International Women’s Day

By | 8th March 2016

So today is International Women’s Day and I have been doing a bit of thinking on this score. Firstly let me say that I understand feminism to mean, as Merriam Webster defines it, “the belief that men and women should have equal rights and opportunities” – rather than an extreme bra-burning notion that some people associate with feminism. It has struck me in the past that anti-feminist tendencies are rather frequently exhibited not by men, but indeed by women themselves. Women resenting the personal and/or vocational achievements of fellow women; mothers subtly (or not so subtly) reproaching other mothers for choosing to work rather than stay at home full-time (or vice versa) and so forth. It has also struck me that much is said about the need to raise and be “strong” women. Very little is said about the need to raise kind and empathetic women. Strength and kindness are not mutually exclusive. We can teach our children both. Let us teach them to raise their “sisters” up, to respect their differing life choices rather than judge them, indeed to respect one another. I should add that my experience has not been one-sided. I have been blessed to have wonderful female mentors (and supporters) in my life in both the professional and personal realms. Today I celebrate you ladies. Thank you for reaching out and offering support, love and advice; thank you for championing your fellow women; thank you for being remarkable role-models. May we all do as much for one another. Wishing all you ladies love on this day – I hope you will be embraced for who you are!