One of the things that I am quite confused about is feminism.
When I was a little girl I was always sort of a tomboy, hair constantly up in a ponytail so that I could pretend it didn’t exist/bother me (silly? yes. Did it work? not really). I hung out with the boys and we played what I considered to be the coolest games ever in the history of game playing: role playing games. And I’m not talking video games here, no we actually pretended to be characters and then acted out scenes. We did everything from Star Wars to Harry Potter. It was freakin’ awesome. I discovered a love of american football and baseball. It wasn’t until the 5th grade, when I had changed schools and befriended a group of girls my age, that I discovered that girls and boys didn’t like the same things. It was devastating to my little heart.
When I asked my mom about why this was, she made some complicated speech that I don’t remember a word of but grasped the principle: boys and girls were not the same. Not in play, not in work, not in life. It was a horrible realization for me that I would never be considered as good as my male counterpart and that I wouldn’t get payed as much (and believe me, as a 5th grader, money was the most important thing about my future). From that day on I was a self proclaimed feminist.
Now does being a feminist mean that I hate boys? Geez no, I love ’em. No shame in that statement. Does it mean that I’m a crazy person who doesn’t wear bras because she believes that men and women should wear the same clothes? No. We’re built differently, that’s all. Does it mean that I believe in equality in between men and women (social, political and financial)? Hell yes. Basically, I’m against gender discrimination and sexism.
And yet as I grow older, I find my view of things evolving. I’ve gotten more girly, let my hair down, put on a dress without feeling weird; even though my interests remain the same (sports, comic books etc). Now I want boys to hold the door for me, compliment me, pay for a movie for me (although that may also be because I tend to be broke most of the time). I want them to ask me out, not the other way around. Yeah, yeah, I’m a chicken. I’m pretty sure that modern culture is to blame. I mean what girl didn’t dream of having her prince charming come and sweep her off her feet? Disney movies, chick flicks, romance novels and songs like Bonnie Tyler’s I need a hero have perverted me. I still desperately want to be a feminist, but am I really?
A good (male) friend of mine once remarked that girls are only feminist when it is to our advantage. And to my sorrow, I can’t agree more.
Live long and prosper \V/
The Mostly Confused Teenager.