Monday, April 7, 2014

Feminism makes me happy

I'm a feminist and a proud one at that. For a very long time, people have treated feminism and feminists to be man haters and I can't for the life of me see myself hating men.We live in a horribly sexist and patriarchal society that needs to wake up to the fact that women are human beings. Feminism lets me do that.

I don't know when I started using the word feminist to describe myself. It felt right and why wouldn't it? I wanted equality for my friends and sisters and wanted unrealistic expectations reduced from both genders and feminism was my aha! thing. I want to live in a world where the feminist movement is unnecessary, where discussing equal opportunity should feel stupid. People few years from now should ask me "what do you mean there was inequality?" (Too much expectation?)

Why did feminism become important to me?

I won't get into reading and research. I won't get into numbers and hold up idols like Marie Curie and Rosalind Franklin who discovered the double helix structure of the DNA, because that's not what makes me happy. It makes me sad. But feminism makes me happy because I know that these women exist and only because somebody out there gave a damn to know who actually worked do we know of awesome women!

Being a feminist reassured and validated my beliefs. When you grow up in an all girls college (that you hated), where you are called a 'man child'; you become a little conflicted, when you don't conform, you begin to question why you're doing something. But I found feminism, I found myself being surer about being vocal and not shying away. In life you need to have a reassuring force that will tell you that you are not wrong for knowing *exactly* what you want. You are not bossy, you are not fickle, you are one hell of a woman even on the days you wear a shirt and trousers. I found feminism to be that reassuring force telling me that I was okay.

Feminism introduced me to other aspects of life, It made me a better person. I am less judgmental, I am more open to discussion, more importantly it made be better at discussing these issues. It made me capable of understanding sexism and how it affects me. When somebody is being treated like crap, I will call it out. I have a very strong sense of what  isn't my business; people's sex life, drinking, clothing, friends, all of that. Being aligned to feminism made me a lot more sensitive to issues apart from women. I always felt it was perfectly okay that somebody was LGBT, but now I'm a million times more sure.  I no longer say things like "I think it is okay to be gay" I will put my foot down and tell you not only is it okay to be gay, we should revel in it.

I have better friends, none of my friends are narrow minded and I say it quite proudly. Every single friend of mine accepts people with warmth the same amount of grace. I like being in that kind of a setting. I like people who are decent.

I cannot watch TV on most days because of all the sexist trash that comes on it, but to be acutely aware about it is also a very important part of this experience. I meet and read about so many successful people on a daily basis, I cannot thank feminism enough for giving me the sight to look at their achievements in a different light. It is no longer "published a book". It is published a book and a best seller at that in spite of being told that it wont do well.

It makes me happy to feel strongly about equality.I am happy that I am a confident, liberated women who is aware about what works and doesn't work for her. I like being sure about the kind of treatment I expect from people and how I will treat them. I know exactly the kind of people I don't want to be associated with. It complicates a lot of things but simplifies just as easily.

12 comments:

  1. I always respect strong women and those women who truly know themselves and know WHO they are! Great post

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  2. A strong and well voiced piece, Maggie. I especially like the reasons you list out for being Feminist and not the pure, 'I choose to be a feminist'. Nice style :)

    *Shailaja*

    Introspection in Shades of 11

    A to Z Challenge, 2014/ UBC, April 2014

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  3. This is such a great post one which every one should read...Your reasons absolutely resonate!

    Random Thoughts Naba

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  4. Awesome post!!!! Clear cut reasons for being feminist!!! Best F post!!

    ~S(t)ri
    Participant|AtoZ Challenge 2014
    Smile, it makes (y)our day!

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  5. Being male what do I say here.... as long as there are no pre conceived notions about anyone I guess it doesn't matter... nice post

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  6. No men but a women can uplift women only after acknowledging the power within.
    My A to Z challenge journey at The Other Side

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  7. I don't watch TV for the same reason. There are so many real powerful and strong women around me .. that I don't need to look anywhere else :) Brilliant post :)

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  8. Because we are what we are, this post was as easy as my thoughts being read out to me. Feminism is not what we wish others to be at times but only the choice that lies with us to be ourselves..

    Richa

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  9. On a lighter note, "Well, that escalated quickly" :P.
    Its a great read

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  10. I love your attitude! Thanks for sharing your thoughts. :)

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  11. Excellent attitude! Nice to see that feminism is still alive and well in this day and age. You are right that it is misunderstood by many and that's too bad.
    Signed - a feminist from way back (1970s)

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