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Do people have an issue with the word 'Woman'?

(20 Posts)
OccasionalKite Mon 10-Feb-20 01:01:30

My argument: the word "woman" is being pushed by some men as including men.

"Woman" includes "some men", which then creepily becomes "all men".


Whereas in real life, "woman" means "adult human female".

"Girls" are "immature/juvenile human females".

Who the hell wants to be called a girl when she's 45?!

KimikosDreamHouse Mon 10-Feb-20 00:47:55

I'm in my 30's and I hate being referred to as a 'girl' by men, women or adverts

When does this happen? Apart from the Boots ^Here Come the Girls" adverts, which were clearly based on "girls night out" I can't think of any adverts which use girl to refer to an adult woman. Given that "boys night out" is also a thing I don't really see the problem with the Boots ad in that context.

There is of course that dreadful Gone Girl novel and all the copy cats of it

katy1213 Mon 10-Feb-20 00:38:47

If you wouldn't refer to your male equivalent as a boy, then you are a woman. The cut-off point is around 25.

Mlou32 Mon 10-Feb-20 00:35:06

Call me a girl, woman, lady, lass....I have no issue with any of them.

Coyoacan Mon 10-Feb-20 00:26:00

I remember a great aunt who was born in the 19th Century and had lived most of her adult life in the USA, who would refer to her elderly friends as "girls", which to the ears of the Irish adults around me sounded weird at the time.

And probably belongs to the idea of never asking a woman her age. Young is good, old is bad.

stumbledin Mon 10-Feb-20 00:17:55

As someone said up thread this is a hangover of when the word woman was a put down, ie nearly always used in connection with something negative such as stupid woman or bloody woman.

It is one of the reasons why 70s feminists started to talk about women's liberation. It was to challenge the notion that to be a woman was to be of no consequence, or subject to dreadful female hormones etc.. ie woman is too much in your face about a biological reality.

So as a hangover from that time people still prefer to talk about women as "girls", eg a "girls night out" sounds sort of fluffy and unthreatening.

Its depressing how so much has swung back. Although much as I am not a girl, I hate it when people talk about you guys, as I am certainly not a man.

TwitcherOfCurtains Mon 10-Feb-20 00:08:59

I didn't write my op well. I'm more interested in the use of girl rather than lady instead of woman.

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KimikosDreamHouse Mon 10-Feb-20 00:00:55

and I’m not sure that’s so much internalised misogyny as a habit of polite language, rather like using please and thankyou

I am 100% sure it has nothing to do with internalised misogyny and everything to do with just being polite.

As an aside I'm very sceptical about the frequency with which "internalised misogyny" gets trotted out on here. It rarely means much more, as far as I can see, than women doing something the poster doesn't like or approve of. If it is a thing the posters chucking the expression around might want to consider who exactly is suffering from "internalised misogyny"

KimikosDreamHouse Sun 09-Feb-20 23:55:38

I would also sag 'mind the lady' but equally of it was someone male id say 'mind the gentleman'

Me too. If the person I was speaking about wasn't in earshot I would say man or woman but if they can hear me , it's lady and gentleman.

TwitcherOfCurtains Sun 09-Feb-20 23:38:14

That doesn't explain why so many women like to be referred to as 'girl' Coyoacan.

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Coyoacan Sun 09-Feb-20 23:32:00

I'm only guessing here, but could it be a hang-over from the classism of earlier centuries? Where a gentlewoman had to be called a lady and the rest of us were people of little value.

TwitcherOfCurtains Sun 09-Feb-20 23:20:17

Oh, I'll have a look!

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ErrolTheDragon Sun 09-Feb-20 23:00:37

Someone started a thread about lady/woman vs gentleman/man last night which maybe overlaps with this.

TwitcherOfCurtains Sun 09-Feb-20 22:52:45

I think lady is quite different to girl.

People say lady as a way of being polite and showing respect, girl is never used about a grown woman in that way.

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Qcng Sun 09-Feb-20 21:44:11

I remember "you stupid woman" being a catchphrase on a (stupid) sitcom. Lots of people would say it and laugh.

The Beatles referred to the woman/object of desire as "girl" in songs even "little girl" (none of them "that" way inclined it has to be said).

But woman does seem to have a "dirty word" thing about it, even now, it's so "offensive" to some people.

Very strange.

AnyOldSpartabix Sun 09-Feb-20 21:40:44

It took me a while to accept I was an adult and that the correct term for me was now woman (or lady, when someone’s children bumped into me).

I’m fiftyish now and fully embrace my womanhood. Not sure when it happened.

I think I did attach some negativity to the word woman when younger. Lady is only used in the specific situation you mentioned, and I’m not sure that’s so much internalised misogyny as a habit of polite language, rather like using please and thankyou.

ninja Sun 09-Feb-20 21:40:07

I would also sag 'mind the lady' but equally of it was someone male id say 'mind the gentleman'

RuffleCrow Sun 09-Feb-20 21:33:57

i'm as GC a feminist as they come, but if my dcs nearly walk into or barge past an adult human female I will say "Mind the lady". Why does "mind the woman" sound rude in my head? confused curse you, bloody ingrained misogyny.

PonyoFishyInTheSea Sun 09-Feb-20 21:29:55

The only people I know that have a problem with the word woman are woke idiots that think it will offend the trans community.

TwitcherOfCurtains Sun 09-Feb-20 21:28:37

A little tipsy and wondering if anyone else feels this is an issue..

I'm in my 30's and I hate being referred to as a 'girl' by men, women or adverts. I find it offensive and it really just brushes me up the wrong way. I'm an adult (a tipsy one at the moment wine), not a child.

It seems though that people are really reluctant to use the word 'woman' in many situations because they claim it doesn't sound nice/friendly enough or that it sounds too clunky or formal.

Anyone else think many people have a problem with 'woman'? Do you find it clunky or unfriendly?

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