Patriarchy is unfolding under the notion that women are ‘less-than’ and should be treated accordingly. However, if it had a structured plan, women hating other women would be one of its phases and women exploiting other women would be another. A committee somewhere would gather, each of the members would rub their palms together, laugh evil laughs, and say that the plan is working.
All the horrible messages we get (that we’re dumb, only our bodies matter, we’re not worth the same pay as men in jobs, we get hit sometimes when we misbehave, we’re sluts, or skanks, or hoes, or prudes…. we could go on for days), all the disturbing images of ourselves in the media (of dead women, airbrushed women, objectified women, sexualized women…), it’s like someone threw all that in a bowl and baked a cake out of it. Then they said, want some cake. First we were like, ‘Umm, no thank you.’ But they insisted. Have some cake, or I’ll hit you, or I’ll rape you. Or, or, or…..
We had to eat the cake and we have swallowed those messages about women. We all have- women and men. But for women, it means that we believe all those messages about other women and also about ourselves.
That’s why we are okay with what has been a somewhat gradual introduction and use of the word “bitch” in the media. When I was growing up, I would have gotten in trouble for saying bitch, but now it’s on TV.
The other day, in the complex where I live, I was taking the trash out and heard a 10 year old (or so) boy yell at a girl his age, “Shut up you stupid bitch. You’re a stupid bitch.” I was a little bit of a distance away, so if she said something back to him, I didn’t hear it and she certainly wasn’t as loud as him. I yelled to him, “That is inappropriate language in this parking lot.” It just came out. I was pissed. But why did I say it was inappropriate for the “parking lot?” I was so annoyed with myself for tacking that on there, but it’s what came out. It’s not appropriate language anywhere and it is definitely not appropriate to yell at a girl or a woman, or anyone. But the message was clear to that little guy, it’s okay to take your anger out on girls and women. Boys get that and girls get that. Women believe it. We can’t help it, they made us eat the cake. Now it’s time to spit it out!
Young women get in fights all the time, often over guys, but even women fighting each other has been eroticized. Cat fight! people yell. It has become a sexy attraction to see women fight each other. Young women know that and already hate other women and themselves. So they fight. The patriarchy committee would be pleased.
Women don’t like other women for whatever reason and they call them bitches. The media does that. women say they don’t like to hang out with other women because women are catty. That’s the divisiveness that the patriarchy breeds. Women can get along and work together and feel good about ourselves around each other.
This blog is to work toward stopping patriarchy and to begin to imagine a new world in which violence against women is unacceptable and in which women are respected in all areas of life. There are many angles to come at this with and to fight the system. Come at it how you will, but women, we have to unite. Cut the bull. This is about changing the world for us.
This is The Grrl Code:
-To encourage people identifying as women to believe we are valuable enough in our own selves to value other women.
– To work to raise each other and ourselves up rather than defeat ourselves.
– To encourage us to promote each others successes, thoughts, ideas, beliefs, and voices, as important, strong, deserving of respect, and necessary.
– To urge women to come together in every interaction with other women, in all communication with other women, and in ways we speak about and work with women to make change that will allow us all to be stronger people in who we are and afford us more possibilities and options in the world.
Patriarchy hurts women, it stacks the odds against us, but it also hurts men. It isn’t something men do. It’s the way the systems we live in are set up and we learn from those systems of society, government, religion… It hurts us all.
In a matrifocal society, women are considered, respected, and honored by everyone. We need to work toward this. To change the system in place, women have to unite. We have to stop hating each other. Patriarchy pits women against each other.
So, this blog is for everyone, but The Grrl Code is geared toward women to come together to see how we can change our situation in the big crazy world. I will add Grrl Code notes at the end of blog posts. They may not be there every blog, but I will post them, so keep an eye out.
Women in solidarity. Women working together to make change. We are awesome- we can change the world. Our lives depend on it.