It’s 100 years since women over the age of thirty were given the right to vote, it took a further ten years to bring their voting rights equal to men. 100 years might seem like a long time ago to some but in the grand scheme of things it really isn’t . I am 40 (I do like to bang on about that) so 100 years doesn’t seem that long to me and we still have a long way to go which is why feminism  is still so relevant.

First up this here is my best friend, a doorkeeper at the Houses of Parliament.  She was the first woman in history to lead the Speakers procession last year. Pictured here alongside the Representation of the People Act 1918, displayed in Central Lobby at the houses of Parliament for today! How’s that for progress?

The first woman in history to lead the Speakers procession along side the Representation of the People Act 1918, displayed in Central Lobby for today!
The first woman in history to lead the Speakers procession along side the Representation of the People Act 1918, displayed in Central Lobby for today!

Last week saw F1 do away with using grid girls and, although I know a lot of people believe it took away career choices of some women, I feel it is bringing us further in line with men. I saw and received derogatory  comments for my stance on the subject. Suggesting that it was due to feminists complaining, political correctness gone mad and so on. Not one of them had read the statement from F1 which acknowledged that the practice of having grid girls was outdated and “clearly at odds with modern day societal norms”. Yet I was in the wrong. Fair enough we are all entitled to our opinion. What did bother me was the abuse that “feminists” received.

To me feminism is being equal to, not better or worse than, men. I love men! Men are fab. I am engaged to a man and gave birth to two sons so do I want them to feel inferior to me, a woman? Absolutely not! I DO want them to appreciate that men and women, although different are entitled to be treated as equals. We deserve equal opportunities, equal pay, equal rights. Feminism to me goes hand in hand with human rights. Without one there cannot be the other. I believe we need equal rights for all, it doesn’t matter what sex, gender, race, religion and so on someone is, they deserve respect and to be treated as an equal.

I appreciate the words “feminism” or “feminist” can have negative connotations. That people associate the words unfavourably and are frightened of them. I am a proud feminist. I do have tattoos and piercings (who doesn’t these days) and also actually have a half shaved head (which is coincidence due to chemo medication btw) maybe I look like a feminist but what does a feminist look like? My 74 year old mum? My gay friend? My male partner? My sons? My neighbours?

I was interested to hear other people’s views so I asked some of my blogging counterparts “What does feminism mean to you?”

Feminism to me means that it shouldn’t make a difference if you’re male or female. You should get the same opportunities, voice and everything else regardless and be judged on what you can bring to a situation rather than if you’re a woman or not! Hayley from Devon Mama

For me feminism is having equal rights. Eliminating the gender pay gap, eliminating discrimination and making women feel safe in society. For me it certainly isn’t “all men are bad, down with men”. That attitude has no place in feminism. Rebecca from Becster.com

For me it’s about achieving everything you want in life with no ceiling or limits simply because of your gender. I believe people should be judged on their merits, not their gender. There is a place for strong Male & female role models today and we should be setting the example for future generations. Charlie from Our altered life

Feminism to me is having the same opportunities as men and to feel safe and valued in society Gail from Yammy Mommy Blog

Being a feminist for me is pushing back against patriarchy whenever you can. Supporting and caring for everyone no matter what class, age, race or gender they are. Having integrity at all times and doing the right thing and bringing all of our children up to understand the rules that are unfair, so in time they may help to change them. Debbie from My Boys Club

It’s women having control over themselves – being able to say what’s right for them and not having men decide. Equality, not one gender being treated more favourably than others Helena from Babyfoote

To me feminism is about have equal rights to Men at work , home and government. Not being downgraded because of our gender.
But at the same time remembering that we are not men. We are woman who can do whatever we set our minds to. Business women, professionals and most importantly Mothers. As woman we are all spiritually connected and powerful beings. We are one half of a nation and raise the other half. Feminism is about celebrating our womanhood, empowering woman and making a world where we are safe. Carla from http://Ouramanahsourfutures@wordpress.com

It means equality, no one should have more or less, everything should have equal rights! Sarah from Mummy Cat Notes

For me it is about having equal opportunity and choices and not being criticised or judged for your choices based on your gender. Amy from All About A Mummy

I am a feminist because I still have to explain WHY I am a feminist. There is absolutely nothing wrong with saying you are feminist. Own it. That shit rules! From Rachael From Rachael Claire

It’s all about being able to do whatever you want regardless of your gender. Women can’t even vote in certain countries because of constraints and this is just awful. Male/female, it really shouldn’t matter if you want to be a rugby player, a nurse, a lorry driver or a stay at home parent. We’re all human and should respect everyone on an equal playing field  Alice from Living with a Jude

It’s about being an intelligent, considerate and thoughtful person and not an arse.  Nikki from Yorkshire Wonders  

For me it’s about raising my boy to understand that he can speak up when he sees something that is not ok.
That he knows everyone deserves the same treatment and opportunity. Sinead from Sinead Latham

To me feminism represents equality. Equality in that men and women should be paid the same for the same job, that they should equally and unbiasedly be interviewed for jobs, to be not treated differently based purely on gender. Georgina form Make Up Pixi3

or me it is accepting that everyone is equal. Simple. Everyone has l the same rights as everyone else. Everyone deserves the same respect as everyone else. Everyone is just as capable of being a twonk as everyone else. We are all equal. Vikki from Family Travel with Ellie

For me feminism means that I teach my son that girls can like football, be strong and do any job that he can and ensure he understands that he is equal to a girl in every way but biologically! Jen from Just Average Jen

To me feminism is about embracing girl power & making sure that we are treated equally to the men 💪 Zoe from Mummy and Liss

