the she series: equality without feminism

This may be my favorite post so far. Not because I agree with everything Lacey has to say, but because it’s exactly what I was hoping to find when I started this series: opinions that differ from mine, along with some of the “whys” behind them.

I only lived near Lacey for a couple of years, but in those years I learned she is full of energy and happiness (and maturity). I respect her for the life she’s lived so far, both trials and adventures–and I love that she’s willing to share her thoughts here (and the last time I asked). Plus she has these two awesome boys that always remind me of Mason and Milo when they were younger. If you’d like to read more from Lacey, she has a blog too.

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Equality and Chivalry

A man can be chivalrous without implying the women is less than him. This is a characteristic that is being lost in the move for equal treatment, and a big reason I can’t consider myself a feminist. Chivalry shows a level of education and refinement that exists in a society of men who possess it. As it disappears we see gentlemen become disrespectful, yet we call this “equal treatment.”

While I would’ve marched for voting rights, the right to defend our country, or other monumental rights, I don’t care for the back and forth banter of “equal treatment” in the 21st century. I love when my children say, “ladies first.” I enjoy that at work my boss assigns the heavy lifting and more strenuous jobs to the men. I feel that women are becoming an unstoppable force in the workplace. In a matter of time there will be equal pay and treatment, but the amount of women in the workforce is still relatively new. I don’t like to exert energy worrying about a topic that will fix itself over time.

I feel that life in America is so good; do I really need more? I’m treated well. I have a fair system to lean on if a man mistreats me. I’m raising my boys to be gentlemen who will value their wives’ opinions, but will also treat them special. There are special and unique qualities in both genders.

Yes, I have definitely been treated unfairly as a woman. In the school setting, at work, and in life; it was an infuriating feeling. Those moments defined me; I grew from them. I didn’t turn to social media and complain, or complain to a higher authority until they were punished. These were individuals with individual problems that didn’t represent the men I’m surrounded by as a whole. Instead, I worked harder, I studied to prove I could do more than expected, and I defended my opinions and values.

Education and Children

I grew up wanting to change the world, and I want to raise my daughter to take on the world; however, I also believe with all my heart that having a mom in the home is the best way to cultivate a happy and loving home. Children are our future and they grow up so fast that I can’t think of a better accomplishment I could do in my life than raising loving, successful children who know who they are.

I believe women should definitely obtain as much education as they can. Having an education gives you a mindset that is open and informed on what’s going on in the world. An education allows a peace of mind that if you needed to go to work, you could. It’s also something you get to do that is just for you, not anyone else. Also, kids have lots of questions, I like having the answers from personal experience and learning.

I’m currently finishing my master’s online, but pausing my career pursuits to be there for my kids. When they’re older I feel like it will be my turn again. This being said, I have no judgments against women who choose not to have children, or who balance work with having kids. Everyone has to do what works for them, and it’s different for everyone.

Advice and Insecurities

I have insecurities over silly things like my body, but I’d say the biggest thing I’ve worked to overcome is feeling like I have to always make the right decisions the first time. I grew up basically raising my siblings, and to be honest, giving advice to my parents. I used to pride myself on being full of advice. The first time my husband and I made a decision that was completely wrong I fell to pieces. It was a big eye opener that I can accept help, not just give it–and that I don’t have to be perfect.

For me, the biggest challenge as a woman is being happy and content with the life I know I want to live, while defending my life choices against a world that degrades me for living the way I do. Why do we have to judge or fight so hard to change what others choose to make themselves happy? Can we not be content enough to allow others different paths in life?

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