I am a local historian in my 50s. I was introduced to another local historian who was about 40 and we discussed work-related matters. Then one lunchtime he appeared on my doorstep, so of course I invited him in for a coffee and a chat. Again it was entirely work-related. Absolutely nothing remotely personal was raised. He went home after an hour’s pleasant chat then six hours later rang me and said, simply “Hi Helena. Wanna fuck?” I was deeply offended. Just because I am a female rather than a male local historian, he thought sex was on the agenda, for the taking.
Why can’t men have an intelligent debate about a topic with women? I’m not implying men are dumb because most are certainly not, but 9/10 a man can’t handle a woman refuting or disagreeing with them. Here is how a typical debate between men goes. 1. Man #1 states his opinion on something and gives reason 2. Man # 2 disagrees and gives reasons why 3. Man #1 refutes these claims and discusses the weaknesses with the argument 4. Man #2 defends his own argument something along those lines… HOwever, if you put a woman in the second mans place itll go something like this: 1. Man starts off by giving an overview on the basics of the topic, including history (in a debate with another male, its assumed the male knows all this.) He then gives his opinion and the reasons for it. 2. Woman disagrees and starts to give her reasons 3. Man raises his voice, interrupts woman mid reason and says something like “rubbish” “youre being silly” 4. Woman continues to try to calmly explain her views. 5. Man gets slightly put off and annoyed, either walks away or tells her shes overreacting tells her to calm down etc I’ve also noticed when a male gets riled up about a topic, its called passion.. Yet women are called hysterical, told to calm down
I’m a big fan of Forza games and joined a fb group called Forza United. The constant casual attitude of sexism has made me consider leaving the group many times. The female members are always silent likely for fear of the sexism. The male members often address the group as if there are no women in the group at all, ‘hey lads’. Pictures of half-naked women are posted across sportscars. Today people were posting Trump quotes about sexual assault and laughing about it as it was funny and okay. I feel absolutely silenced because I know that if I raised this in the group their would be a barrage of abuse to silence me. I don’t even use a real photo on fb so that in groups, my gender isn’t know. People almost universally assume that I’m male without a personal photo. I feel that if I had a photo of myself, it would attract sexism in any gaming groups. I have had to leave numerous gaming groups that have this same attitude towards women. They assume that all the followers are male and talk about women in an objectifying manner with ‘girlfriend memes’ and sexualising images. Female gamer groups are often pink and/or women wanting to stream themselves for male attention rather than genuine female gamers. I encounter so many sexist attitudes in the men that I know that it sometimes feel like almost every man thar I know is sexist apart from one or two. When you ask many men, they genuinely believe that men are stronger and betters than women.
Going out in a club, trying to fight across a crowded dancefloor and a guy grabbing my boob. At 21 saying to the guy I was seeing that I was on my period and therefore didn’t want to have sex and him saying ‘I don’t care’ and pulling my legs apart. Going out for dinner with two of my colleagues and listening to them talking about ‘taking girls to pieces’.
i find it so frustrating that when both parents are working the woman is still expected to ‘do it all’. in my house I work 26 hrs per week (evenings / school hours and weekends so I can look after the children as much as possible)and my husband works 37 (mon-fri daytimes), yet I do all the housework, meals, laundry, kids organising / payments/ activities, garden, finances, finding childcare when needed (usually through swaps where I look after other peoples kids in exchange), birthday parties, presents for all events, and so on and so on. needless to say I am actually getting out of the marriage, partly due to this and feeling that I am living in the 1950s in my relationship! when I asked my husband (over a 5 year period) to cook one meal per week to help out a bit he declined! hmmmm.
When I complain about boys at my school for being know-it-alls or sexist to my dad, I get met with, “you’re probably going to end up dating him.” Um no. Maybe when I really dislike a person, I actually dislike them.
I remember my step mother treated me as more important because I was a teenage boy. My step mother was an intellectual feminist and active union representative in her job and prided herself on her modern views. She would automatically offer to do my washing but not my sisters who was expected to do it herself. My sister brought this up and I ended up having to do my own washing. My uncle, a kind of father figure, use to talk about my sisters as if all they needed to do was settle down and have kids whereas I was expected to be successful and make money. Also when it came to inheritance it was assumed that I would inherit the money myself to be responsible for the other female members. This was in the 1970s and he has changed his attitude now.c
My In-laws needed help with setting up their new television and DVD player a while back but asked my husband despite the fact I was there and he wasn’t and my day job is an audio-visual technician.
I was at home, unwell from work and not looking particularly glamorous when a Travis Perkins delivery arrived for our building work. I opened the door and asked the driver if he needed me to do anything; move my car etc., – he answered he’d ” like me to do a lot of things” followed by a conspiratorial wink. I retreated to the house and once he was finished unloading he knocked on the door; I answered to him saying “l’m here to read your meter…’ I turned the topic quickly back to signing for the delivery and said ‘shall I sign here? Is that all you need?” He said ‘ that will do, for now… I’ll be seeing you again though I hope.’ He invaded my personal space, kept touching my arm, winking at me; it was all completely unnecessary and bizarre really for someone just delivering some bricks to my address- it doesn’t give you the right to make suggestive comments to me.
This isn’t exactly an account of sexism but I think it can count. My mum was unclogging the shower drain today and since there was more hair than usual, she asked if I’d shaved my pubic hair off. I said yes. She asked why. I said because I felt gross with it there and I didn’t want it there. As soon as I said it, I realised how fucked up that was. The fact that I feel gross says a lot. Girls are expected to shave every hair that isn’t on their head or face from their body and made to feel like if they don’t, it’s disgusting. I also shave my legs and under arms but the only reason I shave them is because they feel so nice once hairless. However, I must admit that the reason I shave my private area is because I’m afraid a guy won’t want me if I have a hairy vagina. I know it’s so wrong because guys aren’t expected to shave down there and I shouldn’t feel ashamed. I just think it’s so fucked up that society makes me feel disgusting if I don’t get rid of something that is natural and that I was born with.