The Gender Construction

“A man should be able to change their own tyres.” This is something my dad said quite some time ago. Along with how he will always stop to help a woman because they probably wouldn’t be able to. Now, I’m not going to give out to my dad for this, let’s be fair most of us do it to one degree or another. I pretty sure I do it, I’m not able to say where, but if I catch myself doing it in the future I’ll be sure to make a note of it, possibly change it around. But I don’t know if I should. The gender construction is there, but is it there for a reason? Let’s face it the two genders are different.

Females tend to be more resilient to pain than males. It’s a simple fact, it’s how they are made. Males tend to be stronger. It’s how we evolved. Giving birth to a child is a stupidly painful process, women have to be able to get through it, so they are more tolerant to pain. Men were typically the hunters and fighters in society. They needed to be stronger in order to bring down the bigger prey. So now in the future those differences are still there. So men and women are different, it’s a fact of biology. Now it’s not going to be true of all men/women. I mean, I’m not exactly the strongest of men. I know plenty of women that can kick my arse from here to Timbuktu without breaking a sweat.

So there are women who are manly and men who are not. So what is with all the double standards? Why can men walk around topless but not women? The only difference is that women have distended chests (a rather crass word, but accurate all the same). So the standard varies wildly. Women can say and do things that men can’t and visa versa. All over the simple matter of gender. Does that seem right? Does that seem fair?

In the end we are human. Female or male it doesn’t really make too much of a difference to me (beyond the fact that I’m straight). But when it all boils down a person isn’t defined by what they are, only who the are. I am 22 and I am male. But that doesn’t make me everything that another person who is 22 and male. There is no reason why a woman would be unable to change a tyre and no reason why a guy would be able. Other than learning to do it or not. Why is pink a girls colour? Why do boys play with action toys? These are things that are ingrained into our society and we don’t question them. Why are they engrained in our society and why don’t we question them?

A few people I know have been dealing with issues of gender identification. I don’t understand why it’s a problem, but I respect their decision, whether I understand it or not. If changing how you look makes you feel better about yourself then who am I to get in your way. But since a more recent case I noticed the whole gender difference thing a lot more. How women and men are portrayed on TV or anywhere in general. If you ever flip the roles it seems alien and kinda over the top, so why is it ok this way? Not long ago I heard that a video game was turned down for production because the main protagonist was a woman. I think it was an action game, but it shouldn’t make a difference. Why can’t women be the heroes? Why are they more often than not being rescued by the males?

Before I go I would like to mention the TV series Teen Wolf. It’s the only show I’ve come across (granted I don’t watch tv) that is very open about having characters that are gay. Hell there is more than a few badass women in the show that kick ass left and right. So it’s a step in the right direction, which is good. Other things like the anatomically correct barbie doll have been coming out. So while things aren’t great, I’m hopeful.


About Snababo

What can I say? I'm 26, Irish, have Asperger's Syndrome and a lot on my mind.
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