Tuesday, July 8, 2008

stong women

The thing about holidays is that you get plenty of time to think and sort through stuff mentally. Having read a few blogs these holidays I realise that I am not the only one thinking.

Vanessa posted about forgiveness which I found really interesting to read and made me go away and think through what she was saying.

Frogdancer is having a very interesting time at the moment dealing with the changes in child support.

And then I get amazed each time I read about Laura's job! (not something that I would be able to do myself!)

So now that I have sent you off every which way I will get to the point of my blog: Strong Women.

Last night I couldn't just drop off to sleep - some of that might be to do with the fact that I had my back manipulated in the afternoon and my back was just settling down again - but I think most of it was to do with the fact that I was thinking through "the strong women that I know."

I am very blessed in the fact that I have had many strong women in my life. I watch what these women do in stressful situations and then wonder if I would do the same.

Now I want to make it clear that I am not talking about aggressive women - I know plenty of them - but I am talking about women who get crap thrown at them then find a way to quietly get on with it and do what needs to be done without too much fuss. Sure they complain (wouldn't be human if they didn't) but they don't spend too much time or energy on the complaints. They spend more time getting on with living with the changed circumstances.

I know that I am a strong woman, particularly in the work environment. I also know that there are times when I just have to stop and have a good cry because I find it too hard. I think many women find this as well but you wouldn't see this in the open.

I was watching telly last night and realised that by and large we are still spending a lot of time viewing stereotypes. When there is a strong woman she is often portrayed as aloof which I know to be so far from the truth it is not funny. Women who are good on the personal level are often as dumb as. Ok they are not the same level of stereotypes as they were 20 years ago - but I am so cross that popular media does not reflect what is truly happening. There are women who are portrayed in the way that they appear in real life - but these women appear in shows that don't trouble the ratings meter. Why?

I also know that concept of feminism has changed greatly (often the older feminists think that it has regressed) and a lot of young women don't find it "sexy" to present themselves as completely capable. Again, why? I personally think that this is a waste. I cannot cope with incompetence in male or female unless the person is psychologically or intellectually unable to make a decision for themselves.

As a teacher I watch young adults sorting out what to do in a situation where they know what they should do and how to act but they are faced with the dilemma of public image. Sometimes you hear "I know...." and other times (especially when there is someone to impress) you hear "what do you think....?"

This is often in the younger teenagers. The older teenagers have generally sorted out a broad place that they want to stand on and are fine tuning the character they are becoming.

To all the strong women I know, "Thank you" for being the role model that you are. We will always need a good role model.


Vanessa said...

You are so right about strong women being a great influence on our lives. There is a definite difference between assertive and aggressive. Assertive women get their needs met while acknowledging the needs/wants of others. Aggressive women tend to be the ones who mow down anyone in their path! I prefer the assertive women for my role models. Great post Widget!

Laura Jane said...

Yep, assertiveness is a great quality in a woman. I'm trying to get better at it. Lately I've been struggling with putting the needs of others first, and not feeling entitled to HAVE time /space / pleasure for myself. Recently however someone was quite condescending to me, and I just went for them quite assertively (with just a tiny bit of aggression i.e. not letting them backpedal) and defended myself from their behaviour. It wasn't pleasant, but "No more Plain Jane" does have a backbone now! She's learning to use it on behalf of herself, not just those in her care.

Thankyou so much for your kind words. I felt most warm reading them. I really appreciate your vote of confidence.

Stomper Girl said...

I love strong women. And I try when I can to be one. Having kids helped me enormously with this.