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  1. #221
    meh Salomé's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lateralus View Post
    Depending on the subject, absolutely. I'm sure there's life somewhere else in the universe. I don't know where it is, but I would be astounded if there wasn't. Wouldn't you? Got it?
    No, I wouldn't be astounded if something that I have absolutely no evidence exists, turned out, in fact, not to exist. It's why I don't believe in God or little green men. Then again, I'm rational that way.
    Probably not because every post of mine you read through the lens of sexism.
    I try not to read your posts, in fact, I have you on ignore, because you've been so rude and unreasoning when talking to me on this subject in the past. I see you've mellowed a lot over the years. Which is nice.

    But this was purely a question of logic, and to think otherwise is to betray your own susceptibility, not mine.
    Quote Originally Posted by Ivy View Post
    Gosh, the world looks so small from up here on my high horse of menstruation.

  2. #222
    Theta Male Julius_Van_Der_Beak's Avatar
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    "You're too pretty to frown," is kind of offensive to me, actually, because it is so stupid.
    [Trump's] rhetoric is not an abuse of power. In the same way that it's also not against the law to do a backflip off of the roof of your house onto your concrete driveway. It's just mind-numbingly stupid and, to say the least, counterproductive. - Bush did 9-11


    This is not going to go the way you think....

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  3. #223
    Vulnerability Eilonwy's Avatar
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    I think the Dustin Hoffman talking about "Tootsie" clip addresses the issue of why "you're too pretty to frown" is mostly seen as sexist and not as a compliment. It's not an individual thing--it's the whole mindset thing. It really is focusing only on looks, whether it was meant well or not. The thread is supposed to help point out that the mindset is there, to make it visible, and not to figure out the intention behind the mindset. It's so pervasive that it's not even visible to men or women at times.


    Johari / Nohari

    “That we are capable only of being what we are remains our unforgivable sin.” ― Gene Wolfe

    reminder to self: "That YOU that you are so proud of is a story woven together by your interpreter module to account for as much of your behavior as it can incorporate, and it denies or rationalizes the rest." "Who's in Charge? Free Will and the Science of the Brain" by Michael S. Gazzaniga

  4. #224
    Vulnerability Eilonwy's Avatar
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    I've been trying to think of a similar phrase that might make guys feel the same way. The best I could come up with is "You're too well-hung to be sad". It's an unfair standard by which all males are judged.
    Johari / Nohari

    “That we are capable only of being what we are remains our unforgivable sin.” ― Gene Wolfe

    reminder to self: "That YOU that you are so proud of is a story woven together by your interpreter module to account for as much of your behavior as it can incorporate, and it denies or rationalizes the rest." "Who's in Charge? Free Will and the Science of the Brain" by Michael S. Gazzaniga

  5. #225
    Analytical Dreamer Coriolis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lowtech redneck View Post
    Is the answer to stigmatize such compliments, or to educate people on the need to compliment people on an array of individual talents and characteristics, once they are known? In your example, the people giving the interview should know enough from your resume and their questions to give other compliments, if is their intent to boost your ego or provide positive feedback (and comments on physical appearance are certainly inappropriate in a work environment, which inherently involves formality and some sort of potentially coercive leverage). If someone already knows someone else, they should know enough to diversify compliments so that what you indicated does not happen, but I think it would be an overreaction to regard physical compliments as essentially verboten except in socially designated courtship arenas.
    Not necessarily. They really might value grammar, or writing in general, above everything else for a particular position. This should tell me, then, that I am applying for the wrong job. Similarly, a woman who values more than physical appearance should pass by guys who seem fixated on only that, and find someone who can appreciate her whole person. Men find many qualities attractive in women: sense of humor, kindness, intelligence, talents, being articulate, and yes, physical appearance. Physical appearance is just one among many, and should therefore be the subject of a small subset of compliments or introduction lines.

    The answer is not to stigmatize comments, but to understand how they often do not have the desired effect. In any other endeavor - work, sports, business, even home repairs - a man would probably adjust his approach if he realized it did not have the desired effect. Only in dealing with women do they refuse to adapt, which makes as much sense as blaming your car for not running when you fixed the wrong part. Of course this presumes men know the comment was not received as intended, which in turn requires women to speak up and say so. If women just silently walk away from a guy thinking "what a jerk", they cannot expect anything to change.

