25 Things I Want As a Woman

To go on a date without fear of being stalked, raped or murdered.

To wash the windshield of my car at the gas station without startling and embarrassing cat-calls directed my way from passing cars.

To walk the sidewalks without solicitation for sex from random strangers.

To be able to report a rape without being grilled by a detective over whether I am a liar, whether I made the man think I wanted it or had in some other way invited the crime through my clothing, my company and my whereabouts or whether I am just a vindictive ex.

To be free from the expectation that I act like a “good, grateful young lady” under the fatherly wing of an older man during otherwise normal transactions like renting a room or getting my car repaired.

To be free to decide to keep my baby if I become pregnant without anger, shame, criticism and pressure to abort coming from the father and his family.

To be free from the embarrassing assumption that I am married when I seek prenatal care.

To be free from unsolicited pressure from medical staff to become sterilized at a young age because I am on state funded medical insurance. 

To receive adequate financial support for raising a child if the father leaves.

To be respected by the father and his family when they communicate to my child about me.

To pursue an educational goal and a career of my choosing without discouragement from family or boyfriends.

To receive as much pay as my male co-workers for the same work.

To be free to request accommodations for caregiving responsibilities without fear of being passed over for a raise or promotion at a later time.

To watch tv or movies without frequent scenes of violence against women, sexual objectification and subservience.

To shop for food at the grocery store without being surrounded by magazines that pressure me to get thinner, act sexier and rush to attract a mate.

To be free from worry that my boyfriend will chide me if I miss a day of shaving my legs.

To be free from remarks from my boyfriend about  how my body might be improved upon.

To be free from the expectation that I behave like a porn actress during sex.

To receive recognition for my skills and abilities without worrying that I must also maintain a perfect appearance.

To receive as much support and recognition for my work as a single mother as my friend receives as a single father.

To be free from the imposed ideal of the self-sacrificing mother and recognized as a human being still worthy in her own right.

To be free from the ideal of the placid, ever patient mother so that I may realistically assess my strengths and limitations.

To be free to be a dynamic human being while also a mother so that I may thoroughly enjoy this phase of life and set an inspiring example for my daughter.

To be able to talk about these issues with my boyfriend and receive loving support.

To identify as a feminist without fear.

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