There has been much written about being a cis woman in this world. What that means, and what it feels like. I always think about this – about how men would cope if they had to live with the fear, the constant compromise, minimising of our circumstance and what happens to us. What would happen if men had to deal daily with the wearing, tedious sexism. A lot of women don’t even comment on it anymore, and some don’t even know it’s happening. It’s why I value women’s stories above all, really. It’s why I could listen to women talking about their lives for ever and ever and not get sick of it. Because at least we have each other to tell.
There are so many instances of subtle sexism, and not so, in a woman’s life that we just forget about some of them, don’t we? The way we’re treated by some men, and some other women too, just because we are women. The things we put up with every day that we minimise to others and ourselves because, let’s face it, nobody wants to hear it, do they? An avalanche of unfairness would consume the world if we made a fuss every time someone slighted us because of our assigned sex.
So we all do things in various ways to make our lives more liveable. And we all of us try to make other women’s lives a bit more liveable too. Most of the time, it’s all we can do. Fitting it in between work, and kids, and relationships, and the rest of life’s busyness.
I often wonder what would happen to the world if we all just treated each other like human beings. If we weren’t assigned a sex at birth. If, instead of gender being an enormous crushing force in our lives, it just didn’t exist.
Because gender is used as an excuse for all sorts of terrible fuckery, and quite a bit of inane fuckery as well.
Rape and violence are seemingly seen as inescapable, or as our fault. Name calling and disrespect is okay because….why? Less pay, more drudgery, more discomfort, more exhaustion. Being a woman is pretty dangerous, and most of the time, it’s just bloody tiring, to be honest.
So I would exhort you to treat women, you cis men, more kindly. Treat anyone who doesn’t have your lives and inherent privileges more kindly.
And for fuck’s sake, make toilets unisex.