The common gentleman’s saying, “Ladies first,” is true only when a man wants to let a lady go through a door, but that’s where the notion of letting a woman get ahead ends. Even in our “modern” society, gender roles are still biased toward men.
Gender roles refer to the rights, responsibilities, expectations, and relationships of men and women. It’s obvious that women cannot be men and so vice versa. What really irritates me are people’s perspective of women. They contradict their views because most people make up excuses about the “lady like ways” and their qualities as naturally weaker beings. They say men actually get their “hands dirty” and portray women as couch potatoes only changing the channels. Yet the funny part about it; is when love comes around and all of the sudden women become these goddesses and become excuses for such distractions, that sadly in the end are only used to satisfy pleasure.
A lot of these beliefs start at home. Parents raise their children with different mindsets, leaving unfairness between siblings. Boys are raised with more freedom and with given opportunities to do what they want, whereas girls are raised to stay at home cleaning and when (or IF) they go out, it’s with limits and curfews.
Once boys turn into men their natural instincts make them think they’re superior over women; they act, think, talk as if women should be glad to have the attention of a man. Later on, as girls become women, they grow up being used to these ideals and situations where they are constantly looked down upon. And if they’re finally given the same opportunities, and if they fail; they’re judged more harshly, as if the result was to be expected.
I can relate to this because it has happened to me several times in my own family. I grew up with traditional ideals, constantly being told what my actual place as a female was. Being compared to my brother’s abilities and looked at as a kitchen helper instead of a lawn mower. These ideals were imposed but to this day I have not followed. It’s not that I’m a “rebel”, or that I go against traditional aspects, but I simply have become open-minded and realized that females can also do the same.
I came to realize being a female becomes a strike, being a Latina another strike, and being an athlete is yet another strike against me. Yet, I manage to keep playing the game, while ignoring some of the rules. However, the journey isn’t always smooth, and there are missteps and falls, but for every time I get knocked down, I get up and brush myself off and keep moving forward.
When it comes to sports what really upsets me, are the comparisons between sexes. The disadvantages of comparisons is that you lose perspective on others and ignore why every individual is unique and therefore has very unique things to offer. Throughout my sporting life, I can honestly say these comparisons happen a lot. When experienced failure most athletes like boys are told, they play, hit, catch, throw, “like girls”. Yet when girls experience failures there not told anything because it would be ironically obvious and stupid to say that a girl, plays, hits, catches, throws “like a girl”, as well as to the boys who experience success. Instead, I suggest to a new stereotype…when experiencing success, girls should be told they play, hit, catch, throw, run “like a man”. That way stereotypes would be fair. The point here being that such stereotypes should not exists because they can be understood as a different perspective especially if referred to as a negative complement.
However, I must admit to progress. Today’s women are no longer stay at home mom, expected to cook, clean, and care for the kids and the household all while she patiently awaits her significant others arrival. Women are now active contributors to our workforce, but the inequality still exists. Women have and are being paid less for their work done, whereas men who do the same but get paid more. For instance even business run guilty of such inequalities; when it comes to hiring people, they prefer males because males don’t run the commitment of getting pregnant and therefore won’t cost them a new employer nor money to pay females when they take months off due to the pregnancy. Therefore it becomes a lot harder to women to first of all get hired, and if they do and happen to get pregnant, to get back to business. Yet more and more women today are multi-taskers, taking care of themselves, their family, and their career (which is more than most men do).
I’m pushing forward a different mindset of ideals. I look forward to the future because I’m sure mindsets will change, and females will be truly looked at as equal helpers of society. I don’t want males thinking that I’m defaming their gender roles. In fact, I acknowledge the work they’ve done because they’ve set bars high, and become role models in which women are looking forward into doing the same in order to help raise that bar even higher.
I want girls to break out of their shells, and to stop making excuses for failures, by waiting and watching time and opportunities pass by them because nothing good will ever happen. It’s also always perfectly fine to get dirt under those nails. I acknowledge change but it also it feels as though it’s not truly implemented into our society. It’s an era of new advancements, innovations and ideas where both men and women rejoice and live in. As Marilyn Monroe said,” A girl knows her limits, but a wise one knows she has none.”