As women, we are conditioned at a young age to look pretty, play by the rules, be ladylike, act appropriately, fit in. Not to mention being sexualized from the moment we develop breasts, or even earlier than that for those of us who have unfortunately experienced abuse at a young age.
Catcalls on the street, sexual harassment at work, inappropriate behavior from men we thought were friends, overall pressure from society… all environments and situations women are exposed to lead to a 24/7 hypnosis of degradation.
In a world that continues to place women (and minorities) on a 2nd tier, it’s important to lift each other up. Equality is a systemic battle, but it may begin by overcoming the internal one of the mind.
Go ahead– like and comment “YAASSS” on that fly selfie, praise that woman at work, hug strangers in the bathroom, stand up for those who have been conditioned not to speak, have some f*cking self-control/respect and don’t “steal” that woman’s bf/fiance/husband, support women-owned businesses, support woman-focused movies and shows, mentor young women, or even just be unapologetically confident for the sake of being a role model in your right. It is your duty. Pave the way.
Confidence in ourselves and demanding respect for each other is a key component of ending the cycle. We may not be equal in a world of men yet, but we sure as hell have no excuse not to uplift each other.
It takes a village.