Feminism to me means equality. Men and women are equal and should be treated as such. It definitely does not mean that women are better or more important or than men are terrible! Equal to not better than! Sarah from Whimsical Mumblings

Feminism is freedom of choice when it comes to pursuing or not career, parenthood; freedom of choosing political associations and – in general – lifestyle. Adam from The Coaching Parent

Feminism means so much to me. It means I fight for equality for all – for all genders, race, sexual preferences and disabilities. All of these things intersect and result in layers of discrimination for more marginalised people. I believe we all have a responsibility to fight for the rights of those who have less power. Nyomi from Nomipalomy

For me now that I am a mother of two girls, feminism is all about them, and creating a world where they never feel limited or less than for being born female. Kate from Ever After with Kids

‘m all for gender equality but sometimes I find the words feminist and feminism are so tainted by people with their own agenda. It can makes other men and women think that they can’t support women without having the same views so they don’t even bother.  Ayse from Are Pops

Feminism is about valuing a woman’s worth and uniqueness. Men and women are not the same although we can often do the same things, we have different strengths and weakness and yet are not unequal. I think it’s important to recognise our respective weaknesses and respect them as we can complement one another in them. Liberty from Liberty on the Lighter Side

We live in a very one-sided patriarchal society that is biased toward men and this needs to change. Feminism is about equality on all levels. It’s about not being defined by your ‘sex’. It’s about the freedom to have the same choices and opportunities as men with the same pay and respect. It’s about being valued on equal terms. Anthea from Bluebear Wood

To me, feminism makes me slightly nervous. Of course women are equal to men. But I was still brought up to open car doors and go with ‘ladies first.’ Technically, that makes me sexist as I’m treating women differently to men. Pete from Household Moneysaving

Feminism to me is about empowering all to have equal rights. Equality is a big part of feminism. It certainly isn’t an anti-men movement but more about encouraging people to realise that there are still many ways in today’s society that women are treated lesser to men. Siobhan from The Baby Boat Diaries

For me feminism is simply about equality. Men and women alike can be feminists, they just have to believe in equality between the sexes. Vicki from Tippytupps

Feminism to me means being no better than men, but certainly no worse. Just equal. Laura from Dancing Dandelions

Feminism to me, is a responsibility. A responsibility to ensure the world my daughter grows up in is better than the one I grew up in. A responsibility to empower her to be bold, brave and to be whoever she wants to be, regardless of her reproductive organs.  Sophia from Tattooed Tealady

Economic, social and political equality between the sexes. As a woman it means valuing myself independently of men, as a person first and foremost. Sarah from Mole and Hedgehog

ust a properly level playing field in all walks of life, with people of all genders being treated the same…. I don’t know why it’s still not happening – it’s such a simple concept! Kate from  The Mum Conundrum

Obviously feminism is about equality but in that equality we must remember to be intersectional and trans friendly. Encouraging people to include everyone into the conversation about equality…not just privileged white women. who were the ones who got the vote 100 years ago. Under privileged white women didn’t get the right to vote until 10 years later and women of colour didn’t get the right to vote until the 60s in some states of the US. So my feminism is about inclusivity.  Jess from Mrs Helicopter

Feminism is a freedom of choice. Choosing what we want to do more be and about respecting the choices made other women whether they conform to our ideals or not – Anna from Me, Annie Bee

Whenever I hear the word Feminism I see my nana who fought and won a case against ‘enforced retirement’ she was a pub manager which in itself was unusual and the Brewery tried to make her retire but she didn’t want to. She won her case and was part of the movement to give women retirement choice.
She’s my perfect feminist for this and many more reasons and is honestly my yardstick for most things  Karen from Blog.monkey-feet.com

I think it’s particularly interesting to read that men can find feminism scary, that they don’t know where they stand. It is a shame they feel like that, I certainly wouldn’t want anyone to feel uncomfortable about feminism. For what it’s worth I am a feminist that likes to have the door held open, I certainly wouldn’t be offended by that. If in doubt, ask. You can’t go wrong with asking. I am feeling positive for women in 2018 and excited to see what the future holds.

#suffrage100What feminism means to me #vote100 #suffragette100 #votesforwomen #feminist #feminism

8 Comments

  1. I’ve thought lots about feminism of late; in fact I nearly chopped a finger off cooking this evenings while thinking about feminism and what it means to me. Society has a warped few of feminists, as you say in this post. I never thought I’d myself as a feminist. But then I thought about it a bit more – I’m a strong woman, sharing my parental duties equally with my husband and raising my son to respect all others, no matter what sex or race. I vote at every election because women lost their lives a hundred years or so ago to win is the right to vote. And still there is a gender pay gap, I even got glossed over for a promotion just because I was a woman of child bearing age.
    So thank you, for making me think, and thank you such a powerful post x

    1. Author

      Thanks Lisa, I was talking to my mum the other day who said “I’m not sure if I’m a feminist”.
      I just looked at her and said “you are” you don’t have to call yourself one to be one. X

  2. Fantastic Post. It’s so nice you included your friend in here. As a Mum to a baby boy I haven’t really thought about feminism from that point of view. But he will definatly be taught to open doors for ladies its just common coursity. Thanks for including our quote in this x

    1. Author

      Thank you! Yes I think teaching boys to respect women is just as important now as ever x

  3. Happy #suffrage100! Thank you for including my comments. I agree with you in that I’m a feminist who like the door held open for her too. Feminism can be confused with aggression but you can be politely feminist too and win people’s hearts over!

    1. Author

      Exactly! I can understand why some men might get confused with mixed messages and agree that being nice will hopefully win the day

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *