The myths are everywhere .. even the mention of the words feminism or feminist can sometimes be enough to inspire both men and women to start spouting cliched “man hater” or “bra burning” comments that are irrelevant and represent only the ignorance of the speaker. The truth about feminismis that is exists, and it exists for the purpose of combating discrimination that affects you. It doesn’t matter who you are, or where you live … sexism does affect you. Yes, discrimination against women affects you if you are a male … if you have a mother, a sister, a daughter, a girlfriend or a wife then you are affected.
The truth about feminism is that people want to pretend that it is unnecessary, they want to close their eyes and say “hey, this is a thing of the past .. women are not discriminated against in this day and age” the sad fact is, that you can close your eyes and say that as many times as you like but that will not make it true. I have heard all the dismissive comments about how women should stop whinging because we already get equal pay etc etc, first of all no we do not get equal pay. Just because you work with a woman who is paid the same amount as you you assume that women all over the world are treated as equals? The “equal pay” comments seem to be a favorite way for some men to degrade the principles and the need for feminism in general.
The truth about feminism is that feminists believe all people deserve equal rights and respect. Women are MUCH more likely to be the victims of violent crime than men are, women are often blamed for the crimes that are committed against them, if you have women in your life that you love do you really want this to continue? In many countries around the world women are punished simply because of the facet that they are women and as such are considered to be lesser human beings. If you would be outraged to see your mother or sister whipped or punished for speaking her mind or raped and then punished because the rape is said to be her own fault, then open your eyes because this is already happening … feminists who fight to prevent these kinds of injustices are fighting for you! This is just the tip of the iceberg .. unfair treatment of wome has been happening for hundreds of years and it extend to almost every aspect of society.
The Truth About Feminism is that it is real and you need it.
If you are looking for any kind of assistance in Australia when you are a woman over the age of thirty, then you are not going to have much luck. This is especially true if you are a Mother and are in some kind of crisis situation. Once you reach a certain age, help gets harder to find. I was recently in a situation where I was attempting to locate a charity run counselling service that I could use … long story, I had remembered another time over ten years ago where I had been faced with a similar situation and a charity had provided me with access to counselling services that helped me a lot.
I am now close to being 40 years old and what I discovered was that there are many charities that provide free counselling services but none of them are aimed at Mothers who are over approximately thirty years old. There are specialised Mens Counselling services, young Mothers groups, family counselling services, groups for gamblers, alcoholics … the list goes on. I’m not saying that services are completely unavailable for people in my situation, however the only support service I could find that offered any assistance at all was a local neighbourhood centre that took four months to get back to me. When they did finally get back to me I was offered a choice between family counselling and counselling for my children. Hello am I nothing??
I don’t mean to judge really, I don’t go around expecting things for free but surely I deserve to be treated as well as younger women, men and children. And why are there so many services aimed at “Young Mothers” if I’m to judge that by the reception I received then I would have to guess that it is because younger Mothers are more likely to have younger children in their care. So taking care of Mothers happens for the purpose of ensuring the welfare of children. This may seem like a harsh assumption, but if these Mother support services are really based on supporting women then why do they disappear as we get older?
If we are going to fight sexism then we need to do it on every level. Older Mothers deal with many stressors as children grow and move on .. this alone can be difficult for some people. Women do not lose their worth as they age. I have seen many acquaintances of mine deal with similar problems, they just can’t seem to be heard when they need to be heard.
I think that this is just a small representation of the sexist attitudes that are evident in Australia today.
Many of these services are government run and if I am a citizen of this country then why am I being overlooked? In order to clarify my point here I would like to compare two well known kinds of support groups that are commonly available …“Young Womens Place” and “Dads in Distress” I would like to point out that Dads in distress does not clarify the age of the Dads that are offered assistance … it’s not “Young Dads in Distress” so why is it that groups aimed at female parents are almost always age related?