International Women's Day, because... - mo'adore: cruelty-free beauty ∙ vegan food ∙ glasgow/dundee lifestyle

8 March 2015

International Women's Day, because...



Because my ex told me I'd have to take his surname ('when' we got married, not if) and I wasn't allowed to keep the Ms salutation I'd used before meeting him (though I was allowed to get a PhD and become a Dr). 

Because my mum insists on putting the surname of boys I date after my first name, even though I've repeatedly insisted I'd keep my current name.

Ditto on the issue on grandkids.

Because Cheryl Cole continues to be known professionally by the surname of her first husband and people seem to think this is blaspheme (it's her name, Ashley doesn't own the surname Cole).

Because when I took Graphic Communication for Standard Grade I would get asked with a screwed up face "are you not like the only girl in the class?"

Because the only guy who took a cooking class was asked why he wanted to do a girls course.

Because how safe I feel in a club still determines how much I'll recommend it to someone else.

Because when the news travelled back to school that someone who had left two years earlier was transitioning I was one of the few people who were cool with it and began using the correct name and pronouns.

Because a lot of people still don't think things like bisexual and asexual are real (despite the evidence).

Because I can't seem to have a male friend without people asking if we're dating.

Because I'd like to see unisex toilets within my lifetime.

Because the diet industry customer base is primarily women.

Because a lot of these diets are based on aesthetics and not health or even fucking science.

Because I know a lot of women who are on these diets who don't need to lose weight.

Because when I wear something nice there's always someone who thinks its for men (usually men).

Because I have purposefully dressed myself down in the presence of some of these men (because who wants to look attractive in front of a pervert?).

Because when I bought a nice jumper with my Christmas money my mum asked who I was trying to attract (I put her in her place, the best way any 13 year old can with some good foot stamping but I stand by it).

Because I know women who can't leave the house without make-up.

Because growing up Bliss Magazine provided me with more of a sex education than my school or my parents.

Because comprehensive sex education is one of the first issues I really cared about and seven years after I left school it doesn't look like it's any better.

Because Christian Grey is seen as a dreamboat.

Because Edward Cullen is seen as a dreamboat.

Because I tend to date men of the geeky or metrosexual persuasion and I'm often asked 'why don't you date a real man?' (usually asked by macho men).

Because when I watched Sex & The City at age 23 I actually fist-pumped at the screen when they frankly discussed female sexuality.

Because when I asked my mum as a young child why she wore a wedding ring but my dad didn't her response was 'just cause men have the option'.

Because I've crossed the street to avoid wolf whistling.

Because when I got frustrated at one of my then-boyfriend's constant attention I was told by onlookers it was 'cute' and 'devotion'. It was actually keeping me in a box.

Because it took me almost four years after the split to own my experiences and say that the relationship was unhealthy. And that I'm relieved I got out.

Because quite a few men I've been *ahem* intimate with have tried to dictate to me what kind of contraceptive choices I should make about my own body.

Because young person sexual health clinics exists as 'judgement free areas' when teenagers should be free to go to their GP without fear of judgement.

Because there are still people (even in my generation) who still act shocked/unimpressed/confused when they find out I had a stay at home dad and a working mum.

Because I've known a recruitment consultant who admits he considers the parental status of a woman more than a man.

Because I was concerned with being considered sexy when I was an underage teenager.

Because we still have boobs in a national newspaper.

Because lists stating which countries are safe for women travelling alone still exist.

Because lists stating which countries are safe for gay people still exist.

Because body hair removal is optional for men but mandatory for women.

Because some private schools don't allow boys to have long hair.

Because private schools still exist which helps fuel the old boys club.

Because 77% of UK MPs are male.

Because in Scotland women only make up 36% of public boards, less than 35% of MSPs and 24% of councillors.

Because girls who attend a single sex school are more likely to take up a STEM subject than a girl who attends a coeducational school.

Because it's still not respected that period pain can really stop women in their tracks.

Because in the UK sanitary wear is still taxed as a luxury item.

Because in developing nations sanitary wear isn't a thing and girls have to miss school whilst menstruating (or sit in a hut).

Because there are still countries out there where women can't vote. Or drive.

Because circumcision of genitalia still happens to children (for no health reason) who are too young to consent.

Because this time last year the world was already getting excited for the men's world cup but no one seems to realise the women's world cup is this summer.

Because I'm one of the few people I know who will call it the Mens World Cup and the Womens World Cup, not the 'World Cup' and the other one...

Because cheerleading is sexualised in the media and not seen as a serious sport. Or even a sport. Even by feminists (this feminist is a former cheerleader and I'm yet to come across an argument I can't overthrow).

Because all the UK netball teams are some of the best in the world right now but no one seems to know...

Because Andy Murry wasn't the first Briton to win Wimbledon in 77 years. 

Because I know women (plural) - my age - who have said they don't think women's sport is the same or is 'a bit of a joke'.

Because when I showed someone the leaflet for a open software day I was attending he asked if I was attending cause the flyer had cute little bunnies on it.

Because I'm sometimes hesitant to attend Android events, or Ingress events or Comic-Con because I have been talked down to at these events before (despite being into these hobbies as much as any man).

Because a lot of the hate towards 'fake geek girls' comes from other girls.

Because GamerGate.

Because Bring Back Our Girls had to exist.

Because last year the UK banned a bunch of things from porn, this included female ejaculation and face-sitting.

Because the animal rights movement is rife with sexism (hello PETA) and vegan feminists have been accused of not being real vegans (because we don't support PETA).

Because the videos made by Laci Green still need to be made.

Because I shamefully used the word slut until I was 14 and it was Christina Aguilera who pointed out how hypocritical the word is.

Because instead of society dropping the word slut we instead had to work to reclaim it.

Because I recognised sexual inequality before I came across the word feminist.

Because any woman who is also LGBT, working class, disabled, non-white, an immigrant, or follows a religion not common in her country faces a double whammy of discrimination (and intersectional feminism is only just getting on the agenda).

Because patriarchy doesn't just hurt women. It hurts men who dare to not fit the alpha male stereotype, gay people, trans and non-binary individuals, and anyone else hurt by any kind of inequality. It exists to support a few privileged (and powerful) individuals.

Happy International Women's Day, y'all! 

4 comments :

  1. Bravo!! Brilliant post. I am sick to the back teeth with having to defend International Women's Day to both men AND women. I think I'm just going to direct everyone here from now on.
    Much Love AJ xx

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  2. Oh my stars I love this post! I've shared it on my facebook hopefully people will read it! I've got a similar word document but it's very personal and it's more like all the times that I have been made to feel uncomfortable by men, going back to when I was 13 etc. I just posted something small today on my blog I've been so busy :( but one of my aims is to write more feminism posts, I'm just not sure where to start or what stance to go with, like do I tell a story, a list, what needs to be done etc. Love reading your feminist posts, always really clear :) xo
    amber love

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  3. So many yeses! This list is horrible long, but so important. I hate that it has to be the case, but i'm so glad that there's a day to bring all of these messages together and give everyone some fighting spirit! :) x

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  4. Because every year, this list is getting longer not shorter

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