Am I oppressed?

A woman I know posted up on Facebook that women are oppressed. It got me thinking. In some ways I agree, in other ways I do not.

My first thought was, aren’t there many people who are oppressed in some way? By colour, ethnicity, sex, location, socio economic group, position at work, position in the family… honestly I think the percentage of people that are not living with some form of oppression, because of something that is not truly there fault, would be tiny.

Now as for women…

This has been a subject in the forefront of my mind lately because of a variety of things. One – I am involved in an anthology for Women’s History month. Two – A business idea I am working on focuses on this in some ways.

Yes, I believe that many women live with some form of oppression day to day. I assume I am one, I might not be getting paid what a man might get paid, I might get treated differently by people because I have breasts and don’t pee standing up. But I don’t honestly feel oppressed by those things because I live my life how I want to live it. In all honesty the thing I feel oppressed most by is society who dictates how I should look and act and what I should wear and how I should feel. And you know what… behind all that are women as well. It’s something I’ve been noticing a lot lately…women dictating what it means to be a woman and letting everyone know all the things that they are doing wrong.

I think women are taking away the power of the individual to be the individual that they wish to be. Paint your nails this colour, oh god don’t paint your nails or you are setting the cause of women back centuries, wear this, this and this, oh god don’t wear what you are wearing, you are buying in to the male dictated concept of beauty.

You know what. I call bullshit. No one, male or female, should have the right to tell me what it is to be a woman, because I am my own woman. The power is mine, I have my own goddess within me and only I can know who she is and transform into her.

And you all best hold on tight because that Goddess is coming forth and I am becoming the woman that I know I am meant to be. Not for you, not for anyone else, but for me.

Will people judge me for this? Try to oppress me, change me, dictate who I should be? Hell yes. And you know what, they will come from all walks of life, men, women, poor, rich and all manner of shapes, shades and backgrounds.

So guess what…

Watch me be free to be me.

Remember who you really are
Do what you, what you want

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11 thoughts on “Am I oppressed?

  1. *nods* I agree. I am very ‘let your natural beauty shine’ but am supportive of modifications as long as it’s a ‘because you want to and not because you think you have to/feel like you need to “be normal”‘ thing.
    I know two people who got nose jobs… (or I’m thinking of a specific two I know more personally) one got one because they always wanted a specific nose and thought it would fit them better… The other got teased I’m college and turned down for a sorority so she got one without a specific design in mind in order to look prettier in hopes she would be invited to join the sorority afterwards… While I agree that both have every right to do what they want with their own bodies… I can’t help but be a bit saddened by the latter and angry at the people that incited such feelings in that girl…

    Disclaimer: Personally I’m too lazy for 99.9% of all” beauty” treatments/regimens.. Unless it involves a cos-play.

    Disclaimer the II: I can pee standing up. ;P

    1. I know this is terrible…but I have to admit I ended up in giggles because of this, purely because I am special and read that as “nose bleeds” not “nose jobs” and got myself so confused as to what your sprite had to do with anything. I think I should have had coffee this morning…

  2. Oppression is different to “privilege”. Oppression is the direct and offensive squashing of someone or a group of someone’s based on whatever. Privilege is where in a society some folks get more good things and more rights because they fit the societal model for whatever is “normal”. For example, folks don’t generally get beaten and killed by everyone for being gay and there are very few overt prejudices. However, societally NZ culture still have shitty gay jokes, shitty stereotypes that folks apply to people who are gay (e.g. if I’m open about being bi, someone will make some comment that leads to bisexual meaning I sleep with anyone and anything, or I’m some kind of child molester, both of which, if folks know me is a crock of shit). Those who are straight have the “privileges” associated with not having to deal with that bullshit.

    Women are not oppressed in NZ (unless they’re in a fundi Christian group or an abusive relationship), but we have the lesser privilege from a cultural perspective. We’re still taught that it is our responsibility to prevent rape, we’re still taught that we must always be pleasant to look at, must always be skinny, must always [insert suppressive gender role here], and that if we do not conform we’re not women or we’re not worthy of anything good.

    Oppression is physical, it’s life threatening and violent. We don’t have that so much any more. It’s the prejudices and the privileges that limit and discriminate against people, now days (at least in NZ).

    And I’m sorry, I just realised I’ve totally lectured. This is a very big issue for me.

    1. I’m glad you added the NZ thing at the end… Because where I live… Some people still threaten those that are something they consider “sinful” with violence.. A coworker at my last job bragged about how he would castrate his son himself if he ever found him to be messing with men… And I’ve personally had the belt for not wanting to be baptised or declare “Jesus is lord” in front of my family. Not saying all of America is like this… Or even all of Alabama or Florida… But there are a lot of areas that are.

      1. Yeah, we still have some violence here but on the whole, NZ is a pretty safe place to live if you’re not straight. I mean, you get a lot of verbal bullshit and beaten at school (depending on the school), but adults don’t hunt you down and kill you for being “an abomination”.

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