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Frenemies With My Gender: A Fight Against Sexism

The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.
This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Toronto MU chapter.

Running my fingers through thin strips of gold, I let out a big sigh. Looking in the mirror, I saw the reflection of a worried, unhappy woman. People say heartbreaks make you grow, but how could an emotionless face be growing when “her” heart is filled with hate and rage? 

A feeling so intense that it was not anyone else’s fault but mine. The lack of love for myself was in a big compartment lost in the back of my mind. A compartment I didn’t know existed until I found out what heartache was.

For some, a heartbreak might result from splitting from their significant other. For me, that constant heartache came from a battle I didn’t know I was fighting. 

Yet, society had shown me that there was only one specific group of people reminding me to be alert about my enemy: “her.” The heartbreak I was expressing was due to the sexism against my gender.

Why is it that I’m the one to blame, the “other one.” It was never her that hurt me but “him.”

However, my biggest enemy was someone who had struggled the same as I had. Someone who felt the same way I felt, heard what I heard, and saw what I had seen.

How could I hate her? When all her memories were based on colours that flowed like waves and her beauty like a sunflower garden in the summer. I realized I was her, and every woman was her, too. 

If we travel back years ago, a woman who didn’t have a husband was a miserable human being. A person left in the shadows and hiding behind a curtain she could never slide to be open.

Flipping through books by author Gloria Jean Watkins, better known by the pen name bell hooks, I realized I wasn’t the only one feeling that accumulated anger. We like to call each other “girls’ girl” but blame “her” as soon as something goes wrong?

When Camilla, now the U.K.’s Queen Consort, first started seeing King Charles, the whole world attacked a person who had chosen to love the right person at the wrong time. Yet, Charles would have been the one to blame the whole time. He chose to have a “side chick” when his wife, Diana, former Princess of Wales, was suffering from an eating disorder and craving her husband’s love. 

I’m not saying she is my favourite woman; we each make our own choices and mistakes, but how does the narrative always turn into hatred towards “her.”

“Her” is the definition of power, respect, and strength. But, after years and years, “she” has always remained the fighter, the winner, and the loser.

We all identify with “her.”

“Her” is a human being who is strong enough to continuously prove their strength and worth to society. Why is that necessary? Haven’t we had enough?

Men fight in the war started by their own brothers, and where does that leave us now? 

We found ourselves in a world filled with hatred and disgust where the winner still wears the “King’s” crown. 

Imagine a world like Barbie, where all women had the power to control things. Could we finally find peace? But how would a woman rule the world? She is “too emotional, too unstable, too womanly.”

I am currently a fourth year student chasing a fashion journalism degree at Toronto Metropolitan University. I have written different articles in fashion and women's rights' issues. I was born in Chile but through out the years I moved around the world, this brought an impactful experience to my life. Where I learnt to appreciate and respect different nationalities and cultures. My interests surround the fashion industry and their impact on the youth. As well as the growth and development of the feminist movement in society.