu 05-Dec-13 07:54:44

Just popping by to get this on TIO.

Back later after the school run (i am shirking from home today)

Oh thanks, at least I am getting the sympathy I deserve on this thread as there is none forth coming in RL hmm - yes, I am looking at you, DH...

Have some virtual wine for later then tee. What's up?

And also - can I blame feminism if I get no work done? My car's still in the shop cos I stupidly said yes, it'd be great if you'd do the tyres while it's there, and no, I don't need it back asap. And now it's fucking freezing and I have to trek to the library on the bus instead of lazily driving there.

Men, huh? Bastards. Controlling the weather and all.

Oh nothing much. Just getting ready to tell my mother to fuck off out if my life.

Thanks for the wine.

Oh, that does not sound fun. Sorry to hear.

MercedesDestinyoleary Thu 05-Dec-13 12:08:30

yo what up dogs dis pub sounds da best evr, cans i get in 4 free, i wnt 2 spread my radical libersliam freedoms 4 all and communismist britain we all shud be = together 4 ever

PenguinsDontEatPancakes Thu 05-Dec-13 12:18:58

Oh dear Tee, that does sound hard. Have a top up - wine.

PenguinsDontEatPancakes Thu 05-Dec-13 12:23:47

Pacific - doulas, free birthing, lesbianism and rad fem. Wow! I think I'd have looked overwhelmed at that all at once!

LRD- Hope you didn't get blown away on your way to the library!

Oh my goodness that wind! Nearly took me off my feet several times and I'm glad I had a firm grip on A Small Boy™ on the walk to school.

Thanks for the tops ups and the sympathy. It's been coming for ages. It's only for so long you can hear how horrible your personality is to parent and how bad a mother you are until you snap. I'm snapping.

PenguinsDontEatPancakes Thu 05-Dec-13 12:44:35

So sorry to hear that Tee.

Not blown away, thank you, though not for lack of trying - bloody heck it's scary out there!

tee I hope you will feel better for it, though I can see it must be hard. At least once it's done you won't have that constant feeling of someone bringing you down.

I do notice with some families there is an expectation that women will put up with all the shit relatives throw at them, while men get away with being a bit more standoffish. Not necessarily your situation I know, but I've seen people in it and I think it is so healthy to just say no, unfortunately, I can't take this and there's no reason I should have to.

Anyway, sorry, I'm sure you came on here for the amazing qualities of the virtual booze or something similar. I am currently dreaming up a pub where I will sell lemsip that doesn't taste horrible. It'd be amazing at this time of year and I would be living in the bar.

youretoastmildred Thu 05-Dec-13 17:09:05

Is the Christmas tree up in the pub yet?
Are there any of those weird expanding-shiny-paper decorations hanging from the ceiling?

It is not - shall we decorate it with the skulls of MRAs we have killed, or are we going with peace and love? Either works for me.

TheDoctrineOfSanta Thu 05-Dec-13 17:43:38

Cranberry juice please. Ouch.

<blames the patriarchy for UTIs>

MooncupGoddess Thu 05-Dec-13 17:45:17

Bad luck, Doctrine.

A matriarchal theme would be good for the tree - what about large-breasted fertility goddesses instead of chocolate Santas?

TheDoctrineOfSanta Thu 05-Dec-13 18:47:43

I like that idea, Mooncup.

Or we could glitter spray some mooncups!

youretoastmildred Thu 05-Dec-13 19:55:10

Too expensive - maybe symbolic ones made of cut up egg boxes with match stick stalks taped on

We could use used moon cups? grin

<runs away cackling>

PenguinsDontEatPancakes Thu 05-Dec-13 20:40:07

That's fine Pacific, if you want to be the one to boil them all...

So, nice equal ops point from today. Bit parts in DD1's school play can choose between being a shepherd and being an angel. Now I know there will probably be no male angels and no female shepherds, but I like that they didn't just allocate based on gender.


I just got a text from DH who was flying from Scotland to Leicester tonight: "OMG. We are down. But never again".
I take that to mean he was scared. I know I was scared for him...

It's all calm and very cold here now. -9 apparently tomorrow... hmm. Better than this scary wind I suppose.

I had an interesting conversation about infertility investigations today - I cannot really go in to details, but basically there are religious/moral issues that prevent the man from giving a semen sample....
I was unable to find a way around that one.
Quite rightly invasive and therefore potentially risky investigations for the woman will not be done unless the information re his fertility is forthcoming.


PenguinsDontEatPancakes Thu 05-Dec-13 21:31:45

Ah, so a man who believes in the 'every sperm is scared', no masturbation, no, erm, climaxing elsewhere than inside a potentially fertile vagina.

Difficult. I guess it depends if the partner has accepted and shares his beliefs on that issue. If she does, then it is the rational outcome of both their moral beliefs.

Though personally I think it's rot, what with teenage boys spilling their seed all over their sheets in their sleep and whatnot. Plus, if there is a god, I think he gave us our creativity sexually, which includes all the things we do in a relationship that might not result in a pregnancy!

PenguinsDontEatPancakes Thu 05-Dec-13 21:32:18

Oops, cut a bit off. Meant to say glad your DH is safe and hope he recovers from the trauma.

He is currently having a stiff drink grin - he sounds fine to me.

Yes, I agree, if they both buy in to that way of thinking then this is the logical conclusion. I cannot quite follow that line of thinking, nor agree with it, but I am quite happy to make the choices that they are making as I fail to see how it harms anybody.

I wonder what sex eduction children in similar families enjoy??

youretoastmildred Thu 05-Dec-13 21:38:45

I suppose, Pacific, in that case there is no need for any help from you (is that right, is that what you do?) because it's god will innit, so when god wants them to have a child, they will.

PenguinsDontEatPancakes Thu 05-Dec-13 21:40:20

From the little I know, very little sex education at all. The focus of sex education is almost entirely moral education I think. And the basic biology of fertilisation and pregnancy.

PenguinsDontEatPancakes Thu 05-Dec-13 21:41:45

Gosh, I seem to remember Pacific mentioning she is medical. If she's not and this is just a conversation she had with a colleague in the IT department then I am [shocked] at the level of over-sharing!

PenguinsDontEatPancakes Thu 05-Dec-13 21:42:05

shock that should be

Oh, I know. I am not quite sure why she came - I suppose to confirm her own fertility. Of which by her history I have no doubt.

I worry about children in very repressed environments growing up being 'punished' for natural exploration of their bodies sad

Naw, you're ok, Penguins grin you're right

Nelson Mandela has died sad!

Sorry, not v feminist, but I had this thread open.

PenguinsDontEatPancakes Thu 05-Dec-13 21:46:53

I know people who have an issue with the discarded embryos of IVF, but I find that more understandable. If you believe that life begins at fertilisation, it's a tough ask to accept them being discarded. I know a friend who has had her children through IVF in the end, but who struggled with that.

I struggle much more with the idea of a sperm being scared. After all, an egg is wasted each month if you haven't had sex, and that isn't seen as wrong. confused

TheDoctrineOfSanta Thu 05-Dec-13 21:47:02

Thank you. I didn't know.


Statement on BBC News 24 just now

PenguinsDontEatPancakes Thu 05-Dec-13 21:49:37

Cross post.

Sad news about Nelson Mandela, though had obviously been expected for a while. I remember waiting watching TV for him to be released. And writing about it for the school newspaper. What an inspirational leader (though I suspect that the 'sainting' of him that will follow his death will obscure much of the complexity of the real man).

youretoastmildred Thu 05-Dec-13 21:50:26

I grew up in the 80s RC. (sex is only for married people to make babies)
I was told nothing - NOTHING - at all by my parents. not even about periods. Nothing. Literally.
the nuns at school showed us The Silent Scream which is a graphic film depicting abortion as violent murder. Girls were going green and fainting and threatening to be sick and were not allowed to leave the room which was (deliberately?) too small and overheated.
We learnt the mechanics of reproduction as part of O level biology.
Socially, we learnt nothing except: sex is only for married people; contraception is wrong; in fact contraception causes life-threatening illness; abortion is murder; women who do have abortions usually go mad and steal babies.
masturbation was never mentioned.


youretoastmildred Thu 05-Dec-13 21:51:15

RIP Mandela, hero

Good grief, mildred - in the 20th century??

It beggars belief.
I presume you've caught up in the meantime.

And yy to 'sainting' of NM that is sure to follow - I started a thread in Chat and there is one lone critical comment...

youretoastmildred Thu 05-Dec-13 22:13:26

erm well I wouldn't say I have and I am bit worried about how to look after dds in this respect. I am actually genuinely awfully embarassed to talk about periods for instance and that has to be got over. (no one else is, I notice, these days, which is heartening)

youretoastmildred Thu 05-Dec-13 22:14:53

We fluffed it a while ago when I emptied a moon cup into the loo and it didn't flush properly and dd1 (4) asked what it was. I was too slow and shy to come in fast enough with a child-friendly truth and dp told her some made up bollocks. I feel like I need to get geared up to this.

monicalewinski Thu 05-Dec-13 22:15:39

Thought I'd crash in and say "hi", been having a nosey round the scary feminist threads after it being mentioned last night.

