On Community

Sometimes, as a feminist navigating society, it feels like there is no-one in the world who actually sees things the way you do. It feels like everyone around you experiences all the sexism and the violence and the ingrained misogyny but never stops to think about what’s behind it. It gets stuffed into the cupboard with the old socks and torn clothing you mean to mend but probably never will.

I know that when something makes me uncomfortable, my gut reaction is still to not deal with it, to stuff it into the wardrobe just like everyone else. But it never really goes away – it’s still there, rattling on the door handles just every now and then so you’ll never forget about it completely. And then the wardrobe gets so full that you can’t get the doors to close anymore, and everything is threatening to tumble out and engulf you.

And sometimes I meet people who give me a chest of drawers and a clothes rack, and all of a sudden the mess is tidied up and I can see through it all.

I feel incredibly privileged to have found communities of feminists, who share the same basic ideas and principles that I do, and who can help me sort through the mess of clothing bursting out of the wardrobe and make sense of it. It’s one of the reasons I’ve taken up blogging myself rather than just reading other people’s blogs – I want to be a part of that community and contribute to it myself. It feels so freeing to be able to go to the women’s room at university and talk to someone who will understand my frustration and anger and not shrug it off, and who will share my joy when my feminist self experiences something worth celebrating. And who will argue with me when our opinions on porn or gender or sexism differ.

Being a part of a community is freeing. Thank you to everyone in this community with me.

 

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