I keep noticing this trend where people post things about how wild and crazy and impetuous and fragile women are, and how proud and unapologetic we are of being that way. Sort of like Manic Pixie Dream Girl, but I don't see how the people described by these posts are even enjoyable to be around. The only redeeming quality, according to these posts, is that girls "love" you--presumably meaning they'll throw themselves at you, do whatever you want, and never leave if only because you're nice to them. Our only virtue is loyalty and sweetness.
I don't know why other women want to present themselves this way. And I don't want to judge others, but it hurts me, directly and indirectly, when people post these, directly because I don't like seeing myself portrayed this way, and indirectly because it reinforces negative stereotypes. Such as the stereotype that women are inscrutable creatures that are only capable of giving off vague warning signs when something is wrong, and it's the responsibility of a man to use trial and error to try to crack the code, figure out what the problem is, and solve it. Like we're gigapets.
So, okay, let's take them in order. Number 1:
First of all, I am a woman. Not a girl. I'll cop to overreacting, but that's a product of my personality and tendency to anger. I do not take pride in it, and I do not want to do it. I am trying to stop doing it. I don't even know what it means about overestimating and underestimating. Maybe "lol chicks can't do math or plan"? I don't over-think things. I think exactly as much as I want to think. Sure, I dream big, but I prefer to characterize myself as accomplishing my big dreams. I don't just sit there and think about them. And yes, I don't lie about love, but I hardly see that that's anything to brag about.
Again, I'm a woman. And this is just stupid. A woman's natural state is not "talking", and women are not bombs that you need to disarm. I am silent a lot, and usually doing none of those things. Six things that I am more likely to be doing when I'm silent:
1. Thinking of and solving math problems.
2. Imagining I'm on a spaceship or a dragon or a horse, saving the world.
3. Planning out my day/week.
Wait a second. All of those are things that people do, not women. Sorry about that, folks, I must have gotten confused. I guess I really am falling apart inside!
Why do some women post these things? Why do we perpetuate a stereotype of ourselves as people who boast about being emotional, fragile, high-maintenance, erratic, PMSing, and childlike? I don't mind if you want to describe yourself in those terms. Just please, don't associate it with some fundamental ideal of femininity. Because it's not, and it shouldn't be, and it's damaging.
Are they just stupid pictures a couple of people posted on facebook? Yes, they are. Are they an example of a larger cultural phenomenon? I think so. Do examples of this phenomenon have an impact on how we see ourselves, how people see us and how we are treated? I believe they do, an assertion which I hope to explore more in an upcoming post about a book I'm finishing up.