Earlier this week, movie and television actor Jennifer Aniston published an article in the Huffington Post.
Fed up with the way she and every other woman in America (and around the world) is treated, she did not hesitate to call out the double standards that women are forced to live with every day.
Thank you, Jennifer Aniston.
The problem is that this double standard is ingrained in our culture. Whether it is the pressure to look a certain way, the pressure to conform to a certain lifestyle or even the idea that we are still defined by our looks as opposed to our achievements or intelligence, women (and I include myself in this statement) live subconsciously via this double standard.
Who came blame us? For an untold number of generations, women have been denied the right to an education, to a career and to self determine the course of their life. Marriage and children was and still is the goal. In some parts of the world today, young girls are sold in the name of marriage to men who are sometimes twice or three times their age. They are nothing more than housekeepers and sex slaves.
Even in first world countries, where women have achieved what was impossible only a few generations ago, we are still force fed the idea that we are incomplete until we have a ring on our finger and a child on our hip. Not that marriage and children is completely outmoded, but that is not the goal for every woman and we should not be forced to live a one size fits all life.
While we have come very far in only a few generations, we still have a long way to go.
I’m going to end this post with a quote from Persuasion. It feels as true today as it did when Jane Austen wrote it.
“I do not think I ever opened a book in my life which had not something to say upon woman’s inconstancy. Songs and proverbs, all talk of woman’s fickleness. But perhaps you will say, these were all written by men.”
“Perhaps I shall. Yes, yes, if you please, no reference to examples in books. Men have had every advantage of us in telling their own story. Education has been theirs in so much higher a degree; the pen has been in their hands. I will not allow books to prove anything.”
Have a nice weekend.