Excellent article. The struggle of explaining privilege is one that I am also familiar with. People often get defensive when confronted with the idea of being privileged and I think a big part of why that occurs is because “when you’re accustomed to privilege, equality can feel like oppression.” That, and people also take it as an attack because they aren’t personally responsible for the systematic oppression of other groups.
But flipping the script or presenting role-reversal scenarios can sometimes help to bridge the empathy gap, as can highlighting the ways that men can benefit from feminism and showing how a number of the ways that men feel oppressed also stem from patriarchal values and principles— for example, fathers sometimes not being given full parental rights.
But when we encourage women to be career-oriented, give them the same opportunities as men, and work to eliminate double standards, such as men being perceived as effective leaders whereas women are perceived as bitches, it can lead to more women pursuing high-powered jobs and make more room for men to fulfill more care-taking roles, and thus shift the assumption that women are more suitable care-givers.
Anyway, I went on a little tangent here! But this article was great and it’s wonderful that you’re having these types of conversations with the people in your life.