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AIBU to feel f****d off with a world built for men?

(363 Posts)
DarjeelingDarllng Sat 23-Feb-19 16:43:46

I read** this article with increasing horror.

Many parts I recognise; the phone for example, I have a better camera but the phone is larger so harder to actually use.

I struggle to sit on most chairs easily as my feet don't touch the floor; this has caused some back issues.

I've known that most medical research has always been done on white men aged around 25.

The 'gender neutral' toilet thing is just obvious.

This quote, below, pissed me off the most, not least that there was once an AIBU where a pregnant woman was querying at what point did everyone stop driving as she was really struggling. 70% of people (roughly) said, just get on with it. The rest agreed it was challenging.

I very sadly know of a woman who was involved in a minor crash a week before her due date; the baby died.

The situation is even worse for pregnant women. Although a pregnant crash-test dummy was created back in 1996, testing with it is still not government-mandated either in the US or in the EU. In fact, even though car crashes are the No 1 cause of foetal death related to maternal trauma, we haven’t yet developed a seatbelt that works for pregnant women. Research from 2004 suggests that pregnant women should use the standard seatbelt; but 62% of third-trimester pregnant women don’t fit that design.

DarjeelingDarllng Sat 23-Feb-19 16:47:39

Fucked up the bold, sorry. Last paragraph is the direct quote.

nocoolnamesleft Sat 23-Feb-19 17:42:15

It is appalling. It's the sheer unthinkingness of it. Women are being put at risk, injured, and even killed, not through evil intent but through the system just not being bothered.

FriarTuck Sat 23-Feb-19 17:45:01

Try being an autistic woman - no-one gives a toss about you at all.

HeathRobinson Sat 23-Feb-19 17:49:01


It's the little things as well. One of my dcs and I put together a shelving unit. All fine, except something needed tightening or banging together (I forget what, exactly) and neither of us could apply enough force to do it, despite trying repeatedly. Dh came home from work and it was easy for him. No fair, we had the tools, the will and the time but not the brute strength.

FrustratedTeddyLamp Sat 23-Feb-19 18:08:11

Heath to be fair what could have been done? Presumably you want it to have a certain level of sturdiness? The only change surely would have been to build it of less sturdy material?

Greenandcabbagelooking Sat 23-Feb-19 18:08:51

I'm over-average in height for women and even I find sofas really uncomfortable because if I sit with my bum right back, my knees on the seat and so my legs stick out.

I think my school is designed for men. Everything is high up: the boards, the computers, and our computer chairs.

BelleSausage Sat 23-Feb-19 18:12:38

Yep, this is structural inequality at work. This is the stuff that is so ingrained that people don’t even see it anymore.

This is why sexism is sexism. Because we are discriminated against because of our biological difference to men (who assume themselves the norm) and we succeed when we recognise this and use our differences to our advantage. We’ll never be the same as men (why try) but we can be successful as ourselves, if only the standard wasn’t biased against us.

FrenchyQ Sat 23-Feb-19 18:13:59

I went into Homebase today to buy some heavy duty gloves....they don't sell small ones...guessing they don't expect people with small hands (ie:women) to be doing heavy duty lifting and carrying.

ineedaknittedhat Sat 23-Feb-19 18:14:28

I'm sick of the world being built for neurotypicals. I can't even go out to many places now.

Ds2, who has aspergers as well, was bullied out of school and had to come home early yesterday because the manager in the warhammer store turned up the music until it was so loud everyone had to shout at each other.

The world is not an inclusive place at all.

ghostyslovesheets Sat 23-Feb-19 18:15:05

5ft 1" woman who knows my driving position is dangerous but has not choice - that article was eye opening - can't wait to read the book

Yanbu to be angry

Zwischenwasser Sat 23-Feb-19 18:15:14

Yep, I’ve often though this.

And the tightening screws thing is so true. Think about it. It isn’t a coincidence that screws need to be tightened to a torque easily achievable by an adult male, but hard for a female.

