Monday, April 6, 2015

The roles we play

 "Sometimes being a bitch is all a woman's got to hold on to." 
- Stephen King, Dolores Claiborne


I don't know about you guys but I am notorious for having issues with other women.

There is always one person and it is usually another woman that tends to dislike me. I never know the reason why and I don't suspect it is something I did that pissed them off either.This has been an issue for a very long time, since I was a little girl.

I spent a good portion of my life trying to think of reasons and made all kinds of assumptions that I did something to piss them off. I remember approaching one of these girls and I was told that I was a bitch. When I asked whether or not I did anything, I would just get the same response: I am just a bitch.  Granted, this happened in High school, a very long time ago, I did spend many years thinking something was wrong with me.


In the end, I just accepted that it really wasn't me that has a problem and I stopped wasting energy on people like that. I know deep down I am a nice person. If people can't tell me directly to my face exactly what their beef with me is, then it really isn't my problem. I stopped caring.

Today, I take it as a compliment. If I am "being a bitch" perhaps it is because I stood up for something I believe in or I asserted my personal boundaries. If that is the case, then I don't see it as being a bitch at all. It always bothers me when I hear someone say something along the lines of: "I was being a bitch because I stood up for myself"

No, honey, you weren't "being a bitch". It is called having self respect. As girls, we were often told to never say no, to be people pleasers, to always be kind, soft and delicate. That is absolute rubbish. We need to stop undermining our own sense of self worth.

If we are not "being a bitch", then we are fighting amongst each other for petty reasons. I hold the firm belief that girls insult each other while real women support each other. I am tired of some hidden competition of who's skinnier, prettier, smarter and whatever lame reason. Why can't we look beyond our waistlines and hold each other up? How are ever going to find equality when we are too busy fighting amongst each other over what we look like? Seriously, this has to stop.


Although I do agree with blaming the media- to a certain extent and I do truly do agree that this does affect our sense of self worth, we also need to start looking at ourselves, not just pointing fingers at something else. The media or the photoshopped images of women on magazine covers are partially to blame. In addition to the media being at fault,  I also think we should start blaming ourselves for the way we behave towards each other. The media doesn't control your reactions, only YOU can have that control. Take back that control. The media may influence the way you perceive things but you are still in control of your thoughts and actions.




Personally, I never encountered this kind of behavior within the subculture, with the exception of elitists. I hope this is the same for you. This is one of the very many reasons why I love being goth; we help each other out. I would also like the point out that the blogging community is also fantastic. Seriously, you guys are awesome!

All our lives we are hearing all these negative ideas about our gender, it is ridiculous. I am tired of being told that I "throw like a girl" or that I "fight like a girl". If we choose, we don't have to be "strong for a girl" but just be really strong instead. We can throw really far and we can fight really well if that is what we choose. Let's stop listening to those silly ideals and prove them wrong! Again, never let anyone undermine who you are.  Be yourself. If you like makeup and being a "girly girl" that is ok. If you are athletic and have no patience for the more conventional female stuff, that is ok too. If you want to do both, why not? Don't let any silly ideals hold you back. It is also the same for guys. While I obviously cannot speak from a guy's point of view, I am sure there are many men out there who are tired of hearing "grow a set" or "be a man".

  Again, thanks to the goth scene, I don't think this is much of an issue either. After all, men wear makeup along with the women!

 So yes dear readers, today's post is a good old fashion rant. I realize I covered many issues in this post but it all leads to one thing in common: we need to stop fighting amongst each other, we need to stop restriction ourselves or each other based on gender. Have you been in a similar situation? Anything I may have missed or you want to add? If so! Please share your thoughts!

22 comments:

  1. maybe the whole women taking back the word "bitch" as a point of pride isn't the way to go. perhaps these sexist slurs should just disappear completely.

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    1. That would be nice. That is an interesting point

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  2. Interesting! I have also had problems with people seemingly hating me for no reason! I know in high school I was nerdy, top of the class and never said the right thing. I guess I have only become odder over time, maybe I have just always stood out. I know I definitely am often off in my own world, saying whatever comes to mind, but never in a mean way, just hard for others to follow. I can also be super shy and introverted sometimes which could come off as rude. But if I don't know what I have in common with someone I find it hard to talk to them. Then again at my old job I had customers who would come into the store just to say hi and talk about new books and films. Shrugs. People are weird.

