Accepting and Supporting Others :: Open Story Time11:26 AM
Not going to lie: I've had a shit start to my day. At the time I'm writing this, I've been up for over 3 hours and I still haven't had anything to eat. Staying at my boyfriend's place always messes up my schedule for the day. He lives with a bunch of other guys who aren't nearly as clean as him and the place is always a dirty, messy disaster. It's just not a nice way to start your day. Being really hungry is never pleasant too, but I'm tied to my desk and waiting for an instrument to finish calibrating. What can you do?
But my crappy mood as inspired me to open up and talk about something that bothered me a few weeks ago and something that is related to a consistent problem that I've had. I have a feeling that almost every person who will read this will completely relate (and probably have worse stories than mine). And that's exactly why I wanted to publicly talk about it.
I'm a huge Game of Thrones/Song of Ice and Fire fan. Naturally, two friends (both guys who we'll call Friend A and Friend B) and I set up a premiere party, using my official A Song of Fire and Ice cookbook. We planned a menu and decided to do it at Friend A's place because his roommates wanted to contribute and invite a few people over. I was excited because meeting friends in your 20s can suck sometimes. My boyfriend and I walked in with our meal contributions, including a bottle of my homemade German mulled wine from an old family recipe. We're talking the real deal here, people. Right off the bat, there was a coldness by the rest of the group. I helped Friend A a little in the kitchen and then sat down next to Friend B.
One of the two other girls in the room mention that another girl is on her way with red wine to make mulled wine. Of course, I jump in and say "Oh I brought a bottle of mine. It's an old recipe. You guys can have some so you can save the wine for the next episode if you want!" The girls look at me like I've suggested that they should go get their heads shaved and then said, "I don't think you understand. We're making spiced, mulled wine." And then they pulled out their recipe and starting reading out to the guy sitting next to them. Friend B immediately looked at me with that classic "Uh... What...?"
After than I started talking to one of the guys, discussing our theories for the first episode. But the second my boyfriend sat down with me and it became a little more obvious that I was with him, all conversation completely stopped to that point that if I asked him a question or said anything, he ignored me.
The real last straw was when my boyfriend made some joke about how hot one of the characters was and I said to him in my sassiest, silliest tone, "Boy, you better watch out or you gonna have to find a new girlfriend." Friend A, Friend B, and boyfriend laughed because it was very obviously a joke. One of the girls who decided she extra-hated me goes, "Oh my gosh, he can just use the Internet. It's not that hard." My friends and boyfriend were completely taken aback and I decided that I would keep everything I said to a minimum or only say it to the people I knew. But even then, if either of the girls overheard it, they would take it and make a mean comment about it.
Now, I get it. Obviously these were just mean girls. I don't want to be their friends. But it got me thinking: why do I always have problems with girls? It spurred a "discussion" with my boyfriend where I essentially boiled down that I'm an extremely confident person, I have a "masculine energy" for lack of better term, and, well, I'm pretty (please take that as modestly as possible. I've noticed that I have gotten into the habit of severely toning myself down when I enter a room with women I don't know and that when I know that women I don't know are going to be present at a gathering of any sort, I will wear less makeup, not do anything much to my hair, and dress a little more "frumpy" than I usually do.
I tend to get along with men just fine unless they are actively pursuing me (as noted in my story). I'm an engineer and a scientist. I've always worked with men and gone to a school where I was the only female in 90% of my classes. I think that I've always been a bit of strong, opinionated leader. I know who I am and I always have. I guess in the "gender scale," I identify as a woman, but have very masculine characteristics that women still haven't completely accepted.
But why is confidence so negative with women? Especially "nerdy" women? Women around the world are starting to get angry about everything shitty that comes with being a woman (sexism, social expectations, image issues, etc.). But why are we women not trying to fight woman-on-woman "violence?" We're focusing so much on accepting ourselves that we're forgetting that to accept others for who they are and for the journey they've experienced.
Most of the people I've interacted with in blogging have been strong women (whether they think so or not) with beautiful personalities and who are open about their insecurities (this is an incredible piece that goes into privacy while being an OOTD post by HEY BASH). And I feel like a lot of you have experienced something like this, too.