/> What Would Ripley Do: control
Showing posts with label control. Show all posts
Showing posts with label control. Show all posts

Wednesday, 5 January 2022

Why Part Of Me Will Always Be "Bridget" (And That Is Allowed)

There is a thought that has been building in my head lately.  Well, not lately, for some time now.  

Why do I feel that, at a time where arguably (in the first world) women are at our most liberated, are there more rules imposed on women than ever?

We are at a point in history where we are told that women can be all things, that nothing is impossible. We can do anything we want, be anything we want to be.  The rules and shackles imposed by society for so very long are being thrown away and we are creating and running our own lives the way we want to.  Or are we?

Somehow, despite all of this liberation; it seems that we are once again being told what to do, how to look, how to act and how to think, increasing not just from men, but from other women. 

Sometimes it feels that the only thing we are not allowed to be, is ourselves.  

I was watching Bridget Jones Diary over Christmas.  Bridget Jones Diary was written in 1996 and released as a film in 2001.  For so many of us, Bridget encapsulated so much of who we are, our characteristics and both our flaws and our strengths.

Her silliness, her hope, her need for love and looking for it in all the wrong places.  Her inability to make the right choices.  Her ability to pick herself up and dust herself off to try again, after an obligatory vat of wine and a few renditions of "All By Myself".  

I saw so much of myself in Bridget and indeed, now over twenty five years since the book came out, I still do.

The thing is, we are all multifaceted people.  Aside from my many similarities to Bridget, I am also many other things.  Many of which are contradictory to the other.  I am independent, but feel an innate need to be loved, cared for.  I am both secure, and insecure in my appearance, my character, my trajectory in life.  I may have finally reached a point where I no longer walk about swathed in black, but I still change my clothes as many times before deciding on an outfit.  Whatever the occasion. 

I have a career, but it does not drive me more than being happy in my life outside of work.  

I have both a traditional and non traditional relationship with my partner.

All of the above is the way I choose to live my life.  It is who I am.  Because I am be more than one thing.  I can, and do, have opinions about a thousand different subjects.  They don't all have to be on the same wavelength.

This, for me, is what the women before me fought for.  To be the person I am.  To think the way I want.  Act the way I want.  Do what the hell I want.

After watching the film, I later watched a documentary about the writer, Helen Fielding who spoke about her own similarities to Bridget, which inspired her to write the book.  One of the people in the documentary was Germaine Greer,  who made comment about the routine that Bridget went through in order to ready herself for her first date with Daniel.

Germaine was eyerolling at the fact that Bridget felt the need to do all of this.  Why was she thinking more about whether to wear sexy underwear or control underwear rather than, as Germaine said "Don't worry about your pants girl, just kiss him".


That is true enough.  What we know, certainly by Bridget's age, is that a man cares more about getting into your knickers rather than their style.  They don't care.  From my own experience with my partner, he tells he loves the "wrapping", but it is what inside that counts.  The body and the mind.

But should that mean that we should also not care?  Is that now not allowed? The effort that we put in is never just about them, it is part of who we are.   

But, now, in 2022, being like Bridget is discouraged.  Embarrassing even.  All of those traits that we saw in Bridget reflected in ourselves are now frowned upon.  At a time when even the word woman is being taken away from us, by men who have decided they are women; why are our feminine traits being seen as wrong and traits attributed to men, now right?

There is nothing wrong with being confident.  Forthright.  Competitive.  Single minded in our pursuits.  Assertive.  All typically "male" behaviours.  An increase of these behaviours is all good for women, but more and more I see them the things that make us women, now actively discouraged and forbidden.

There is no right way to be a man or a woman.  We can be any and all things, but by our choosing.

Even the choice to be a stay at home mum is now judged.  I overheard a conversation the other day where a young twenty something was saying to friends that what she wanted most in life was to be a mother.  At home, with her children.  She was immediately jumped on.  What about your career, your independence, your money.  You can't "just" be a mother.

Of course she can.  She can be anything she wants to be.  Can't she?  

I am not writing an anti Germaine Greer post, but I saw this quote from her relevant to this post.

If a woman never lets herself go, how will she ever know how far she might have got? If she never takes off her high-heeled shoes, how will she ever know how far she could walk or how fast she could run?

Can I not wear high heels?  Put on my makeup, take an eternity to decide on what to wear?  Why do these have to detract from the person that I am?  Does this now make me vapid and silly?  Why can't I be silly?  Doing those things are part of what makes me, me.  It does not make me less intelligent, less willing and able to be successful and walk the path that I want to.  

But I want to walk that path the way I chose.  Not chosen by others.

