I’m not sure if it was 9th or 10th grade when my fellow female students in school said that they would pity the man I would end up with, at least a little bit, because I was so bossy. Now, I never really considered myself bossy, especially not at the time. I had and always will have strong opinions on certain subjects and while I try not having to make decisions, especially when there are others involved (like deciding on where to go for dinner, what to watch on the telly etc.) I do get frustrated when nobody says anything for a while though and I offer my opinion.
Maybe I’m more of an alpha female than I ever thought I was.
Back then, I was a little bit disappointed that these kids/teens decided (a) I was bossy, (b) that was a bad thing and (c) a man would have to be pitied because he had a wife who knew what she liked and wanted. Never mind the underlying heteronormative standard that Mini!Me wasn’t concerned about at the time but bugs Present!Me just a little bit.
I have thought about this a couple of times and with every year I grow older, I get a bit prouder of Past!Me and I start pitying all those women who think they have to be less opinionated, less direct, less themselves in order to please someone.
Somewhere along the line of realising I was a lesbian that whole construct crumbled to the ground for me and I broke free of some of those patriarchal designs, if that’s how I can put it. Since this is my blog, I can say it like that in the absence of a better way to describe it.
The only person I have to please is myself. As long as I’m proud of who I am and how I go through this world, that’s what matters to me. Of course I crave validation by other people, we all do, but I don’t have to pretend I’m someone I’m not. I don’t have to hide my ideas to please a man’s ego. I don’t have to make myself smaller. It took me a long time to learn this but I eventually promised myself to not value some else’s happiness over my own by pretending to be someone I’m not.
This isn’t meant to seem like I don’t have respect or care for the opinions of men or any other person for that matter but one of the most important revelations for me was not being afraid of having to hide my own in favour of theirs. I can’t even pinpoint why this was such a big concern for me but it was. Being gay, to me, is about being more equal (she says without ever having been in a relationship hetero- or homosexual). Like I said, I don’t know why, it just is.
Ironically, I love being one of the guys; in school, at uni or at work, I always gravitated more towards male friends than female friends though I can talk baking like a pro with the girls if needed (my only real blank spot is talking boys because I don’t really care).
Back in school, I thought I needed to wear make-up, to behave a certain way for the boys to notice me and even more so, like me. A lot of that is normal for teenagers. I’m glad I outgrew that phase though and didn’t get stuck in it.
I’m glad that I don’t care if I dress in lesbian chic or look really girly as long as it makes me happy. I’m glad I get to be myself and know that if someone doesn’t like me for who I am, it’s their loss and I don’t have to chase after their approval because it’s not worth it.
I don’t have a great conclusion for this, I thought I would have.