Day 8: Do I Like Being a Woman?

19 Feb

Today, I just felt like making a list of reasons why I like and don’t like about being a woman (and the gender roles that come with my sex).

Firstly, the don’t list. I don’t like being a woman because:

It’s too difficult to pronounce “girl” than “boy” in English. I had to practice a lot to make the perfect “-rl” sound.

I was made fun of because I wanted to play with toy guns with my cousin when I was 4-ish.

My class number in elementary school (which is given to every child in a class in the order of birthday in Korean school system) was in the 40s or even 50s, while the first half, usually between 1 and 25-ish, were all taken by boys, and even the girl with the earliest birthday was number 23 or later.

I was a disappointment to my grandparents, as the first born of the first son of the family was a girl (me!), not a boy.

I have to try to speak quietly, “more like a girl.”

I am afraid of being physically and sexually assaulted.

I have suffered the pain of PMS-ing and period for over 10 years, and the cramps will probably go on for the next 20 years+.

I have felt that I was too chubby, multiple times, while my weight was, in fact, normal or even below average at times.

I have been told once that the greatest achievement in my life would be getting married and being a wife and a mom, instead of becoming the biggest entrepreneur, life saving doctor, kick-ass advocate for a cause, or something like that.

I am “too emotional.”

I am not (supposed to be) good at math and sciences.

I was supposed to wear a pink hat as soon as I was born (and I don’t even like pink).

I have been objectified.

I am always afraid of/ not able to walk around the street when it’s dark by myself.

I’ve tried to be “effortlessly perfect.”

My comments were not appreciated while male colleagues’ comments were.

I still have to “play like a man” in professional world.

I have to always justify myself why I am a feminist.

BUT, I like (love) being a woman, despite all the negatives above, because:

I can wear both pants and skirt.

I have a legitimate excuse to eat as much chocolate and sweets as possible once a month.

I’ve met and got to form meaningful relationships with many more inspiring women than men (and I don’t think the bond would have been possible if I were a man).

I can get three inches taller than my actual height, if I wanted to (but usually don’t).

I am able to see the world from the “woman’s perspective,” which is “minority” but more refreshing and powerful to the patriarchal society.

I got to be interested in many minority issues regarding race/ethnicity, nationality, age, religion, physical and mental capacity, etc. because I have also experienced how it’s like to be a minority as a woman.

I can choose to bear a child, if I wanted to (hopefully at some point in my life).

I still have a shot at being the first Korean female Nobel (something) Prize winner.

I can become a trailblazing woman in improving the future generation’s life in terms of gender relations.

I can become a girlfriend/partner/wife and a mother who will make a great feminist clan one day.

My list could go on. I noticed that it was a lot easier to make the “don’t list.” I love being a woman, and I mean it, but I just have to wonder long and hard why it was so much harder to come up with the things that I like about being a woman.

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