Talk

Advanced search

To wonder how we know?

(142 Posts)
AmbivalentAmbivert Wed 08-Feb-17 19:11:40

That we are women?

How do women define being a women?

Everyone else seems to be defining this for us lately, let's take a stab at defining it ourselves.
As you'd think we'd be the ones to know...

UnbelievablyChocolatey Wed 08-Feb-17 19:14:11

Periods. The absolute worst part of being a woman as well

BrownEyedLady Wed 08-Feb-17 19:23:37

I'm very happy about the recent fluidity about gender that we are now seeing. It feel like there is more freedom somehow. Not where you want this thread to go, but it's something I've been thinking/feeling about gender recently.

AmbivalentAmbivert Wed 08-Feb-17 19:29:31

I'm all for gender fluidity, and messing with the gender construct. Absolutely.

Still, doesn't answer the question: what is a women?

user892 Wed 08-Feb-17 19:31:40

On one extreme: XX chromosomes; on the other: anyone who identifies a woman

user892 Wed 08-Feb-17 19:32:06

*as a woman grin

AmbivalentAmbivert Wed 08-Feb-17 19:32:08

If you consider yourself a women BrownEyedLady how do you know?

Not trying to trip you up, genuinely interested in the responses and thoughts on this.

Prawnofthepatriarchy Wed 08-Feb-17 19:32:17

Being a woman is a fact. It's not a belief or an identity. I'm an adult human female. That's how I define being a woman.

Gender, which describes sex stereotypes, is cultural. It changes all the time. We dress girls in pink, for instance, but a hundred years ago it was pink for boys and blue for girls. Nowadays football is associated with boys here, whereas in America it's a sport for girls. So gender is just stereotypes.

The only thing that I have in common with every other woman on the planet is biology.

CaoNiMa Wed 08-Feb-17 19:32:27

There's no such thing as "feeling" like a woman. It's just a state of biological being, as is being human. Do you "feel" like a human as opposed to a donkey?

"Being" a woman is the only relevant thing. If you have a female reproductive system, you're a woman. There's no identification necessary.

There is no such thing as gender. It was invented to categorize us, and now in a capitalist world, it is used to sell more stuff to us. If there weren't so much emphasis nowadays on gender, we wouldn't be in such a mess regarding who can "identify" as what.

CaoNiMa Wed 08-Feb-17 19:32:49

Major cross-posting with Prawn!

AmbivalentAmbivert Wed 08-Feb-17 19:34:13

But if you identify as something you have to have a concept or definition of what the thing you identify with is. Or what are you identifying with?

So what is it?

VladmirsPoutine Wed 08-Feb-17 19:34:46

But then what about women born without reproductive functions or indeed intersex people if you want to use the pure biological argument?

CaoNiMa Wed 08-Feb-17 19:35:26

Vladimir, intersex people are intersex people.

SmileEachDay Wed 08-Feb-17 19:39:25

It's all about the chromosomes.

Those chromosomes lead to a reproductive system, the potential to bear children and various hormonal things which are uniquely female. Men have different chromosomes and therefore are different reproductively and hormonally. This leads to some physical differences - testosterone tending to make men more aggressive and stronger, for example.

The rest of it - ironically often the bits focused on in discussions about gender fluidity (clothes, colours, social roles etc) is social construct.

VladmirsPoutine Wed 08-Feb-17 19:40:41

The point is Cao that it is therefore not a binary biological outcome in that respect.

SmileEachDay Wed 08-Feb-17 19:45:13

My understanding is that intersex people have a variant of the typical sex hormone - or mosiacism, which is a combination of XX and XY chromosomes.

So it's all about the chromosomes, for sure!

MrsTerryPratchett Wed 08-Feb-17 19:46:21

Of the sex that bears children. Don't need to bear them, don't identify as one. Don't need to wear pink, like cupcakes or giggle.

Intersex people are intersex. Women who can't have children are women who have something unusual about them but they are still of the sex... In the same way that humans are bipedal but there are people with no legs.

We are a sexually diamorphic species that needs a male and a female to produce young. Those are the sexes.

FormerlyFrikadela01 Wed 08-Feb-17 19:46:28

Intersex people are, for want of a better word, an anomaly. Their existence does not negate the fact that human beings are separated into xx and xy aka Female and male.
It's like saying that because some people are unable to walk then we are not bipedal .

FormerlyFrikadela01 Wed 08-Feb-17 19:47:28

Xpost with MrsTerryPratchett

OpenYourEyesAndSee Wed 08-Feb-17 19:47:41

A woman is an adult human female and I am one of those.

MrsTerryPratchett Wed 08-Feb-17 19:49:27

Do people 'feel' human or are we just all humans? I don't spend all day feeling human. I just am one.

BrownEyedLady Wed 08-Feb-17 19:55:12

From my own experience I can say that my gender isn't at the forefront of my mind. If I'm asked to identify, I would say woman, yes, but I think that is mainly because of the conditioning I've grown up in where my genitals define me somehow. I've felt such relief from all the bits I've read recently about gender identity that I know I would have loved the freedom not to identify if given the option.

I've also experienced more than my fair share (can't back that up wink just feels that way) of sexual harassment/sexism because I look young and girlish. I could have, at times in the past, been described as Alfa Female. I have worked in male dominated environments for much if my career and have always ha a niggling feeling I's be much further ahead if Inwere male. I'm loving the ageing process as I feel like I'm taken more seriously at work now I'm not seen like a daughter/potential conquest, but rather an experienced woman.

I'm writing an essay here! Sorry about that. You are making me think.

So I suppose for me, being a female has meant more about how others have perceived me (in my case, inexperienced, weak, emotional, girl etc) rather than how I perceive myself. I am a person.

SmileEachDay Wed 08-Feb-17 19:55:27

I barely have time to go for a wee in the daytime mrsTP, never mind check if I feel human.

MrsTerryPratchett Wed 08-Feb-17 19:57:05

grin

BrownEyedLady Wed 08-Feb-17 19:57:41

*alpha fuck! Look like an idiot now!

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

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

Register now