Bored my husband shitless last night about my newly re-awakened passion for the rights of young girls and how shock I was at my ignorance over the toys.

Not staying now, off to bed but I'll pop back another time - thanks for the invite!

PenguinsDontEatPancakes Thu 05-Dec-13 22:17:28

I'm off to bed too, but here's a wine (or an orange juice should you prefer) in welcome Monica

mildred, my 100 year old gran had a very strict RC (convent) upbringing.
She knew nothing - her wedding night came as a great shock to her and she genuinely thought she was dying when she was in labour sad. V traumatised decades later sad.
But: she never told her daughters anything either hmm.
So my mother, the older of 2 girls, assumed she was dying when she started bleeding. She was also frightened to confess to blood stained clothes. She hid in a cupboard hoping to die before her mother would find her...

To her eternal credit she did a great job with me: I don't remember ever being sat down for The Chat, she just answered questions as they came up, she never behaved in any kind of way exhibitionist in front of my brother and me, but I knew where her sanpro was, what it was for, that it was 'private' but not 'dirty'.

I really feel I owe her a great debt of gratitude for that.

I am sure you are doing far better than you think you are, considering all your very insightful and thoughtful posts on here thanks

Mind, my mum did not cope so well with me having a sexual relationship before marriage, but we all managed to move past that wink!

... far better job... sorry

Welcome, monica smile

Aw, she's 4 - plenty of time to come up with the sciency bits grin

AntiJamDidi Thu 05-Dec-13 23:04:34

I was brought up in a fairly strict Catholic household but my parents did give me some sex education. I definitely knew all about periods for ages before mine started and my mum was always open about sanpro. School sex education was not great, it was a biology lesson and we were taught about the basic biology and then a range of contraception was displayed and talked about in terms of, you need to know this for your GCSE but will have no further use for it in your life because you will all be married before you have sex and then you'll be happy to have as many babies as you are blessed with (by a nun who obviously had never had any need for contraception). My mum was more matter of fact than that and did a lot of "wait til you're ready" chats and my parents were very understanding when they thought I was pg at 17 - I wasn't, I was a virgin but have pcos (didn't know that at the time) so don't have regular periods and they went awol for almost the whole of my lower sixth year at school. They were great when I did fall pg at 19 and had no intention of marrying the father or ever seeing him again in my life.

I'm trying to be even more open about sex and stuff with my dds. I've never kept any of it secret from them but obviously my answers to their questions are age appropriate.

I came on to have a bit of a rant about older gentlemen and their gentle sexism. I am in an orchestra which I enjoy but I'm struggling with the sexist way some of the older men talk to and about the women in the group. They are trying to be nice and they genuinely don't see themselves as being sexist but little things are winding me up, like the 93 year old man who constantly tries to help the women do things - we're all a lot more capable than he is (because he's got a lot of health issues now) but he gets music stands out for all the women and not the men. Then there's the way all the men refer to us women as "girls" but refer to the men as "gentlemen", and they think I'm being completely ott to point out that since we're all significantly older than 18 we're women rather than girls. It's all little things that feel pathetic to pick up on but it adds up to me feeling quite patronised, just because I am a woman. It annoys me.

It would annoy me as well, AntiJamDidi. That sort of thing always annoys me.

I'll be around a lot today as my son is ill and off school. Explaining the Super Tantrum and nap he had after school!

UptoapointLordCopper Fri 06-Dec-13 08:31:58

Antijam That would annoy me too. I had a frank discussion with a very nice gentleman of a certain age too at a blood donating session hmm about why we don't like that.

<< nosey >> What instrument do you play?

youretoastmildred Fri 06-Dec-13 08:52:38

Yes, I want to hear more about what you play (both instrument and repertoire) too, antijam! (off the point)

I remember becoming very conscious of this elaborately twirly "chivalrous" behaviour that suddenly started happening (in some contexts) the second I stopped being a child. the same people who thought children were like dogs, to be stepped over, ignored, mildly tolderated, or put outside, were suddenly making a huge song and dance about physically guiding you through doorways ahead of them (ugh, the hand on the back) and jumping ostentatiously out of chairs for you and so on. It was embarrassing because of the huge difference from the way I had been treated what seemed like last week. It was like I was wearing a sign saying "NOW UP FOR SEXUAL CONSIDERATION"

benid Fri 06-Dec-13 13:01:48

hello .. never been to the pub before but I am lurking in the corner having a glass of pop.. just wanted to say thankyou to all the FWR posters as (although I don't post) I've been lurking here for a few months and what I've read has really helped to clarify my thinking on how the world actually is. It's been a bit like that bit in the Matrix smile!

Also I've been giggling at every sperm is "scared" penguins hehe! poor little things grin

So much for being here today. My broadband went pearshaped there for a bit! I even had to clean the kitchen! ::faints::

I hate patriarchal expectations of clean rooms in my house.

scallopsrgreat Fri 06-Dec-13 16:16:48

Hi Tee, monica and benid and welcome. I am a sporadic poster on this thread because I am shit at long running threads. Invariably RL invades and I lose track.

I don't know if anyone knows but it's the anniversary of the Montreal massacre today. Julie Bindel's written an article on it here

PenguinsDontEatPancakes Fri 06-Dec-13 16:42:53

Benid - I know. Auto correct didi it in two separate posts as well.blush I figured you all knew what I meant. Mind you, it does sound a fairly terrifying journey. grin

PenguinsDontEatPancakes Fri 06-Dec-13 16:44:03

Scallops- I am sporadic too. That is why I love this thread. just wander in and chip in without any expectations you have 'kept up'.

SinisterSal Fri 06-Dec-13 16:52:29

Things change

I had an RC convent eduaction in the 90's and came away from quite well sussed. My parents - M&D - were both open and matter of fact about periods and boys and all that. Stood me in good stead, but of course it's no magic bullet against aking mistakes and having bad experiences.

I have no memory of who 'taught' me the birds and the bees. I know my mom got me a 'growing up pack' which was various kinds of sanpro and a little booklet. But she also told me not to tell my friends, in case their mothers hadn't talked to them.

And I know we had Sex Ed in school. This was in the US, BTW, so probably different than here. It was part of health education or something like that.

CaptChaos Fri 06-Dec-13 17:58:52

My Granny (who would be coming up to 100) had a very secular upbringing but still had no clue whatsoever about periods before they started and she thought she was bleeding to death (don't tell your brothers, darling) or sex. My grandfather worked out on their wedding night that she had no clue what was going to happen and so did nothing but cuddle her, he bought her a book about it all and waited until she was ready and happy to have sex for the first time, about 6 months into their marriage.

MooncupGoddess Fri 06-Dec-13 18:13:12

Oh CaptChaos, what a lovely granddad you had!

scallopsrgreat Fri 06-Dec-13 18:40:08

Oh I think I had 'The Talk' but I suspect I broached the subject. Tbf my mum was quite good. Is it ever going to be that comfortable with your mother? She was great about periods though. I do remember not knowing what an orgasm was until I was about 16 and being laughed at by friends at school because I didn't. So evidently we didn't learn it in Biology hmm. Clearly not important enough for us girls to know! These were the days before PHSD (if I got that right) btw.

monicalewinski Fri 06-Dec-13 19:08:17

CaptChaos, your granddad just made me do an "awww" face in rl !

My mum dealt with it all iirc, although I think we had a half assed effort at school for periods etc (but not sex ed).

My 11 yr old (yr 7) has just had a sex ed lesson (mixed sexes) this week where they broadly touched on rape, feelings and not having to do things you don't feel right about, and also cyber grooming and sexting; the next lesson is separated and is going to be about 'the sex' I think. This follows on from the yr 6 one where they were told about puberty.

Luckily at the mo he's quite open with his dad and he has been talking it over (although less in depth) with me, so so far so good (I live in dread and fear of the next 8 years though!). Definitely his school are dealing with it all quite well I think.

CaptChaos, what a gent, your granddad, in the true sense of the word, lovely smile.

Which brings me to the not so gentlemanly behaviour of some old goats men: yy to the hand in small of back to usher me in to a room or standing up when I entered or scuttling to get me a chair when I must have been about 13 or so. Usually by friends of my grandparents. FFS.

I hope I will be able to not look at DSs' friends when they are teens and go 'fnar fnar' in my head, I really do.

Oh, re sex ed in school, I think it is SO important, just because we don't know what some kids are told at home and how they are told it.
I wish there was more emphasis on 'relationships' though, as well as the biological facts and contraception etc.
It's ok to not want sex.
It's ok to say 'no' - and 'no' means 'no'.
If something does not feel right, it probably isn't right.
Trust your gut.
Make sure the other person feels good and chances are you'll feel good too.
Etc etc

I think our school is doing a really good job of it too (DS3 is in P1 - we are in Scotland - and they are just learning to look after their bodies and how to name parts).
Some parents were up in arms about their little girls saying 'penis' at home hmm

I'd struggle to be a teacher and remain polite to some parents grin

PenguinsDontEatPancakes Fri 06-Dec-13 21:47:43

What did they want their daughters to say?

