Happy Non-Women’s Day to Those Who Can’t Acknowledge Male Privilege

My news feed everywhere is filled with so many “Mother’s Day” posts that it hurt my eyes and mind, so I had to write about it. I understand that it’s considered a good gesture, a way of expressing gratitude and love, sharing mother’s day posts and wishes on social media and appreciating the love and respect you have for your mother.

Is This The Best You Can Do?

But is appreciation, acknowledgement, and expression of love twice a year (once on women’s day, and another time, on mother’s day) the best you can do?

Understand that The World Is Still Cruel to Women.

“Not me, I don’t do any such thing” is the quickest excuse you can give. And if you happen to be one those excuse-givers, there’s no point in reading this; go do something better. While we are living in 2022, women around the world still don’t feel equal because the society refuses to treat them as equals.

Women Still Don’t Feel Safe.

So many bold women step forward and speak up about the abuse they have faced, the fears that they have, the worries they carry with them wherever they go, and still, not much seems to have changed. How happy and relaxed would you be when your son goes out on a date with a woman vs How happy would you feel when your daughter hasn’t returned home yet, when she was supposed to have gone out with someone, and you’d expect her to be home soon?

A Cocky Man Is a Hero and A Woman Who Speaks up for Herself is An Arrogant, Attention-Seeking Bitch!

This is why I am tired of most movies and series. You know what I’m talking about. The Arrow, Sherlock Holmes, Harvey Specter, Jack Reacher, all these men can act cocky and self-entitled, and not only get away with it, but also “impress” the audience with their ways, but can you even imagine a woman playing such roles? Chances are high that most men wouldn’t watch even the trailers of such movies and series if women were to play the lead role, that too, a confident woman. This society can’t handle confident women either in real, or (how funny is this!) even on screen!

Women’s Bodies Are Still Governed by Men.

“Pro-life”! Rubbish. If it were children’s lives you’d care about, you’d focus on how to make the world a better place for them — you’d want to change the education system, act on climate change, accept homosexuality and erase gender stereotypes, fight to make mental health more accessible, reduce pollution, be less controlling, and all that. No, it’s not the lives of children that you care about; it’s just that you want to assert that you are unwilling to end patriarchy.

A Man Being Vocal About Sex vs. A Woman Being Vocal About Sex:

A man who talks about and displays his interest in sex with several people often is simply, just being a man, or at worst, a “player, not ready to settle down yet”. A woman on the other hand? Women are either “keepers” or “whores”. You’d certainly want to fxck them all but marry that one who would be your servant for life, tolerating all your BS, raising your babies, while not getting the support she deserves anywhere, either at home or at work or in her social life.

Men Accused of Rape Always Get More Support, While Women Who Share Their Stories Are Cruelly Harassed and Silenced.

Every single time you silence a woman and don’t listen to her story, you are telling millions of daughters who are watching you today, including your own, to not share their stories; that if they would ever say to anyone that they were harassed, they would only be insulted, shamed, and harassed further.

What should a woman wear? Ask men. What should a woman say? Ask men. How should a woman behave? Ask men. When is a woman allowed to speak? Ask men. What makes a woman a “good woman”? Ask men.

No, this is not an anti-men post; nobody expects roles to be reversed; nobody is asking for women to have the power to control men’s lives.

When was the last time you sat down next to your mother and asked, “Mom, how satisfied are you, really? Be honest. How hard has life been for you? Have you ever wished could be an independent woman with a lot less responsibilities? Have you ever secretly wished you could be vocal about your sexual needs? Have you ever dreamt of being the founder of a company? Have you ever wished that you’d not have to be the first person held responsible for everything that could have gone wrong in the family? Have you ever wished you’d married and had children much later in life, that the society didn’t pressurize you to get married early, that you’d feel more accepted while being your true self, not having hide who you are?”

Let me guess, you never had such discussions with your mother. Ever. Either because it never occurred to you that she’s not just an “awesome mother” but also an oppressed, innocent person in this male-dominated world, who rarely had the chance to even ask for what she’d want. Or because you are afraid of the answers, afraid that she might tell you a simple “no”.

A lot of women have accepted patriarchy because they think there’s no other option for them to feel accepted, so they might tell you that they love being treated the way they are. But just be honest, think about it, don’t your mother, wife, partner, friend, sister, daughter, junior employee, your female boss (I doubt if even 1/10 people reading this would have female bosses), your co-worker, the waitress at the local restaurant, the actress on screen, the woman labelled “prostitute”, … and all of them deserve much better?

Note that none of them want pity; we want equality. Till then, go low on those twice-a-year display of admiration and wishes, please. It hurts.

Being a woman is not easy; everyday is a struggle, at home, at work, on the streets, at the club, … Fighting is the only way to break unfair systems and coming together is the only way to make the world equal. Sister, speak up. Let’s tell the world, we don’t want wishes and gifts, but control over our lives, basic civil rights, no gender bias anywhere, and the freedom to make our choices.

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How fair is it to judge others when we have never been in their shoes? How fair is it to ourselves to have our stories untold? Let us open ourselves up to listen, to learn, and to unlearn so that we won’t die with the ignorance we were born with. Peace over violence.

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Lakshmi Prakash

Lakshmi Prakash

A conversation designer and writer interested in technology, mental health, gender equality, behavioral sciences, and more.

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