Gender: The Myth

“I think we’re struggling with trying redefine various positions at this point. To allow freedom for women, freedom for men, freedom from those sharply defined gender roles.” – Fred Ward

Gender, what a strange concept it is. Socially constructed to keep people in small little boxes and control them by criticizing them whenever they don’t fit a stereotype. A girl is a person with a vagina, and having that vagina automatically means they will love makeup, dresses, shopping, pink, barbies, and want to have babies. A boy is a person with a penis, and having that penis means they automatically love blue, cars, fixing things, breaking things, violence, guns, and being in control of everything. What wonderful stereotypes they are right!?!

Who even came up with these things?

Gender is a myth.

Woah what an even stranger concept right?!?

Here’s thing. How can gender be a recognized concept world-wide when each culture has a different social expectations of the sexes? And when those expectations change so dramatically over the years. After all, in the 12 & 13th century is was common for men to wear dresses in European countries. Now, it is highly frowned upon and thought of as solely feminine attire.

And it seems we have been attempting to become more and more separated by gender. It seems some people think that these gender roles and stereotypes are ancient, but let’s move forward from this inaccurate belief.

Why is our species so insistent on pushing and forcing these gender roles when we have watched other species deny or defy our beliefs of male and female? In my opinion, it makes us look even more primitive and anomalistic than other animals.

Hunting, being the bread earner. Those are things we relate to being male qualities, so much so that it can be harmful for a man’s ego and emotions if he believes he cannot provide for his family (trust me I get it, everyone should want to provide for their family). But, lions, the kings of the jungles, let the lioness do the hunting. The only time the lion hunts is if the lioness don’t give him food or it’s a bigger kill he wants.

Raising the child is seen as a female job to us. But, the male penguin sits with the egg while the mother hunts and feasts.

Here’s an article you should check out for more on animals deviating from what we believe to be male or female.

We seem to be the only species that has such highly varied stereotypes and enforce them so strictly. Our ideas of masculinity and femininity doesn’t apply to any animal but us. Yet, we shame those who do not fit the gender roles. We are quick to judge a man who can not provide for his family. Let’s not even mention a woman who isn’t interested in having children because how selfish is that right? To push motherhood onto a woman who does not believe they are fit to be a mother, do not posses the want to have a child, and is not harming anyone by not having a kid; that’s just the right thing to do because that woman is so selfish.

So why then, do so many people find it “natural” that we make these distinctions and enforce them so strictly?

Gender is a myth. It’s a social concept that so many people use to control their lives and their actions so as to not stand out in society. It’s a concept that is different from culture to culture and has dramatically changed over the years. It, to so many people, is about what you like and how you act, but you are expected to like certain things and act certain ways based on genitalia. It controls people based on stereotypes that no one truly, one hundred percent, fits. And it’s supposedly determined at birth based on something a doctor sees between your legs. “Oh this one has a penis, he will love blue, football, and monster trucks.”

For so many people, it’s a black and white concept, as if we haven’t learned enough that nothing is ever black and white, wrong or right. There is always gray areas.

In conclusion, fuck gender. Just do you.

A version of this was previously seen on Courtney’s Voice

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