It feels sometimes like we have moved on from changing from we look like and how we dress for men, to now editing who we are as people and the persona we show to the world, for (some) women.

I walk to the beat of my own drum.  Not others.  I won't be told how to live my life or how to act/be.  I see how far women have come, what we have achieved, what generations before us fought for and gained for us.  I don't think they would want me to be put in another box.

We make our own rules.  What we cannot and should not do, is impose those rules on others. So yes, part of me is Bridget.  And I am not ashamed of that.  Nor should I be.

Friday, 4 October 2019

Are We Being Played By The Patriarchy?



"The greatest trick the Devil ever pulled was convincing the world he didn't exist"
I am not one for conspiracy theories.  I laugh at the flat earthers and shake my head in disbelief at the people who don't believe that we landed on the moon.  

But something has been rolling around in my head for some time now and it has been building up momentum.  So here is what I have been thinking.

In keeping with the quote above from The Usual Suspects, I am starting to think that the greatest trick the patriarchy have or will ever pull, is convincing people that men can become women.  Because it suits their agenda perfectly. 

I believe that the patriarchy is neither left nor right wing.  It exists at a higher level than politics.  The patriarchy is ingrained in the way that people think and what they believe.  It is a state of mind and is a set of beliefs that is not easily changed.  For some, that way of living is what they are brought up with and know.  They still live in it and some women, sadly, embrace it.  For others, that way of living is something that we fight against still.

No matter where you live in the world the patriarchy is there.  Sometimes out in plain sight, sometimes lurking in the shadows.  This can be when they are most dangerous.

So what is it that they want?  Ultimately, they want control of women.  Specifically taking control back.  They cannot (yet) take the vote away from us.  They cannot (yet) take us out of the workplace.  Society cannot function without two incomes in a household and they therefore pick their battles wisely.  Mothers for example are both encouraged to work but are also derided for leaving their child.

So what battles can they win?  What control can they take away from us?  The first answer is that it has already started.  You just haven't noticed.  If you have, chances are that you are gender critical.

Transgender women are a gift, perhaps the largest gift that the patriarchal system has received in a very long time.

Photo by Sharon McCutcheon from Pexels
Think about it.  I cannot think of another time in history where a minority has had such a quick rise to acceptance and normality.  Not just normality, for the first time, a taking over of one group's rights and taking them as their own.

Gender dysphoria is a real thing.  There have always been transgender people.  But what is happening today is not just about transgender people and their rights.  This is also about power.  Over the past few years this has no longer just been about acceptance of transgender people in society.  It is becoming a takeover.  Supported, I believe, massively, by the patriarchy.

In 2018 the UK government estimated that trans people made up between 0.35 and 1% of the population (source).  For those who say my source is biased, here is the Government link, page 82.  Stonewall's estimate is 1%.  So let's go for ease with 1%.  Around 600,000 people.

Of those 600,000 people, according again to Stonewall figures, less than 5000 people have the Gender Recognition certificate.  Less than 1%.  Three quarters of those people are transgender women.

According to statistics, only around 11% of trans women go on to have gender reassignment surgery and 12% of trans men.

So let's use those figures and compare.  Of the 600,000 people who identify as trans, using the top end figure, less than 1% go for the certificate.  11-12% of trans people have gender reassignment surgery.  So basically around 530,000 people of the trans group who neither apply for the GRC or go for surgery.

So please can someone explain to me why the Government, all of the political parties, the NHS, the left etc etc are going with the party line that trans women are women and visa versa?  Why are we being told that someone needs to do NOTHING MORE than identify as a woman in order to be one?

How did we get to a place where a bearded man in a skirt who claims he is a lesbian and is on zero medication, can be called a real actual woman?  How did we get to a place where lesbians are being called immoral bigots for not wanting to have sex with men with penises who decide they think like a woman and therefore "are women".  How did we get to a place where (some) men are advocating for this?  Who are threatening, doxing and harassing women who disagree (I'm looking at you woke bearded bros).

One of the answers for me is the patriarchy.  Trans people are benefiting from the aims and wants of the patriarchy.  They are the perfect vehicle to deny and take away the rights of women.



Just look at what women are losing.  Our changing rooms, our bathrooms, our refuges, our hospital wards, our prisons.  We are no longer being called women.  We are "non men", chestfeeders, front holes.  The consequences, vast and far reaching.

Because it is no longer real transexual people who can access these areas and places.  It is anyone who "identifies".  Woman are becoming less safe every day.

Trans rights activists did not achieve this on their own.  They did it, I believe, with the support of the patriarchal system that wants to roll back the rights of women and put us back in the home, in the kitchen, where they think we belong.

Prove me wrong.