Wednesday, 9 November 2016

When The World Lets You Down. Fight Back.

Today I woke up to a world where once again I was confused. Confused by people's choices. Baffled that perhaps people can see something that I can't. A world where I am worried that rather than celebrating 'being different' you are penalised. It might be your race, religion or sexual orientation. But today felt extra raw as it seemed that in 2016 being a woman still wasn't quite good enough. And I genuinely can't get my head around it. That the people who make most of the decisions when raising children are deemed incapable of making decisions on a wider scale. We who lead the way in producing and moulding the human race? Can't be trusted.

I attended an all girls school until I was 18. There was never any "you can be whoever you want". As we all knew it. We didn't need anyone telling us as it was built into us that we can from day 1. And this is something that has stuck with me throughout my life. I truly believe that men and women are equal and I cannot wrap my head around someone who would think otherwise. When I heard the news this morning I got my five year old daughter and talked to her through what had happened and said I was going to do everything in my power to ensure that she grows up and can make a change.


But am I being foolish? Is it silly to think that things can change? We live in a world where women are continuously judged on their choices, their figures, their faces, the way they live their lives. Where post natal depression is hidden as mothers are too scared to say that they aren't perfect. Bit chubby? You have let yourself go. Showing a bit too much flesh? You are a sl*g. Drunk and get sexually assaulted? You were probably asking for it. I am telling my daughter she can be anything she wants but the reality is at the moment if we continue like this? She probably can't.

So what do we do as mother's? How do we combat this? For every time I tell my daughter she is equal I will encourage my son that he is equal too. When they are young we are their moral compass. We are the ones that can make them think that it's OK for a boy to wear pink and a girl to play football. That there aren't genders when it comes to colours or toys. That it's OK for my girl to climb to the top of the highest climbing frame just as much as it's OK for my son to be scared and have a little cry if he can't quite manage it. 

Today a woman wasn't chosen but that doesn't mean that in the future she won't. Each morning we hold in our arms the future men and women of the world. We can fill them with love, we can explain toelrance and acceptance. It's not just a case of encouraging our girls but letting our boys embrace that our daughters are just as amazing as our sons. So today was a bad day but tomorrow we can start our own war on sexism in our houses. Together we can do this. Despite what Trump thinks.
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7 comments

  1. I hope it never occurs to my nearly 4 year old girl that she is not every part the equal that her nearly 6 year old brother is. I hope she takes it for granted.
    But I grew up with a mum telling me never to be financially dependant on a man and she had a point. I am lucky enough to have an amazing husband who I earnt on a par with pre kids, but at this point in our lives we have chosen together that he does more of the stuff that pays and I do more of the rest. But should I need to I could support our family. And that's something I think my daughter will still need to be taught that unfortunately. That she needs to be able to stand on her own two feet. The boys will be in a world where that is expected, less so the girls I fear.
    And today when I was ranting at the radio about how hideous it was and the boy wanted to know why I was upset I told both of them that it was never ok to treat someone as less than you or as a toy (explaining sexual abuse can wait for another day!) for any reason, gender or otherwise. To be fair the girl looked a bit confused and told me she still wanted to be a spacelady, but if I say it enough it might sink in and maybe their generation will change the world. I don't like that I need to tell them but I can't stop doing so in case it makes a difference.
    The boy said "Trump Donald sounds like new fangled nonsense" because he still lives on Sodor!!

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  2. Today, after work, I must share Hillary's speech with my kinder. My girls must know they can be anything they want to be, as long as they work for it and are good people.
    We are in mourning over here. Ugh

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  3. Totally agree honey! Makes me sick that a man who treats woman like that would be voted into a position as a leader of a country. As a woman I would be ashamed to vote for him and if I were a man I would be just as ashamed to vote for him!

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  4. I am completely with you. Just a couple of nights ago, before this madness, my girl and I were reading through a history book together where one little picture had a 'votes for women' banner on it and she asked me what that meant. So I explained to her that until relatively recently in history women could not vote as they were not considered equal or able to do so and she was absolutely horrified! I am glad she considers herself the same right now and I'll do all I can to ensure that she keeps that attitude. x

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  5. Amen to that! Let's hope that by the time our daughters are grown up that women have more equality and acceptance than they do today. On the plus side, we have a female PM here in the UK (whether or not we agree with her policies, at least she's a role model to show women can get the top jobs) and there's Angela Merkel in Germany too. Let's hope the US sees sense about a lot of things and Trump doesn't get a second term of office!

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  6. This world is going mad. Look at today, #Equalpayday the fact that in this day and age we are (in some companies) paid less purely because we are female.... it's not right and it's time for change!

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  7. Whilst there is truth, and a lot of admirable passion, behind your comments, as a woman who grew up in America (and currently lives in Birmingham), I'd caution you to base your opinion about such a complicated matter primarily on what you hear on TV. The Trump/Clinton issue in America is an extremely complex one, and to make it all about gender equality is not very accurate or helpful. Yes, Trump seems to have a shockingly low view of women, but that doesn't mean that Clinton didn't win bc she's a woman. In fact, she won the majority populous vote. It's more likely Trump won bc he attracted a group a voters who have been largely overlooked by the Democrats in the last couple of decades. Clinton'a politics also do not suit many women, including myself. As a mum of 3 children, one lost to miscarriage at 12 weeks, I don't consider someone who wants to fling wide the gates of killing unborn boys and girls to be a champion of women's rights. Anyway, I'm all for talking through the injustices of this world with our children and inspiring them to make a difference, but it's also important to appreciate the complexity of such matters and not just jump to conclusions or offer up our own condemning labels which stir up the same sort of hate we're trying to fight against.

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