As a woman, I am upset right now. And it may be because I’m even more hyperaware of my inferiority complex since finishing ‘Moxie’ by Jennifer Mathieu. In the book what girls have to say doesn’t even register; they don’t even rank in terms of their… impact, I guess. And I’m upset by this and by my own experiences. I’m upset by the fact that, even since identifying as a feminist and feeling empowered by what I am, I still have these internalised feelings that a man’s word is more important, that I should keep my lips pressed tightly shut even when what I really want to say is, “Hold up, what I wanted to tell you is important, too.”
If I were ever to interrupt, it would be rude and they would feel put out (and rightly so, because interrupting is rude even if it comes from a place of excitement to get what you have to say out, which I think for the most part is my problem in a lot of cases). But if I were to demand someone listen, I would be the bitch or the girl that likes the sound of her own voice a little bit too much. The rules are different depending on whether you’re a girl or a boy, which is by no means a revolutionary statement, but I guess it’s hit me that not even guys get that. Even the good ones won’t understand completely why, above all else, allowing your moment to just speak and be listened to, is that bit more important because so often it’s overshadowed by a louder, deeper voice.
I’m upset with myself, though, more than anything. Because I have let this churn uncomfortably in the pit of my stomach and tried to tell myself my upset and sadness are unnecessary. I’ve been telling myself, “perhaps you’re hormonal”, that “you’re making too much of a big deal out of this.” But that’s the patriarchy talking, isn’t it? I hate confrontation, I do. What’s more, I know deep down that if I spoke out about the fact that, yeah actually you made me feel a bit crappy, I’d get told I’m in the wrong.
And that is… monumentally shit. If I am in the wrong, I think in most cases, now I’m twenty-two years of age and definitely have no desire to relive playground fights, I back down and apologise. But men are brought up to believe they’re superior, that they’re always right, whether it’s directly taught or not. It’s there. It’s in the way men and women are portrayed and talked about in every angle they’re looked at.
Who is going to believe my anger and upset is valid, if even I’m starting to second guess standing up and being heard? Honestly, I’m gutted.