I must say, I struggle with what to call female parts. I mean, vagina isn't even accurate for what they are talking about most of the time, vulva just sounds odd. There is no neutral and overarching word for the whole area.

Had an interesting conversation with DD1 (4) today about the fact that there isn't such a thing as a 'rude' word in itself if that word was just a body part or a bodily function, but that it was rude to say things to people in a way that was designed to hurt their feelings. A boy had called her a 'poo poo' and I was trying (and probably failing) to explain taht there was nothing rude about poo, or the word poo, but since it was our waste and had germs and we flush it away it wasn't nice to say somebody was a poo. Gee, this parenting lark...

UptoapointLordCopper Fri 06-Dec-13 21:54:48

I find it hard to keep a straight face when DC go around saying "penis". I don't know why. It's just funny... << juvenile sense of humour >>

I struggle with a word for female genitalia too, but we say penis and vagina which is not anatomically accurate but a nicer word than vulva (which sounds a bit like vulcano or valpolicella, all wrong grin).

It is funny what children learn to be offended by or to use as an insult. In our house we currently have a problem with 'racist' and DS2(9) accuses DS3(5) of being 'racist' because he called something 'brown' (like, say, a brown crayon) - where do you even begin with that?? Is this 'brownist'??
They obvious talk in school about racism and how using 'Paki' is racist, but DS3 had no clue what 'Paki' meant or what 'racist' was. But he was most offended at being called racist.
Cue much talking around in circles and finding Pakistan on a world map and talking about tolerance - he was v puzzled that people would consider colour of anybody's skin to be worthy of mention as this had not occured to him in his rather multi-coloured class!
So, now he has taken to chanting "paki, paki, paki..." under his breath while colouring in <head - desk>

Oh, and all of mine say 'penis' and 'willy' and moon whenever there is the least provocation. DS4 like calling his penis his 'wee penis' grin - he is very fond of it and goes to sleep lying on his front, holding it. Aw!

PenguinsDontEatPancakes Fri 06-Dec-13 22:07:53

That's very funny Pacific. Loving the racist brown crayon. It's political correctness gorn maaaaad I tell you grin

UptoapointLordCopper Fri 06-Dec-13 22:17:15

grin at pacific's DS3. I hope he doesn't do the chanting thing in school. You'd be hauled in to explain things.

DC's school is pretty multicultural as well. I like it.

We talked about Nelson Mandela today. sad

PenguinsDontEatPancakes Fri 06-Dec-13 22:18:39

DD's school is not very multicultural. Sadly not a very multicultural area. I miss London in that respect.

To be fair, the boys' school is not very multicultural (where we live isn't), but there are a variety of skin colours present nonetheless, including 'white, freckly and redheaded' which he found much more worth of mention grin

Oh, I sincerely hope he'll have grown bored of the chanting by Monday!

Somebody called me 'a little lady' today hmm - I was so taken aback, I did not respond and just walked away seething - where is the feminist wit when I need it most??

AntiJamDidi Fri 06-Dec-13 23:31:33

Upto and mildred I play the flute and we play the sort of thing most secondary school orchestras play, fairly easy arrangements of decent classical music. We're not particularly good but we all enjoy it which is the main thing.

I struggle with what to call female genitalia too. Dp started calling it "lady parts" or "girly bits" so that's what dd2 calls it, but I think dd1 used to call it her "front bottom". None of those terms feels quite right though, whereas I would automatically call a boy's bits his willy.

I love the chanting by pacific's ds, I hope he gets bored of it soon. We live in a particularly white area, but do have a very few non-white faces around. Dd1 was quite shocked when she found out that her friend was a different race to her when she was 7, she had literally never noticed that they had different coloured skin (I wanted to keep it that way but other children at school started commenting and the teachers had to have a big discussion about everybody being different). Dd2 has a Chinese friend but I don't think she's noticed yet that she's got different coloured skin, she has noticed her Polish friend talks differently but that's ok apparently because they can all still understand him. I miss Newcastle, we had loads of non-white faces in my class and imo we were a lot more tolerant than kids are in my current school where there are only 5 non-white faces in the whole school of 1500 pupils.

legoplayingmumsunite Sat 07-Dec-13 07:04:42

Had a long discussion with the kids (5, 4 and 1, admittedly the one year old didn't have much to say) about Nelson Mandela at teatime last night. Very strange introducing the idea of racism to children who have never considered it but kept thinking about the nurtureshock article that says you have to talk about these things explicitly to children otherwise they fill the vaccum of difference themselves. White liberal parents (that'll be us!) often find it difficult to talk about race, whereas black parents are much more explicit about fighting it.

I wonder if the same is true of sexism, parents of girls seek out positive female role models (in the same way black parents talk about positive black role models) but parents of boys generally don't worry about it so much (obv parents on here will). I wonder if there are any studies about the relative sexism of men with just brothers and those with sisters? In my family one of my brothers is quite an outspoken feminist (e.g. he posted on FB 2 baby cards complaining that the options were 'bouncing boy' and 'gorgeous girl' and all the sexist assumptions bound up in that), my other is less obviously opinionated but is very proud of his outspoken high earning wife. My Dad loved opinionated women as well so they've both been brought up valuing women for their brains.

kickassangel Sat 07-Dec-13 12:18:57

Don't know about siblings but in the US congressmen with daughters are more likely to vote for anti sexist legislation.

monicalewinski Sat 07-Dec-13 14:06:41

I know if I had daughters I would have made a big deal about how they can strive for anything and probably would have overstated it to a degree, but with boys it is more just expected that they can aspire to anything.

I obviously try and instil in my boys that hard work and trying your best is the best you can do and education is the key, but thinking about it I do not push the idea like I imagine I would have with a girl.

I do however make a point about how when they grow up and fall in love, it's much more fun to be with someone who is clever, funny and interesting, as life would be boring without that and my husband says the same to them - hopefully this is giving them a positive impression of women as they grow up (and obviously I'm a fecking awesome role model to boot! grin)

monicalewinski Sat 07-Dec-13 14:13:44

kickass interesting about men with daughters suddenly being interested in discrimination.

My dad did the exact same job/trade as me (aircraft engineer in RAF), he joined in late 60s and women only started being allowed to work on the squadrons in the early 80s - I remember him being pissed off that they would want 'special treatment' etc at the time. As it turned out, they didn't (who could've guessed?!) and he grudgingly re-assessed his opinion on them.

10 years later, I joined up - doing the same job as him; from that moment he was not just accepting, but an avid supporter of women on the squadrons and takes to task regularly (he now works as a civvy within the RAF) the old dinosaurs who still come out with the sexist shite.

Just goes to show that when there is a vested interest, people change their views.

SinisterSal Sat 07-Dec-13 15:02:48


But maybe also hy it is so difficult to get people to see about the objectification of women and the sex trade and so on.

The vested interest may well be there, but the whole Madonna Whore thing neuters it quite nicely

The "rape festival" thread , so was that a troll?

It's penis and vagina here. Yes, I know vagina is just one part, but it's what I was raised calling it, it's what I call it.

My son, at 4 with a development delay, has only just noticed his. And it is, of course, his favourite toy. Then again, it's my 39 year old husband's favourite toy as well. fgrin

Oh living with BOYS is such a hardship!!!!!

I'm in NI but I don't think they do any sex ed of any sort for years. Hell, he's in an integrated school and they still do a little prayer every day at home time. fhmm The joys of this country.

A 'rape festival' thread?? hmmshock
The mind boggles - I've not seen it.

I emphasise being nice, solving conflict by talking about it/stepping back/tolerating others (rather than starting WW3 at the least provocation), I dampen competitiveness ("yes, winning is great, always try your best, but I love you just as much if you don't win") because they are so fiercely competitive, to the point were coming 2nd is 'losing' hmm.
I don't think that a single of my easy-going, chilled genes got through to the DSs. Except possibly DS2's curly hair grin.

I luffs my boys. Including DH I suppose.

Oh I adore my two boys.

It's just hard to teach the little one that the living room is not an appropriate place to 'adjust' himself when Daddy was never taught that! Or at least never listened to the lessons!


AntiJamDidi Sat 07-Dec-13 23:33:17

I'm trying to encourage competitiveness in my dds. I think I may have succeeded with dd1, she's absolutely certain that she's the best in the school year academically but she refuses to play sport because she's not so good at that.

I agree that appropriate ways of solving conflict is more important for boys because it seems as if society expects boys to be violent and getting into fights, when actually most of them wouldn't want to do that if they had other ways of sorting things out.

monicalewinski Sat 07-Dec-13 23:41:22

I think competitiveness is good, but it is important that it is not all about the winning (boys and girls).

If you grow up to believe that you are able to compete in anything, then you will - but you have to be able to deal with defeat and failure; you only learn to do this by competing and failing.

Boys tend to be encouraged to have an inherent belief in their ability to do anything, but girls are encouraged to go for the safe achievable option - this is why girls in general are not such risk takers as boys (totally generalised but true, I think).

