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An Open Letter from a Bitch

Urban Dictionary definition of “bitch”:

Someone who is inconsiderate and insensitive.  

 

Hi! I’m a bitch!

Yep, you read that right. I am a bitch. I know what you’re probably thinking, “Why would you call yourself a bitch?” Great question! Here’s why I call myself a bitch.

When I was in fifth grade, I loved the show Wizards of Waverly Place. It was my all-time favorite show, mostly because I liked the main character, Alex Russo. Alex was this high school student who didn’t care about anything. She lived life the way she wanted to. So, I decided that, when I got to middle school, I wanted to be exactly like Alex Russo.

When I finally got to middle school, I started my pursuit to be like Alex. I went to school, talked to everyone, and acted the way I wanted to. I wasn’t a delinquent or a troublemaker. I was just a 12-year-old who accepted myself. Looking back on it, it was probably the most confident I have ever been in my life.

It was the middle of 7th grade when I was first called a bitch. It was a by the most popular boy in school, and he was the star football player. It so weird saying all that now because it was only middle school, but hey, it was in middle school – we all thought we were grownups. He called me a bitch because I called him out on making fun of a boy in our class. At first, I was taken aback; being called a bitch was an insult, right? But I didn’t think I did anything wrong; I stopped a bully. It was right then that I accepted my new title. Okay, I was a bitch.

I carried that name with me for the rest of middle school and through most of high school. I was kinda bossy; I was blunt; I didn’t really care about what people thought about me. I told people what I thought, even if it wasn’t necessarily what they wanted to hear. When people would talk to me, and I said something blunt or pessimistic, I would add, “yeah I’m a bitch.” It’s like that scene in Pitch Perfect where Aubrey asks Fat Amy why she calls herself Fat and she replies, “So bitches like you won’t say it behind my back.” That’s what I thought. If I called myself a bitch, no one else will.

But I didn’t truly know what the word bitch meant until later in life. Throughout high school, I became more active in the feminist community. I learned more about the impacts of the toxicity of masculinity as well as how important it is for women to support women. I became more aware of the use of words used to describe women and how they are received among others. I started to understand that words like “bitch” and “whore” were not used for those who embodied the meaning of those words but rather used when a woman stood up for herself. More often than not, I was referred to as a bitch when I talked back, stood up for myself, or simply thought a way that was different than the norm. In 10th grade, I gave a persuasive presentation on why religion should not be taught in school; after that, the word bitch was used to describe me by a large number of people. I was baffled that I was targeted by so many people after one controversial speech.

On January 21, 2017, I attend the Women’s March in Washington. I made a sign that said, “Keep your tiny hands off our rights” and joined almost 1,000,000 other women and men to protest a variety of different things. Once I returned from the march, I felt empowered. I began to write about the injustices in America and around the world; I actively started to voice my opinions in different political areas ranging from the dress code in my school to the stance on immigration in today’s America. It seemed like almost every day someone was calling me a bitch, an ignorant hipster, or even a feminazi. I was called horrible names for the sole reason of standing up for what I believe in.

But I won’t let a word stop me. If I am a bitch for speaking my mind, standing up for others as well as myself, and trying to make a difference in our society, fine. I will accept my title and continue to do what I feel is right. I know I’m not entirely inconsiderate and insensitive. I know I am not a true definition of a bitch. But if that’s what the world wants to call me, I am ok with that. After all, bitches get stuff done.

Love

~ A Bitch

Devon Smith

Clemson '21

Psychology Major; Communication Minor; Cat Lover; Makeup Obsessed; Disney College Program Cast Memebr 
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