Sunday, March 17th, 2013

I’M A LOUSY FEMINIST

I didn’t used to be.
I was never strident but I was vociferous and active in correcting inequalities of gender.
From minor to major.

I insisted on using the men’s bathroom in the law school my then husband attended.  The women’s was waaaaay far away in the basement.
I did make coffee for meetings with my all male colleagues but made sure they knew it came from my hospitality gene and was not a gender assigned role.
I wrote letters all the way to the top of a Fortune 500 company when asked in an interview what my plans were to have a baby.
I pointed out inequalities and blind spots right and left.
Always with good humor making sure not to push the delicate equilibrium of power out of tolerance into rejection.
I always carried my own luggage on business trips with my male colleagues.
Still the Chairman of the Board only asked me about the room temperature or the quality of the sandwiches in Board meetings.

I think the insidiousness of “good enough” did me in.
My husband was “good enough” with sharing of house and kid tasks.
My salary was more than “good enough” but not quite what a man in the role would have gotten.
My self expression and sense of self was “good enough” too.  I didn’t have to kill it or over protect it to get ahead.  “Good enough” but not all it could be.

It takes discomfort to be a feminist.  Pain and Irritation.  Enough irritation to make action more comfortable than inaction.  “Good enough” is the opium of women.

I am mulling on my own behaviour and values on being a declared feminist.  Time to recalibrate.
“Good enough” isn’t.

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