In the beginning I refused to be called a feminist even though it was a lie, I am indeed a feminist. But why wouldn’t I be?
I think I was scared.
I was scared of been labelled angry or lonely or stubborn. Maybe I was scared the society would be angry at me for choosing to support the side I belong to. Maybe I was scared I wouldn’t find a husband. Maybe I was just trying to play safe and be on everybody’s side. Maybe I was scared the society would remind me that I am a Christian woman that should worship the man because that is how they have interpreted the Holy Book. Maybe I was scared of what the social media would say. Maybe I just didn’t care about it. But what kind of person would that make me? There are a lot of maybes really.
The point is now I can say I am a feminist. And I can say it hasn’t made me angry or hurt or lonely. It doesn’t make me have horns and capes. It doesn’t mean I don’t smile at men anymore. It doesn’t mean I don’t still ask for help when I need help carrying something that is too heavy for my delicate hands. It doesn’t mean I don’t cook anymore. It definitely does not change anything about my relationship with God neither would it change my relationship with my husband (because of course feminists get married too)
This is what feminism means to me:
According to Wikipedia Feminism is a range of political movements, ideologies, and social movements that share a common goal: to define, establish, and achieve political, economic, personal, and social rights for women that are equal to those of men. This includes seeking to establish equal opportunities for women in education and employment.
Feminism is seeing something wrong with how women are generally treated badly both in the society and in the home and speaking up against it.
This is where a lot of people get it wrong. The social media gets mad at you for calling yourself a feminist, they call you angry.
They say you will never find a man with this attitude.
You cannot even keep a man even if you find one.
Contrary to popular opinion, Feminism is not trying to get all into a position of dominance over all men, but rather to address inequality by empowering women.
Why is the society so afraid of empowering women?
Are they afraid of what a woman can be when she can speak up and fight for herself? Are they are afraid of the power a woman can carry when she’s determined to rise?
Maybe that is why they want to shut her down. Tell her she was created to please a man. Tell her she cannot have a life of her own. Tell her she cannot be educated. Tell her all sorts of lies.
No. A woman was NOT created to please a man. A wife was created to please her husband and vice versa.
No. The man is not the head of a woman. The HUSBAND is the head of his home. HIS OWN HOME. Not the default head of a society or club or class or organization. HIS OWN HOME.
Who cares if you want to marry a woman that cannot cook or a woman that cannot pray? That’s on you. Feminism is much bigger than that.
These are my favourite quotes from Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s TEDx talk, We Should All Be Feminists.
“Some people ask: “Why the word feminist? Why not just say you are a believer in human rights, or something like that?” Because that would be dishonest. Feminism is, of course, part of human rights in general—but to choose to use the vague expression human rights is to deny the specific and particular problem of gender. It would be a way of pretending that it was not women who have, for centuries, been excluded. It would be a way of denying that the problem of gender targets women.
We spend too much time teaching girls to worry about what boys think of them. But the reverse is not the case. We don’t teach boys to care about being likable. All over the world, there are so many magazine articles and books telling women what to do, how to be and not to be, in order to attract or please men. There are far fewer guides for men about pleasing women.
Now, imagine how much happier we would be, how much freer to be our true individual selves, if we didn’t have the weight of gender expectations. Boys and girls are undeniably different, biologically. But socialization exaggerates the differences, and then it becomes a self-fulfilling process.
Now take cooking for example. Today, women in general are more likely to do the housework than men, the cooking and cleaning. But why is that? Is it because women are born with a cooking gene? Or because over the years they have been socialized to see cooking as their role? Actually, I was going to say that maybe women are born with a cooking gene until I remembered that the majority of the famous cooks in the world who we give the fancy title of “chefs,” are men.”
“My own definition of a feminist is a man or a woman who says, yes, there’s a problem with gender as it is today and we must fix it, we must do better. All of us, women and men, must do better.
And this is how to start: We must raise our daughters differently. We must also raise our sons differently. ”
― Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, We Should All Be Feminists
Watch full video here