Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Why I don't want you to call me a girl

I have a vagina. There, I've said it.

I love being a woman. I'm sure being a man is fabulous, too, but I know nothing of being a man. I also loved being a girl. Sure, there were some downsides, like the pressure to be thin and having to put up those obnoxious guys in school who rated your sex-worthiness as you walked down the hall between classes (note to self: fix the world so that doesn't happen anymore), but there were so many other wonderful things about my years as a girl. I got to wear dresses and pointe shoes, have slumber parties, fall in love, and have girlfriends. You know another great thing about being a girl? Dreaming about all the things you'll be and do when you grow up. At various points in my own girlhood I considered paleontologist, flower arranger, ballerina, doctor, lawyer, ballerina, and professor. Scratch that last one.

And I still love girls, especially MY girls. I completely lucked out having two perfectly delicious daughters who, I hope, will also come to love being a girl, however that looks to them. While it seems that Alyce has planted herself firmly on the side of princess, maybe Shira will enjoy being a girl because of the sports she will play or mountains she will climb. Either way, Alyce will still probably make her wear a Cinderella dress while she does all these marvelous things. 


I am no longer a girl. And this post is dedicated to the man in my office who continues to call me one as he passes by my desk each day. "How are you girls doing today?" he asks me and my temp-mate (we're both on a short-term contract with the company), probably unaware of how my blood boils with each passing question.

I am no longer a girl. I have worked for years in school, earning two degrees (and some of a third). I have grown and birthed two babies. I have a family and I am responsible for them. I worry about how to put food on the table and clothes on their backs. I am a grown woman who deserves respect for all the things that I've done and all the things I might do. I might be temp who enters boring data all day into a computer, but I am not your office girl. I am also about ten years older than you, so zip it.

I am struggling with so many things right now. I still can't find permanent, non-terrible employment. Matt still can't work outside the home and faces his own challenges staying at home with the girls each day. What I don't need to struggle with is this condescending crap at work. I have earned so much more than that.


  1. We must think of a total zinger for you to say on your last day.

  2. Great post and I'm sorry to hear you have to deal with that bozo on a daily basis. You'll be out of there in no time though and on to greater things. Your mountain is waiting...

  3. Whisper “go F&&K yourself” when he goes by and kinda mumble it while hes talking to you.
    It will:
    1) Make you giggle knowing you have a secret with yourself
    2)Make you look a bit insane, which may frighten him to STOP talking to you …would that be so bad?
    3) Give you a sick sense of satisfaction…..and if by some chance he says Pardon or is catching on to you, you simply reply “I’m fine, yourself?”
    And THAT is why i dont have a job right now.
    Love Kate

  4. I love you, Kate!
    The funny thing is, while I hate to be called "Girl", I always tease the grocery-packing teenage boys when they call me "ma'am"...I say, "You'd make a lot of women my age happy if you called us "miss"!"...ha!
    God bless our little girls...mine, who won't grow her hair long and wears her brothers batman socks with pink pants, and YOURS! And you, too. In French, they say, "Bon courage"...I have faith you'll find an amazing job that fulfills you and uses your talents to great benefit for all!! In the meantime, follow Kate's advice.

  5. I love you, Kate, too!

    I've had a lot of different comments on this post (mostly on facebook or over email) and I've been thinking about it all day. I know this guy didn't mean it maliciously or even give any thought to it all. But a 25 yr old professional should know better than to call his colleague a girl. When an old man does it, I shrug it off. But when a colleague does it, I get angry! Words matter.

    But moving on. KGH, our girls will do anything they please! Have yours gone through a princess phase yet? Do you need some extra gowns?

    And thanks for all your good thoughts on the future. I need as much optimism as I can get.