SconeRhymesWithGone Sun 08-Dec-13 00:02:01

Just jumping in to say hello to monica and Tee. Glad that y'all meandered over from the other thread. And welcome to benid too.

Now back to my cosy corner to have a large glass of red and a good listen.

legoplayingmumsunite Sun 08-Dec-13 12:13:22

Boys tend to be encouraged to have an inherent belief in their ability to do anything, but girls are encouraged to go for the safe achievable option - this is why girls in general are not such risk takers as boys (totally generalised but true, I think).

This is why I love Pink Brain, Blue Brain because it has sensible suggestions to counteract this. I don't have it at the moment (my friend has just had her third son so has borrowed it again to inspire her) but I think it suggests team sports like hockey for this particular problem. We try and stress with the girls that the more you practice something the better you get, and really praise effort. It's hard though sometimes, achievement is just so much more obvious isn't it.

This is totally inappropriate, but the other day I was on the bus with someone repeatedly whispering fiercly to her today 'no, James. No! Nobody wants to see that!'

I have only just twigged what 'that' probably was. blush grin

That poor woman, she'll have got off the bus to tell her husband '... and he won't stop fiddling with his thing, and there was this idiot woman on the bus who kept smiling vacantly at him instead of decently averting her eyes, it's disgusting ...'.

UptoapointLordCopper Sun 08-Dec-13 18:09:37


I've assembled a bookshelf. It weighs a ton. How to get it to where I want it to go!? hmm I need a drink.

Very interesting talk about Media and women

Too bad I can only see about 5 men in the audience.

legoplayingmumsunite Sun 08-Dec-13 19:00:53

uptoapoint I assembled an IKEA bookshelf and couldn't lift it off the floor! I had to use the plastic stuff tape that holds the boxes shut, get it under a shelf then use that to lift up the bookshelf. How far do you have to transport yours? have a drink then get a friend to help tomorrow. When we had to move the bunkbeds it took 3 people to move them.

SconeRhymesWithGone Sun 08-Dec-13 19:01:18

That's a powerful clip. Very good point about how advertising sells values; it also creates values. Her way of making the point about the relationship between media objectification of women and violence against women is good, too. I think that connection is completely unrecognized by so many. And, yeah, no surprise at the lack of male faces in the audience.

UptoapointLordCopper Sun 08-Dec-13 20:32:19

Bookshelf in place! Phew! Already half full ...

SinisterSal Sun 08-Dec-13 23:26:19

Great clip Tee

monicalewinski Mon 09-Dec-13 00:25:04

Good clip, Tee - photoshop is the devil's work!

I found out recently that the reason I look shit in any photo but my sister miraculously looks amazing (all pictures of her on fb) are because she photoshops herself every time. And apparently everyone does it. She has also had her children's school photos altered to make them more perfect!!!

No-one is real anymore. fsad

UptoapointLordCopper Mon 09-Dec-13 07:37:55

People photoshop their own FB photos!? shock shock It has never occurred to me.


I use photoshop for a living.

It would never occur to me to edit a family photo! Take us as you see us.

monicalewinski Mon 09-Dec-13 08:35:36

To my shame though, now I know this if I had the first clue about how to do it I would probably photoshop every photo I have of me! blush

Good grief - photoshopping family photographs?! Now I've heard it all.
I will use the 'Red Eye Removal' button so my kids look less like aliens - is that the thin end of the wedge? ::worried::

(See, Tee, :: in deference to you wink)

Re media and women's images and alteration of said images - it IS really all-pervasive and pernicious.
It took me literally decades to fully understand and make my peace with the fact that I would never look like the 'ideal' advertising woman: I don't have a boyish figure, no matter what weight I am. My legs will never go all the way to my neck, my shoulders will always be broad, my breasts and hips will always.... well, just be there and prevent me from looking like... oh dunno, Keira Knightly or someone.
I spoke to a 7 year old girl recently who is quite into her gymnastics, does 13 hrs/week of it and has just been told she needs to watch what she's eating by her coach hmm. Nought to do with medja, I suppose, but just made me feel quite queasy.

PenguinsDontEatPancakes Mon 09-Dec-13 10:45:16

We remove red eye. And DH did once remove a snot trail from an otherwise lovely photo of DD2 we wanted to put in a frame. I think we're within normal Pacific

monicalewinski Mon 09-Dec-13 11:03:44

Penguin, in fairness to my sister and others, she did only have a livid red mark removed from her toddlers face (banged his cheek the day before) for the school photo I feel like I threw her under the bus a bit now!

Well done PD. fgrin

I used to read Judith Krantz novels as my escapism (now I read fan fiction) and in one of her books she says something like "Supermodels are freaks. Maybe 10 women in the world are supermodels at any one time. There's no way the rest of us can match them." And that was long before even supermodels were photoshoped to the point that they can barely recognize themselves!

PenguinsDontEatPancakes Mon 09-Dec-13 11:34:20

Yeah Monica, I can understand that. But she photoshops herself routinely? That says something sad about what we see as the purpose of posting photos of ourselves doesn't it? That it isn't just about letting loved ones see what we've been up to, but 'presenting' ourselves to the world in the same way that models or actors are 'presented' in their photos.

I think it kind of removes the reason for sharing them on FB if you're taking the time to PS them first!

I take a picture and instantly upload it. I would never upload anything if I thought I had to PS it first.

monicalewinski Mon 09-Dec-13 11:43:42

She's more of a blemish remover to be fair, but she has shown me 'how to pose' for a photo - chin down, arm at unnatural angle etc because I could never understand how she always looked so good in photos.

It is sad though - most public forum 'joe public' photos are posed or manipulated in some way, it's all about how others perceive you with so much less importance on how you perceive yourself.

Everyone is aware of media manipulation, but it goes on all around us all the time and we don't notice most of it.

DS3(5) noticed tonight that Stickman is taller than his Stick Lady Love.
I just said "Yes, he is."

Julia Donaldson strikes me as quite enlightened (and her DH Malcolm too) and I have no idea what Axel Scheffler, the illustrator, is like.
Does Stickman's height matter?
I don't even know why I am still thinking about it.

It's the old chestnut of men being physically 'superior' to women, stronger, faster, taller. Yes, a lot of men are stronger or faster or taller than a lot of women, but not all. A lot of men are taller than other men, a lot of women are taller than other women and some women are taller than some men.

Sigh. I am overthinking this, aren't I?
Fecking Stickman grin

UptoapointLordCopper Mon 09-Dec-13 21:43:39

This "man taller than woman" business is part of our "gender schema", according to my book. Statistically speaking men are taller than women. However, when they did an experiment showing pictures of men and women of the same height (separately), people consistently think that the men are taller than the women. This shows that even "true" stereotype influences our judgement.

UptoapointLordCopper Mon 09-Dec-13 21:44:07

Is that sufficiently dull? grin

UptoapointLordCopper Mon 09-Dec-13 21:45:57

AntiJam I would like to play in an orchestra. Unfortunately I don't play an orchestral instrument ... It must be fun. envy

Oh, oh, I've started a thread in 'music' and then in 'Chat' about [ this]] and am getting v little traffic - if this does not get you taking up an instrument, then I don't know what will, LordCopper grin.

Again, not feminist, but fecking inspiring!

And no, that was not dull, v interesting, thanks smile

kickassangel Mon 09-Dec-13 22:35:47

The bigger the gap between height of man an woman in a Holkywood movie, the better it does at the box office. So the fact if men being averagely taller than women becomes something we judge people on.

On another note, according to my mother I am not meant to read in Christmas Day. I should cook and play with dd. I pointed out that it is dh's turn and I get the day off.

AntiJamDidi Mon 09-Dec-13 22:51:58

Upto I love playing in my orchestra but I hate the fact that they all want to do concerts. I get embarrassed about stuff like that, especially since the music we play is the exact same stuff that dd1 plays in her school orchestra. I feel like we should be better as adults than the teenagers, but then I remember that the teenagers are still having lessons and I barely picked up my flute in the 15 years between leaving school and joining this orchestra last year.
The other flautist started playing in her 40s, had lessons and took exams as an adult once her kids were older teenagers. She got grade 8 at 60! It's not too late for you to start playing an instrument if you want to. I have a colleague who always wanted to play the violin and he was given a violin and some lessons for his 50th birthday. He isn't particularly good but he really enjoys it, has joined a folk group and an orchestra and is improving all the time.

AntiJamDidi Mon 09-Dec-13 23:00:25

Pacific dd2 noticed that stickman is taller than his lady love too. I think that's acceptable because an 'average-height' man is taller than an 'average-height' woman.

It is interesting about Hollywood movies and height differences between men and women though. I know my friend feels very self-conscious because she's 3 inches taller than her husband, and my sister never wore heels when she was with her ex because they are exactly the same height. Tall women and short men both seem to have quite a hard time of it.

TheDoctrineOfSanta Mon 09-Dec-13 23:11:14

To be fair, if you are trying to make a stick look different, there's only so much you can do...

