How to be a Woman

May 2008

How to be a Woman. Quite a list of offerings. Discuss away.

Fraser commented:

Well, going by that list, I guess I want to be a woman. I've already Got to Know My Authentic Self, Owned My Power, Found My Voice and My Tribe; I Practice Self-Care (involves drinking wine, cooking, playing guitar or some combination of the three) and Express my Creative Side. I'm quite interested in Embracing Conscious Sexuality, Being Beautiful, Keeping My Heart Open and Being Wise, too. So I suppose I have to declare along with Eddie Izzard that "I'm a lesbian trapped in a man's body"!

Also, I can imagine the "Suit you, Sir!" tailors quoting #7.

Matt commented:

Ooh, suit you, Sir!

It's interesting, I think, that there's nothing that I find particularly controversial or offensive in any of these. Compare that to some of the 'man' attributes, which were edging pretty close to 'be a huge uncompromising jerk, it's what men are all about.' Just an interesting contrast, I feel.

(‘Keep your heart open’ is mighty challenging, though.)

Kelly commented:

I agreed with pretty much everything on that list, but it made me feel a bit like I had been undergoing centuries of oppression! I guess just the fact that so many of those things needed to be articulated when it seemed to be just a pretty good list of ‘how to be a fully functioning human being’… you know, not a doormat or a victim. It struck me that the guys list (which I also had issues with!) seemed so energetic and proactive, while the girls list is so ‘how to survive normal life and human interactions’. It all seemed a bit fluffy and weepy and girl power. Hrrrmmm.

KT commented:

Yeah, disappointing. The list seemed a bit shallow to me. Highly defensive - more like how to be a woman in our society without being criticised for being old-fashioned. Nothing particularly courageous about it, I doubt it would work cross-culturally, and it didn't resonate very much with my experience of being a woman, except for keeping your heart open and the wisdom part. I hate it when women think that it's our job to prove that we're as good as men and ain't gonna take no crap from them, and that's success. I'd rather be myself and do something pro-active in the sphere to which I feel called.

My sister and I have had some great talks about womanhood over the years, and especially while I was at home last week, and have what seems to me a much richer vision. Maybe I'll see if the two of us can put together a post on it.

KT commented:

Of the submissions I've read though, this one was my favourite.

(minus the lame 'goddess' stuff. i'd rather be a person thanks.)

Summary: "A goddess needs no man, yet chooses a companion. A goddess is strong, both demanding and yielding. A goddess inspires all to be better, do better, and love better. A goddess doesn’t conquer because she encompasses. A goddess embraces truth in all things. A goddess is dynamic in heart, movement, and nature. A goddess is love, and does so with an open heart."