|07-25-2010, 09:11 AM||#1 (permalink)|
Join Date: Aug 2009
Do you get called "hysterical"?
I've heard this a lot: when a male-presenting person transitions to woman, there is an experience of decline in social status. When the opposite happens, there is an incline. I read on one woman's blog that when she transitioned to male, her status in the queer women's community went up; when she decided that was wrong for her a year or two later and transitioned back, her status went back down. Now that she identifies as a heterosexual woman, she is considered too masculine by the heterosexual community.
One of my friends is intersexed, was raised as a boy, and had to transition to female when she was 20. She dated a few men, but then decided she was only interested in women. She said that when she was considered a man, all she had to do to be taken seriously by men was talk in an authoritative tone. Now if she does that she gets told that she's being "hysterical" and "listen to reason!" when, according to her, the men talking to her haven't a clue what they're talking about - and she knows a lot more now 9-10 years after transitioning than she did before transitioning, and still gets treated this way. She also said that going out in public on a heterosexual date resulted in people mostly only directing questions at the man instead of her.
Now, as cissexual people, I'm sure it's harder to notice such things, but I was wondering if people here find they are told by men often that they are "hysterical" and less capable of reasoning? 'cause I personally can't think of many occasions of this happening to me (not that I doubt it happening to her), but I also don't present in a very feminine way, I tend to be quiet around people I am not familiar with, and I mostly hang out with politically radical people on the left (not just "liberal"). That may also have to do with a learned quietness related to social conditioning, but I can't say for sure.
|07-25-2010, 01:42 PM||#2 (permalink)|
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Off this forum from 10/27/10 to 10/27/11. Yay me!
Only with my ex-boyfriend (emphasis on ex, tee hee). The more I think back to that interaction, the more I realize how stuck he was on proving to me that I was the woman and he was the man, which had the exact opposite effect of what he was trying to achieve.
I really really enjoy being a woman, being feminine -- and all it represents. But if you want to bring out the man in me try to show me that I am somewhat defective because I'm a woman. Ha!
But with random people cochonette, I've never had anyone tell me I'm hysterical, or not reasonable. I've many discussions with intelligent men all the time and they seem to enjoy my point of view as much as I enjoy theirs. Of course, if a person is hurting, one way to transfer that hurt to you is to try to use historically-painful putdowns (provoking your societal "pain body" IOW) and it then it could have the intended effect.
Last edited by MidasGirl; 07-25-2010 at 01:44 PM.
|07-25-2010, 02:32 PM||#3 (permalink)|
Join Date: Oct 2007
I'll have to admit,
If a woman tries to act "authoritative" or controlling it's often seen as coming from a place of insecurity or "hysteria".
I'll give you an example, the other day I burned a girl by accident with my cigarette. I was dancing and she ran into me at the club. Of course I smiled and said sorry but then she flipped me off. I was thinking "What's wrong with this girl? She has some serious issues".
I saw it AGAIN in the club the very next day and it happened to another guy. A girl who was actually really rude bumped into a guy and flipped him off. A whole bunch of guys just looked at each other and kind of non verbally we all kind of agreed with each other. It was a "shared moment. Quite beautiful actually. We all kind of said, "Yep, PMS".... lol
Women who are authoritative are viewed as hysterical because they aren't "built" to have status seeking behaviors. Testosterone is usually associated with a male's seeking status seeking behavior. Women are "supposed" to nurture and maintain social unity. (Obviously gender roles are changing and there's even evidence that testosterone is actually increasing in women but let's not get into that). There is a social stereotype that is STILL prevalent that women are supposed to be... caretakers, and forgiving and gentle and submissive. It's changing but we all on some degree still believe that women are still like that.
A woman who tries to show dominance in masculine ways appears to be "hysterical". Part of the reason for the "hysteria" is because it's like someone who is 4 foot tall trying to order around a 6 foot man. Our minds still process things visually and tonality very strongly. The metalanguage is confusing. Why we don't have many female leaders is because traditional roles have told us that men are leaders. They are "stronger" mentally and physically. They are more suited and designed to earn status and order people around. (lol but that's not actually true though, in some way all men are slaves to women. Men only gain money and status so they can have access to a females egg. And when a woman withdraws sex from a man, she controls him lol).
But anyways, so yeah. Why is that aggressive status dominating behavior actually lowers status? Because it's threatening. Women don't like to have "status" battles (but they do it all the time in other ways, conversational styles of women revolve more around bragging and comparing. OH look at me, I have the newest LV bags.... ho ho ho....)
Not ordering and demanding, or even joking patronizingly like men. Men conversational styles are actually a turnoff. But female conversation styles are attractive to either sex. Men, while don't respect an "feminine guy", at the very least will not find them threatening. SO their status still goes up.
|07-25-2010, 09:48 PM||#4 (permalink)|
Join Date: Feb 2010
Although this is a behaviour that I was Ďwarnedí about in my feminist classes, I have never actually been called Ďhystericalí for showing Ďdominant-masculineí behaviour. So long as I feel inclined, I have no issue whatsoever in voicing my opinions on political issues or assuming a leading role in the workplace. Most people (men and women) donít care though. They value my opinions and insight on social issues and they appreciate my ability to run things smoothly in my little dead-end jobs. Iíll occasionally come across people who feel threatened, but there is a equal distribution of men and women in this crowd. Some people just donít respond well if you are a hell a lot smarter than they are or can understand and run things better at work. But this isnít an observation about men only and Iím not 100% convinced that it has anything to do with gender roles. I think it is just a question of insecurity.
This is why I prefer to approach feminism from a economic and political perspective more so than a social perspective. Often, I just donít see a lot of the social behaviour that is described to me in feminist courses (though that isnít an absolute statement - people tell me that I should look more feminine quite a bit). But then, I live in a city so my perspective may be skewed.
Seriously, the only time when I had issues with men feeling inferior to women was when I was very, very young (around 7 may be). Back then, some of the boys were angry that a girl could beat them at sports. But then they grew up.
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