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Too opinionated, crazy, ridiculous and a feminist

Usually I get people rolling their eyes, a nervous laugh and an uncomfortable smile. Thirty seconds later “Are you being serious?”

I have been told that I am too opinionated, crazy, ridiculous and frequently that if I continue with my “beliefs” I’ll never find anyone that would want someone like me. Like me?! I am a simple young women voicing my thoughts, and belief in equality for everyone; belief in the right that everyone should have attainable health resources and make choices without always being questioned or ostracized.

I use to be so afraid that I would never find anyone, be alone and helpless. I have never really learned to use my voice until a few years back. I had a bad habit of replying on other peoples voices, fearful to step away from the crowd in case I was not accepted. Despite if I agreed or not, I didn’t want to cause any attention to myself.

The first time I ever really spoke out was in my women’s literature class during my undergrad. Here (I thought) was a classroom filled of women who wanted to learn about other remarkable women. One day, the professor asked a simple question with a daunting laugh; “Who’s a feminist?” My hand shot up so fast I think I almost knocked my friend out of her seat. To my dismay, I realized I was the only one with my hand up. I felt my peers’ eyes penetrating through me, like I did something wrong. My friend, turned to me and was like “Sammy, put your hand down, people are staring.” My Professor asked again but my hand stayed in the air. She asked “Why?” and I simply stated “I believe in equality.”

It dawned on me that people did not want to be associated with the term “feminist”. Even though this is not a bad connotation; it is rare for anyone to speak out because they are fearful of negative stereotypes. People get too comfortable with tradition and are scared to stand out.

For them, I have found my voice. I take every opportunity to not only listen but to express the need for equality for everyone.

Comments

Jan K Askin's picture

The Raised Hand

Dear Smay,

How much more powerful is a raised hand than a raised fist.

Keep yours raised from now on. I support you.

Jan

Jan Askin

Frances Faulkner's picture

Bravery

Smay,

You are being true to yourself, a great quality. Use your strong voice to encourage positive thought, discussion and interaction and the world will benefit. I agree the word "feminist" can be loaded with a variety of interpretations and so people are sometimes wary of it, and a good ongoing discussion is well worth our time.

Frances

sallysmithr's picture

Very true!

I felt your story hit on a lot of what I have learned growing up. We are expected to follow and there is a fear of being different and you are right on. It is important to stand up as you did and it allows those stereotypes to be broken and in that class, maybe not that day, but I'm sure you helped another woman stand up as well! Thanks so much for your story and keep being you!!

Thanks,

Sally Smith

Smay's picture

Thanks!

Thanks!

I really appreciate all the comments and support!

Thanks again!

Sammy)

panaric0's picture

hey you!

yeah you!

over here!

hey!

:D

more democracy - less autocracy. more expression - less oppression. more loving - less loathing.

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