The Plight of Women

I’ve been in a bigger dither than usual about how women are viewed and treated. Between  government interference in our decision-making process, and our dress and behavior that is geared to being noticed by men, I feel my blood rising.

It’s great that women can stand strong in the business world and hold positions in government, but that doesn’t mean we’ve come anywhere close to achieving the status of men. This world is still a patriarchal one, and women are still treated as the inferior human.

This latest brouhaha about contraception, and the “personhood of the embryo” bill, feels like a war against women. What makes it repugnant is how people use God to justify their decision. Susan B. Anthony said, “I always distrust people who know so much about what God wants them to do to their fellows.” Isn’t it interesting how many politicians think they have the right to mix church and state, in their quest to control humanity, especially women?

I am not in favor of abortion, but I am in favor of women having the right to choose. I read an article about a man on Fox news ,who suggested that women on welfare should be sterilized. Well, I have a better suggestion: how about performing a vasectomy on the men who impregnated these women? Why target the women and not the men who are helping to make these babies? If a woman gets pregnant and she does not believe she can take care of a child, I say make the father responsible for raising the child.

Women’s right to their bodies shouldn’t even be a government issue. But then women’s right to vote, to own property, to keep their own name, to be admitted to colleges and get degrees only given to men, should not have been a government issue either. It should have been a right given to us at birth as it was for men in our world.

What are women to do? How do we help put an end to being treated as chattel? I recently read that 53% of thirteen year old girls are unhappy with their bodies, and that number increases to 78% by age seventeen. Sixty-five % of women have eating disorders and 17% of teens engage in cutting and self-injurious behavior. The rates of depression among girls and women have doubled between 2000 and 2010. These are horrifying and sickening statistics.

I see women losing ground when I notice young girls being held hostage by a society, and many times by their own mothers, to the notion that they have to be thin, beautiful, and sexy.

I was talking to a young women about the high heels that women wear in today’s world.

image by: aromaticembrace.com

She said she wore them because she liked the way she looked in them. I asked her if she really liked the way she looked, or if she liked the way men looked at her when she wore them? Sheepishly she agreed that she did wear them to look sexy and be noticed.  Male/female interactions are part of life, but why do we usually feel the need to make them about sex?

Are we that shallow that we’ll stand and walk in an unnatural position, and perhaps do harm to our feet and backs so men will look at us? Come on ladies. How about if we spend the greater part of our time developing our vocabulary, our minds, our creativity, and our soul?  Of course, we already know that bright, wise women do not ordinarily attract men to us, so instead of focusing on developing who we are, we develop what we look like.

When I look at how females dress and behave, it seems we’re going backwards in our efforts to be taken seriously. In today’s world, many mothers start sexualizing their daughters when they’re just little tots. I feel so sorry for these little girls because at age six they’re learning to impress others with how they look.

What would happen if there was an uprising of women? Are there women today who are willing to stand in the front lines and be punished, abused, and ostracized like Lucy Stone, Julia Ward Howe, Harriet Beecher Stowe, Margaret Sanger, Susan B. Anthony, and many others?

I suffer in my heart and feel the sting and the burden that women have picked up and carried for so long. This is not about blame or making men wrong, because we’ve carried this banner. It’s about us. I appreciate men and I’m blessed to have a supportive husband, and a loving brother, sons, and grandsons.

It’s time to take men out of the equation, and focus on what we deserve and our self-worth. We’ve bought the lie and we’ve lived it for too long. Being inferior is ingrained in our consciousness from the time we’re little girls, and it is up to us to throw off that mantle.

For change to happen, it seems women will have to be willing to take the blinders off and quit pretending that we’ve been liberated. The last wave of the feminist movement gave women the impetus to get college degrees and head corporations, which was a good thing, yet it did not earn us the respect or equality we deserve.  As long as we play the “let’s see how sexy I can look” game, we’ll be treated as objects.

I’d like to hear from both men and women on this issue. Does anyone else see what I see and feel what I feel? How do we liberate the females in our society? Where do we start? It feels like a huge job, one almost as large as building the pyramids in Egypt. Any thoughts?

