… or Superman for that matter.
I was just reading a post on the Attainable Sustainable Facebook page asking women whether they use power tools or if they ask the men in their lives to do things for them. As usual there is the stream of women posting saying that they are fully capable of using a power drill and love it.
It’s great to see women doing these things but, as someone with fragile self esteem, it is easy to make comparisons and think that somehow I am letting down the feminists of the past by not being able to do this.
Of course the first thing that gets rolled out is that I shouldn’t compare. Of course I shouldn’t but that is not really enough. In the back of my mind it’s still there, whispering to me “you’re rubbish, you should be able to do anything you want to, what did the feminists fight for?”
This is where we have to think about these things a little deeper about what is going on.
With the increase in the number of “ordinary” people being able to showcase their abilities we are flooded with messages from A-type achievers and we think this is normal. People all around us are being creative and successful in so many ways and it is easy to think that somehow we are “less than” them because we’re not shouting from the rooftops (or at least through our 10,000 likes Facebook page) that we have just finished our latest book on fitness and cake baking whilst travelling through Nepal on the back of a camel.
But, how does this relate to power drills?
Some time ago I was talking to a friend about the very same subject and I realised that it was ok for me to not like power tools, just like it is ok for me to not want to fix my own motorbike, because, you know what? I have no desire to be Wonder Woman, I want to be me!
Why should I grovel around on a cold garage floor with a spanner, skinning my knuckles and getting frustrated trying to fix my motorbike when my husband is a perfectly good mechanic? Just so I can prove that I take Girl Power seriously?
I’m ALL for feminism and for anybody doing whatever they like (so long as the aren’t hurting anyone of course) but that is completely different to actually doing EVERYTHING. There are men out there that are not good with their hands, but are amazing chefs, just like there are women wielding welding torches and eating junk food because what they cook is inedible.
Equality isn’t about being able to do everything, it’s about having the chance to try. I’ve had a go at welding, I was ok with the gas torch but terrified of the arc welder, and you know what, that’s fine.
Each and every one of us is made up of things we are great at, things we are ok at and things we are rubbish at, and all of that is perfect. The sooner those of us with fragile self esteem embrace that the sooner we can stop beating ourselves up about what we are rubbish at and start telling the world about what we are good at.