Why are you a feminist?(53 Posts)
I've only very recently realised why feminism is so important. Not quite sure why it has taken me 29 years to get to this point, but hey ho. The thing that tipped me over the edge was the CE rape case - it opened my eyes to how many people don't actually consider women to be as worthy of autonomy and respect as men.
I'm now wondering how other people decided feminism is important, and if I'm just a bit dense in taking so long to realise. Anyone care to share?
Because I'm a woman.
Because I have a daughter and I'd like the world to be more equal for her.
Because I have an innate sense of what is fair and just.
Because I believe in equality and I think the largest demographic being denied equality are female and I want that to change. I hate other forms of inequality too and they similarly offend my value system.
I was shocked to find out relatively recently that not all women are feminists. I must admit the mind did boggle.
I'm didn't really have any other option given the way things are.
Because I've worked in a particularly techy area of IT for about 18 years.
But before that, I was brought up as a feminist, and I stood up at school when we were treated differently simply because we were girls, and not because there was any sensible reason for it.
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Because women are viewed as second class by even many "good guys"
Because I want to be paid the same as a male colleague to do the same job.
Because it's not fucking acceptable to have so few women in politics/power/top of business.
Because the patriarchy damages men and women alike.
Because my DH family are part of a
cult religion that literally believes women are meant to be subservient to men and man should be head of the house crap.
Because I want the world to be a better place for my dds.
Because I know as soon as a guy tells his wife that changing a nappy is a "pink job" (as happened recently with new possible friends) that he's not worth becoming friends with. I'm amazed by the number of men I know who absolutely think they are more important than the women in their lives.
OP we are the same age. I remember my feminist conversion clearly. I was pg with Dd kept on seeing what I found to be very confronting posts by Dittany on MN. So I read more on MN and realised that, shit, I had no idea what being a feminist actually means and I bloody am a feminist.
I don't get the because I am a woman comments. If I were a man. I would be a feminist.
I am a feminist because I believe in equality
My mum always talked to me about it and I was calling myself a feminist from quite early on.
Then I experienced very real disrespect to women first hand and it became personal rather than abstract.
Then something more serious happened which really drove it home and I know that in a feminist world, it would not have happened. I know lots of children who I don't want this ever to happen to. I feel protective of women everywhere and feminism is the natural accompaniment to that.
I totally get the "because I'm a woman" comments. Because for example there's a lot of compassion in feminism and compassion has its roots in having experienced something personally. Unfortunately many women have their eyes open to the rampant prejudice about because they have experienced it. Men are unaware because they can be, because you know essentially we're selfish creatures and often you need to take a personal hit for it for you to really understand how you feel about something.
Because I'm a woman and also a woman who is not very adept at "women's work", whose mother was equally inept.
I have tremendous admiration for SAHMs, natural born mothers and people who cook and clean well, IMHO, these are extremely underestimated skills. But not having them, as a human being I feel we should all have choices.
I would always have called myself a feminist but I think you do need some life experience to really get it, but that's normal. It's life that really drives home how not-abstract feminism is. I'm a bit of a codger at this stage and would have considered myself a liberal feminist at 29.
But as life moves me on and men interest and impress me less and as I move on and have no need to impress them, I find myself a radical feminist.
Because I remember coming home age 11 to find my mother sitting on the bottom stair crying, holding a letter marked to Mrs Insert Husband's First and Second Name.
She had spent 15 years as an unhappy SAHM at that point, having already chosen a job she didn't really want to do because she was told that no one would hire a female genetics researcher. Although she was easily the best in her year at uni. That sense of regret and waste really stuck with me.
Although of course it is perfectly possible to be happy and feminist SAHM. The point is one of women's choices, preferences and identities being taken away from them to such an extent that they no longer even have their own first name.
Because it's be a feminist or accept that women deserve injustice and violence
I think, like many people here, I am far more of a feminist since becoming a mother. It is the realisation that so many men just see themselves as 'helping' with childcare and housework. They don't really see it as their job. I am watching more and more women get pushed into unsatisfying pt jobs while their partners careers forge ahead to deal with this.
If you actively choose a less ambitious role, brilliant.Why not? Jobs arent everything.
But the women I know are being elbowed into it because their partners just aren't doing the 50 /50 share they expected.Or they are continuing to try and work ft and they are exhausted. It is beyond disappointing...
I believe I have personally cracked most of the personal issues on here. Dh stays at home. I never have or never will do any wifework type role. I never think I am less than a man. It is all due to my upbringing.
If you are brought up by strong parents who go against the grain, then none of the in the home issues will apply as you will have high standards imo. Hopefully ones who aren't there yet will do better for their children. I think dh and I are brilliant role models for our dds.
If you are a man, you rarely have to think about being a feminist, to be honest. No matter how decent you are. Because your whole life has been one of relative privilege and superiority compared with women.
That's why I say 'because I'm a woman'
I have been shocked quite recently to hear young women in my own family talk. Sometimes it's as if feminism never happened. One confessing that she would be quite happy not to work and let her (new) husband pay for everything and take responsibility for being the money-earner. The other talking about looking forward to being married and changing her name.
Now, it's her right to choose to change her name (I changed mine), but it was the comment of her boyfriend that really shocked me, when he said he would be 'offended' if she didn't change her name. And even my DH, to whom I have been married for almost 25 years, said that he would have been hurt if I hadn't changed my name. I was really about that.
Because I believe in all persons' right to choose their path in life.
For virtually all of the above, plus not being able to walk outside without getting sexual harassment in my teens. Having a bullying father who was fairly sexist in practice didn't hurt either.
I am a sahm who will probably end up in an unsatisfying part-time job (if I'm lucky) while partner' career forges ahead btw. Don't make the mistake of blaming him alone will you. In his profession (any profession?) you don't find part-time jobs for men and most will not do very flexible working. It's the way society as a whole is set up.
Because I am in no way inferior for not having a penis.
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