Thursday, March 12, 2015

My Husband is a Better Feminist Than Me

Now let me be clear: in my heart-of-hearts, I'm pretty sure it's not really possible for Jeremy to be a "better" feminist than anyone else because it's not a race or a competition. Being a feminist just means wanting equality of the sexes.

And being a feminist looks like...
-wearing pink
-not wearing pink
-wearing make-up
-not wearing make-up
-wanting kids
-not wanting kids
-working outside the home
-working inside the home
-being straight
-being queer
-being a woman
-being a man
-letting women be whoever they want to be.

And, for me, being a feminist means CHEERING MIGHTILY FOR women and men who are making decisions based on what's best for them, not on what makes a church, a school, a culture, or a partner comfortable. That means that girls can play rugby and boys can be hair designers. Hurray for everyone being whoever the hell they want to be!

And lately, I've realized that no one is a better champion of that than my husband, Jeremy.

  • When I have zits and my hair is doing that floppy, droopy thing and I sit down at breakfast, Jeremy's the one who says, "You know I love you no matter what you look like, right?"
  • When I  fight my body for being female, for bleeding, for being hungry, for needing chocolate (!), Jeremy's the one who says, "Good job listening to your body."
  • When I carry the guilt of showing "too much" skin, Jeremy's the one who says, "Men aren't animals. You can't be responsible for all men. Just wear what makes you feel good."
  • When I tell him about sexism I see on a day-to-day basis, he doesn't try to talk me out of it or come up with reasons why it's not true, Jeremy's the one who says, "That's awful."
  • When I worry that I'm being too bossy or taking up too much space in the world, Jeremy's the one who says, "You deserve that leadership role. You are allowed to have a voice. Speak up!"
  • When I thought about keeping my own last name (ya know, because it's my name) after we got married, Jeremy was the one who said, "Wow, if I was expected to change my name, that would be hard. You should do whatever feels right to you."
  • When I try to do all the things--like cooking, cleaning, and paying bills--Jeremy is the one who says, "Hey, you are not the only one who dirties up this house. I'm cleaning."
  • Basically, I try to be the best possible super-WOMAN, and he just wants me to be a grace-filled HUMAN BEING.

And I can be a better feminist, a better woman, and a better human being if I can give myself the same lavish amounts of grace and acceptance that he gives to me.

What I'm trying to say is this: I really love my husband.