The Strength of Her

We should all be in awe of the strength of women. Their tenacity, brilliance, and, above all, resilience. As someone who struggles with depression, I often feel like there are many moments I have to shove through or past something. Women do that every day, every moment of their lives.

Today, I’ve done a lot of thinking. I’ve browsed social media looking back at the Women’s march, reading posts with shoutouts to specific women and women in general, applauding their heart, stamina, spirit, and a variety of other wonderful things to praise. I even saw a number that labeled women as strong. I don’t believe I saw enough lauding their strength, so here’s one more.

Women have to deal with so many different stereotypes, objectifications, and miniaturizing. Black women who are tokenized for their bodies and hair. Trans women who are boiled down to their genitals and gender presentation. Muslim women who are viewed as hypocrites for their hijabs. These are just a few examples. There are many I’ve left out, and many I do not know. It’s unending. Daily.

As a cisgender man, I can’t understand these specific moments. I never will because of my privilege. But what I can do is have hard conversations with other men. I can talk to those with my own privilege and stop their actions of sexism, misogyny, or rape culture. I do this not because it is fun or easy, but because it is unpleasant and difficult. I do it because it’s necessary to utilize your privilege to help others. That’s the whole damn point of being an ally.

I want to take a moment to thank the women in my life who’ve shaped me into the person I am. I would not be the person I am today without the lessons of love, bravery, humility, endurance, and strength they have taught me. These women are my friends, my family, my heroes (like popular vote winner, Hillary Rodham Clinton, and I am endlessly lucky to have their presence in my life.

So today (and every day), I applaud women and girls, both cisgender and trans, of all races and ethnicities, of able and disabled bodies, of neurotypical and neurodivergent mental health, and I commend them for all they do, and I do all I can to help them have to do less.

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