At this point, all over the world, anyone and everyone has started claiming a feminist identity. Most of them do this without bothering to read it up in detail, understand the movement and/or the ideology. As a result, while they call themselves feminist, they continue to practice anti-feminist actions. Not only does this earn a bad name for the movement, it also propagates actions which is what feminism stands against.
Disclaimer: We do not wish to say or put any rule book around feminism – anyone can be a feminist and adopt that identity but these are a few anti-feminist actions, which you may wish to carry out or do, but at least don’t do them in the name of feminism.
Here is a list of characteristics that do not make a feminist:
#1. If you reduce anyone to the size of their face, the colour of their skin or freckles on their face, you aren’t a feminist.
Body shaming and bullying someone, who doesn’t fit the socially accepted ideals of beauty is something feminism stands against – respect is not based on how someone looks.
#2. If you have and voice out an opinion that an individual should not wear this or that because they are too fat or too skinny for it, you are a part of the problem.
Maybe, we don’t need to have an opinion about other people’s body type or the clothes they wear. It’s about time we accept that standardizing certain body types is a dangerous idea.
#3. If you judge a woman depending on how long or short her clothes are and how much skin it shows or does not show, you haven’t fully grasped the basics of feminism.
Just because you wouldn’t want to wear a short skirt, don’t envy her confidence and self-love. And just because kurtis aren’t of your taste, kindly refrain from passing on your judgement.
#4. If you believe that a woman who gives in to her sexual needs is a girl of loose morals or that a woman who has had more than one relationship in the past is best described as easily available, may be you should take a look at your hypocrisy.
What gives anyone the right to assign a label on a woman’s character?
#5. If you judge a woman because her lifestyle choices are different from yours, you need to look up the words ‘preference’ and ‘choices’.
It is okay to want to ‘save yourself’ for marriage and to be the stereotypical good girl who is everybody’s good books. It is okay to be the rebellious one who can down two shots in no time. But it’s not okay to compare, comment and shame another woman’s lifestyle just because your preference is different or you don’t understand it.
#6. If a grave situation like a woman being assaulted or having her intimate photos and videos leaked, leads you to shame the victim instead of standing up for her, stop calling yourself a feminist.
When nudes get leaked, the person’s character and judgement is questioned. And they further spread it, while criticising.
#7. If you talk about equality and preach about equal treatment and equal pay, don’t shy away when the bill arrives. You don’t have to pay the full amount or even exactly half but pay how much you can, whenever you can.
Equality always enters the financial domain. Learn to pay your bills. Don’t shout equality only when it suits you.
#8. If you judge a man by the weight of his wallet or term him unmanly because he is in touch with his emotions, you are sexist and a terrible excuse for a feminist.
#9. Making distasteful comments on other women’s decisions regarding their personal and reproductive choices makes you a terrible person.
She wants to be a young mother at 21, her choice. She doesn’t want a child at 30, her choice. She chooses motherhood over career, her choice. She chooses career over motherhood, HER CHOICE. She can choose both too; they are not mutually exclusive.
#10. Don’t shame a woman’s choice to be a working woman or a housewife or both, or neither.
It’s nobody’s place to take decisions on another woman’s behalf. Feminism means accepting a person’s choices.