To hate when men refer to grown women as girls?
kisdenhus · 01/12/2019 22:29
I know it's petty but it really grates on me. Went to see my 32 year old brother today and he was saying how he went out the other week and a group of girls got talking to him and now he things he may be starting a relationship with one of them. From the phrase girls I thought she must be early 20s or even younger but he showed me a picture and she was quite obviously his age. So it's confusing for one.
It also feels like an attempt to almost patronize or even infantilize women, by using a word meant to refer to children when describing them. And in my experience, the ones who like to refer to fully grown women as girls tend to be the same ones who objectify women and their body parts (I hear men saying "Did you see the on that girl?" a lot more than "Did you see the on that woman?) for example. Because referring to her as a woman would be admitting she has full autonomy over her life and body. We don't really see it done in reverse, can't say me or my friends have ever referred to a male as a boy, except when we were in high school.
I accept most of the time it is innocent but I don't like the connotations it has.
JassyRadlett · 01/12/2019 22:32
I think the trouble is that ‘girl’ has adapted to be the female equivalent for ‘guy’ as well as the female equivalent for ‘male child’.
I think I mostly hear ‘girl’ from other women (and sometimes men) in that context - where the male equivalent would be ‘guys’ not ‘boys’.
I try to avoid it, but I can see how the usage has come about (though there is an uncomfortable intersection with the older ‘young girls in the typing pool’ I recall from my dad’s generation (though thankfully not my dad).
JustanAunt · 01/12/2019 23:09
I have a coworker who refers to me and our other coworker as 'the girls', I'm only a year younger and our other coworker is five years older than him. We have told him off so many times about this and every time he says 'what should I refer to you as? The women?'. We say No! Coworkers, or 'the rest of the team' would be fine. So annoying
BackforGood · 01/12/2019 23:13
I agree with a lot of what Jassy said.
I don't see 'girls' as an insult. It is a friendly, word for a group of females. Used commonly by those of us who are female. In the same way we might refer to a group of men as 'lads'.
I know a lot of MN doesn't like it, but I've never met anyone in my life that thinks it is offensive, and I know a huge number of people who would be up in arems at the first sign of inequality.
MistyCloud · 01/12/2019 23:17
I have absolutely no problem with anyone say 'girl' for someone over 18. 'Girls night out,' Girls on tour' who's that girl by Madonna and the Eurhythmics were about females over 18, New Girl with Zooey Deschanel was about a young woman in her late 20s. Numerous songs and films have had GIRL in the title when it's been about someone over 18.
Never get the hate for it. Each to their own, but if someone said ' I am 22 do NOT call me a GIRL!' they would be laughed at by everyone I know.
outherealone · 01/12/2019 23:17
I hate it but it’s too engrained in our parlance. The same as calling women females and marking out females for doing jobs that anyone can do but adding ‘female’ in front of it as tho that suddenly makes it special or better eg ‘female dj ‘ and various other annoyances..
FelicityBeedle · 01/12/2019 23:22
I hate being told I shouldn’t refer to myself as a girl because I’m an adult. Where I am it’s always the girls and the boys (or the lads and the masses)in all aspects of life, work, social, family etc. It’s not insulting or infantilising, it’s just colloquialism. I assume you have an issue with people calling you pet, love, dear when it’s a term of endearment?
SenecaFalls · 01/12/2019 23:25
It's demeaning, but that's often the intention. It's also often ageist in that many people want to use a term that preserves a sense of youthfulness. In any context where a male is referred to as a man, a female over the age of 18 should be referred to as a woman.
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