I'll give you that point, TheDoctrine, not much in the way of secondary sexual characteristics to play with grin

TheDoctrineOfSanta Tue 10-Dec-13 00:03:58

I think the height difference has a better statistical basis than the fucking eyelash difference which seems to be de rigeur for indicating "female".

legoplayingmumsunite Tue 10-Dec-13 00:31:03

The DDs talk about men being taller than women the whole time. You'd think they'd get fed up of me saying 'who is taller:DH (5'5") or A (my female cousin, 6')?' They roll their eyes and say 'A'.

DH is secure in his shortness due to being quite tall in his family and taller than me. Fathering 3 DC in quick succession has earned him the odd high five, although personally I think my 40 something ovaries should be pretty impressed with themselves as well. And why is it that men get congratulated on being manly for having children? No-one congratulates me on my fecundity, generally I've been told I'm crazy to have 'so many'.

UptoapointLordCopper Tue 10-Dec-13 07:47:53

Antijam I had a few violin lessons when I was younger, and dabbled in the guitar, but my main instrument is the piano, which you don't get to play in an orchestra unless someone particularly want a concerto ... And I'd be terrible at that - the thing about playing solo all your life is that you don't keep time particularly well. blush But I've started playing the piano again after a break of about, oh, 20 years. It's great. I thought I'd go back to old pieces to relearn them, but actually I've learned all kinds of new stuff. I've got my eye on either a violin or a cello, though. I'll torture my neighbours for a bit and then join an orchestra and torture the general public. grin

As for being better as adults than school kids, I'm not sure about that! I certainly don't play to the same standard as I did when I did exams... Kids don't have anything else to do if they want to spend all day practising, whereas adults somehow got coerced into providing them meals. hmm grin

Not s very feminist post.

UptoapointLordCopper Tue 10-Dec-13 07:51:02

legomum Yeah, it's odd that men should get congratulated for that micro-second of effort while women don't get recognition for those months and months of gestation.

When I was young and foolish I had a job where I was taller than my boss and made a point of wearing 3-inch heels. Hate heels.

TheDoctrineOfSanta Tue 10-Dec-13 07:57:09

It's because society is predicated on the ownership of children and the succession, and men cannot gestate, therefore when the woman they "own" is pregnant they are proved to have a rightful place.

SinisterSal Tue 10-Dec-13 10:40:57

Oh the eyelash thing

DD1 was obsessed with eyelashes being a girl only thing until we inspected daddy's eyes to discover he has them too. Silly cartoon makers don't realise boys need to keep the dust out of their eyes too.

UptoapointLordCopper Tue 10-Dec-13 10:44:06

When DS1 was a baby a woman walked up to us and admired him and then said that those eyelashes were wasted on a boy. hmm hmm

He does have lovely eye lashes. grin

SinisterSal Tue 10-Dec-13 10:55:42

Ha - someone said the same about my nephew.

I suppose it's not wrong, DNephew or your DS won't be expected to flutter them much

monicalewinski Tue 10-Dec-13 11:04:54

My boys have the most gorgeous eyelashes you ever did see.

My 8 yr old HATES them - they brush on sunglasses when he blinks and get in the way apparently.

He said once that he was going to cut them off, and asked the hairdresser if she could cut them for him - he is not an eyelash fan!

"Hate heels" grin

Oh, the stupid cartoon eyelash things really gets my goat as well!
Guess what, ALL my boys have eyelashes, every single one of them. FFS.

Please tell me that this wins the prize for the most overpriced, sexist, pernicious piece of shit plastic tat marketed at girls this Christmas?!

PenguinsDontEatPancakes Tue 10-Dec-13 12:49:47

Linking together the height thing and the creepy chivalry thing from upthread, when I was fully qualified and an expert in my niche of law, but relatively young I found that there was a certain type of middle aged man who would have difficulty listening to my opinion in meetings (even though they were often the one paying my bills!).

I soon discovered that, as an already tall woman, wearing 3 inch heels to the meeting was an incredibly effective way of disarming them. There was something that their brains just couldn't compete about physically looking up to me to talk to/do the meeting and greeting bit of the meeting. Really affected the dynamic.

Probably not the most feminist thing to do, and interestingly as I got older (by which I mean into my 30s) I encountered it less and went back to ballet pumps.

youretoastmildred Tue 10-Dec-13 14:58:20

So great to see all these grown-ups doing music! I have long felt sad that while we now recognise that sport, or at least physical activity, is good for everyone, there seems to be a belief that music is only worth doing if you are pro-standard.
Orchestras for all!

Yes Pacific, that is grim. However the piece of Barbie tat that dd1 wants for Christmas is a 3-figure-sum worth of tat. She isn't getting it. But Father Christmas at the school fair has ok'd it, so this is going to be tricky.

Right tell me to woman-up. I have just found out that a work trip I am supposed to be going on (I never go anywhere, hence my dithering and confusion) will cost an insane amount as it turns out the policy says a flight of that length can be booked Business. I have led a sheltered life and the numbers are blowing my mind. The travel agent recognises that my mind is blown and is suggesting alternatives like Premium Economy one way or both ways.

Tell me that I should get the figures for Business signed off and stop being a wimp about it, because it is the policy. It applies to everyone, including me.
I have got stuck in a self-perpetuating feedback loop where I never get to go anywhere so I have no confidence so no one thinks I want to go anywhere or will perform when I get there. I have a new-ish boss, who is behaving as if he has confidence in me, and it is realising how much I have internalised the lack of trust of my previous boss. Tell me to book the expensive flights and get the hell on with it.

MooncupGoddess Tue 10-Dec-13 15:05:08

Book the Business tickets, mildred! After all, you are a senior executive and need to arrive at Exotic Destination fresh and ready to communicate your amazing insights.


AngelaDaviesHair Tue 10-Dec-13 15:35:41

Book the expensive flights and get the hell on with it. It's a long flight, it's work, you need to be compos mentis when you get there, which is precisely why the policy allows you to fly business. Now why on earth would you broadcast the fact you don't think you're worth it by a very public act of self-abnegation like only going Premium Economy? Hmn? Hmn?

Have a punishment essay of not less than 2000 words on this very topic PM'ed to me before close of business, please.

youretoastmildred Tue 10-Dec-13 15:44:34

This is the problem, I don't think I am worth it!
Green face taken on the chin - this is a bloody nice problem to have. I am really thrilled to be going, there have been other trips for several of the team that I have not been included on and this is a huge deal for me.
Thanks for the pep talks.
Apart from anything else, I really need to close this issue down NOW (in my head, on my desktop, in my life) and get it out the way and do some actual WORK which is ALL urgent.
thanks for letting me witter on

Good grief, book the expensive tickets, woman!
Can I come as your PA? grin

AngelaDaviesHair Tue 10-Dec-13 15:58:39

Essay, 4:30 pm, get cracking.

grin Angela

I think was mildred is going through is part of that Imposter Complex thing, isn't it? 'I am not good enough at my job and soon I shall be found out and they'll want their money back for those outrageously expensive flights'.
Whereas a man is more likely to see a perk like that as his due...

So, mildred, it is your fucking feminist duty to book the tickets, drink complimentary champagne and eat truffles en route and arrive looking all glamorous and fresh as a daisy.

Yes, I am envy too.
Measly public servant (kind of), I'll never fly anything other than Ryanair cattle class <sobs>

youretoastmildred Tue 10-Dec-13 16:02:37

I would love you to! I am going to arrive and look around and think what am I doing here and where are my babies and what sort of a fraud am i?

if I were going with a mn-er we would have a right laugh.

youretoastmildred Tue 10-Dec-13 16:04:52

Speaking of where are my babies? I am already practising the blank, non-plussed face I am going to wear when people ask me that, and I say "with their... father. Their other parent."

AngelaDaviesHair Tue 10-Dec-13 16:05:38

Absolutely Pacific, I know it well.

My sister came to my workplace the other day and admired my new office. I admitted to her I didn't feel I'd 'earned' it and was a bit of a con sitting here in top floor splendour. She rolled her eyes at me. All the years I've put into this job (not to mention all the accessories I've put into the office) and I still can't quite own it.

youretoastmildred Tue 10-Dec-13 16:18:33

I have stopped agonising about this now I have realised how long I am going to have to watch films. Incredible. I will have more undisturbed time than I will have had in the total 4 years preceding.

<Opens diary>
When are we going?
Will you expect me to sit cattle-class while you lord it up with the poshos? hmm[class war]

See, I lack that maternal gene for 'where are my babies?' - the v rare occasion that I am away on my own it's all 'thank goodness' grin

AngelaDaviesHair Tue 10-Dec-13 16:21:18

Yeah! Films, books, chocolate you don't have to share, relative comfort, meals brought to you. Bliss. Blimey, you could even file your nails in peace (personal bugbear of mine that I never manage this).

You may be able to buy a magazine and read it shock
Or a whole book.
And actually eat your meal in peace.
You can have a drink while waiting to board.
You'll have ALL the peanuts to yourself.


Angela and I are clearly thinking along the same lines grin

AngelaDaviesHair Tue 10-Dec-13 16:25:14

Let's sit next to each other and not talk all the way while we cram in as much peace, quiet and self-indulgence as possible.

