Here’s What Men Should Be Doing for International Women’s Day
To be clear, this isn’t at all what men need to be doing on International Women’s Day, it’s what they need to be doing every damn day of the year. Because this one day of platitudes isn’t gonna cut it, really.
You think we’re mad, in all senses of the word. You’re exhausted by our complaints. So you’ll throw a pretty little meme up for IWD and call it a day.
We want to be paid fairly. We don’t want a portion of what men make, we want the same remuneration for the same qualifications. Not more, the same. This still intimidates the fuck out of men, because what’s to become of them if suddenly the playing field is equal?
We see the reactions online — on articles about women advocating for equality, on TikTok videos of women calling out the patriarchy, on Facebook walls. And it really doesn’t matter that each of these men came from a mother, or may have a sister, or is married to a woman. That should never matter. The hatred towards us, and protection of what they see as their naturally-given rights is fierce. You try to reduce us — you’re fat, you’re stupid, you’re just old, you’re unfuckable, you’re crazy. Oh, we hear you.
We see you, men, pointing fingers at your spouse who has carried the emotional burdens of you, and your children for years. We see you pointing at her and blaming her lack of sexual interest in you for your errant ways. We see you underwhelming her in the bedroom, and her lying to protect your ego, because in the end, it’s easier than trying to teach you what you clearly do not want to learn.
We see you letting her take on the parenting, the household chores, the planning, the managing, while you fluff up your feathers for holding down one job. We see you exhausted at the end of your day, while her work never ends.
We see you telling her to “Just ASK” if she needs help, without taking on the initiative yourself. We see you absolve yourself. We see you make excuses and sit back, while she manages everything.
We see you ogling youth, idolizing freedom, without once looking at your own reflection.
We see you, men, snickering at the jokes your colleagues make when the women step out of earshot.
We see you with your boys’ clubs, creating glorified circle jerks in boardrooms.
We see you pushing us out of the workforce entirely when we’ve been forced to stay home and raise the children. We see you penalizing us.
We see you reducing women to their hormones and bodies, thinking that we must simply be bitter/on our periods/fat/old when we’re angry.
The truth is we’re always angry. The truth is we’ve seen you all along, but you used to hold the power, and things are now shifting.
What you need to do, on International Women’s Day is this:
You need to pay us what we’re worth. You need to woman up. You need to learn on your own. You need to be your own goddamn mother for once. You need to carry your own emotional weight. You need to be an actual partner. You need to recognize your part in the breakdown. You need to raise your children. You need to pay the bills. You need to clean the house and get the groceries. You need to get therapy. You need to learn to communicate. You need to schedule the appointments. You need to plan the vacations. You need to remember the important dates. You need to take care of yourself. You need to be better lovers. You need to speak up when your cronies act like cavemen. You need to stop laughing at the sexist jokes. You need to amplify the voices of women. You need to step aside when a more qualified woman should take the promotion over yourself. You need to read more, do more, listen more. Oh, you can’t? It’s too much to ask for you to be more like us?
You better believe we’re angry.
And we all know you don’t like us when we’re angry.