Why Valuing the Sacred Feminine is More Important Than Valuing His Reputation

I have some intense feelings about this and in fairness, I think that’s appropriate. I think we should ALL have intense feelings about this. Written into sexism is the ability to dismiss what women say. “Women are emotional.” “They have PMS.” “Their emotions make them erratic.” “They are vindictive.” Etc. What I’m writing right now will likely be dismissed by some because I’m “always harping about gender inequality”/I’m”riled up”/I’m a feminist/etc. So in the very fabric of the issue is the ability to dismiss women’s voices. The attitude is often something like, “If she’s freaking out at a level 10 well sure…., something happened but it’s probably REALLY a level 3.”

My personal community is admittedly farther ahead in this learning curve & dialogue than many places. Yet even there, I’ve had men whom I’m sure would not consider themselves sexist say to me, “but why are we STILL talking about the consent thing!” As if it’s such a fun conversation for us that we just find joy in endlessly complaining about it. And that’s part of the problem. The idea that women complain or speak without there being a reason. It hadn’t occurred to this male friend that he is surrounded by the most amazing, evolved women in the world. And if we’re still talking about it there must be a reason. And this is the most aware group of people I’ve ever met. But sexism is literally written into our language. Devaluing women is so much a part of our societal structure that people don’t even see it.  Women have been having poor experiences and addressing them in the moment, after the moment, in writing, in avoidance, with ignoring, with warning each other, etc. Which I feel we are often admonished about not doing. Or not doing it enough, Or not doing it firmly/immediately/consistently/etc enough.

But I’m making this declaration now, and I’m not sorry if it ruffles some feathers: Every time you need 3 or 4 women to corroborate a story, you are being complicit. Every time you are more concerned about someone’s reputation then someone being harmed, you are being complicit. Every time you don’t call out sexist behavior or comments with your male friends or say things like, “yeah chicks are crazy” you are part of the problem.

I’m tired of not saying these truths because one or two friends will turn an entire cultural conversation to be about the one time that they were misunderstood and it was hard on their life. Who gives a fuck. It happened one time? Good for you. How many times have you woken up in a club to have some dude’s fingers in your ass while everyone watched uncaring that you were unconscious? Never? Lucky you? How many times were you flashed penises by old men in cars before you were 5 years old? Not that many times? Wow must be nice. The first time that you were raped by three men did your father say you were lying too? No? Lucky! (Notice I said first time.) How many times have you been pressed up against a wall while 6 men video taped tearing your clothes off and punch you repeatedly before you were old enough to vote? Didn’t happen either? Huh. That’s weird. So then you probably didn’t have the judge actually ask you what you were wearing LIKE THAT SOMEHOW WOULD HAVE MADE THAT VIOLENCE LEGALLY PERMISSIBLE. Have you ever felt grossed out by the way the doctor looked at you during that prostate exam? How many times have you had to tell your physical therapist to put his penis back in his pant? Really? Demanding that your professionals focus on the task you’ve hired them for rather then their dick isn’t just part of your regular day? Because it’s part of mine. You ever had your lovers try to give you hepatitis cuz her orgasm was more valuable to her then your liver? This tiny, tiny list is *maybe* 10% of this shit that most women, including myself, have gone through in my life from the age of 4 to now. So, yes. I am frustrated as hell that I often feel silenced because once or twice there were friends of mine that were actually misunderstood. I’m having a hard time empathizing with the fact that once or twice men were accidentally on the wrong side of that story and it was hard for their lives THAT ONE TIME because as a woman living in this patriarchal culture it’s been hard many, many MANY more times than “that once.”

Am I expected to apologize for having strong emotions about this? I keep rereading it and feeling this impulse that I know is wrong, that I should go back to the top and offer a warning to soften and prepare the reader so that I’ll be listened to. Am I expected to follow up with “no of course not all men” to assuage? Will I be told that I can say those things but I should have used a different tone in order to not alienate? Should I await the almost assured lecture about the need to be more compassionate, gentle, and understanding? Should I assure people that I’m not not mad…. I’m not mad at you…. I’m just frustrated? Will any of those thing make you feel better about what you just read or help you to understand? Cuz what any of those statements really telegraph is that women can be abused their whole lives, but  need to squelch any rage about it. “Just keep calm that you have been, and and continue to be, abused by a culture that doesn’t value you. And god forbid if you have to talk about it, do so in gentle manner that is supportive to men. That is, after all, your role.”

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