Oh, I'm so in!
Can I have noise-cancelling headphones and a black-out eye mask?

youretoastmildred Tue 10-Dec-13 16:37:33

I don't care if I never get off, I think I would be quite happy to fly around for a while. You could just do it virtually to save trashing the planet: LONG-HAUL "PLANE" EXPERIENCE. It's like a night club. You turn up, check in, get given your boarding pass, file through a corridor and are shown to your seat. Then it's all movies, books, blankets, eye masks as the "plane" rocks convincingly and no one can reach you. One in a hundred "flights" is randomly selected as "CRASH EXPERIENCE" and those lucky passengers experience the invigorating adrenalin effects of surviving great peril.

Oh, you should develop that idea as a business plan - you'd make ^millions*, I tell'ya! grin

AngelaDaviesHair Tue 10-Dec-13 16:45:53

My latest business plan, though I'm sure someone's already done it: court stylist, helping female defendants/witnesses or partners of same navigate the snap judgments of patriarchy with specially chosen clothes for their court appearances.

What d'you think?

PenguinsDontEatPancakes Tue 10-Dec-13 17:29:13

Mildred - I think that there are valid reasons for feeling guilt about booking business class: e.g. if the policy was written in better economic times, the company can't really afford it and no one avails themselves of it except the dickheads.

Otherwise, I agree with the others, woman up and book! I bloody love business class. Been a few times as DH used to do a lot of long haul travel for work and clocked up a million airmiles. We once went Virgin to New York and you could have a free haircut, meal and champagne in the lounge. It was magnificent. Sadly, he has changed jobs since and only travels around the UK, so no more airmiles for me. Boo hiss. My own area of expertise when I return to work is sadly confined to England and Wales, I don't even get as far as Scotland!

Please tell me you are going transatlantic and have flat bed business class so that I can live vicariously!

When people ask where your kids are, I think the correct answer is "What do you mean, am I meant to have brought them with me?" accompanied by a look of panic. Or a friend used to say "I should imagine they are probably at school/at after school club/at their swimming lesson/in bed" depending on the time of day she was asked. grin

AntiJamDidi Tue 10-Dec-13 17:40:30

Can I come on your business trip too?

I want that much time by myself in peace. I think I'm lacking the "where are my babies" gene too pacific I took dd1 on holiday at half term without dd2 and I didn't think of her once, other than when dp phoned to let her talk to me. Dp and the cm are perfectly capable of managing without me. I don't get to go on business trips child free though. The best I can hope for is a school trip with 50 teenagers belonging to other people hmm

The best I can hope for is a school trip with 50 teenagers belonging to other people

One of the many, many reasons I could never be a teacher, Anti, seriously grin. You couldn't pay me enough...

I am quite fond of my own offspring though <defensive>

UptoapointLordCopper Tue 10-Dec-13 19:00:39

Impostorism again. JUST BOOK THAT FLIGHT mildred. grin grin And quaff all that champaign for us. wink

UptoapointLordCopper Tue 10-Dec-13 19:01:39

And champagne too. blush

TheDoctrineOfSanta Tue 10-Dec-13 19:06:54

Have you got your tickets yet Mildred

Can anyone recommend some really basic books on feminism? I keep getting involved in discussions on Twitter then finding that I have very little clue what they're talking about. confused

I need something that I can download onto my kindle app as I rarely get the opportunity to read proper books - any suggestions?

SconeRhymesWithGone Tue 10-Dec-13 19:49:07

Feminist Thought by Rosemarie Tong is a good overview, I think. The earlier version is available on kindle in the UK, I think, but there is an updated 2013 edition that I don't think is available on kindle yet in US or UK. There are more reviews on the Amazon US site.

PacifistDingDong Tue 10-Dec-13 19:52:13

Oh, I am the World's Worst Read Feminist blush - anybody with any faint whiff of an idea about feminist theory can wipe the floor with me.

I am too scared to read on the subject because I think it will make me angry and it will be bad for my health...

I'll have a look at that, thanks Scone.

Pacifist I'm still quite new to feminism and naively thought it was all about equal rights for all women. Then I was told I should educate myself about womanism, then there's the transgender issues, not to mention liberal feminism and radical feminism and arrrggghhhh!

PacifistDingDong Tue 10-Dec-13 20:24:33

My approach to feminism is a bit like some people's approach to art: I don't know much about art, but I know what I like blush.

youretoastmildred Tue 10-Dec-13 20:29:12

Tickets signed off. To be booked tomorrow with my passport number.
thank you all!

Thejoyfulpuddlejumper, there is a lot of stuff you don't need to worry about until you actually get there and need to form an opinion on it all.
Have all those come up? how? (or just in discussions with people trying to wrong-foot you?)
the exception to that I would say is womanism because white feminists need to make a conscious effort to think about other races and if you not white, well, it already has come up hasn't it

TheDoctrineOfSanta Tue 10-Dec-13 20:30:12

Yay Mildred!

youretoastmildred Tue 10-Dec-13 20:34:19

I think what I am sort of getting at with that, if you are a woman, it is completely ok to approach this, of all things, with yourself at the centre. It is absolutely fine not to have a load of "what-iffery" whirling about in your head especially if it has been put there to distract you - which it so often has - every time we want something or need something we think "but what if - ? what about -?" and it gets us into a tizzy worrying about all the ramifications and always trying to be unselfish.
People throw "problems" in your path - people including you - because we are all so uncomfortable with the simplicity of a woman saying "and what about me? When it is my turn?"
are you a woman? Does your heart long for justice? For you? YOU? Start there.
Nothing would ever happen if it were only allowed to be engaged in when the grand unified field theory is complete

There is an exception to this in womanism because white privilege innit

PacifistDingDong Tue 10-Dec-13 20:46:32

See, I hadn't even heard of 'womanism' as opposed to 'feminism' confused.

The whole intersectionalism is vair confusing for my feeble female brain - I don't really 'get' why there needs to be a rank of who a person might be disadvantaged. Or does there??

Excellent news, mildred.

UptoapointLordCopper Tue 10-Dec-13 20:47:22

I don't know any of the -isms. I've only read 1 and 2 half books on the topic and they are good for explaining to myself why things wind me up, and why things are the way they are, and sometimes they are good for telling other people why they are wrong. grin

Thanks mildred, that helps! They've all come up or been referred to in discussions apart from womanism which I only heard of today. I hadn't realised that feminism was white-centric, I assumed it was all-women-centric.

UptoapointLordCopper Tue 10-Dec-13 20:51:16

I've not heard of womanism either.

I think there are different aspects of a person which may be why you have so many different aspects of feminism. Are you your race first or your sex first or your gender first or your profession first or your family role first or whatever else first in each situation? My book also talks about this- when schemas clash things get very weird indeed.

But I may well be talking nonsense. I don't even know what intersectionalism is. blush

I had to do womanism at school. All I got to was reading a lot of Alice Walker, but I liked her.

I can't remember details but she had a quotation 'womanism is to feminism as purple is to lavender' - I know she is talking about the depth of prejudice women of colour face compared to white women, but I liked how she translated it into terms that gave it a positive connotation of a deep colour, too.

I am less sure about intersectionality. I agree with pacific. Surely the 'ranks' shift constantly? There will be times when it's safer to be a black man, and times when it's safer to be a white woman - but so long as we can all agree that misogyny and racism are pretty shit, especially for black women, surely it is counter-productive to spend time arguing whether black men or white women are fundamentally more suffering?

PacifistDingDong Tue 10-Dec-13 20:59:47

To me intersectionalism risks a divide-and-conquer situation: if a black, able-bodied woman is up against a white, disabled woman or a black, gay, poorly educated man then who is worse off surely depends on the situation? Is it a job interview, or a seat on the bus we're talking about?

As mentioned before I am an atheist, but the basic christian tenet of looking after those in a less strong position than yourself, seems to be a sound one to me.

YY, and what's really offensive is that, in the hypothetical situation, we're always talking about one seat on the bus or one job ... there should be masses of them, and intersectionality often seems to be about getting us all fighting so we don't notice that.

PacifistDingDong Tue 10-Dec-13 21:03:32

"As mentioned before I am an atheist, but the basic christian tenet of looking after those in a less strong position than yourself, seems to be a sound one to me."

Sorry to quote myself, but maybe that statement is a bit smug as it is quite easy for me to say being a white, able-bodied, well-educated Western woman.

It makes perfect sense to me Pacifist, there's always someone else worse off than you no matter who or what you are.

BelleCurve Tue 10-Dec-13 21:19:37

I need to vent, got some very thoughtful Christmas and birthday cards but all with my ex-married surname on them! I kicked my XH out two years ago, and actually never even changed my name when we were married.

Seems so ungrateful, but I just want a card with my actual name fhmm

Well, I am also white, able-bodied etc., but I read it as acknowledging a responsibility, and I think that makes sense. I don't think it was smug. I just think most of us would rather not be in a position to need looking after.

Cross post.

Erk, sorry to hear that belle. That is really tactless.

