Unveiling the Feminist

Before I begin, I want to thank all of you for your support in my most recent announcement.  It’s difficult being on Progesterone and being pregnant–it means I’m a million times more emotional than the normal pregnant woman.  Until I have my next appointment, I will continue to feel elated, confused, and sad within a few minutes, every hour of every day.  And I’m okay with that.

Growing up, “feminism” was considered a dirty word in our home. My mother severely resented the movement and all it represented; unfortunately,  at that period, her resentment is completely understandable–the movement often criticized, shamed, and demeaned women who chose to stay at home.

When I came to college, I was prepared to throw my own criticisms toward any person who brought up feminism.  I knew I wanted a husband, kids, and to stay-at-home. I studied feminist literature; this confirmed my suspicions that the movement was only about “free” sex, reproductive, i.e. abortion, rights, and finding fulfillment outside the home via an occupation.

Ironically enough, once I graduated and fully settled into stay-at-home motherhood, I took another peek into the feminist world;  after even more research and much thought, I did a complete turn-around.  Like many movements, I recognized that feminism has its extremes but the main tenet is to help women reach their highest potential–something I fully agree with.

The change I underwent is rather complicated, as our my personal views on feminism.  To summarize, briefly, I believe in empowering all women to make the best choices for them.  I also believe that we, as women, must accept the consequences to the choices we make–even if we feel those choices are our right.

Over the next few months (or even years), I hope to unravel my feelings toward feminism.  I also desire that each of you chime in with your own insightful thoughts and opinions; remember, this is a community, a safe place to share how we all think.

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12 Comments

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12 responses to “Unveiling the Feminist

  1. I fully support any woman who chooses to do whatever works for her – whether that be staying home or working instead. Because I know that being a stay-at-home mom is harder than any job, and some days I'd rather be working someplace else, too!

    So I see both sides. I'm interested to see your views, as you write about them.

  2. Tay

    I'm a Mormon Feminist. 🙂 It's mostly just like 'I will clean and cook for you gladly, but as soon as it's expected or demanded of me, I'm done.' Stuff like that. I think it's because my dad was so stifling to my mother's creative personality that I refuse to give myself up to appease others.

  3. I'm not a huge fan of most soap boxes – it seems like once you're up high you forget to help others and just hurl cruelty. This is my experience with extreme feminism and the opposite. However, I do believe that women have deep and meaningful power and recognizing that is essential. And I firmly believe that women should be able to choose their profession free from abuse and with equal compensation.

  4. d

    I, like you, have mixed views on the subject. On the one hand, I believe in wives being in subjection to their husbands — of course, in a balanced loving way — on the other hand, I think that women should be able to make the same choices men make… but, they need to take responsibility for their choices.
    For example, in cases where circumstances don't require the woman to work full-time to help out with the finances, and a mother chooses to work anyways – that is her choice and she should take responsibility for it and not whine about not spending time with her children. It was a choice she made, to pursue full-time work – and while I think that's a perfectly valid choice – you can't spend your free time bemoaning your decision.

  5. Feminism of the 70s and 80s has done some growing up and maturing. I think any smart feminist nowadays would not dare to be too condescending to at-home moms, knowing they are a force for good and a band of sisters!

  6. My personal definition of feminism is just supporting women in their choices and allowing them to have a choice. SAHM? Great! Working mom? Awesome!

  7. This is a very exciting topic to hear you explore, Amber! I've been a feminist for years but at times have been turned off by the more radical elements in it, like from the elements who seem to indicate that you have to be anti-men or not heterosexual. I've ignored all that, though, knowing that, at it's core, feminism just means that I believe that, as a woman, I can be all I can be, and that all opportunities should be available to me, and I will say, I've ended up with a very strong-minded daughter from this philosophy. Almost too much so… 🙂

  8. I was a super-feminist when I was in college, and when I started becoming more religiously observant, I swung to the other extreme of deriding anything even remotely "tainted" by feminism. Now I have come to somewhere in the middle, where I recognize that each woman has her own calling, and I appreciate that we live in a country where a woman can choose to stay home with her family or go out in the workforce. It's a freedom that many women in the world do not have.

  9. This is such a huge and complex issue – and there is little clearcut about any of it – including for those of us (dare I admit to it) who are old enough to have been part of the heady (and naive) days of the "women's movement."

    Like Linda, I look forward to your exploring the subject matter.

  10. I agree with Linda–feminism has grown up, I think. I don't think it's as much about man-bashing as it used to be. I think it's more about trying to be our best selves and offer support. I'm excited about your news (!) and thinking of you.

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