“You’re like a girl!”, “That’s so girly!”
Men say it to other men, women say it to men. But when women say it to other women? Is it a compliment or a mockery?
This 2015 superbowl commercial by brand Always #LikeAGirl video comes to mind. It really struck me because I even say this to myself when…
I’m too sweet and kind because apparently I’d rather be sourly and strict.
I cry because apparently I’d rather be tough.
I’m too pink because apparently I’d rather wear all black.
I’m too colorful and bright because apparently you should be a minimalist.
But does being sweet and kind mean you’re weak? Doesn’t that just mean that you have sympathy, which honestly is what the world needs? Indifference is dangerous. Young girls cry because they feel the pain of others, the loneliness of a stray animal. To cry is to feel and to feel is to be human. Suppressing it either makes you explode one way or another, or just make you feel less and less, until you just don’t care.
The thing about designating colors is that it’s cultural, it’s man made. “In the 18th century, it was perfectly masculine for a man to wear a pink silk suit with floral embroidery” according to fashion scholar Valerie Steele, director of The Museum at the Fashion Institute Technology and author of several books on fashion. Heck, just wear any color you want. Designate feelings and moods to colors, but maybe not to sex or gender. Wear black or be a minimalist because you believe in having less but quality stuff, not because you think being colorful makes you look ‘girly’.
Girls are genuinely human for being sweet and kind. Girls are strong for letting themselves feel emotions and accept whatever the result of that is, even if it’s crying. Girls are brave for wearing whatever color they want, honest for expressing themselves. So everyone, this International Women’s Day, let’s all be like a girl.