PacifistDingDong Tue 10-Dec-13 21:24:37

Send them back - "Recipient unknown" grin

No. Seriously, that would also annoy me.

I'll send you a card with YOUR name on it if you want smile.

FWIW, my parents totally tie themselves in knots over my surname, because I did not change it when we got married, our DCs have DH's surname so after some years I changed my name to a double-barrelled one to allow me to travel with them unchallenged. I never, ever use my 'passport name' in RL. They are very distressed by this ambiguity grin. Me telling them that any of the versions of my name will reach me does not help.

In your situation, you could maybe add a little PS to your Christmas cards "Please remember that I do not wish to be known by exH's name, particularly as it was never my name" or something?

Grennie Tue 10-Dec-13 21:26:00

Sorry to hear that Belle flowers

Grennie Tue 10-Dec-13 21:29:23

I am not a fan of intersectionality. Yes racism has a massive impact on black women, class on poor women, etc.

But intersectionality is often used in such an individualistic way, that it becomes meaningless. To talk about feminism, you have to talk about generalisations. For example, women are paid less than men, and black women are paid less than white women.

If you don't do that, you can't devise political campaigns to fight these issues.

BelleCurve Tue 10-Dec-13 21:35:25

Thanks! sorry, just wading into a massive debate about important things like racism and intersectionality.

Never was good with pub banter

Wade away!

PacifistDingDong Tue 10-Dec-13 21:39:40

I just threw a Big Word around to impress people - all smoke and mirrors, here

BelleCurve Tue 10-Dec-13 21:41:46

Hope Mildred booked her flights. The relative proportions of men and women in business travel situations is always a stark reminder.

Post-DC I mainly do short haul now, previously I remember being told by the customers I was visiting that I would never find a husband with all the travelling I did.

BelleCurve Tue 10-Dec-13 21:48:13

Boys Clubs

Thought this was very powerful

SconeRhymesWithGone Tue 10-Dec-13 22:35:58

Belle I do sympathize. I have been married nearly 30 years and have never used my husband's name. We recently received two different wedding invitations from his side of the family addressed to Mr. and Mrs. His Firstname HisSurname. The older (and grumpier) I get the less I am inclined to put up with it. So in the RSVPs, I made a big point of getting our names right.

I agree with Grennie that the intersectionality discussions can get so individual as to be meaningless, especially in a political context, but I still think that intersectionality in a broader sense can be very instructive in addressing how oppressive systems work together. I grew up as a white person in the segregated US South. I came to the Women's Movement from the Civil Rights Movement (as did many Second Wave feminists, black and white) and racism and sexism and how they work together is still an important focus of my feminism.

And lately I have been examining from a professional and personal standpoint of how ageism and sexism function together. Just at the point that some of us think we may have reached some measure of liberation, we run up against the very hard wall of ageism.

youretoastmildred Wed 11-Dec-13 00:10:05

BelleCurve, sorry to hear about your cards.

As far as I get intersectionality - which is only at a very shallow level - the point is exactly not to rank people according to victimhood. It is precisely so as you don't get the apples / pears situation of everyone refusing to acknowledge each other's oppression.
I think it is based on an idea that you have to look at everything in context and that everything shifts.
as you can tell, I am no expert.

I think it is not so much about attempting to "trump" one another as about looking at how different currents of oppression can become perfect storm in some sections of society, and feed into each other; and also at how attempts to attack one kind of oppression can unwittingly bolster another. I read lots of examples but I am too sleepy to talk about it properly. just back from work.

What I don't think it is (and this may be my personal prejudice or what I need it not to be) is a rationale that can ever invalidate feminist defence of a particular woman's equality because her would-be oppressor is, for instance, black or poor or disabled. I know there are men who would like it to be that. But I don't recognise that, I see that as missing the point and more menz "me me me" ism. You can recognise various other forms of oppression without throwing your own liberation under the bus.

kickassangel Wed 11-Dec-13 15:11:03

OK - I have been super busy and not managed to keep up with this, but in summary.

1. NAmes, it is rude and stupid not to use the name a person wants. Apart from the first couple of times, you really should have the basic respect for another person to use their name. Not to do so implies you either can't or won't listen to what that name is.

2. Intersectionality - think about it in mathematical/geometrical terms. It is where two aspects of your life meet/intersect. Think about two lines that cross or intersect. It is about that moment when you suddenly realize that you are dealing with an issue not just as a woman, but as a woman who also ... (fill in the aspects of life that affect you.) So it is less about who has the greatest disadvantage, and more to do with the complications that abound the moment you look at all aspects of a person, not just their sex/gender. (e.g. it is harder for women of color to get into a refuge for women at risk, although they are at greater risk than white women!)

First and second wave feminism were dominated by white middle class women who had the time, education and money to be activists and write papers. Therefore they tended very much to reflect that background. Since then other women have pointed out, quite rightly, that those women are among the most privileged of women, and that we need to hear the voices of women of color, women with infirmity, women in poverty etc. More modern feminist writing tends to be about those issues, but still white middle class women continue to hold the greatest power wealth etc.

I have just done an entire semester on this for my MA. I can recommend some reading if anyone wants it, but it can be fairly heavy going.

PenguinsDontEatStollen Wed 11-Dec-13 16:11:53

I'd like some recommended read Kickass. If I'd understand it without a mega academic background in the subject. I don't mind heavy going, but I struggle when every other word is terminology I don't know and have to go away and look up.

kickassangel Wed 11-Dec-13 16:49:02

Chandra Mohanty is good for readability, and Shane Phelan. Kimberle Crenshaw writes about afro-american women & violence.
Judith Butler I found I had to unpick every word.

Just looking back through my work I realise it's all articles and book excerpts, not things I can do links to. This one gives a good reason for why we shouldn't assume white, middle class when talking about feminism.

Gloria Anzaldua wrote about this a lot, particularly in her book Borderlands, which is part poetry, stream of consciousness type stuff.

Grennie Wed 11-Dec-13 19:45:50
PacifistDingDong Wed 11-Dec-13 19:47:12

'Tis London, it might as well be the moon... sad

Grennie Wed 11-Dec-13 19:55:15

sad Maybe they will do events in other parts of the country as well. Lets hope so.

UptoapointLordCopper Wed 11-Dec-13 21:30:39

<< scuttles back after wandering around some threads where women are in charge of cooking dinners and men are to be allowed out to the pub. >>

<< scared >>

PacifistDingDong Wed 11-Dec-13 21:33:32

There, there, it's safe here, LordCopper <strokes hair>

I know, it's like time warp out there sometimes hmm

UptoapointLordCopper Wed 11-Dec-13 21:56:39

It's OK - I've gone to the food section. Strangely enough nobody tells you that you have to cook because you are a woman there. grin

OrlandoWoolf Wed 11-Dec-13 22:02:13

I've just been to a family event. My step mum talked a lot to me about her relationship with my dad. In her words, he treats women as second class citizens and she thinks he married her to be a kept man in retirement. He put on an "act" before marriage before revealing his true self. I could have told her that before - he does fuck all around the house. doesn't listen and always thinks he's right.

I think they're going to separate. He can not change his ways and I can see her point of view as I know exactly what he's like. Listening to her and knowing Dad like I do, I honestly don't understand why she stays.

AntiJamDidi Wed 11-Dec-13 22:04:22

I don't cook. That's dp's job, he's far better at it than me. I sometimes make dinner for the dcs but that's only on days dp is home late from work and the dcs can't wait that long.

In our house dp is pt while I am ft, so he does the majority of the household tasks that aren't covered by our cleaner (14yo dd1 who wanted a job about the same time as I decided we'd pay for a cleaner so we killed 2 birds with one stone). I get to do the fun bits of having kids grin while he gets the boring bits grin.

And I agree with Pacifist anything in London may as well be the moon for all the chance I have of going to it. If they came to the North West then I'd go, or the Scottish Borders.

PenguinsDontEatStollen Wed 11-Dec-13 22:07:39

Jeez LordCopper, that sent me straight to the thread and I got the rage!

I am actually a good cook and do cook a lot (DH works away from home quite a lot). But it would never occur to DH that a big 'event' was my responsibility and that he could swan off out.

UptoapointLordCopper Wed 11-Dec-13 22:18:01

Did you find it Penguin? Isn't it astounding?

I also love cooking. DP does cook as well but his main job is the washing up. grin And for bigger occasions we tend to cooperate. But people tend to thank me. hmm Which also gives me the rage. angry

I must be all sweetness and light. hmm

BelleCurve Thu 12-Dec-13 08:30:20

wow that thread is angry shock

SinisterSal Thu 12-Dec-13 10:09:23

Christmas is the hardest time of the year to go against tradition.

We run a pretty gender neutral ship most of the time but I know on Xmas Day it will be the women in the kitchen and the men assembling toys. In all honesty i'm not annoyed though I see why I should be, and indeed would be any other day of the year.

Christmas innit. The ritual and tradition is more important than the substance, now.

