How to be a feminist boyfriend? And other questions

by Jess McCabe // 11 April 2008, 17:43

A reader wrote into the blog Feministe with the question "how do I be a feminist boyfriend?" The comments thread is going strong, but Bitch PhD has some particular advice worthy of passing on, including this:

Dick Move #2: Being patronizing about her anger. Manifestations include "ooh, someone's angry," "getting a little testy, are we?" and "whoa, there, tiger!" Given that women are socially conditioned not to display, nay, not even to feel anger, you better believe that when your partner is angry, she means it. If her anger surprises you, say so: "I'm surprised you're so angry. What's going on?" If you expected it, then you can just proceed from there.

This is part of the new(ish) Feministe Feedback section, which is proving very good. Previously, the blog has addressed "how to start a successful feminist blog", finding journals that publish articles by feminist men, etc.

And while we're on the theme of advice columns, Lesbilicious has great regular feature on readers' questions. Most recently I'm a lesbian, my mum can't be!

Of course, we have our own Ask a Feminist section as well.

Comments From You

Shea // Posted 11 April 2008 at 18:27

Dick Move # 3 -- blaming all anger on "that time of the month". No- women can just get angry/moody/pissed off without any hormones being involved.

Lynne Miles // Posted 11 April 2008 at 19:27

Oh I *love* that thread. My top 2:

1) Realise that when I'm ranting about 'men' in general I'm not mad at 'you' personally. Unless I say I am. You don't need to explain to me how you, personally, are not like that and therefore my anger is invalid.

2) Call out your oafish mates when they make one of those stupid all-lads-together I'm-joking-but-I'm-not-joking sexist comments. This might make the biggest difference in the world to me....

Fanny Blood // Posted 11 April 2008 at 22:21

A few of mine:

1) Don't say "oh as if that's happening to women in society" when you no fuck all about what's happening to women in society. Grrrr.

2) Don't say "oh, be quiet, it's just banter" when your friends are being overtly sexist or racist.

3) See Lynne Miles #2


Fanny Blood // Posted 11 April 2008 at 22:22

A few of mine:

1) Don't say "oh as if that's happening to women in society" when you know fuck all about what's happening to women in society. Grrrr.

2) Don't say "oh, be quiet, it's just banter" when your friends are being overtly sexist or racist.

3) See Lynne Miles #2


Max // Posted 28 January 2010 at 19:05

Cheers for the advice - it's harder than you'd think :/

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