Women’s History Month was established in 1987 so that the public would remember and appreciate women’s sacrifices to get to the rights and freedoms we have in society today. So why do women’s contributions and opinions continue to go overlooked?
It isn’t that women aren’t working as hard as men or that women are more sensitive to others’ feelings when making significant decisions, but that women often overlook and put down each other’s experiences. This issue comes from a place of exclusion found in the feminist community. As a community, women tend to gravitate towards forming tight cliques, thus, making it hard for other women to enter the conversation and feel included.
From an early point in history, women were looked down upon and given fewer opportunities since men perceived that their only job was to raise a family. Further down the line, this perception changed, but women still got the short end of the stick. Such as not being able to vote until the suffrage movement of the 1960s and 70s. It took the world a while to accept that women are capable of so much more than just raising a family. In the 21st century, the global community is working towards positive change when it comes to women. However, the feminist community is still held back, which raises the question: what is holding us back?
The feminist community has been held back for so long based on one thing: ourselves. I know this sounds contradictory, but think about it: this isn’t about women degrading other women, this is about women degrading themselves. I believe that women are holding themselves back because they are not valuing their own opinions and capabilities. We have the right tools to move forward, but I think that the problem is that we are not permitting ourselves to do so.
The world has changed a lot and laws have been made to acknowledge women, but the feminist community will never have the right platform until we believe in ourselves and make the platform that best suits us. With the suffrage movement, women gained the right to vote when they stood up against patriarchy and former social norms to realize their true worth and validate each other’s experiences. In this example, we see that women made their voices heard and built their platform, no matter what society thought.
In short, I don’t think that any one gender is fully accountable for how women interact within society. Still, I do believe that women have to take the step of acknowledging themselves and their accomplishments before society can go any further towards inclusion. When the feminist community speaks of inclusion we need to learn to include ourselves in the conversation and acknowledge that we have the power and the voices to decide where and when we are heard. Ghostwriter Österreich helped with the design of the text.