I usually avoid the political world on my blog, but I read something today that left me rather disturbed. Did you know that The Boy Scouts of America will start accepting girls next year? I know as a woman in this era, I should be celebrating another step in gender equality, but I am left simply shaking my head.
It would probably be a good idea to give you a little of my background so you understand where I am coming from. I am a full blooded tomboy. I have always hung out with the guys. I played sports with them. I have always felt accepted and respected in the guy arena.
But, I always knew one thing. I was not them. I am a girl. I have different characteristics. I am more gentle, nurturing, and emotional than they are. Even so, I always felt valued. I did not have to be exactly like them to be one of them.
Our world seems to want to push the notion that girls are the same as men. We are equal in all areas. To say that a man excels in certain aspects more than a woman is considered sexist. I think this does a great disservice to our society.
Guys and girls are different. We are two halves that create a whole. We need the more gentle, nurturing, emotional nature of women to balance out the rougher side of guys. There is much girls offer that guys usually don’t. Instead of celebrating this diversity, we teach our girls to strive to be just like the men.
This is a mindset that has frustrated me for years. I always craved being a stay-at-home mom. I did not want a career outside of the home. Far more than I ever felt judged for being a tomboy, I feel criticized for that decision. But, the judgement is not from guys disrespecting that choice, but rather girls who feel stay-at-home moms set back our society.
Instead of pushing girls to be like the guys, why don’t we start commending women who display the more stereo-typical aspects of women. Our worth is not to be judged by how well we measure up in a man’s world, but how we measure up in our own personal world. Telling women that they need to suppress their nature in order to succeed robs them of incorporating their whole self into their identity.
I was always led to believe I could do anything I put my mind to, but to also accept that it might not be what society thinks is right. In a way, I am my own feminist fighting for women to be women, including those who want to honor feminine traits instead of fighting our way through a man’s world.
I have Little Flower. I worry about what the world will teach her about her value. I will protect her from outside pressures to the best of any mother’s ability. She is a girly-girl. (I often joke that she is evidence that God has a sense of humor given how much of a tomboy I am!) I will show her how to respect herself for who she is and the interests she has, not what the world wants to tell her she should have. She is very nurturing by nature and loves taking care of her dolls as a mother would care for a child. It is so inborn that sometimes I watch her in awe. I hope she never feels pressure to change that about herself.
We don’t need The Boy Scouts of America to show us how to be women. We don’t need to be taught how to be more like the guys or how to compete with them. We need to respect girls as separate, but equally special. We have our role in this world. It is time to accept it and stop trying to be something we are not. We are women. That is honorable in and of itself.