I rage at bike tyres. Totally designed for someone of male strength to remove. I’m ok in the Workshop, but out in the wet and cold when I NEED to repair a puncture to get home. I lack strength.

Thinkinghappythoughts Sat 23-Feb-19 18:17:55

The seat belt thing and pregnant women is horrendous. It seems much easier to boss women about what they shouldn't consume when pregnant. That way if anything goes wrong it is their fault.

I have always thought the same about stress caused by working while pregnant and uncertainty about job security. The stress it causes a pregnant woman (btw I was effectively sacked while pregnant) would have some effect on the unborn baby. But when it comes actual money, in the form of research or employment rights/benefits, then pregnant women just have to get on with life as normal.

BelleSausage Sat 23-Feb-19 18:20:27

The classroom board thing is totally true as well. I’ve never thought about it before but it blows my mind. I have never been able to reach the top third of any board I’ve ever used. I stood on a chair in my first classroom if I needed extra space!

Movingtoplanetclanger Sat 23-Feb-19 18:37:05

My f_ing kitchen, new build house looked like we had so much space, alas I can only use 70% of it without climbing on a chair. So irritating.

soulrider Sat 23-Feb-19 18:50:12

The tightening things and changing bike tyres isn't a clear male/female divide imo. Yes, more women than men may lack strength to do so, but some women will be strong enough and some men won't be. And generally there are ways to apply more torque etc. if necessary.

I once embarrassed some Japanese men who'd been on the minibus I was driving by undoing the wheel nuts to change a tyre when they had failed! (They'd insisted they try first because they were men)

soulrider Sat 23-Feb-19 18:53:00

And bike tyres really depends on the combination of rim and tyre, some are ridiculously easy to remove, some are very difficult. They've not been designed to require x amount of strength where x is more than the average women possesses.

beeyourself Sat 23-Feb-19 18:58:40

I've just posted about this too! Somethings I knew about, others I was horrified about. And not to mention how medicine has mainly been based about males when there are some major differences in symptoms/treatment for some problems

TheWomanin12B Sat 23-Feb-19 19:18:15

It was a bit of a light bulb moment for me reading that article.

So much shit that we just put up with because it's always been like that, without ever really thinking why. I'm quite angry now I realise.

I've just mentioned it to husband who said 'yeah, but you're not small'. That's not really the point, is it? confused which I told him and listed off several examples. Oblivious because he never has to deal with it.

Definitely ordering the book so I can be properly enraged.

EwItsAHooman Sat 23-Feb-19 19:21:16

It's the sheer unthinking involved and it's everywhere.

"Standard width" toilet stalls that are perfectly fine in the male toilets but when they're in the female toilets they aren't wide enough to accommodate a sanitary bin without your leg resting on it.

Clothes without pockets because it's expected we'll have a handbag and that have random pieces missing from them (e.g., cold shoulder tops).

Shoes that cause actual damage to our bodies yet are part of the mandatory dress code for many work places (high heels).

I could go on but do I need to?

Splodgetastic Sat 23-Feb-19 19:24:41

Cars are definitely designed for fairly strong and tall men. I always feel like the handbrake is behind me and I really have to yank it!

DaisyStarburst Sat 23-Feb-19 19:25:37

I'm not small, 5' 4" but I have to stand on a stood to adjust my boiler settings. I don't have one at home but if I'm in a hotel I'm not tall enough to see through the spy hole.

WeBuiltThisBuffetOnSausageRoll Sat 23-Feb-19 19:26:36

I think my school is designed for men. Everything is high up: the boards, the computers, and our computer chairs.

Apart from those little tiny chairs that the young kids sit on, which often get put out as the only option at parents' evening and fill some of the dads with visible trepidation!

SinkGirl Sat 23-Feb-19 19:27:50

Also this, from The Times review of Invisible Women

TheHodgeoftheHedge Sat 23-Feb-19 19:30:02

we haven’t yet developed a seatbelt that works for pregnant women.. sad

As a short woman with big boobs, seatbelts barely work for me full stop.

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