Recently The Frisky did an article called “The Soapbox: On Feminism & Judging Other Women.” It was in response to another article that (duh) judged women and their decision to stay at home. I’ve been very open about how I feel regarding stay at home moms. Guys, these women are home with children all day… that’s who they talk to, that’s who has control over the TV, that’s it. My seven year old nephew came to visit me for a week and within 4 hours I wanted to rip my hair out because I had watched Pokemon, Great Adventure, and Kung Fu Panda 2 and not one episode of SVU on a Saturday. It takes strength to stay at home with kids and to be judged for it.
But I digress. The point of this article is not about stay at home, it’s about judging. I’ve been told I’m very judgmental and frankly, I don’t see it that way. I’m very opinionated and I also don’t really care what people want to hear so I tell the truth. I don’t play nice and therefore I am called judgmental. If someone asks for my opinion and I give it honestly does that mean I’m judging them? Does it make my opinion any more right than theirs? I don’t think so. I guess that’s the beauty of “opinion.”
Feminism needs to get over it. Yes, I said it. Feminism is about equality and equal human rights – it’s not about man-bashing or man-hating, about working or not working, about getting married or staying single. It has nothing to do with personal decisions. Feminism is the fight for equality when you make those decisions. If I decide to work. I should be paid the same dollar amount that a man would be paid if we are doing the same job and have equal experience and qualifications. I don’t understand how that is still not common knowledge and practice. My vagina does not mean I should make less money or that my education and experience periodically leaks from my body because I have a different hole than a man. It’s ludicrous to think that because a person has a dangly body part instead of …
… a neatly tucked away (and way more attractive looking) body part they deserve more. It’s also ludicrous to call yourself a feminist and then look down on a woman for her choice.
I identify as a feminist because I support women in whatever choice they make. I also have my own personal views on things and my own morals so I make my own decisions. I caught a lot of flak for my “stripper position” and it was deemed “anti-feminist.” Look, my life story is a lot different than yours and I have had different experiences with strippers and strip clubs. So, while I love my friends that are strippers I also think they could do better. I don’t judge them for being a stripper but I also don’t lie to them about how I feel about their profession. Is that judgment? Yes, I judge their profession I do not judge them and I don’t think they are setting anything back by what they do. I would stand by them in a march and thank them for helping to support the cause because what they do in their personal life does not change the work they do on the feminist movement front. It does not change the fact that they want equality for my decisions as well as theirs, and their nieces, and their aunts, grandmas, etc.
Everyone judges. EVERYONE JUDGES. There’s a Judge Judy in all of us and that’s fine that’s being human but own your judgments people, I feel the way I do about strippers and stay at home moms because of my experiences not because I’m a feminist. The movement has never told me how to feel about a job or a choice it told me to be upset because I’m not equal. A woman has an equal right to choose to work and to choose to stay at home and as a group that only wants to be seen as equals we need to back ALL decisions made by women when it is made in their best interest. It’s okay to judge, but it’s not okay to let those judgments create speed bumps in the movement.
If a man decided to stay home no one would say he’s setting back a movement they would say “what a trailblazer.” He would be applauded for allowing his wife to take the lead while he tends to the children. So why is it any less trailblazing for a woman to do it? Is it just because we always have? If it’s something that we’re good at why shouldn’t we do it? How is that less feminist? My friend is a stay at home mom and she’s great at it – I can’t babysit for more than 6 hours without needing a glass of wine, Xanax, and nap. I applaud her for being great at her job and she applauds me at being good at mine. That’s equality, people.
If we condemn each other and look down on each other then why shouldn’t men, bosses, media, etc.? So feminists, I say to you from the bottom of my heart – knock it off. You don’t have to stop judging each other, but you do have to stop trying to prove you’re more feminist than someone else because of your personal decisions. You want to be a real feminist? Embrace each other and fight for change side by side. The war isn’t against each other the war is against ideals so stop giving more power to the people that say women are “too emotional,” or “too catty” – stand tall and stand together and embrace the differences.
I’m judging all of us and I’m saying we’re getting in our own way – so do something to change it. Change my opinion, show me I’m wrong. Don’t stop judging or having opinions, just stop thinking that your judgments and opinions are better than anyone else’s. Reread that last statement. See what we’re doing? We’re causing inequality among ourselves. We’ve got enough inequality to fight in the world, you know? Let’s not cause more.