I am a 22 year old female who is fed up of receiving sexism at home. I am a person who believes in equality for all genders, races, sexualities and beliefs. I am very careful and respectful about this. However, at home my parents treat us in such ways that clearly prove sexism. Chores are never that important if my brother does not do them (I’ve never ever seen him help out in any kind of way) but whenever I am asked to do anything and ask my mum/dad why they are not telling my brother to do something as well (e.g. chores), it always comes down to them stating that as a female it is more important for me to do it and not him. I argue with them every single day. It gives me so much anxiety. I try to understand because that is how they were bought up but it is really frustrating.
This is basically directed at my dad, so apart from changing the names, I just left it in this letter format seeing as I wrote it as I was feeling it. Coarse language and severe satire follows. Fucking patronising dickhead “when you’re done with your intensive studying can you clean up a little?” fucking prick, because ‘Jacob’ is so clearly the golden child in this situation, sitting in his room, isolated from the world, doing nothing with his life except maybe pissing me off on a daily basis when he looks smugly at me when you praise him. ‘Oh, ‘Jacob’ cleaned the kitchen tonight…’Elaina’ you could’ve cooked dinner for your sister’ Well maybe ‘Jacob’ shouldn’t have eaten our hardworking, uni student-sister’s leftover lunch, and maybe you should’ve cooked dinner. Of course as soon as it becomes more complex than sausages, you refuse to look up a recipe even though you can’t cook- and even when I try to help you find one and make suggestions, you act as if some great burden has been placed upon you and decide it’s too hard. I’ve given up on cooking for you fuckheads because I spent hours finding healthy recipes which wouldn’t inconvenience me too much in (in terms of cooking skill and time)-between having a life, trying to lose weight because I’ve been insecure about that since forever (and thanks for letting ‘fat bitch’ slide for a good 7 years with ‘Hayden’ [other brother], can’t comprehend why such a nickname could be harmful), doing homework, and feeling miserable because I had no friends. Then I would go shopping with you, to which you would always complain if it took too long, then we would get home and I would unpack the whole fucking thing. Emphasis on I. ‘Jacob’ would so graciously bring a few bags inside before he went back to his room. Well done Golden Child (who has a penis), well done! Then I’d cook the damn meal, you’d make some remarks about how the kitchen was a bit messy (sorry I’m not a 50s housewife looking to protect you from dishes). And when I cooked, the dishes were never cleaned properly, so then I would have to re-clean the pots/utensils before I cooked. Worst case scenario, I wrongly assumed you or ‘Jacob’ had completed a simple task, and yet in the middle of cooking the meat, I get last night’s sauce coating tonight’s food. Poor you, you fifty-year old adult, I can’t fix your life when you’re fucking up mine on a daily basis. I used to rely on you before, but now I prefer it when you fuck off, because I don’t need you throwing a tantrum in the kitchen and turning your anger towards me. I’m done taking it, I don’t care how much you scowl at me, this is not going to be a one-sided conversation in which you are correct because you happened to ejaculate some sperm during an orgasm you fucking dickhead. “‘Elaina’, you should do a little more around the house” fuck off. On top of everything, when I came home feeling lonely and miserable from school, I had you in the kitchen-every fucking day and I am not exaggerating-yelling about every little thing. ‘Why is there an empty cup on the coffee table’ Because I’m done with life so I recently just took the last sip of coffee so I can be prepared for your bullshit. I dealt with it for too long, so you only have yourself to blame for the teenager who no longer enjoys going to school which makes doing homework a billion times harder as you helpfully suggest that I should do some laundry as ‘a break’ from studying. I still love you, because you can genuinely feel bad and apologise for these things and you can still be kind, but I don’t want to live under the same roof as you anymore. This keeps going on and we don’t put space between us, the space we will inevitably find will be permanent, as much as the thought of removing family from my life sickens and distresses me. Rant over.
The girls in my school have to go to lunch with tracksuit bottom on over our skorts after PE, the boys however can have bear legs in the dining hall. I’m 15 and got told today (I refuse to follow these rules as they’re extremely sexist) by the deputy head that what I wasn’t dressing “appropriately” and that I need to got back to house and either change into my school uniform or HIDE my legs in some way. I was mortified, but carried on and went into lunch, bear legged, with my friends. I’ll risk anything to stand up for this.
I have my dog who I love dearly, and I walk him around my block every day because my mom thinks it’s “safe.” I usually wear sweatpants and a t shirt. Nothing fits me tight or is revealing. But every time I go to walk them I get catcalled at least once. It never got farther than that, until a few weeks ago. I was walking my dog and we stopped because this man has a dog about the same age and they both seemed to get along. He seemed friendly and we just stood there when we started talking about the dogs. They were simple things like the breed, the dog food they eat, their age, and so on. He was slowly coming closer to me, and I soon became uncomfortable. So I called my dog and told him it was time to go, and we started walking home. We were walking down the sidewalk when he caught up to me and told me that he was going the same way, and I knew he was lying because we were going in opposite directions. I just nodded my head and continued walking when his hand reached for my butt. He grabbed it like it was nothing. That was when I told him to back off. He told me that I was making a fuss out of nothing and he went to grab my breasts. I tried to run, but I couldn’t get away seeing as he was much bigger than I was. My dog saw that I was trying to get away, and he started to bark. The people who lived in the house we were by looked out the window and saw what was going on and came out as well. Thankfully it was a woman and she told him to back off or she was going to call the cops. She asked me of I was okay and offered to walk me home. She walked me home, and luckily didn’t tell my parents what happened. Ever since then I have refused to walk him anymore. My brother is the one who walks him now. I’m only 13 years old.
