Continuing the spirit of Christmas tales, I paid a visit to London just before Christmas to attend a wonderful concert of Tudor polyphony. In the afternoon I wandered through Camden and ended up following two people a man and a woman. At first I thought it was a couple. I noticed that the woman was ignoring the man, I imagined some sort of quarrel. The man then quite casually stopped and the woman continued on her way. This seemed odd, until it occurred to me that these two people may not have met before and the man was simply pestering her. If so, he did a very good job of appearing to the world as if he knew the woman as he walked beside her. I’ve only recently become aware of such things occurring in larger towns and cities. This particular phenomenon of sexist oppression. such oppression affects us all. This oppression affects white males too, like me.
I have formed numerous friendships with ladies over the years. I have discussed before how once the possibility of a sexual relationship has been negated, a friendship may continue. However there have been a couple of examples where the lady has stopped all contact with me. This hurt me greatly and not understanding what had happened, not knowing what I had done wrong caused me great peturbation. I seemed to be misunderstood and randomly losing friends.
It is only know that I have learnt not to be afraid of being misunderstood that I perhaps have the answer. That my continued contact has been construed as continuing to pursue a relationship. So why, when it was clear that I wasn’t seeking a closer relationship was this not being believed.
The answer being that the harrassment of women by men has led to women being oppressed. Women have to put up with the regularity and persistence of unwanted attention from men every time they walk down the street. Hence men are oppressed too as when men such as myself are simply being friendly, we are viewed with suspicion.
Having said that it isn’t entirely this, it is partly that I overcompensate for my lack of social skills and talk too much, to the extent that even men have felt the need to tell me that they are not interested in a relationship with me. I just like talking to people, I don’t seek relationships, I just think that relationships happen when people bond together, but there is no harm in talking with the people that I meet. Nonetheless, I think the point still stands that systemic oppression affects us all, which is rubbish as it is then society as a whole rather than individuals to blame for this.
So, grab your pitchfork, light your torches and lets all get out there and change society. This blog has a purpose! Except we are all different and no-one can expect the world to change to suit them. I am just so glad to have understood this. The biblical quote “Judge not, that ye be not judged” (Matthew C7v1), resonates so much with me. That the problem isn’t within me. I just needed to be more aware of sexist oppression in society, to not be afraid of being misunderstood and more accepting of it when it happens.