Tomboy in Doll Shoes

Picture this, a group of around ten ladies, seating at a table, slowly eating their lunch. They are talking, the topics keep chaning, from family, to food to fashion. They stop at fashion, after one simply says, ‘I’m a tomboy’, from a statement someone had made.

Now, these ladies have their differences, and for some reason, they rarely agree to disagree.

‘You are not!’ quickly utters one of the ladies in disgust. Things are starting to get awkward in the group, you can see the faces of the others already knowing which side they’ll take.

‘You are in doll shoes and lipstick and nailpolish,’ she says, ‘tomboys don’t dress like that.’

At this point one is probably wondering what a tomboy dresses like. The challenger is in jeans, converse shoes and a t-shirt.

‘My dressing doesn’t say much about whether I am a tomboy or not, besides I like nail polish and lipstick, I believe my personality is the indicator here,’ the other lady saids defending herself in a soft spoken voice.

‘Really,’ the challenger says rolling her eyes.

The other girl keeps quiet so as to avoid any confrontation.

The challenger still wants a challenge.

‘You can’t say you are a tomboy! You have to ‘dress like a boy’ and ‘act like a boy”.

Everyone keeps quiet probably thinking how the conversation has gotten stereotipical.

There is tension in the air until one of the girls asks the rest if there have seen some funny video as she lifts up her phone.

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She’s the Man

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They taught her to be gentle and submissive,

They taught her to cook and clean,

They told her it was not her job to hunt,

They taught her to be a lady

 

They never told her that she’d have to hunt,

They never told her that she would have to do the tasks the other did not feel like doing,

They never told her that she’d have to fight,

They never told her that she’d have to hide her weakness,

 

They never told her that she could be just as strong and powerful as she wanted to,

Until she had to,

And when she did,

They tried to put her down for it,

But they didn’t know how strong life had made her

 

THEY WERE WRONG

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Over the years they told her many things she couldn’t be

A teacher,

A nurse,

A factory employee,

A pilot,

A scientist,

A soldier,

A leader,

A working mother,

A single mother,

A policewoman,

A strong woman,

Yet she has overcome all of this,

Because many strong women spoke out,

Many supportive men joined the quest,

And today, we’ve come a long way,

After a long fight for liberation

Traditional Woman

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She is being raised,

To be the person she doesn’t want to be

 

Her life feels like a prison,

In which she has been serving a 25 year sentence

 

She is the ‘woman’ of the house,

She has always been,

Even as a child

 

She cooks and cleans,

As she watches other people relax,

Simply because they are men,

And she is not,

At least that’s what they say

 

When tragedy strikes,

She is supposed to forget about her life,

It doesn’t matter that she has exams or loaded school work, or office work,

She has to put down anything regarding her professional life,

Until all is solved,

Even when those who could help her are many,

.. and they have nothing to do,

Because she is a ‘woman’

 

Her future in the minds of her family,

Working,

But most importantly a ‘submissive’ wife,

In the thoughts a ‘servant’ wife,

Because that is what she was raised to be

 

Her future in her mind,

Working,

Alone,

Free from the prison built for her,

Living a life she wants for herself,

Not a life that she is being forced to live,

She will not be the ‘traditional woman’ she was raised to be,

She will be her own woman

Gender

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So I thought I’d post something about International Women’s Day since I’ve been passionate about women’s issue since last year.

At first I was looking for a topic which I wanted to have ‘woman’ in it but I settled for gender since it is a more inclusive term. Then as I look for pictures of women I get lots of sexual images and decide to put a logo and I rule out the pink one since it seems like it overlooks, and there was only one pink picture which goes to show that times are changing.

I grew up attending Christian schools which pretty much gave me a background of who a woman should be. One of my teachers told me that a real woman does what she wants to do. Nonetheless, what particularly stood out was that a woman should be a virgin till marriage and should be submissive. Submission was mostly explained to me as doing what the man wanted you to do, doing everything for him and of course cooking for him. If I was submissive, he would love me, and I would have the perfect marriage. This is what I was taught for most of my life and I never really though about it, until I joined high school.

In high school I also studied in a Christian School but I was taught more about spirituality. No one ever preached about being a good woman. As I would later come to realize my foundation of what was expected from a woman wasn’t really applied. Especially on what had been emphasized on a lot, which was virginity.

When I joined the university, gender issues weren’t exactly my area of interest until something happened to me. I sought help but did not really get it until I took a course on gender then my healing began and I began to be more aware on gender issues.

As I opened my eyes, I realized that society really expected me to behave in a certain way as a woman. The emphasis here was on dressing, submissiveness and being more in the domestic sphere. Talking about sex gives one the impression that you are a whore.

On socialĀ  media, the sexual life of the woman is a big deal, the issue of nudes and exposing how many guys a girl has slept with.

One thing that has however stood out for me is that society expects me as a woman to be at home and the man can be anywhere. It expects me to look like a certain singer or actress yet it will hate when I have layers of make up on. It will want me to have long hair but hates it when I put artificial hair to meet the requirement. It will hate on me if I choose to keep my virginity but also hate on me if I loose it. As a woman, I can probably never fully satisfy society requirements and it is the same case for a man. Doing everything society tells you to do is living a life that focuses on pleasing others but not yourself.

Another issue I’m concerned with is the fact that gender isn’t really appreciated. A boy wears, skinny jeans, he’s gay, he has a piercing it’s gay, he likes Justin Bieber or Glee and he’s not a real man. Statements that imply being gay is wrong in society and try to tell you how to behave and what to do. A patriarchal society which imposes behavioral norms on you. A religious society which will preach love and lack of judgment that will beat up, hate and even kill those who choose a certain sexual orientation.

I’ve taken more gender courses since last year and I’ve realized that I identify more with being an introvert than I do with being a woman or feminine. I remember in a particular class on communication the lecturer saying that women talk more and looked around to see if they were any awkward stares because I’m very quiet and I do very little talking… despite this long post. With being introverted no one has to impose behavioral norms on me.

Then at the end of the day I am a woman. I also identify strongly with being a woman and femininity and if I have to go on a definition that touches on ‘femininity’ or being a woman, it’s probably the one that has stuck in my head, which is “A real woman does what she wants to do”. I don’t have to ask men or older women how I am expected to behave as a woman. Everyone is different and should behave in a way that suits them if it is going to have a positive impact on you as an individual and those around you. Differences should be acknowledged and respected and not assumed and dismissed.

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