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  3. Some of my very best friends thought I was a bitch before meeting me because my natural facial expression is somewhat of a frown with a furrowed brow recently known as "bitchy resting face". I'm pretty animated once folks know me but when I'm just standing around, I suppose I do frown. That's just the way my mouth is. Maybe others are perceiving you in a similar way. People often dislike or are afraid of that which they don't understand. *shrug* Just a guess. But it sounds like you've approached them and it was high school... Brains aren't fully formed until about 25 yrs old. At our ten year HS reunion, Iearned there was a group of students who thought I was a witch and sacrificed cats. I'm glad I didn't know that back then but it would have hurt my feelings... Knowing it now makes me laugh a bit. Teens come up with the oddest ideas.

    The blogging community rocks! I agree :)

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    1. I don't know if I have that "bitchy resting face" lol. I seem to be pretty friendly but meh, people are weird. People in high school thought all sorts of things about me too. It always amuses me the way people think.

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  4. Really, really great post. "Bitch" is not a label I've had applied to me as far as I know, but I have found throughout my whole life that for reasons I can only guess at folks tend to either love or loath me, and it's usually quite instantaneous. I'm shy, introverted, (humbly) well spoken and read, I don't dress like 99.95 of the population, I have unattractive teeth, I'm severely chronically ill, I don't drive, I don't (can't!) drink, the list goes on and on, and it's all just surface stuff. By only getting that far, they fail to see many of the positive points I have (and I'm not classifying all of those things as negative at all) and what a cool person I really am. If people actually stopped judging books (aka, one another) on such shallow levels, I bet you and I would have a lot more folks like us from the get-go. No matter what those, there will always be "haters" and you just have to roll with the punches they throw and remind yourself that you rock no matter what anyone else says.

    ♥ Jessica

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    1. I know about having no in-between. people, especially other women either love me or hate me. In the end, it is not caring what other people think and do what you need to do in your life that counts.

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  5. Ehh...this is exactly the kind of behavior I encountered amongst women within the subculture....:/

    Anyway; I have the same problem. Most girls dislike me because I act natural instead of being all loud and mannered like other chicks; I don't look for attention. And I seem confident...and sometimes I come off high - minded and perhaps rude.
    And another thing I noticed is that I usually hang up with guys and I can have fun with them without having to flirt and flaunt myself to get their attention. I realized, that other women often see me as competition just because I can act natural around guys.

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    1. I am like that too. I don't flirt with the guys but I get a lot of male attention. I think it is because I am often "one of the guys".

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  6. One of the most importan things I've learned in life is that it's OK to not like and be liked by everyone. I find it a lot easier being myself among men than women, and prefer working in male dominated workplaces. When working with mostly women you either get too much conflict and gossiping, or everyone is so busy being considerat that nothing gets done.

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  7. Yes! This! It is sad. I do believe that there should be more female in management roles yet... I prefer having a male boss. I now have a female boss where I currently work. I like her and all but... I just work better with men. Less drama that way.

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  8. I'm 50/50 on the boss thing. I've had two amazing female bosses who were smart, thoughtful and very clever people who didn't have to resort to bitchiness in order to get things done. They have my eternal respect. My last boss was a man and he made my life hell. Ruined my job and my health. I'd call him a bitch but he'd probably sue me. The relatively new CEO was also a man-bitch - and boy did he know it and exploit it.

    Some people just don't get on. Can't get on. At book group tonight there is a member who I shall call the Deadly Doctor with whom I will inevitably clash heads. We just don't get each other, and I find her terribly rude. She probably thinks the same about me. Actually, I think she thinks I'm pretentious, which in someone else's world I probably am!!!

    I've had mixed reaction in the subculture. I've made some very good friends within in, but I'm not uber, I'm not tattooed and pierced and I look like a librarian so I have been variously named pretender and Barbie. That's fine, I'm old enough to know who my mates are, and who I want them to be. I've never been told I couldn't do something because I'm a woman. Perhaps I lucked out. Who knows?!

