Category Archives: sexism

Teach Your Children Well

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Yesterday, a friend of mine checked her 13 year old daughter’s text messages and was shocked to find some sexually explicit texts from a boy. Apparently, he had broken up with her and it started with him basically saying that he just “didn’t want a relationship”, etc, and her not really understanding why. But then he told her he would still be “friends with benefits,” but it had to be a secret – she couldn’t tell anyone. Now here is where the rest of us (not being a teenage girl in this horrible-to-girls society) start hearing the DING DING DING of warning bells going off. Because if a guy wants you to keep your relationship a secret for ANY REASON – he is not the guy for you. But she is a teenage girl, and sadly didn’t tell him to fuck off.

He went on to say that if she didn’t keep it a secret, he would “spread some dirty secret around school that will make everyone hate [her] guts.”

Next, the conversation turned to pretty sexually graphic (especially for 13-14 year olds), and included him trying to pressure her into doing things she clearly is not ready for and that her mom was shocked to read.

Delightful kid, huh?

But the big issue her (for me, at least) is not how much of an asshole this kid is (for the record – big, HUGE asshole), but why on earth would a smart, cute, nice girl like her not see how much of an asshole this kid is? And I think the answer says a lot about teenage girls (and boys).

Teen boys are desperate for sex. Teen girls are desperate for love. This is a dangerous combination. All peppered throughout this conversation was “I love you.” He said it in nearly every text. I love you babe. You can’t tell anyone about us. I love you. I’ll make everyone hate your guts. Baby, I love you. I want you to [insert city sexual act here]. I love you. And sadly, a teenage girl will rarely ever see the threats and pressure and cruelty because they are so blinded by the “I love you.”

And when she put herself down, calling herself fat and ugly, he didn’t tell her she was thin or pretty. He said “I love you.” Which translates to teenage girl speak as “You ARE fat and ugly, but I love you.” Which translates into teenage girl thoughts as “I can’t do better than this guy, so I’ll put up with anything (or DO anything) to keep him. And this makes me so sad.

This kid isn’t bright enough to even realize what he’s doing. Sure – he must know that he is being cruel to her, but I don’t think he could even begin to hatch a plan that involved answering her self-deprecating comments with I love you instead of reassurances, and yet he somehow knows to do it.

Where do boys learn it?? I might be in the dark here, but I am pretty sure there’s no Academy of Manipulation and Cruelty for Teen Boys. And actually, that idea is less offensive to me than the reality – that it comes naturally.

My own Asshole Teenage Boy Story ended OK – but only because I had luck (mine), drunkenness (his), and anger (mine) on my side. But I know that there are many, many girls who have similar stories that didn’t end so well.

Everyone’s first reaction on hearing this kind of stuff is “I’m locking up my daughter!” and understandably so. But what about our sons? Maybe because I have a son this age it hit me, but my first thought was, “I need to talk to my son about this.” We have talked to him about sex, but we need to do more. We need to teach him to be respectful and kind. No matter how uncomfortable it may be to do, we need to teach him whatever it takes so that he is never EVER that kid.

Somthing is not quite right

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This is from an article on MSN. One question – see the bold type – why the disparity?

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – Arkansas’ marriage-age crisis is over. A law that mistakenly allowed anyone — even toddlers — to marry with parental permission was repealed by a measure signed Wednesday by Gov. Mike Beebe, ending months of embarrassment for the state and confusion for county clerks.

Lawmakers didn’t realize until after the end of last year’s regular session that a law they approved, intended to establish 18 as the minimum age for marriage, instead removed the minimum age to marry entirely. An extraneous “not” in the bill allowed anyone who was not pregnant to marry at any age with permission.

The bill read: “In order for a person who is younger than eighteen (18) years of age and who is not pregnant to obtain a marriage license, the person must provide the county clerk with evidence of parental consent to the marriage.”

Legislators, however, had the chance for a do-over this week when Beebe convened a special session to consider a hike in the state’s severance tax on natural gas. They repealed the botched law, and reinstated 17 as the minimum age to marry for boys and 16 for girls.

