In honour of International Women’s Day, I thought I would share my thoughts on the topic of feminism, the important women in my life and the day as a whole.
The name speaks for itself – a day to celebrate women internationally, which really is so important. It can be easy to feel un-celebrated, or under appreciated, whatever sex you are. For sure, we are not the worst off in the Western World. There are so many women on an international scale, who deserve so much better…I know this is not news to anyone who reads this. It is often said that we have come a long way but still have a long way to go, but I find myself thankful for the long way that we have come, and hope that we can use this positively towards helping others and continuing with the journey.
So often, we say that we need to stop men from labelling and putting us down, but it is often to each other, that we also act this way. What good comes from mocking another woman, or shaming her for not being what you would consider ‘perfection’? One of the hot topics of conversation at the moment, is Emma Watson’s recent photo shoot for Vanity Fair. A renowned and active feminist, Emma posed semi-topless, something which people – men and women alike – labelled as against her feminist beliefs. Feminism is about being proud about who we are, completely, and seeing equal lines drawn between men and women…not about covering up! We have to celebrate individuality, across the board of all genders, races and religions.
I have always found specific days to celebrate specific people a little bit of a strange concept… we should appreciate our Mother’s daily, not just Mothering Sunday, tell our partners we love them all year round, not just on Valentines Day. Someone shouldn’t have to dictate when or how we justify our feelings, but unfortunately, that seems to be the case. In this particular instance, perhaps it’s necessary. Women around the world seem to be uniting, and excuses like these give people worldwide a sense of unity…we may be worlds apart, but the power of social media can spread hundreds of thousands of miles, to ensure everyone feels uplifted. Celebrities and people in power feel closer to us than ever before, and if they adopt a positivity and drive for change, they should hopefully inspire change in other. I don’t believe powerful and positive role models will ever be out of fashion.
When I think of the women in my life, they have such elements of strength and individuality. My Mum, my Grandma and my late Granny, all powerful women in their own way but who I truly look up to and learn from. Equally the ones either side of me, my friends and colleagues. I never used to think I was a girls girl until I lived with 6 at university! A challenge, yes, but 4 of them are the best friends I’ve ever had. They are my second family, each to be celebrated for their quirks and innate beauty. Then of course, there are the important men in my life, as they are an equally big part of the people I hold dear to me.
To me, it’s about everyone on a whole, men and women alike (there’s no reason why I put ‘men’ first in that sentence either, it just flows better, and there’s nothing wrong with that!)
I think the thing is as well, just do what you want to do and what makes you happy. A man should not tell you to make him a cake or dress up to please him, no, but if you decide that’s what you want to do in order to make him happy, then do it! It doesn’t make you anti-feminist, it just makes you a nice person, and I’m sure you’ll find he’ll return the favour.
I appreciate I haven’t said anything ground breaking, or that hasn’t been said before. Changes need to be made worldwide about the attitude towards women and gender equality, but individually, in our own sense, if we strive to treat everyone as equals and appreciate each other and ourselves for exactly how we are, then at least we know we’re doing what we can to make those around us feel a little more loved.