I grew up in Cyprus and sexism is extremely common there. Cases of sexual harassment often go unnoticed, and even if reported, not much will be done. My boss is a top architect in the country and he would blow kisses at me when I was leaving the office, call me darling and ask me to pick up his kids from school. I’m a qualified architect. His wife said I look like a “russian” (Cypriot for slut) and said I make easy money. In such a sexist environment you see, women often target women, since the man is never to blame.
I wrote in earlier today my experience of sexism but I have something I would like to add that is relevant and quite important. A lot of stories I’ve reading on here are not actually falling under the definition of sexism. I think as a result of firstly people not fully understanding what sexism is and secondly jumping on the bandwagon of victimization and blame shaming. Many of the stories here are actually fall under sexual harassment NOT sexism. Sexism is defined as the following: 1. prejudice or discrimination based on sex; especially discrimination against women. 2. behavior, conditions, or attitudes that foster stereotypes of social roles based on sex. To clarify, getting catcalled, hit on or any other inappropriate sexual behavior is sexual harassment NOT sexism. I’m not saying its not wrong, i’m just saying its not sexism. I’m clarifying this not because I dont support the cause of changing views on sexism, but because I DO. The only way we will achieve this is by being focused and logical. Pointing the finger at every wrong doing and shouting sexism will only make the problem worse. Most sexism is subtle and people may not even realize they are doing it because it is so ingrained. It is your dad jokingly saying you shouldn’t play football because your a girl, a job which pays slightly less because you are a woman or that bloke in the office who needs to show you how to do the most basic things because deep down inside, unconsciously, they think women are inferior. I dont think anger will deal with this kind of sexism. Showing people when it happens in a non-aggressive and confrontational way will. They dont even know they are doing it. An example on how to deal with this sort of sexism: I lived in India for a year where sexism is rife. An Indian man who worked FOR me as a translator whilst I conducted research there prized himself on being very progressive and respectful of women. He spoke of it often and spoke against sexism. Yet, on many occasion he would take something out of my hands that I was doing and tell me he would show me how to do it. Once it was in regards to folding a piece of paper. He did not realize what he was doing but he was treating me as Indian men treat women, as if they cannot do anything for themselves because they are weak or stupid. Once when alone, I started by saying that sexism was so ingrained in their culture many men did not even realize they were doing it. I gave him as an example and he was aghast at his own behavior. He had not even realized he was doing that. Safe to say he was extremely apologetic and spent a good deal of time after that thinking about what his actions meant. It was a friendly conversation, no voices were raised, it was a discussion we both learnt from. Sorry for the long post but I thought it was important to share.
Good friend of mine works as a hostess where they’re required to wear all black for their uniform. When she working on St Patrick’s Day the customer’s took her uniform as permission to pinch her on her ass because she wasn’t “wearing any green.” So many issues with this 1) it was annoying in grade school and everyone hated that stupid tradition why do it now? Oh right because they’re pervs 2) why the hell were they touching someone in a sexual manner without consent? 3) my friend told me all the men that did that to her were old enough to be her dad. Men in their 40+ -some of whom probably had kids- looked at my 19 year old friend and thought, “yeah let me touch her ass that’s appropriate” I’m so sick of hearing stories about how men interact with her and making working difficult. She’s not there for you, she’s there for a paycheck. You mean nothing to her and you certainly aren’t “obligated” to get her number or her attention outside her role as a hostess.
Not long after arriving for an 8 hour shift at work yesterday, my manager told me to go home and change clothes because I was wearing a dress that fell slightly above my knees. I was wearing black leggings underneath, and I wasn’t showing any skin from the neck down besides my hands (both details she apparently considered to be irrelevant). I was deeply disappointed to be reminded that my workplace still implements a reductive dress code that values a woman’s appearance over her work ethic or professionalism. Perhaps I was doubly disappointed because I work at a public library, which is a place that has such great potential to promote egalitarian values. In this instance, however, library personnel decided that the energy I put forth toward my work was not important, and that my time would be better spent taking close to hour off from work to drive home, change clothes, and then drive back to work. When my manager told me to go home and change clothes I was shocked, angry, and disappointed. I mulled over what I should do for a while, unable to focus on my work because of the troubling thought that the policing of women’s appearances was happening all around me, enforced by other women no less. I finally decided that the only thing I could do was to try to stand up for myself, so I ventured to my manager’s office to try to explain the harm of the library’s dress code policy. I was pretty upset and didn’t explain myself very eloquently, but I did manage to convince my manager to let me finish my shift without going home. What a strange world where you have to convince your employer to let you work, or where doing so successfully would be considered a victory. I don’t feel victorious, but I feel lucky. Countless women everyday are no doubt prevented from doing their jobs because someone, somewhere might be offended by their choice in clothing. I wonder how many of us there are. I was able to discuss my concerns with my manager, but I know other women in similar fields might not be so fortunate, and might even be fired for doing so. Workplace dress codes seem like such a small thing, but they comprise no small number of daily inequalities that women around the world face, apparently regardless of the field they work in. I’m posting this in solidarity with all of the women who have and who will be discriminated against for their clothing. If we can, let’s #leanout and speak up about workplace inequality.
I was told, “you’re good at soccer, for a girl”
My housemate went to a quiz night, he’s just walked in and said – ” We won the quiz and we had a shit hot name – ‘Quiz on my face and tell me I’m pretty’. “