Womens Liberation--Men, your comments are welcomed.

  1. do you feel that womens liberation has hurt or helped us as a whole? do you feel you are more of a traditional woman, modern woman, or somewhere in between?
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  2. 55 Comments

  3. by   Ted
    I think that woman's Lib was very helpful. Not more than several decades ago, women were still considered man's property without voting rights. There may be physiological differences between man and woman, but there should not be differences with how government/laws view and treat one sex from another.

    If "Woman's Lib" was one of the hammers that beat sense in our society's head to promote legal equality between "man" and "woman", than so be it.

    It will be interesting to read the comments posted on this subject.

    Cheers!

    Ted
  4. by   researchrabbit
    I think it's done a lot for us. Any one who doesn't should read Antonia Fraser's The Weaker Vessel (a historical overview of women's rights -- mostly there weren't any).

    Working women were BARELY accepted just 30 years ago. My dad caught a lot of flak from coworkers because Mom worked. My Girl Scout leader told me I couldn't be in the troop anymore because Mom couldn't attend the meetings (held at 3:30 -- we found another troop). I wasn't allowed to take DRAFTING in high school because I was female!

    And...have you heard the latest in Florida? If you want to put your baby up for adoption and don't know who the father is, you have to advertise for him in the paper (including YOUR NAME AND ADDRESS) even if the baby is the product of a rape!

    Women have come a long way. But we are still dealing with outmoded attitudes (why do you think nurses get paid less than computer programmers? And there's a bigger shortage for us than for them!).
  5. by   GPatty
    I am a somewhere in between woman...
    I like to rely on my hubby for some things....
    yet I am independent...
  6. by   Love-A-Nurse
    julie, i like you avatar.
  7. by   Love-A-Nurse
    with womens lib, there are quite a few issues one can speak on. i am in the middle. i still want a man to open the door, assist me in sitting at the table, close the door, etc, but i know i am independent if need be.

    i am interested in hearing other views on this topic. thanks for the replies thus far.
  8. by   Love-A-Nurse
    originally posted by researchrabbit
    i think it's done a lot for us. any one who doesn't should read antonia fraser's the weaker vessel (a historical overview of women's rights -- mostly there weren't any).

    working women were barely accepted just 30 years ago. my dad caught a lot of flak from coworkers because mom worked. my girl scout leader told me i couldn't be in the troop anymore because mom couldn't attend the meetings (held at 3:30 -- we found another troop). i wasn't allowed to take drafting in high school because i was female!

    and...have you heard the latest in florida? if you want to put your baby up for adoption and don't know who the father is, you have to advertise for him in the paper (including your name and address) even if the baby is the product of a rape!

    women have come a long way. but we are still dealing with outmoded attitudes (why do you think nurses get paid less than computer programmers? and there's a bigger shortage for us than for them!).
    great post. i know some men still perfers the wife to be at home even if the wife wants a career of her own. i know women who have chosen to stay home and the man see the need for two incomes. the good thing today is, we all have choices to do or not to do.


    i agree "women have come a long way. but we are still dealing with outmoded attitudes."
  9. by   Love-A-Nurse
    originally posted by efiebke
    i think that woman's lib was very helpful. not more than several decades ago, women were still considered man's property without voting rights. there may be physiological differences between man and woman, but there should not be differences with how government/laws view and treat one sex from another.

    if "woman's lib" was one of the hammers that beat sense in our society's head to promote legal equality between "man" and "woman", than so be it.

    it will be interesting to read the comments posted on this subject.

    cheers!

    ted
    ted, thanks for your post! voting is one right that i cherish deeply. it is good to hear from a man on this type of issue, thanks!
  10. by   Mkue
    hmmm.. .. i cringe to think of how women were subservient (sp) to men.. and some still are..oooohhhh....

    i'm modern, and i think we still have a long way to go !
  11. by   nurs4kids
    hmmmm..I kinda straddle the fence on the whole issue. I think women's lib hurt women as much as it helped. Yes, we gained the right to vote and work, but we lost much more. We lost the ABILITY to stay at home and raise our kids because with the increase in family income d/t 2 incomes, came an overall increase in cost of living. Although I'm "allowed" to work now, I'm still expected to do the same things that women did PRIOR to this "right". Women, in general, are still the home-makers, primary child-raisers and yes, husband nurturer. So, through these "rights" we gained, we also increased our responsibilities.

    Then, let's see. We want equality, then we want men to open the doors and do all the things that make us feel "protected" or IMHO "weaker". Don't get me wrong, I love to see a man hold the door, step back and allow a female to exit the elevator, etc. BUT, I think we're unfairly asking for both independance and dependance.

    I have a real problem with the term "women's liberation". It irritates me that it took a movement or group to change the attitudes toward women and furthermore, that group set the precedent that all women feel they must follow. I am not a women's lib'er, I am a confident woman. I do not appreciate the fact that a "group" of radicals set the future expectations of me. In my mind, I AM equal, but not because of the liberation, but because of how I present myself.

    How much did it actually change other than the right to vote and the expectation that we'd work? Very little. Although men, in the presence of women, will claim we are equal, in the privacy of male conversation, women are still seen as the weaker sex. Perhaps this is because, in general, we are. We will always be physically weaker and many of us look to men as our leaders. If true equality had been gained, then the issue raised in Florida would be nothing more than political humor, we wouldn' t continue to hear abortion issues debated..there wouldn't be a bunch of men sitting in congress determining what we can and can't do with our bodies. We wouldn't still see more men, than women, in upper-management, politics and as CEO's. We wouldn't be working 8 & 12 hr shifts, coming home and still having the responsibility of feeding the family, cleaning the house and seeing that all the other needs of the family are met. No, instead, we'd be able to work for "equal" pay (and not have the need to work OT) and still have the finer things and life and time to properly raise our kids.