    Quote Originally Posted by Nijntje View Post
    Are you asking me if i solicited the responses? Or are you trying to shame me for not being an active feminist? Or are you asking what i've done in response to unwanted solicitation? I'm not trying to be difficult, i genuinely don't understand your intended outcome for the question.
    Being an active feminist is great, in the sense of joining organizations and campaigning for better laws, policies, and awareness of the problem. Even more, though, we need every woman, and every man who understands the situation, to kindly but firmly resist the many small assumptions, unconscious put-downs, and limitations we encounter almost daily. Yet another example of being the change you want to see in the world. Everyday feminism, to counter everyday sexism.
    I've been called a criminal, a terrorist, and a threat to the known universe. But everything you were told is a lie. The truth is, they've taken our freedom, our home, and our future. The time has come for all humanity to take a stand...

  6. #226
    darkened dreams labyrinthine's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Red Herring View Post
    From what I gather, the intent of this thread was to invite people (of both genders, but let's face it, there will probably be far more women) to exchange experiences of everyday sexism. Not to discuss what sexism is or to question the context of idividual experiences but simply to collect anecdotes to illustrate a point as perceived by those telling them. That can include cases of gross abuse or harassment like a fair share of what the OP mentioned, but also the little things that might not seem worth getting upset about but that are manifestations of an underlying larger issue.
    There is a term for these: "micro-aggressions". The problem is that they happen far more times than a person can remember, and they are by nature dismissive. The insult added to injury is that to present them as a problem is typically responded to with dismissal as well. I'll try to think of some.

    In graduate school I was labeled "the sweet one" which felt very dismissive to me because even though I value being kind, it was absolutely intended as an insult to my intellectual ability. In a cut-throat environment this is a back-handed compliment.

    I took a couple of years off between my masters and doctorate and had started the application process, but left it undone for a year. When I went in to talk to the chairman of the dept a year later about getting the rest of my materials together he said, "Oh yes, I remember, you had applied, but we decided you needed more maturity before being accepted." That never happened. I had never completed the application process before, but I looked like a little girl. This could have been related to agism as well.

    I left my van at the garage to have the fan fixed, and when I picked it up the man started making fun of me for having a small can of mace on my key chain. It felt like he took personal offense at it or something.

    In college I was helping my brother clean up his dorm room at the end of the year, and it was quite a mess. I was working really hard to help, was covered in sweat and grundgy. He had a really nice roommate who stood there watching me clean and said, "you will make a good wife."

    When an elderly female family member found out that I was going into another graduate school program she didn't like it and asked "Can you be unselfish for just one year?"
    Step into my metaphysical room of mirrors.
    Fear of reality creates myopic morality
    So I guess it means there is trouble until the robins come
    (from Blue Velvet)

  7. #227
    Strongly Ambivalent Ivy's Avatar
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    I'll contribute to the original purpose of the thread. I don't have as many stranger stories as others do- being invisible due to not being a conventional beauty has its benefits, I guess. Many of mine come from my family, whom I love dearly and who I think have learned better over the years (in part because I spoke earnestly to them about how the treatment felt and affected me).

    When I was about 9 my parents joined a church and were told that I would have to stop wearing pants and shorts because they were immodest, and stop cutting my hair because.. I don't really know why. While I had to wear long skirts and dresses (for which I was pretty mercilessly teased by classmates) even in the hottest weather, my brother continued to wear whatever he wanted to wear and cut his hair as usual. He was also allowed to swim- I wasn't allowed to wear bathing suits or even shorts in the water.

    This same church sent clear messages to young women that their role as adults would be as keepers at home, submitted to a husband who would be her "go-between" to God. I was encouraged to go to college to be more interesting to my future husband, not to learn skills that would help me be an independent adult. Boys were given corresponding messages that they would be expected to be the head of their household and responsible for the actions of everyone in it, including their wives. It was a lot of pressure to put on the girls and the boys- sexism doesn't just affect women.

    As a teen my brother was allowed to stay out late and do normal teen things (and some not-so-normal more risky things, like drive a motorcycle soon after he got his license), but I wasn't. My dad told me I would understand when I had a daughter. (I don't- I think my son deserves the same protection my daughter gets, and she deserves the same freedom her brother gets.)

    A male friend in college told me I was great for him, because I wasn't hot enough to be intimidating so he could practice on me and then be more comfortable with hot girls. (For the record I was not hideous in college. The fact that I feel the need to point that out is also an effect of living in a sexist society.)