PacifistDingDong Thu 12-Dec-13 10:30:55

I think I'd shoot myself in the foot if I didn't do the stuff I enjoy because it's gender-typical, for instance 'proper' cooking: I like trying new recipes out when I have the time and often Christmas I do have the time and inclination. I'll be off work for 5 days and I am sooooo looking forward to doing stuff in the kitchen.
I hate, hate, hate cooking dinner every day of the week, what shall we have for dinner today, aaaargh! Thank goodness DH does about 80% or our grocery shopping so he thinks about what we are going to have and I or the nanny prepare it usually and that's fine.

I love not having to bother about looking after my car as I have No Interest whatsoever in it whereas DH actually likes it.

I know he can cook (and sometimes does, he does a mean chilli con carne and ham in cola) and I know I am perfectly capable of keeping my car on the road, but this way suits me better grin.

Now if I could find somebody to go through the mess that is my paperwork and find all the bits I need for my tax return?! blush

youretoastmildred Thu 12-Dec-13 10:58:55

that thread is terrifying but it is good for that stuff to be out there. It is in people's heads - like the OP's husband's head, and a fair few on the thread itself - so it is really good to get it all out there, have a look at it, and maybe, who knows, change some minds.

I have a feeling (this might be a bit rose-tinted) that without resources like MN that allow a lot of different people to speak their minds, that OP would just be sitting on her own, feeling cross, not sure whether she is being ridiculous or not because this does seem to be something that her husband is very confident in expecting. I know I put up with a lot of crap before mn (with different men from my current dp, may I add) because I just didn't have anyone to talk to except other women who didn't know they could say no either, and men who didn't want women to start saying no.

SinisterSal Thu 12-Dec-13 11:02:04

Consciousness Raising in action

PacifistDingDong Thu 12-Dec-13 11:09:06

V true, mildred

youretoastmildred Thu 12-Dec-13 11:53:56

Is this the right place to ask:
Does anyone know if Lottie dolls have a house?
(following on from the Barbie Dream Castle / Father Christmas debacle I have moaned about on here)

SinisterSal Thu 12-Dec-13 12:15:56

I haven't seen any on Amazon when I was looking through all their stuff - it'd be there if it was available I'm sure

PenguinsDontEatStollen Thu 12-Dec-13 12:16:22

God, I have caught up with that thread (not every post, but the over view) and it is hideous. The fact that so many people don't see, or don't want to see, any bigger context or considerations than a cute family tradition.

It reminds me of when I first knew DH and he played cricket. MIL was genuinely shock that I wouldn't go along and hang around for the day watching. She said that, when her family was little, the wives and kids would all 'make a day of it' with the wives making sandwiches, etc. She kept saying it was good fun and a chance to all see your friends. She just couldn't comprehend that I wouldn't base my social life around hanging around watching whilst DH and the men 'did stuff'.

She has long since given up on me as a feminist nightmare woman. At the moment I am doing ok because I'm a SAHM for a bit, but I have quite a few previous strikes to my name!

kickassangel Thu 12-Dec-13 12:24:10

According to my mum I should not be planning to read on Christmas Day as I will be too busy. Dh does glory cooking and I will happily let him take over. Dd will have a pile of new Lego and I will read.

There's only 3 of us so I have no idea what I am supposed to be doing but my mother was very shocked that I am contemplating a relaxed enjoyable day, not getting all stressed about gravy an shit like that.

PacifistDingDong Thu 12-Dec-13 12:27:02

Oh, I am SO looking forward to an enjoyable, relaxed Christmas Day - this is mainly facilitated by nobody coming to ours so it will be Just Us. Yippee!
I think M+S will cater to a lot of our Christmas needs...

I know nuffink about dolls, Lottie, or otherwise, sorry.

UptoapointLordCopper Thu 12-Dec-13 13:19:25

Just been out to buy a lego set and interfered in someone else's shopping. blush Told the shop assistant that it was great their shop don't do the "boys' toys girls' toys" thing, but that his advice to the other shopper could be less gender stereotyping. blush I never used to be so bold before MN. grin OK so maybe I was, but less well-informed...

SconeRhymesWithGone Thu 12-Dec-13 13:51:45

Can someone do a link to this thread? I can't seem to find it.

We are all going out for Christmas dinner. fgrin

UptoapointLordCopper Thu 12-Dec-13 14:02:51

Scone if you really want to torture yourself it's quite high up in AIBU. But don't do it!

I'm going to make meringue. Just so you know.

SconeRhymesWithGone Thu 12-Dec-13 14:08:28

Thanks, LordCopper, I found it. And I see your point.

SinisterSal Thu 12-Dec-13 14:08:38

Just thinking about it

I don't give a shit about gender roles at Christmas. the rest of the year I'm like a dog with a bone about them.
But I am looking forward to being Mum, and doing things the way Mum did, and I want DH to do the man stuff. Because it's a link with the past and makes me feel like a proper grown up. A proper woman in fact.

Christmas has don ethis to me, but I guess that's the way a lot of non feminists feel all the time. Weird and unsettling to not e a proper Mum/woman/man. I never really understood that feeling befoe even though I knew it, iykwim. Interesting.

SconeRhymesWithGone Thu 12-Dec-13 14:15:59

I mean to say I see your point about not torturing myself.

DH does almost all the cooking in our house and has for most of our marriage. I do have certain dishes I specialize in for the holidays mainly due to the fact that he is a Yankee and I am from the South so we have this cultural divide for Thanksgiving and Christmas dinners.

But I do sew, and I am fairly good at it. I don't have the patience for making clothes anymore (although my best ffriend and I made my first grandchild's christening dress), but I still do home decorating sewing, curtains, cushion covers, etc.

monicalewinski Thu 12-Dec-13 15:11:59

Mildred, the thing I like best about MN is what you said about really getting to see inside other people's heads.

You are privy to so many other views that you aren't in real life and it can open your mind to all the other possibilities out there.

For eg, some people grow up with the defined roles and it is what they have been immersed in - the chances are that those women/men who don't move away or move in different social/work circles as they get older will meet other people who share their upbringing and viewpoint - and so it perpetuates.

MN is so diverse with women from all walks of life, SAHM/ft work, abusive relationships etc and you get such an understanding of people's motivations and aspirations - as well as being able to tap into other people's coping mechanisms and mindsets. You realise that you're not alone and that everyone has a 'game face' - lots of women who you would look at on rl and envy their self belief and presence express on here that even they experience self doubt at times (for eg). This, to me, is inspirational because it means we can at least begin to believe that we can all be that person -or strive to be at least.

I love that someone can post with their gripe about husband going to the pub/not cooking, and then a whole range of different viewpoints are presented - even if the OP still goes along with her husband's view, she's at least had her mind opened a wee bit to the possibility that things don't always have to be that way and she can make the changes in her life that she deserves.

(Hugely long rambly post, sorry - but I hope it makes sense!!)

monicalewinski Thu 12-Dec-13 15:18:08

YY Sal about feeling like a proper 'mum' too. (I don't cook, I'm shit at it!), but I like to be a mum at home.

I'm a strong, independent woman to the rest of the world, but to my husband and children I'm their wife and mum.

UptoapointLordCopper Thu 12-Dec-13 15:47:17

"I'm a strong, independent woman to the rest of the world, but to my husband and children I'm their wife and mum."

I am not content to be my husband's wife or my children's mother. I want to be seen also as a strong independent person by them (and by the rest of the world). I'm not satisfied with anything less. Am I too demanding? After all, that is what I am.

UptoapointLordCopper Thu 12-Dec-13 15:49:14

Now I'm going to go and make that meringue. And pastry for mince pies. I love shortcrust pastry.

PenguinsDontEatStollen Thu 12-Dec-13 15:55:21

Oooh, I just can't do pastry. My mum still makes our mince pies blush. Tis ridiculous, I am good cook, honest.

I think my kids I want them to just see me as mummy at the moment. The oldest is only 4, they don't really need any other understanding of me. This will change as they get older though. I would feel the same about how they see DH.

My husband, yes, I want him to see me as wife, a mum, and a strong independent person.

monicalewinski Thu 12-Dec-13 16:00:48

Not too demanding, no - what I am trying to say (cack-handedly!) is that I am always that woman, but I don't feel I have to project it at home like I do outside. My family know who I am because that's who I am - to the outside world I have to push it more.

PenguinsDontEatStollen Thu 12-Dec-13 16:06:02

Yes, that's a good point. At home you are just 'you'. Out in the world you have to 'project you'.

UptoapointLordCopper Thu 12-Dec-13 17:01:44

Perhaps it matters how old your children are. Mine are late primary school. They get many different ideas of what women are and what mothers are from all their friends and teachers (and some of these ideas, frankly, are astounding). I need to fight my corner, IYSWIM. Of course it's not as arduous as "projecting" yourself in general, but nonetheless, I'm concious of the need to be that strong independent woman.

SconeRhymesWithGone Thu 12-Dec-13 17:14:04

I agree with LordCopper.

My feminism is at my core; I think my children absorbed that at an early age.

SconeRhymesWithGone Thu 12-Dec-13 17:15:42

Actually I think my family would agree that out in the world I have to tone down me. grin