One of the questions I asked other parents in the blog series, In Conversation With, last year was what are your hopes and dreams for your children? It’s a question I have tried to answer myself over the years, but it’s a difficult one to truly articulate. Good job, success, happiness, happy relationship, respect, pride? As you probably know by now, Little Bean is growing rapidly and it turns out that she’s a she! We’re delighted to be having another girl, a little sister for A. Raising daughters in this century, however, has never been easy and it doesn’t look like it will get easier any time soon. In light of the new American Presidency, we have to question where has equality disappeared to? Why are women’s rights still not being recognised? In a world where such a man can be elected to one of the highest levels of esteem and power, how can we tell our children, our daughters, that by the time their future is here that they will be treated equally, respected and honoured?
Same Shit, Different Century
I watched the Global Women’s March on Saturday with absolute fascination. Five million people, men and women, globally stepped out and made their voices heard. Shouted to the rooftops how they are against what the Oval Office now stands for.
“The rhetoric of the past election cycle has insulted, demonized, and threatened many of us – immigrants of all statuses, Muslims and those of diverse religious faiths, people who identify as LGBTQIA, Native people, Black and Brown people, people with disabilities, survivors of sexual assault – and our communities are hurting and scared. We are confronted with the question of how to move forward in the face of national and international concern and fear.”
– Womens March
It’s 2017. How are we still in this place? Why is this story so long, everlasting and without an end? Why are women still second rate? Why are women still refused a voice? A choice?
The world, myself included, is flabbergasted by the prejudice and the poison that is spread daily. From our leaders, in our news feed, from neighbours. The hateful, disrespectful attitude spreads like a plague. People like Trump, negate any good work or progress that is done to make women feel respected and equal. Where do we go from here when a world power champions the behaviour of someone who is clearly ignorant, racist and misogynistic?
“In the spirit of democracy and honouring the champions of human rights, dignity, and justice who have come before us, we join in diversity to show our presence in numbers too great to ignore.”
– Womens March
I genuinely don’t know how we move away from this. How do we overcome the attitudes of those who clearly are adverse to change? March’s, protests, free speeches will always take place. Women and men alike will push through boundaries, knock down walls, and create paths for our children. The Womens March movement have plans to make Trumps first 100 days in office memorable, not for Trump but for the power and support of women’s rights.
But it seems that these walls can all too easily be thrown back up again. The negative and prejudicial attitude of leaders, those in power whether in politics, the news room or at our kids dance classes, are dangerous and damaging to our future generations.
How are we to raise our daughters in this world knowing that it could potentially be worse for them in years to come? I imagine our parents believed women’s rights would have progressed to a much better place by now. This year makes me feel as though it is going the wrong way.
How Can We Ensure Our Daughters’ Futures?
By doing exactly what we are doing. Protesting. Standing Up. Fighting. Making our Voices Heard. Raising smart, independent, strong, brave and resilient women. I will fight for my daughters rights. My daughters will fight.
Because it is a fight.
It’s a battle against the detrimental establishments that hold us down and pull us back. The world is not standing for this. The world is fighting back and I will teach my world, my daughters, to stand up, be proud and fight.
To be strong, to be brave. Have courage and know their value.
My hopes and dreams for our daughters? That they may not despair as I do about what their future holds for them.
If you are interested in the idea of raising your daughters to be strong, supportive and open minded women, then Raising Feminists might interest you. Beth from The Motherhub is hosting a panel discussion with special guests in the Workman’s Club on February 15th. I’m disappointed to be missing Raising Feminists because I feel it’s an important issue, all the more so now when our world is clearly rewinding time instead of looking forward.