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Young girls are told that how they look and how sexually accessible they are to men are more important than their education when they are repeatedly being sent home from school for daring to wear shorts and tank tops (read: weather appropriate clothes) because their bodies are “distracting” to boys.
Women are taught to be shameful of every stray hair, stretch mark, blemish, cellulite, freckle and embarrassed of their arm fat, flat butt, wide butt, itty bitty titties that need extra padding in our push-up bras or big-ass titties that fall out of every flimsy top and need to be covered up immediately because patriarchy dictates how female bodies are viewed, what they are best for, and how they best serve men.
This sexist and dehumanizing mentality is reproduced daily in things that people deem normal or trivial.
You don’t have to be well-versed in feminist theory to confront someone on behavior that makes you uncomfortable.
Allies should be willing to educate themselves on issues as well; marginalized people are not walking encyclopedias of oppression for people to demand information from.
When it comes to being an ally, respect is just as important as recognizing all the terrible ways people are marginalized in society.
And part of respect in a relationship is acknowledging your partner’s feelings, earnestly engaging with their ideas, and creating a culture where everyone involved feels secure in speaking up for themselves. ”) This was awkward at first, but I’ve grown to appreciate my friend’s willingness to respect other people’s boundaries and make an effort to give others full autonomy over messages received about their appearance.
Sadly, women and those perceived as women are still being commodified, picked apart, and scrutinized by body parts.
And most of us are so accustomed to being told that our bodies must always be accessible to the sexualized viewing pleasure of men that, like in the case of our reader, we second guess and question the validity of our own discomfort when faced with this type of objectification.And if they’re truly an ally, they should be actively working toward a better understanding of the marginalization that people face – even if it’s something as seemingly trivial as being really into boobs.The reader mentioned in her question that she didn’t feel well equipped to call out their husband about his comments on breasts, and that’s perfectly fine.This is where I forget I’m writing this for a mass audience, smack my forehead, and think, “Come on, bro.” If you only take one thing away from this piece it should be this: If what you do makes another person, especially an intimate partner, uncomfortable, you should stop. That is more than enough reason for the husband to reevaluate his actions.No one should feel uncomfortable or unsafe in a relationship.It seems like normal behavior for men to “appreciate” “women’s bodies,” but not for its functional purposes.