The Millennial Feminist and the Modern Clothing Crisis
I love clothes. It’s true! I really, really do. I really do not have the best style, but man can I put an outfit together on Pinterest that would blow you away. Some times I like to dress my absolute sexiest, and other times I feel like a pair of slouchy pants and a sweater would work just fine for me. The feminist movement has allowed me to make decisions on what I want to wear, without having to have someone else dictate me, and as millennial feminists, we have a certain reputation to uphold. Unfortunately, there are a lot of negative things that we still hear in today’s culture that does not represent what many strong women have fought for, or are still fighting for.
She is too fat to wear that.
How often do we hear these words uttered under peoples breath at the bar? Not only is it an incredibly mean and rude thing to say, it is simply not true. Clothing should not come with a weight limit, and instead of scrutinizing another human being, we should be proud of them to have the confidence to wear something that shows off their best assets. In a world where beauty norms are already extremely impossible, we need to be finding beauty in each other, and encouraging each other to feel our prettiest, sexiest, and most confident selves!
I can’t believe her boyfriend let her leave the house like that!
This is extremely awkward, because this has been said to me within the past 6 months, by more than one person. “Your boyfriend let you leave the house like that?!” I guess the world can’t handle a little cleavage without imploding in on itself. Spoiler alert: Keep this a secret, because I don’t want my feeble female self to get in trouble for what I am about to say…
(I didn’t get his permission to leave the house like that.)
I know, what a crazy concept. It gets pretty hard to sneak out of the house in my parka without my boyfriend questioning how I could wear such a thing in the 95 degree Florida heat, but somehow, I am able to pull it off. Of course, when I sneak off with all my adult girlfriends, we then take off all our cover ups and have a night full of tank tops, short skirts, and all sorts of frowned upon things.
Wearing that will give her the wrong kind of attention. She should be more modest.
This kind of ties into what I was saying before. Seriously, are we not in 2015? Hell, it’s almost 2016, and we still hear this type of shit on a daily basis. Seriously, can we just stop with the slut shaming already? It’s bad enough that we have gender-biased dress codes in our schools, where we sexualize our teenage girls, but we have to put up with that when we are finally done with school, too? I have been told in my adult life that my shorts were too short. News flash – shorts made for women are SHORT! Plus, I live in Florida, which is always 300 degrees on a cold day.
On this same note, why should I really give a damn about the “type of attention” I would attract? Why does every single thing that a woman does, even just dressing up to go out for a girls night, have to be to attract the attention of the opposite sex? Dressing your best is a great confidence booster, especially when you are surrounded by your favorite gal pals with some cocktails and laughter.
She is too covered up! She must be oppressed!
Obviously, this is the exact opposite of what we have been talking about in this post. You see, our culture likes to have a “happy medium” in the way our women dress. Too revealing and she is a slut – too covered up and she is a prude. Interestingly enough, we never really know exactly how covered up or how revealing we need to be, because it tends to vary from person to person. Unfortunately, we tend to hear the “she is too covered up” when talking about our Muslim counterparts. As a millennial feminist, our job is to stick up for other women, even if they might be more covered up than you prefer to dress. Whether it be for religious, cultural, or different personal reasons, it is not your job to dictate why a woman might be covered up.
This is just the tip of the ice burg, ladies. Of course change does not happen by simply stating that we like each others outfits – but when you stop judging each other based off of first glance, then we can truly uplift and stick together when we need each other most.
“We need to shape up our perception of how we view ourselves. We have to step up as women and take the lead.” -Beyonce Knowles