Why is it then women have to believe they are beautiful?
Why is beauty valued above…everything else?
I want women to feel beautiful, because…it often feels like physical appearance is the only social currency afforded to women. When women greet each other, it’s a comment on what they’re wearing (“Oh, you look great in that color.” “Your hair looks fabulous today.” “Is that new?”)
It’s important for a woman to feel beautiful, because if there is one lesson that pervades culture, it is that “Women are meant to be beautiful”. It’s why Snow White got poisoned, it’s quite literally the only trait ever spoken of in The Princess Bride, it’s the one thing
Women have the responsibility of being physically attractive, and it gets culturally mandated to continue.
A woman’s job it so be beautiful.
So what if we…weren’t.
What if we could get to a point where beauty wasn’t a factor. I mean, it’s nice to like your appearance, but what if instead of wanting to be beautiful, women wanted to be strong, or courageous, or intelligent.
In every plot that I can remember, when it’s supposed to be celebrating a woman having traits that could be valued independently from beauty, it’s not. It all has to be additional to beauty. A woman can’t prove her intelligence until she believes she is beautiful. A woman can’t be strong unless she believes she is beautiful.
There are so many stories about a man reaching a point of competence – physical appearance is never mentioned. Physical ability is, but beauty and fitness are really only barely related.
There are no stories of a woman gaining competence through being competent, because it’s not enough for a woman to be good at what she does. There is a reason that every woman on a cop show runs around in high heels. It’s not enough to be good. A woman must be good *and* beautiful.
I want women to feel beautiful, if that’ s what they need to feel successful and fulfilled.
I just think that physical appearance shouldn’t be a reflection on someones life-worth.
I wish that women didn’t feel a need to reassure each other in their beauty, because women were confident enough in their other abilities that beauty was an afterthought.
I don’t think we’ll ever get there, but it sure would be nice.