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What I’ve Learned from Anti-Feminist Blogs

One of the things that I absolutely love to do is to read anti-feminist websites. They amuse me to no end. I don’t tend to comment because my definition of feminism is the right for women to live how ever they want even if I think it is insane even if I disagree.

One of my favorite anti-feminist sites is Raising Homemakers. The best day is Wednesday because they have a huge link up and you can see all kinds of blogs dedicated to the idea that girls should be raised to be homemakers and mothers.

I’ve learned a lot reading these posts. I once saw a listing of skills that a homemaker should have and I had most of them up to and including the quilting. (They considered quilting a potential money maker and I consider it a money sucking pit of a hobby so we don’t always agree.)

Courtship

Dating is bad. Girls should only be approached by boys who have already talked to her father about exploring the possibility of marriage.

  • YES – I’m a relationship person. I didn’t like men who only wanted hook up. I like the idea of being straightforward with your intentions from the beginning.
  • NO – Are you kidding me? Ask my father first? No way, buddy boy. I’m a fully formed human who is able to make her own decisions and I don’t need to hide behind a man when important decisions are being made. I’m even way too offended when people talk about asking a father’s permission to marry his daughter. I think that is a crazy-offensive beginning to a marriage.

There is a blog that links up written by a college-aged man who talks about courtship with the authority of someone who has absolutely no real world experience whatsoever.  I’m just waiting for someone to come along and rock his world(view.)

Stay at home daughters

A stay at home daughter is a girl who has graduated from high school and then does not pursue higher education or a job outside the home. The idea is that if her goal is to be a homemaker, why should she be wasting her time doing anything else and getting in debt pursing an education that she isn’t going to use?  She should be home “contributing to the household economy” by helping in her father’s business, starting her own small business that can be done from home, or helping her mother with younger children.  Preferably all three.  Remember, girls should be able to run a household by the age of 14 because that’s when Mary had Jesus.

  • YES – College isn’t for everyone and if you can start a business that supports you – go for it.
  • NO – Where do I even start?  The idea is that girls are under the protection of their fathers until they have a husband to take over that duty.  Nope.  Just nope.  What are they going to do if they suddenly lose a husband?  Oh, excuse me, because of courtship and being serious about their marriages they won’t get divorced.  Guess what?  I’m a former good Christian girl who was serious about her marriage and my last husband took off anyway.  It happens.  You could be widowed.  Then what are you going to do with no skills?  Some folks say that the church should support widows.  Yeah, I’ll believe that happens when I see it.

Modesty

Women should not wear revealing clothing.  In this community it usually involves wearing mainly skirts.

  • NO – I don’t buy into the notion that women are responsible for the thoughts of men.  If you are advocating modesty for women so they are not a distraction for men, they I’m not with you.  That’s the step before mandating burkas.  Men need to learn to live in a world with distractions.  I get distracted by chocolate.  That doesn’t mean I get to ban it from my sight.
  • YES – I think women should dress modestly because they should have some class and self-respect.  I’m sure there are people in the world who are interested in seeing all your personal bits but that person is not me.  Please put them away.  And let’s get real.  You are going to be judged by your clothing choices.  You may not think that is right but it is the truth.  Look at this guy.

evolve-2-pack-muscle-tee-251x300 Photo from Target.com

Was your first thought that you imagine that he is a magnificent accountant?   If a woman comes strolling in wearing a shirt that shows her bra and a miniskirt are you going to think that she’s smart and likes to do charity work?

Because of my exposure to these sites, I started to notice all the women around me wearing maxi skirts.  They looked nice.  Too many of the modesty sites espouse a look that is “Amish chic.”  I tried maxi skirts this summer and felt like I was let in on a huge secret.  I wear leggings under them and it is just like wearing sweats when out in public but because there is a skirt covering them, people are under the mistaken impression that I am fancy and put together.  They don’t know that I just pulled a skirt over the nasty sweats that I had on at home in order to go out in public.  I’m getting credit for being sort of fashionable when in reality I’m just too lazy to put on pants with a waistband. Win!

If you want a more political look at the anti-feminist world, try out Ladies Against Feminism. This is a site that I sometimes just need to click away from before I say something I regret. They have a tendency to link to studies that are so very poorly set up that their conclusions are invalid (Ooops, I learned that in vet school. Look at me being too educated.) I do post a comment when they start twisting what an article actually says to make it mean what they want.

On this site I learned that I was emasculating my husband by having a job and making money.  I immediately went and apologized to him profusely and told him that I would quit my job in the morning so he could support me fully and feel like a real man.  He told me that I was banned from reading that website anymore.  Unfortunately for him, I had already learned that I was a bad, feminist type woman who didn’t listen to her husband properly so I just continued to ignore him like the heathen I am.

There are some sites of people with differing world views than mine that I genuinely like.  Fresh Modesty is written by a woman who is a stay at home daughter.  She does modest fashion that is not Amish-like and is starting a clothing business.  My Holy Joy is written by a woman from this background who went to college and is starting to realize that the world may not be exactly as she was told.  (See, that’s why you can’t go educating impressionable young women!)

Linking up to The F Word.

 

 

6 Comments

  • Paulita

    Terrific post. I love that you can critically think about both sides rather than a knee-jerk dismissal. You are much more understanding and open-minded than I am about the anti feminists. I grew up in a religion that preached no dancing or mixed bathing, so I’m very intolerant of anyone who suggests limits on women. That being said, I did choose to stay home with my kids and even homeschool them, though not for religious reasons.

  • Sarah Christine

    I agree with your definition of feminism, I believe that everyone deserves to be their best version whatever that means to them. I have no issue with some women wanting to stay at home and support their fathers and husbands, if it is what feels right to them and is working for them then I’m all for it (being forced is a completely different situation).

    What I don’t understand about the anti-feminist movement is that the feminist movement allows for me to decide I want to work and support my family financially AND them to decide that they want to stay at home and support their family by being a homemaker. Both of those life decisions are supported with the feminist movement, but the anti-feminist movement only supports the latter. I get this feeling from the anti-feminist movement that they believe the feminist movement is going to hurt them, but on the contrary it is in full support of their choices as well.

  • Lulu

    Sites like those seem so crazy and foreign to me. It blows my mind that there are still thousands of women in America that believe it is their duty to become homemakers. And don’t even get me started on the father giving his daughter away/men passing on ownership… It’s bogus.

    Thanks for sharing this through the linkup!

  • Marielle

    Oh, reading stuff like that is so fascinating. I agree with your take on feminism – women should just have the right to live the lives they want. It’s so crazy to raise your daughter to be a homemaker, and deny her higher education.

    And modesty…ugh. I do still believe in certain types of dress for professional/formal situations. That’s just how we roll. But I hate how this idea of “modesty” gets carried out in public schools, to the point where skinny jeans are now “immodest” and “distracting boys.”

  • Kiersten

    I just cannot understand how there are still people who believe women were created to stay at home and raise the kids and cook dinner and nothing else. Why are we not past that? Thank you so much for bringing this up! And I love thag you pointed out that feminism is about doing what you want, regardless of someone elsea opinion 🙂 such a great point!
    I do have a caveat to your point about dressing modestly though. Of course Id never wear tight jeans or a short skirt to work or an interview, because its not professional. But if I want to wear those things in my own time, thats my prerogative and I couldnt care less whether the people who see me think I donate to charity or not. I think what a person wears on their own time is entirely their decision.
    Thanks so much for linking up!

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