A woman’s right to be a man by Yousra Serry, Egypt

13497813_10154867002722137_1862929900133047368_oAs far as my limited education goes, women’s rights are all about their right to be and do whatever they’d like.

However, that’s not what I see nowadays. A lot of the so called ‘women’s rights fighters’ aren’t even remotely fighting for this. Most women’s rights activists aren’t fighting for women to live freely and choose the life they want, regardless of what they tell themselves, they’re mainly fighting for women to live the life THEY think is most appealing and suitable for a woman. You want to be a bellydancer? No! Bellydancing is all about making men happy and you’re much better than this.. This is so degrading for women! You want to cover up? This “covering up” thing was originally invented by men who think of women as nothing more than a tool for pleasure.. This is so against what we stand for! You can’t be a stay at home mom! You need to find a job to prove he’s not better than you in any way. And on it goes and goes that now the only thing that’s supposedly all about women is, again, about men. If men like it why do we have to stop doing it for ourselves? Work stereotypically for men should be for women too,no?

It’s like a lot of women’s unconscious goal is to deprive men of all that they like about women as some sort of a childish revenge. Which is totally understandable regarding how women have lived and still live in male driven societies—But, it’s never acceptable.

What about a woman? What about what SHE wants? Are you seriously going to tell her how to live her life as a “strong woman”? Are you really going to make her feel bad for choosing something just to get back at men? If that’s the case and if that’s your idea of women rights, then you’re not any different than any male driven society, if not worse.  You’re freeing women from men’s control and stereotypes to oppress them yourself and all in the name of female empowerment when what you’re really doing is nothing but taking their power and right to choose. Telling a mom to “get a job!” isn’t okay. Because A) She’s already got one and the hardest one of all. B) It’s none of your business. C) telling someone how to live their life is the first step to being an oppressing a-hole. Women are human, and humans are different. Creating one picture of how a woman should be and asking all women to be it is the worst way to shit on what you’re supposedly fighting for. Saying a woman should act or look a certain way to be described as a strong woman is actually what you should be fighting AGAINST. All women are strong and all their choices are the right ones as long as they take full responsibility for it. And they would, if you would just give them enough space to breathe. Women rights went from a woman’s right to be herself to a woman’s JOB to be a man. Just because men are doing something doesn’t mean it’s the right thing to do. Now THAT’S degrading. Trying to turn us into something we’re not and don’t want to be just to prove a point. I’m a woman and I want to be one. I wanted to join the army as a kid because I wanted to; not so I can feel better about myself getting a “man’s job”. I believe raising kids is the hardest job in the world and moms face challenges and difficulties much harder than any man fighting a war. My sister likes makeup and polka dots and she’s not just strong, she’s also scary. My friend likes the classic “controlling” man, and though I can’t stand them, I don’t think she’s a disgrace to what women are fighting for today. Because, at least in my case, I’m fighting for women to say and be what they like without the fear of being judged whether by other women or men. I want to live in a world where a woman isn’t ashamed to say and do what she really likes and isn’t shamed for doing something “too womanly”, a world where she stops constantly worrying about what other women will judge her for today. I want to live in a world where being “too girly” isn’t an insult and being a pussy doesn’t mean you’re weak. One of the very first things I noticed about the double standards of our society was how when a man cheats his friends cover up for him and even if they don’t agree, they still stick with him and even try to “cheer him up” when he’s caught. But when a woman does the same, the first of those who stand against her are other women. Probably even her friends and family. And that’s when I realized women are a huge part of the problem, if not most of it. We have this proverb in Egypt that goes like “They asked the pharaoh “What made you one?” He replied “No one stopped me!” Pharaohs are known to have been controlling and dictatorial so the proverb explains how dictators and oppressors are made, and it’s when no one stands up to them. So, yes, women need to get educated about their rights first so they can then ask for them.. But what’s more important is knowing WHAT those rights are. You have the right to be, say, dress, write, go who/what/where ever you want. So to all the women out there, it’s okay to be who you are and do whatever you want to do. And, yes, that includes being something I don’t agree with. I’m not the god of women nor are you or anyone else. Be a working mom, stay at home, or don’t even have kids. Get married at 16, 60, or never get married. Wear a bikini, a scarf, or even a tent. It’s fine. It’s okay. It’s amazing. There’s absolutely nothing more beautiful than a woman who’s comfortable with who she is. And absolutely nothing more ugly than a woman shaming another woman. And because women are awesome and we never stop till we reach the top… I want you to be THAT beautiful and never even remotely ugly. A guy once asked me “So if women really are as strong as men.. Why aren’t they ruling the world like men are?” I answered “because we don’t stick together like men do.” I refrained from adding “and because we’re also not power hungry a-holes” But I decided to be nice instead. Because, you know, women are also nice. At least when they want to be.

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