    Right after I got married we spent our first year together living in NYC. Most of my stranger stories come from that time. I've just never encountered as many strangers anywhere else. Even I got comments there. No seats on the bus-- some old lecher pats his lap and says "You can sit here." And erections in my back on the subway- this happened a minimum of once a month. Apparently subway grinding is a popular pastime, and it always happens when it's so crowded that you can't easily get away. It actually happened more when I was pregnant, after I started showing.

    We moved back to NC to have our daughter. I started making friends with other moms. The judgment and derision was breathtaking. For some reason mothers love voting each other off the island. I was judged for nursing my older daughter too long (she self-weaned at 3), and for not nursing my son long enough (I weaned him at 2). But specifically sexist stuff- one story stands out. I had this mom friend when our first babies were just a few months old, and we got together to break up the monotony of life with babies. I had a daughter, she had a son. She made sexual comments about her infant son and my infant daughter. Things like saying to my daughter, "you know you want it" when he would pull her hair or bite her. I told her it made me uncomfortable and she said I was repressed.

    I was a childcare provider for my daughter's early years, and for a year after her brother was born. That meant we didn't need outside childcare ourselves which saved us money and was a good setup as long as it was satisfying for me. But then it wasn't, so I found work in my field of study. My husband's boss at the time complained that he now had to take time off to take our kids to appointments to share the load with me- said Noah was being indulgent and should "put his foot down."

    I played roller derby last year and the year before. It was strenuous and challenging- one of the hardest and most fun things I've ever done. The sport and the athletes who play it are constantly reduced to "hot girls beating each other up on skates" (that's not really how it works). I was the PR/Marketing committee head for my league and we were constantly being invited to do things like spaghetti wrestling, jello wrestling, blood wrestling, and things like that (I did not want the league to get that kind of reputation so I always turned these down and sought out events where the athletes would be taken seriously). Occasionally, some other more normal event would take on a creepier vibe as we got closer. Things like the event coordinator would say "can you send over some headshots so we can pick the girls we want to be there." I wasn't going to allow my friends to be objectified on my watch, so I declined requests like that, too.

    I could go on but I should probably work at some point today.

  8. #228
    Analytical Dreamer Coriolis's Avatar
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    A few more examples, in the spirit of the OP:

    When I was in middle school, I wanted to be on the stage crew at school - the group that did lighting and set changes for school shows and assemblies. The oldest, most experienced boy on the crew told me girls weren't allowed. I went to the teacher in charge and complained. Then I was on stage crew, too.

    When I was in 8th grade, I had to take wood shop. Everyone had to take both shop and home-ec. My father had already taught me how to use hand tools and make simple things, so I knew what I was doing. Some of the boys were resentful of a girl being better at shop than they were, and tried to sabotage my project. I was able to fix it, and still get a better grade than they did.

    When I was in grad school, we took delivery of a piece of custom equipment from Russia. A few weeks later, the engineer who built it came to set it up and train us on its use. At the time, everyone in my group was female except the professor. When he introduced us, the visitor asked, "aren't there any men students I can work with?" The professor told him no, we were his group, and he would need to train us. The visitor then pointed out that it took physical strength to tighten some of the fixtures on the apparatus properly. The most experienced woman in our group then pointed out that the Japanese versions of this equipment did not require much physical strength - obviously a superior design. That was the end of that (and, by the way, how such encounters should be handled).
    I've been called a criminal, a terrorist, and a threat to the known universe. But everything you were told is a lie. The truth is, they've taken our freedom, our home, and our future. The time has come for all humanity to take a stand...

  9. #229

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    Honestly Nij, the objections of Gish and Lateralus here seem to underscore your point pretty well. I would like to contribute once my son is down for a nap, haha.
    "The purpose of life is to be defeated by greater and greater things." - Rainer Maria Rilke

  10. #230
    Vulnerability Eilonwy's Avatar
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    Since the title of the thread doesn't say that this is limited to sexism against women, I think that men should also post examples of when they have encountered sexism. A few general examples that I can think of is that men are told that certain professions aren't manly enough, such as nursing. Derogatory comments might be made about their height, weight, or physique, too. Choosing to stay at home and raise the kids is still not completely acceptable. We need to make the mindset visible from all sides.
    Johari / Nohari

    “That we are capable only of being what we are remains our unforgivable sin.” ― Gene Wolfe

    reminder to self: "That YOU that you are so proud of is a story woven together by your interpreter module to account for as much of your behavior as it can incorporate, and it denies or rationalizes the rest." "Who's in Charge? Free Will and the Science of the Brain" by Michael S. Gazzaniga

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