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Supporting Feminism

(19 Posts)
MattMelia Wed 20-Jul-16 13:31:54

Good afternoon,
I just signed up to this site to ask a few questions about feminism. People on here seemed to be rational and there is a distinct lack of trolls so I thought I'd get some good response.

I recently had my eyes opened to feminism after I made a casually joke at one of my coworkers. It wasn't intended to offend but after being challenged on the comment by my coworker, I realised that the things I say can offend be misinterpreted and therefore I should a lot more about things before I make jokes/comment.

It sparked a discussion on feminism and wider issues, it led me to realise that as a man, I should be more pro-feminism and supportive. I've been reading up on feminism for the last few days and researching feminist opinions and topics.

My Question is, how can I, as a man, be more supportive of Feminism? What can I do on a daily basis to challenge the patriarchy and create a more equal society? I think it's more than simply treating women as equals, I'm willing to learn and change what's necessary to make things more equal both at work and at home.

Matt

TheCountessofFitzdotterel Wed 20-Jul-16 13:41:33

Listen to women and believe them when they talk about their experience of sexism. Understand what mansplain means and do your best not to do it. Also understand why all women activism is important and don't get in a snit if your local feminist group doesn't let you go to all its meetings. Read - The Equality Illusion is one good place to start; Delusions of Gender is fun.
Open your eyes to male violence and donate to Rape Crisis or Women's Aid. Don't expect cookies!

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

TheCountessofFitzdotterel Wed 20-Jul-16 16:18:52

Yy. Try not to be defensive.
Can you tell that these are the things we're saying because they're things that men who say they want to learn about feminism most typically do? But not all men, and if you're willing to go into it with an open mind and prepared to step back and critically observe you're own reactions, you will get further.

TheCountessofFitzdotterel Wed 20-Jul-16 16:19:43

YOUR own reactions. Ouch.

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

cadnowyllt Wed 20-Jul-16 16:22:02

Well, that'll fucking learn him.

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

JacquettaWoodville Wed 20-Jul-16 16:53:12

FYI, OP, cadno is a man and broadly opposed to this board and all who sail on her.

Listen more than you speak and believe women's experience. If women are talking about men (eg "men are paid more than women"), consider if it's a class analysis - a generality - before jumping in with a "but that's not true about me"

Good luck and welcome to the journey.

JacquettaWoodville Wed 20-Jul-16 16:53:41

grin Buffy

cadnowyllt Wed 20-Jul-16 17:00:53

Opposed to this board - No
Opposed to Twattery - Yes

MattMelia Wed 20-Jul-16 17:01:23

Thanks for all your advice, my main goal at the minute is to listen, learn and absorb as much information as I can. I'm aware of things such as the pay gap but I don't know the facts or the details surrounding it so I am not in a position to comment on it, that goes for most things. For now, I'm being a sponge and staying 100% open minded.

JacquettaWoodville Wed 20-Jul-16 17:10:51

Those are good goals.

If you have questions then feel free to ask. Reading through a few discussions on this board might be useful too - scroll back through some thread titles and see what takes your interest.

BertrandRussell Wed 20-Jul-16 17:25:44

I think the most important - and probably the most difficult thing- is to challenge other men, particularly when they're are no women there. I know both my dp and ds find this challenging. A lot of men seem to think they have done their duty by paying lip service to feminism in the company of women, but going back to the "old ways" when it's just men. And men who pull them up on it can get a hard time.

FreshwaterSelkie Wed 20-Jul-16 18:27:42

Opposed to Twattery - Yes

Awww, maybe you should give it up then, if you're not enjoying it? <headtilt>

OP, I think the really hard bit for men to get to is the understanding that although you personally may not feel that you're sexist, and you may not do overtly sexist things, you benefit in your daily life from sexism. It's not an easy thing to get your head round. My husband was horrified by the thought and I'm still not sure he entirely accepts it.

I find Feminist Current to be a really good resource if you're still researching.

VestalVirgin Wed 20-Jul-16 19:12:20

One can also make a lot of difference by donating money. One of my preferred ways of doing armchair activism, along with signing petitions. wink

MattMelia Wed 20-Jul-16 19:35:38

I have thought about setting up a couple of direct debits, one of the commenters above mentioned Rape Crisis and Women's Aid, any other suggestions are very welcome!
I am more inclined to take an armchair approach with this, I feel as though the groups and such should just be for the women plus I have a hell of a lot to learn before I can contribute anything!

Felascloak Thu 21-Jul-16 08:52:28

Hi Matt! All the stuff countess and buffy said. I think men can help by sharing childcare and pushing for part time/flex working. Don't know if you have kids but I hear a lot of men talk about how work "wouldn't let" them do these things which is a blatantly sexist position.
Challenging disproportionality - if you see an all male promotion list/event then comment on it.
And please please please speak up when other men are being trombones. If a woman does it we get ignored as feminists! I know so many men who notice sexism but say nothing - I really wish they would comment. It would make a huge difference.
You might also want to look at leanin.org/together/men

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