I am only 12 years old and in year six and there are careless terrible people in our class who cannot stop talking about sexist comments like: “Women belong in the kitchen.” “Women are only good for cooking cleaning and their privates.” “We’re stronger taller smarter better we get paid more.” “The buildings wouldn’t have been built without men! Who built your house??” This one happens all the time so I respond with “who gave birth to you?” But it’s always put back when they say “who created the life in the first place.” This boy said that without men cities wouldn’t be here and everything wouldn’t be here. Our teacher was tanding right there, his arms folded over his chest listening and all he says is “Well he’s right. Maybe in the future Women could do that as the technology. All day constantly. “YOU ARE A RAGING FEMINAZI!” “WOMEN ARE ONLY GOOD FOR MOPS” These boys are 11 years old and they are dead serious about all the things they say. Do they not understand how this can make people especially women feel? Unworthy, angry, fearful, disgusted. It happens so much it’s like I can almost agree with them. They drill these things into your brain and it’s like a slippery plug in a bathtub that you can’t take out to let the water go.
When I was in primary school, the boys would play this “game” with the girls, they would tell you to say when the train would stop and then run their finger from your foot up your leg. Of course you would say stop when it got to your knee, or for some daring people a little higher, but when you said “stop” they would reply with “the train stops for no one”, and would keep going. A light punch usually got them to buzz off, but I never thought much of it at the time, it was just a fun little game at school I guess. Funny thing is that I really distinctly remember one particular guy doing it when we were in year 7. This guy has then gone on to make rape jokes about me, in front of his friends… to my face. It starts young I guess
I’m in my late 50’s now so I have quite a few to recall over the years. However, the most recent and therefore relevant to this generation. I was in a suburban supermarket in Sydney as a couple were shopping for personal hygiene products for the young woman. Her partner remarked “Can’t you make a decision which nappy you need? ” loudly to embarrass her in front of other shoppers. Enraged I told him he had a big mouth.
I’m 16 and from Australia.Whenever we visit my dad’s side for Christmas my older brother was always the one included in the big discussions in the living room about world issues, economics or politics, and my grandma and auntie’s and myself were always sitting at the dining table or in the kitchen talking about town gossip, or asking me about boys and what makeup I wanted for my next birthday. It angers me so much that I’m not accepted into the ‘inner-circle’ of men in my family, how they just assume that women are weak or stupid or just good for cooking and raising kids. I’m in the open first VIII at my school for rowing, recently went to nationals for it and came away with 4 gold medals. When I told them this, I heard ‘I can’t believe she could handle the mud or getting her hair wet’ followed by laughter. It doesn’t matter what kind of sporting or academic achievements I make in my life, I’ll always be told, maybe not to my face but it is surely implied, that I am just simply are not as good as a man and I never will be. It doesn’t matter if I become a doctor or a lawyer I’ll always be second best to a man of the same qualifications as me.
When I came into work today and told the all-male office I manage that they need to leave Guy 1 alone so he can finish long, long overdue paperwork for me. “I don’t care what you want him to do, he needs to do this.” Cue another team member make a whip crack gesture and sound. Everyone laughs. A woman manager is hilarious when she lays down the law, isn’t she?
My daughter is 16 and in Year 10 in a Public School. She is both successful academically and on the sports field. A young man was very angry with her recently for getting an A in PE. He feels that as he throws further, he should not have a C while she has an A – when she pointed out to him that the grade is also made up of Theory and Leadership and Peer Support being demonstrated, he called her a bitch. She has been told by another male class mate that the reason the girls get A’s is because they all flirt with the adult male teachers. She has been called a femnazi for organising a White Ribbon fund raiser at her school and a C*^T for rejecting a boy. When I intervened and demanded the 6 months of being called a C&*t along with other abuse end, the teacher spoke to the boy and advised me she was very impressed with the level of maturity HE displayed as he understands he did wrong and is willing to say sorry….it makes me crazy! Recently a male teacher pointed out to her that she needs to be more understanding of the boys bad behaviour as she is quite intimidating and it must be difficult for them to know how to handle her – she is 5 foot 4 , petite and fit – intimidating indeed…recently,my 19 year old daughter was violently shoved and verbally assaulted because she politely asked a drunk idiot to stop touching her….it just goes on and on….sometimes I feel so helpless I want to scream in anger and frustration!!!!
I remember when I was in the 7th grade, I was in my maths class and the class was having somewhat of a group discussion with the teacher about what we do after school. Our maths teacher thought it was appropriate to tell us that “the guys will go outside and play games and the girls can go and vacuum”. The girls all rioted back yelling giving him a piece of our minds and the boys proceeded to laugh.
When I was 17 my then-boyfriend took photos of me during sex without my knowledge or consent. Months later, when he was showing me something on his phone, I caught a glimpse of them and he desperately tried to hide them. Eventually he caved and revealed them to me. I never made a big fuss. I thought since we were in a relationship it was “normal”. Now that I’m in my 20’s I realise it’s not normal or acceptable and I’m disgusted that I never stood up for myself.
I work as a senior administrator for, running reports and analysis for the company and reviewing and negotiating large contracts. Our Receptionist, whose role involves keeping the kitchen stocked up with biscuits, milk, coffee, etc., as well as stacking and emptying the dishwasher, is on annual leave, so we are expected to take care of it amongst ourselves until she returns. This hasn’t worked well, with the kitchen getting messy and milk and coffee running out. The office manager (female) decided to put a kitchen roster in place for the next three weeks – the only people on the roster are the four women who work in the office. I questioned her about this, and she said men couldn’t be expected to keep the kitchen clean. I took it to the boss (male), who said he saw my point, but it probably wouldn’t get done on the days a male was responsible for it, and it’s only for three weeks. The general feeling amongst the other employees was that i was making a fuss about nothing. I have refused to be on the roster, as have two of the other women, so the office manager is having to do it all herself. It has not led to a happy office atmosphere.
I went out to lunch one day with two male colleagues. After paying for everyone’s meals, one of my colleagues attempted to give me a $10 note towards the total amount. I kindly refused. My colleague then proceeded to try and place the $10 note down the front of my shirt and comment on how “cheap” I was. I was embarrassed. My other colleague was embarrassed.