Rep. Will Bond, the sponsor of the botched 2007 law and its correction, apologized for the error and asked his colleagues to “throw me a rope and bail me out here.”

Not Your Sweetie

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Mr b and the kids and I recently went out to Eat n Park for dinner and the waitress kept calling me sweetie and honey and babe. This is something that has always pissed me off. I’m not a particularly formal person, but I don’t care for terms f endearment from someone not sear to me. I find it patronizing and insulting. But I generally keep my mouth shut, because I don’t want to come off as a pompous bitch. Instead, I usually come off as a juvenile, since I tend to answer questions like “how’s your salad, Honey?” with a big smile and a cheery, “It’s great, Sweetcheeks!” or, “Awesome, Lovemuffin” (I’m saving up Sugartits for when I really need it). Anyway, this usually does the trick.

On this particular night, though, I was planning my “Can I get some ketchup, Schmoopy?”, but never got a chance, since the next time she came by, she spoke with mr b – “Do you need more iced tea, Sir?”

Cue needle on record sound…

Excuse me, but Sir? Sir??

I’m Sweetie, Honey and Babe and he is Sir?

You know, if she had been an elderly man, I may be a little less bothered by it. I almost expect it – the concept of “the little woman”, but I have been finding that women are often just as, if not more, sexist than men. I’m tired of giving the check pointedly handed to him. I’m tired of salespeople speaking more to him than me. I’m tired of arguing with customer service people to no avail while he can get results in minutes. I can order my own tires, thank you very much. I can pick out the paint colors all by myself. Don’t tell me about how my husband “has a wife and kids to take care of”, because it’s I who does most of the taking care. Don’t try to sell me credit card insurance so we’re covered if “my husband should lose his job”. I don’t need a pink hammer or (god help me) a pink Steelers jersey. If I’m going to be driving it, tell me about the gas mileage in that model of car, and not the makeup mirrors. No – I don’t want a white zinfandel, I’ll have a Guiness, please. Hard as it may be to believe, I make more money, I have more education and I deserve the same respect, regardless of what parts I have. And if you aren’t married to me, and you’re not my grandma, then goddamit, I am not your Sweetie, Honey or Babe.

I’m not sure why I still find myself amazed at some of the comments I hear from people who are not voting for Hillary Clinton. Don’t get me wrong – many people have legitimate, intelligent opinions on the candidates’ policies and ideas. But I’m talking about the other ones. The ones who – no matter how vehemently deny it – will not be voting for Hillary simply because she has a vagina. The “I don’t think the country is ready for a female president (translation: I don’t want a woman in office) or the “She’s not nurturing enough” (translation: she’s hard and manly, and should be more feminine, like a real woman who should be at home and not in office), or the “She couldn’t even control her husband, how can she run a country (translation: I don’t even know how to translate this one, but it sure has a whiff of honor killing, doesn’t it? I mean – it surely is her fault he cheated, right? So let’s keep her out of office for being so ugly and sucky) and the “we can’t have a woman president because Middle Eastern countries wouldn’t deal with it well (translation: I am a fucking idiot. I mean, good-ole boy petroleum lobby much? Because first off – way to endorse a way of life that not only oppresses women, but completely dismisses them and often enslaves and harms them in ways both physically and psychologically. And as for them not liking it? Fuck them. They can either deal with it or not, but the last time I checked, citizens of the middle eat do not get to vote in our elections. Besides, maybe having a leader that they “won’t deal with” will give us the push we need to get the hell out from under the suffocating control of all things oil. If having a woman in office will leads to some serious thinking and action regarding alternative energy, count me the fuck in.)

And this ? Is this how low we are sinking? Are we so afraid of having a woman in a position of power that we are willing to ignore her viewpoints and ideas and instead focus on humiliating her over her husband’s inability to keep his dick in his pant while he balanced the budget, raised employment rates, reduced poverty and signed the Family and Medical Leave Act?

Look – I’m not saying that you should vote for Hillary because she is a woman – that’s as bad as saying you won’t vote for her because she is a woman. I’m not even saying you should vote for Hillary at all. What I’m saying is that you should vote for a candidate and not their gentials. We’re too good for that.