As a woman, there are certain things that I do but grumble about each time. First is teeth whitening. It’s not only the cost, that would buy a good meal or half a pair of fine shoes, it’s the principle. Who decided that teeth whiter than nature intended for ANYBODY is the only acceptable color? The 17th century Japanese favored teeth painted black. Now, I agree that deeply yellowed and stained teeth are, well shudderingly gross. But some people go so far with whitening that their teeth nearly glow in the dark! I personally think snowy white teeth that look like a melted down and reformed glow in the dark plastic Jesus are ludicrous.
The other grumblies I have about being a socially acceptable woman are leg shaving, underarm shaving, and eyebrow plucking. I do them. Thankfully it’s required less often as I age, but nevertheless, who set that rule into motion? Thank the powers that I grew up when pubic hair was not considered something that needed to be shaved!
I saw an interview once where men were asked about women who didn’t shave their underarms. Their opinion that it was unsanitary. Men don’t shave. Are they equally unsanitary? Why is it that women feel a need to play into a man’s need to have a woman hairless except for eyebrows and head hair, which has to be long, thick, and luxurious? Is it that these men have repressed pedophilia and want their women to resemble children as much as possible?
The exception I guess is grossly over-inflated boobs, but that can also go back to childhood. A mother’s breast looks mighty large to a baby. Sorry, that may have conjured up a picture of something you CAN’T UNSEE! EEEWWW, giant mammaries! Freud had a lot to say about that one. So the desire for women to look like children except for the breasts, in my never to be humble opinion, is more than a bit twisted.
What would happen if women decided that they could be attractive AND more natural? Well, a lot of women do, but I will venture a guess that they are in a minority. Mostly we shave, whiten teeth, spend hours and mucho dollars on our hair, wear high heels, bras, body shapers, acrylic nails painted fancy. We wear make up to accentuate eyes and make our skin look more youthful. During a certain age range, our clothes are often made to accentuate sexual attractiveness. A middle-aged or elderly woman who continues to dress in tight, revealing, and sexually attractive clothing, is generally NOT socially acceptable.
I understand that the primitive desire to couple and reproduce is a strongly embedded urge, just as it is in other animals. But, who decided that it should be the women who make the most concessions to nature in often unhealthy and uncomfortable ways? Men shave their beards–if they want to. They wash (most of the time). For men, two socially acceptable ways to attract a mate is to show power and money.
We are complex creatures full of primitive drives. Unfortunately, we are mostly clueless about them. Many humans like to think that we are above the animal kingdom, yet many of the same urges drive us that drive them. We are all concerned about survival, safety, connecting with others of our kind, procreation, and such.
What would it be like to base our opinion of attractiveness on what’s in the mind and heart instead of the wrapping, ribbons and bows? It might be worse. It might be better? It may be impossible. Just thinking and musing.
As a woman of a “certain age” I find that life is a lot easier. I no longer care so much about what others think of me. I am more able to express my opinions openly. I dress the way I want to most of the time. I generally shun high heels and have stopped coloring my hair. I wear make-up but not always. I wear jewelry because I like it. Life is good. Still, I dress okay, I think. I am clean, neat, and my clothes reflect my personality. The clothes I wear are attractive to me.
I stopped dieting and just eat what I want, and know. is healthy for my body. Sometimes, though I eat what is NOT healthy just for the sheer pleasure of it. And, you know what? I didn’t get hugely fat. But even if I did, so what? That’s another thing people are so obsessed about, body fat.
I’ve said it before. I think people would be happier if they stopped worrying about fat and cared more about health. There is conflicting evidence about whether obesity (to a point) is or is not unhealthy. Some women are so obsessed about looking like a stick bug that they are damaging their health. Jeesh, let it go.
End of soapbox.
Agree? Don’t agree? Think I’m a douch? Think I have it right? Love to hear.