Research on effects of wearing high heels: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22241055

Advertisements

About brendamarroy

blogger, and author
This entry was posted in Awareness, Consciousness, Feelings, Making choices, personal, spiritual, Womens issues and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

11 Responses to The Plight of Women

  1. gingerclub says:

    Dear Brenda,

    Thanks for a very interesting post. First of all, I do not see the point why a woman being on welfare should not have children in the first place. What kind of approach is this? Being on welfare does not mean inferiority or stupidity but rather the choice for children without the necessary financial support. Who has the right to say who is supposed to have children and who not.

    The second point I would like to make is that an entire industry, that is the fashion and sex industry blinds women and men for the sake of profits. We are all lured into a make believe portraiture of the perfect being by media unless we all, men and women alike, start using our brain. Women`s liberation movement has also brought about the so called “sexual liberty” which in the end became the same old pitfall for women, making them more objectified then ever before. The internet with all its images what “love”, i.e. sex, and superficial beauty, has accentuated this drawback of sexual liberation. Pornography is taken for granted, being void of any true interaction between men and women, as you rightly stated.
    Maybe we should start educating our children more again about values, such as respect, honour, love, grace, friendship rather then feeding them with useless toys and images.

    Peace and smiles

    Ellen

    • brendamarroy says:

      I’m with you all the way Ellen. I believe women are more objectified than ever, and I do not see that changing anytime in the near future. In this country, almost everything is geared towards sex. There’s even advertisements for sexy cars, purses, shoes, etc. How can something that has no sex, be sexy? Yet, people buy the lies and the hype.

  2. I don’t agree with abortion, but contraception is perfectly fine. It makes it easier for people not to have unwanted babies or to even have to consider abortion as an option.

  3. brendamarroy says:

    Hi Gianna,
    I do agree with you that we all suffer. As I told Rosie in a former comment, my husband and I have discussions about this, and he shares with me how men are burdened by society also. They have a role they think they’re supposed to fulfill, just like women do.
    Perhaps all the crap going on with the government right now and their desire to put women “in their place” is going to be the straw that breaks the back of the camel. I just read yesterday about the uprising of women against the lawmakers. It seems we’re standing up in numbers, signing petitions, sending letters, and making our voices heard. Hurrah for us.

  4. Roseann T. Kriebel says:

    It’s not just injustice towards women; it’s about injustice—period. Until enough kindness/compassion/desire for global peace outweighs greed and fear, the nasty behavior will continue.

    • brendamarroy says:

      You’re right Rosie. It’s about all of humanity, but because I’m a woman, I feel the burden society has put on women. Because Paul and I talk about this stuff often, I realize that he feels as burdened being a man and trying to live up to society’s demands as I do. Thanks for your insightful comment.

  5. Carla Low says:

    We also need to instill in our younger girls that once they have children, the children MUST come first. The angle that raises its ugly head is the need we feel to have men in our lives. The articles in the newspapers about the “boyfriend” who kills the woman’s child while she is at work (he is living with her and supposed to be babysitting?!?) are too frequent.

    • brendamarroy says:

      Hi Carla, You are so right. I often read or hear reports of boyfriends and stepfathers abusing and killing the children they are supposed to be watching and protecting. It’s a sad world. Thank you for your thoughtful comment.

  6. giannakali says:

    I agree with you and share many of your thoughts and feelings…though I also (and I don’t suppose you’re disagree with this) think that men are harmed equally, though in different ways, when women are oppressed. This is a societal issue and it harms all of us, men and women, boys and girls…I don’t really know the way out, but I do think it’s happening slowly in any case…even while we see all this backlash…

    In fact I see all the stuff going on at the govt. level as a desperate attempt by those who are threatened by healthy change to cling to unconsciousness…It feels like the final throes of people who are fighting a losing battle. I consider all the homophobic rhetoric to be part of the same phenomena…

    Maybe I’m wrong or maybe I’m just hoping this is the case, but the chaos seems like somehow a necessary foment that will lead to change in these arenas…

    • brendamarroy says:

      I think you’re correct Gianna, as far as the stuff going on in the government. When they fight as hard as they’re fighting, I have to think they’re feeling their way of life threatened. What will happen if the good ole boy network crumbles???

I'm interested in what my readers think. Please leave a Comment.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s