I’m a bitch.
Wait…no…It’s only because I’m a woman that I call myself a bitch.
Had I been born with external plumbing and the ability to urinate standing up without dousing the seat in liquid gold as my thighs cramp from the effort I might use different words to describe myself. Words like powerful, aggressive, and a real go-getter… a man that gets promoted while women who possess those same qualities are passed over. I might consider myself the kind of man that you want covering your back…a man that knows what he wants and knows how to get it. People might praise my propensity to call a spade a spade and to not confuse friendship with business.
As a man…I might be admired.
But alas…I am but a woman and for possessing these qualities I am labeled a bitch. Better yet…and possessing of no knowledge of how often I may or may not engage in sexual relations some might be label me a frigid bitch. And if you really want to get pejorative to both me and members of the gay community…you just might call me a lesbian.
To avoid such characterizations I may bend and contort. I may hide my drive and lay aside my dreams of success and autonomy. Of owning my own place in the world where no one, man or woman can tell me how I should or should not be living my life, because it is…after all…my life. I may curl my hair and blush my cheeks only to sit quietly with my legs crossed and eyes lowered. I will offer up no opinions of importance lest I offend anyone or be considered in the slightest measure displeasing to either the eye or the ear.
Perhaps I’ll forget that I have opinions, that I have a voice, that I have a say in the events which dictate the course of my life. Perhaps I’ll marry and make a home for my husband and subsequent children.
Perhaps I’ll be “woman”…
Perhaps I’ll simply cease to exist…
It is a quiet death this thing called being woman, though it need not be that way. Awake and alive I am woman as I define myself.
And don’t you dare call me a bitch.