"Why did you colour your hair pink, when Mia coloured it blue?" they asked me.
"Because I like pink and Mia likes blue," I answered, though I thought it was pretty obvious.
"You like pink?" they asked in disbelief.
"Yeah, I like pink a lot!"
"Ew, gross. That's so girly."
Welcome, dear reader, to my rant. I don't complain an awful lot, but when I do, it's for a reason. So let me start complaining!
"I'm not like other girls. I'd have two big burgers and get fat rather than count every calorie that I consume."
Okay, first of all, that is such a toxic and senseless quote.
Who doesn't want to eat burgers like there's no tomorrow? And what are you trying to achieve by saying this quote?
"Oh, you other girls can go to the club. I'd rather stay here with my pizza and Netflix."
Not all girls spend their nights at clubs. And even if they do, what is wrong with that? Is it wrong for a girl to go out to the club, spend time there and have fun? Why are girls being downgraded on the fact that they go to clubs? Are guys being downgraded because they go to clubs? And what is it with every quote having a "burger" or "pizza" reference?
Liking food is not a personality trait. A vast majority of the people in the world like food. You being a girl and saying that you like food does not set you apart from the rest of the people in the world. And watching movies on Netflix; you're not the only one who does it. Netflix is a huge streaming service that is extremely successful. Do you honestly believe that being one of the users of this streaming service makes you special?
Also, it is not necessary to bring down others for paving your way up. Do not bring down other girls or wrongly categorize them to differentiate yourself. These kinds of quotes tell the reader that their gender is bad but they're good because they're unlike the aforementioned "vast majority". Being is a girl is neither bad nor good. It is not something to be categorized. Being a girl is being a girl and being different from a certain set of girls does not make you special in any way.
Especially when it comes to trivial matters like eating food. Who says that all girls count their calories? I don't. Neither do my friends. In fact, we enjoy sitting on the couch and stuffing food into our mouth as much as the guy next door. But that does not set us apart in any way nor does it make us better than the rest of the girls out there.
This is the kind of hypocrisy that leads to gender discrimination.
I have heard coaches and teachers say phrases like, "Run faster! Stop running like a girl".
This makes people perceive the notion that girls can't run or play sports, whereas, in reality, that is not true at all. Girls are as capable as boys in every arena. I have heard many people say that it's a scientifically proven fact that boys are stronger than girls due to greater muscle-mass or upper body strength. While that may be true, it doesn't make girls incompetent in any way.
"Man up! Stop crying like girls."
Does this even require an explanation? I hate to break it to whoever uses the above quote, but girls don't always cry. And if they do, they may or may not have a good reason to do so and that is totally fine. Why is it your problem if someone cries? It's not. So stop acting like it is.
"You're cool because you're not like most girls!"
What is that even supposed to mean?! What do people define these "most girls" as?
Do they wear lipstick every day? Have a diet, hang out with guys, go to clubs, party often and have a lot of followers on Instagram? Well, they seem extremely cool!
Or are they introverted and like to hang out by themselves? Do they have messy hair, wear sweatpants all day, have a huge bookshelf instead of a social media account and rarely go out? Because they seem extremely cool too!
Why is there a certain bracket of girls you have to fit into to come off as cool and fun to hang out with? Can't I like wearing lipstick and enjoy reading books? Can't I party often and still like to spend time by myself? Can't I wear pink and still talk about topics like sports and politics? Can't I be a girl and be whoever I am, without having to worry about what people think of girls in general?
As a society, we've normalized the idea that girls are mindless machines, who's only personality traits are makeup and liking boys, so much that people think that disliking these things makes you special. Disliking make up does not make you special; neither does liking make up. Quit acting or believing that being feminine or "girly" is a bad thing. Human beings are not stereotypes so get rid of this internalized misogyny that you have.
"I'm not like other girls". What is wrong with other girls?
When did "girls" become such a narrow spectrum? There are girls who start their own makeup brands and there are girls who design their own video games. There are girls who sell their designer clothes and there are girls who do stunts for a living. I wouldn't call any of them "less feminine" or "unusual".
Hailee Steinfeld says it best in her song "Most Girls", in which she sings about how she wants to be like most girls, because "most girls" are strong, smart and unstoppable. They can have their own personality traits, and still, be who they are.
So to the girls who think that colouring your hair pink makes you less cool, you all need a reality check.
Phew! Okay, getting all that out made me feel a lot better. It is time that we all see gender as a spectrum instead of two sets of opposing ideals.
Thank you, for reading till here, and have a nice day!