I'm Sorry You Think I'm Arrogant...
Do I just enjoy conflict?
Maybe. But not really. It's difficult to be a woman in this world and have an opinion, isn't it?
If we're too forthcoming, we're faking it or we're arrogant or don't actually know what we're talking about.
If we're too submissive, we're accepting or don't have a spine.
In short...we can't win. So for generations we have learnt to keep quiet. But there is an uprising within this generation. We are finally finding our voices.
'Why do men talk to women like they're giving a Ted talk?'
Because they genuinely think they're helping. My male gynaecologist was offended when I disagreed with him after he told me how heavy my periods are. Has he ever witnessed my period? No. Has he seen the amount of blood loss? No. Apparently however, he knows about my periods better than I do. When I challenged his claim, he looked at me like I was disobeying him in some way. I’m not shaming men. Men have been taught the wrong way to approach women for decades, and it’s confusing - because some women still encourage conditioned behaviour. My MIL (mother in law) for example, just could not understand why I wanted to work instead of stay home and have a baby.
Whilst I wouldn’t call myself a feminist, nor do I encourage extremist behaviours - I do believe in equality. There have been many occasions throughout my 20’s when I endured my body being grabbed or rubbed up against my will, had my body looked at instead of my face during conversation, had insults thrown at me, been followed or intimidated all because I rebuffed unwanted advances and worst of all, had men tell me I’m arrogant for daring to challenge their thinking - because how dare I, as a woman, challenge.
This has often been confusing for me because in amongst this madness were many women - conditioned themselves to share the same mentality, equally shaming my ‘difficult’ or ‘aggressive’ behaviour, all because I increasingly refused to conform to gender stereotypes. If a man behaved in the same way...would it be interpreted as aggressive?
Embracing my femininity also seems to be a problem. Some men see it as inviting and some women interpret it as threatening. The world appears quite uncomfortable with women who enjoy expressing their feminine identity whilst simultaneously expressing their intellect. It has taken me a long time to realise; I am not entirely the problem.
If I can help just one little girl realise that her beauty and her brain is not the problem, I will be satisfied.
How we - as women - respond, is where change lies. Educate.
'Fools multiply when wise men (and women) stay silent'