    So, one more time..
    exactly WHAT did we gain in the "women's lib" movement???
    Last edit by nurs4kids on Aug 14, '02
  12. by   researchrabbit
    Don't get discouraged, Nurs4kids!

    1. At least we have a say in what the government does to us (that voting thing). Yes, women need to get more involved to make more changes and keep things like the Florida debacle from happening.
    2. We can keep our kids after a divorce (this wasn't true 100 years ago).
    3. We can work for pay or not (yes, it's harder if you don't have that second income, but it can be done, I know plenty of people that do -- see below)
    4. We can get divorced with less stigma.
    5. Abusive behavior in marriage is less tolerated.
    6. Rape is less likely to be considered "the woman's fault".
    7. We can be paid a wage we can live on, and work in any field we choose.
    8. Title IX.
    9. Rights over our own bodies (I am not talking abortion here -- you can now get your tubes tied without your husband's permission).

    As for attitudes...they take a LONG time to change but they are changing (ask anyone of a different ethnic background about racial discrimination...or anyone who is sexually oriented toward their own sex...things are much better than the 50s but still aren't where they ought to be).

    We women are still straddling the attitude fence, too. We cut down those of us who succeed at whatever. We make good/bad distinctions between working for pay and not working for pay (both sides of the fence do this, have you noticed?). If someone's choice isn't OUR choice it must be wrong! We want to be protected by men (so we tend to choose macho guys, especially when we're young -- who father our children and perpetuate the "guys don't have to do childcare" myth). There are more men now participating in parenting than ever before. When I got married back in the dark ages, it was always only women at the grocery stores with their kids. Now it's COUPLES with kids, dads with kids in addition to moms with kids.

    People talk about the increase in living. But how much of that is cost due to cell phones, SUVs (have you seen the prices on cars?), cable TV, CDs, designer jeans, dance/sport/vocal lessons for kids, credit cards, etc? There are so many things we think we have to have. Do without those and practice the kind of economy people practiced 30 years ago (have a garden every summer and can your produce, pick your own fruit and vegetables at farms, use coupons religiously, drive one OLD car, live in a city where housing is cheaper, work for pay AT HOME like many of my friends' "nonworking" mothers -- cut hair, take in sewing or ironing, watch other people's kids...). It can be done. It's not easy, but it never really was!
  13. by   delirium
    I'm not sure I have much to contribute to this thread. Although I am a woman, I have no experience with relationships with men, so I can't comment on the dependent vs independent issue.

    I can say that being a lesbian sort of forces you to be independent. Even in my long term relationship with my wifey, we both have to work (there simply is not enough money for one of us to stay home), I have to carry enough hours at work to pay my car note, my mortgage, etc., I have to carry my own health insurance, I have none of the automatic benefits that marriage affords heterosexual couples (i.e. shared insurance, automatically granting you 'next of kin' privileges... everything that we have done had to be done deliberately and legally... without legal documentation, some things are ridiculously backward as I am still considered a 'single' person. For instance... I almost died during one of my major surgeries. I was on a ventilator. There came a time when they asked my family if they wanted to continue life giving measures. Who did they ask? My parents. Michelle had no say in my treatment because, technically, she is not related to me in any sense. It was this experience that prompted us to seek legal counsel and change some things).

    However none of this really has to do with women's lib. I agree that women's lib has enabled us to take on the responsibility of being the breadwinner while still keeping the responsibility of being the homemaker. In that sense we've neither lost nor won. Women's lib has sort of turned us into 'superwomen' who have many, many responsibilities.

    Is it any wonder, then, that married women reportedly live shorter lives than single ones? It seems to me that when a man gets married, his life gets easier, and when a woman gets married, her life becomes more difficult.

    Just my opinion. I think that its important for women to have the right to vote, but it is also my jaded opinion that it hasn't done us a hell of a lot of good thus far.
  14. by   Robin61970
    I also straddle the fence on this one.......I "CAN" change a tire or fix a leaky faucet, BUT I would prefer not to do this things because these are the things that my husband likes to do for me. My husband and I are very equal when it comes to housework and children. I do not work and I am a full time student, but he considers my school a full time job and splits duties accordingly. I do end up doing more with the children, but that is the difference in my school hours VS his work hours.
    There are certain things I do not feel a woman should do though(ducking as I say this) and being in a combat situation is one of them. Here is my reasoning on this subject. Men were raised to protect and look out for women. It is a fact.....I tell my boys to watch out for their sister to this day. So you have males and females side by side on the front line and they become POW's.......that female can and will be used against those males. If the enemy took a female and tortured or raped her in front of that man he would crack......that does not make the male weak though it is how they were raised and they would do whatever they could to stop the hurting of the female. I don't believe they would be on thier game in combat either because they would be trying to take care of the female and watch out for her. This is my opinion.....I would not want to be in combat(trust me my opinion made me quite unpopular when I was in the Navy) and others have their own opinions as well.
    There are certain things I think were good about this movement, but others that were not. There will always be some jobs that men do better than women......because of their brawn.....face it they are stronger......

    As I said.....my opinion.......

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