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    1. I didn't know you needed to have tattoos and piercings to be goth! I don't think you are a pretender at all. You are lucky you had great experiences with the boss thing. It was not very positive for me in the past.

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    2. I mention that because an academic and his wife who identify as goth wrote a paper on Whitby Goth Weekend, where they interviewed people about their feelings about the festival and the invasion of 'pretenders' - the link has been taken down now because it caused great offence. Basically they interviewed around 10 'ubers' who said they could spot the weekenders / fake goths a mile off because they didn't have the right hair, tattoos, piercings and jewellery....The report was then presented as an academic study into the weekend, when really it was an opinion piece that looked at a tiny minority of festival goers. By their definition, I'm a fake, despite having supported the festival for 12 years and the scene much longer. It was a nasty report. Written by a man! I will try and track it down again.

      Funnily enough, the book reviewed last night was slammed by the feminists in the group. (the Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins). There are 3 really shallow female characters with no depth and no meaningful female relationships whose lives are defined by how the men in their lives see them. Quite a lively debate! Even the Deadly Doc and I agreed!

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    3. Found it... 'Tourists are coming to Whitby for the Goth Weekend for the postmodern play
      of performing Goth identities, but the performances are inauthentic and dependent on an
      instrumentalised notion of what a real Goth looks like: they come dressed as steam-punks or
      Victorian vampires or something from a horror film, but they do not have the right hair or the
      right make-up, or the right combination of jewellery or piercings or tattoos'.... Boils my blood every time. Full report here - http://eprints.leedsbeckett.ac.uk/165/1/The%20Strange%20and%20Spooky%20Battle%20over%20Bats%20and%20Black%20Dresses.pdf

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    4. Now that got my blood boiling! The whole article sounds so pretentious to me. Ironic, isn't it?

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  9. What you are describing is being a woman in a patriarchal world. It sucks balls. To try to get ahead some women step on others. They know they can never compete with men (who have all privileges given to them as some kind of birth right) so anyone who isn't exactly like them is perceived as a threat and treated thusly. The fact that we are taught from an early age to identify men as human beings, but women as objects, facilitates this structure, and makes calling yourself on it very hard.

    Moral of this comment? EVERY SINGLE PERSON should get a feminist education, women as well as men!

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  10. In my experience, people tend to "hate" and criticize those they are jealous of, or who do what the haters are afraid to do, usually because they are insecure but need to deny it at all costs. I don't believe in all this stupid "role playing"; I just want to be myself, and too bad if someone else doesn't like it. I frankly don't care anymore. If anyone called me a bitch to my face, I'd probably reply, "That's MS. Bitch to you!" It's always annoyed me that assertive women are called derogatory names whenever they assert themselves, while aggressive (not just assertive) men are celebrated for it. It's exactly the same mindset as calling men who sleep around "studs" while calling the women they sleep with "whores". And in my book, the women who go along with all that crap are as bad as the men they've sold out to. Fortunately, the men currently in my life treat women like equals and friends, the way it should be. :-)

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    1. I am past the point of caring what others think of me too. I am annoyed whenever I hear someone undermine themselves. Being a "bitch" because you stick up for yourself isn't being a bitch at all. it is really sad. I am fortunate too, all the men in my life treat women like equals too. :)

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  11. I came upon your blog through Jessica at Chronically Vintage, and this was one of the first posts I read. I admit it's somewhat comforting to discover that other women go through this undeserved judegement that leads to an automatic inexplicable rejection. I have gone through this all my life with other women, as you, since I was in school. To this day I have had women tell me that when they first met me they thought I was a snob or a bitch, only to discover when they give me a chance I'm actually quite 'nice'. I'm not a snob, I'm shy and introverted! I have 'resting bitch face' because I don't go around grinning from ear to ear for no reason whatsoever. I've been told to 'smile', 'your'e too serious', 'you're not likable' all because I'm not the typical giggly, blubbly, gal people expect me to be. So to make a long story short, THANK YOU for standing up for all of us in this social situation. :-)

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    1. Wow, what a really heartfelt comment! I am glad to be of help and please don't listen to what others have to say. You know your self worth and be true to yourself - the right people will come into your life, trust me! *hugs*

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