Hello Wild Ones 💎💎,
I hope you are well and doing great. I hope that today you will look in the mirror and be like’ I am awesome!!!” I hope you see the beauty of the sunshine that oozes from you. I hope you learn to see your brokenness as cracks that allow you to show the world how beautiful you are. I am currently full of grace and love for myself. I am proud of my journey.
I started writing this post a while back but I got lazy. I remember this boy that was trying to date me some time back. We had a heated conversation on the day about feminism and male privilege that made me realize that he was a chauvinist and he didn’t even know it. This is why it was so easy for him to equate rape to robbery and then dare to ask me ‘If I thought every rape victim is really blameless from the heinous act committed on them.” While still claiming to be an ally to women because he respected me, his sister, and his mother. I bet there are so many men like Mr. Never (this guy) who haven’t checked their male privilege and still refuse to see what the society gives them but doesn’t give women. So I made a small list from my experiences.
- No one ever suggests that you got something because of your sex, the credit goes to your dedication and hard work– I was always one of the smartest people in the room. The fact that I loved to look at stars and wish that my existence was within them had me shooting for them. So when I got my scholarship at African Leadership University, I never for one moment thought it was because I was a girl until a friend suggested it. I remember feeling a wave of impostor syndrome then anger that he dared to suggest that the only reason I had been chosen from a group of around 300 applications to be part of a group of lucky 25 students was that I have a vagina and not because I was smart and a good fit. For the first time, I realized that the fear of getting raped was not the only problem I had to deal with just because I have a vagina. When you got that job or that scholarship did anyone say that it’s because of your penis?
- Your body is not oversexualized– I recently watched a video on Instagram by Evyan Whitney where she was chanting that her nipples change from female to male so that Instagram allows her to post a topless photo. This reminded me of my relationship with my boobs and how much I hate the attention I get because of them. I hate how sexualized they have been made. I have a special hate for every guy that offered unsolicited compliments about my boobs. I can’t even wear a top with a little cleavage without getting the most disgusting comments and stares that often force me to shower just in case I can wash the filth I felt them leave on me. Do you have a body part that is oversexualized so much that you struggle to love it?
- You can wear what you want- When I was studying at the University of Nairobi, every day as I chose an outfit, I would have to consider the part of the Nairobi CBD I would be passing through and how late I might be going home. I just didn’t want to be one of those women who are stripped naked for wearing a short skirt or refusing the advances of the matatu touts. I didn’t want to have to be asked the infamous ‘What were you wearing ?” as I try to grab at justice. I didn’t want some old man old enough to be my father whistling at me and proclaiming love. Do you ever worry that your trousers are the reasons that you will not get home safe?
- When you fail at something, it doesn’t have the reputation of your sex all over it– This point reminds of Anne Waiguru and one bumpy ride home. Anne is the governor in my county and as her name and pronouns suggest she is a woman. Anne is yet to build the tarmac roads that she promised when she was campaigning so the ride home is always bumpy. Every time I take that road someone in the car will curse, ‘That’s what you get for putting a woman in power.’ And I squirm in my seat trying not to start a debate. Why do we not exclaim that Kenya’s economy is shit because all our presidents have been men?
- You have a bad mood or day and that’s just it – “Is it that time of the month?” is one of the statements that often have me trying my best not to bite someone’s head off. I hate the assumption that mood swings are only the way that I experience my menstruation like my experience is not unique. I hate that they can’t even call it menstruation, it has to be that time. Does anyone suggest that your bad mood is because of your wet dreams?
There are so many male privileges that need to be checked. If you are interested, you can go to Project Humanities and learn more about male privilege. Learning about your privilege as a man is the first step to understand the problems that women face in a patriarchal society and then maybe you can become an ally to women empowerment. This is not to say that men don’t also have problems caused by this system too. Talking about the problems women face doesn’t take away the negative effects of toxic masculinity or make the pressure for men to be providers less. It just acknowledges the problems.
What point did you resonate with? If you are man, have you checked your male privilege?
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With looooove and grace,