After a short excursion out of town, I am back!
I just wanted to drop a quick note, as I've been thinking about a few examples of how the patriarchy traps women and basically punishes us for following its own rules.
Both are related to dating and male attention...I recently wrote this exchange on Tumblr to summarize how I see this playing out:
Woman: I'm not really into him that way, but he's a good friend.I mean, think about it...we're told at nearly every turn that it is some kind of magical leveling to a higher plane of existence if we "have a man." The message is that we're not really fulfilled unless we are attached to a dude. But then, when women internalize this message or even when they don't and they just have a tough break up, they're labeled "crazy bitches" who are "obsessed" with the guy.
Patriarchy: Ew, friend zone level one billion.
Woman: I like to hook up with him, but I'm not looking for a relationship.
Woman: I'm happy being single.
Patriarchy: Haha, good one. You need a man.
Woman: I love my girlfriend!
Patriarchy: Hawt. Y'all looking for a third?
Woman: I love my boyfriend!
Patriarchy: Jeez back up, you're smothering him.
Woman: He dumped me and that sucks.
Patriarchy: God you psycho bitch, get over him!
You can't win.
Take another case. I was recently made aware of the Facebook page "Girls with daddy issues and the approval seeking sex that comes with them" (vomit.) In this case, the patriarchy deprioritizes parenting for men. The result is that many fathers are absent. And then it says that being caring and nurturing are feminine traits so that many physically present fathers are emotionally unavailable. And as a final 1-2 punch, it teaches women that male approval is critical but slut shames/takes advantage of us when we seek it.
You can't win.
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