By: Chris Millman
A very common exercise that peer educators use when giving a lesson on healthy masculinity is the “Man Box.” In this exercise, a group identifies words used to make a man feel bad about his masculinity, forcing him to act more “manly.” This includes just about every word you can probably imagine, such as “gay” or “pussy.” Obviously then, telling a male he does something “like a girl” can also fit into this category. Everyone has heard it before in many different contexts. These include “You throw like a girl,” “You fight like a girl,” and “You drink like a girl.” However, in all these exercises, no one harps on the effects that this can have on females. This commercial, made by Always, a company that sells feminine products, gives a glimpse into the effects that this has had in our culture:
The effects of “like a girl” on the female population is best illustrated in that video. Our culture has created an image of how a girl should be and act. Women grow into this image because that is what our culture tells them they should do; otherwise, they are not in the “Woman Box.” This sense of inferiority that our culture places on women are major influences for sexual assault, and especially the silence that surrounds it. If we could learn how to live in a world with healthier masculinity, there would also be healthier femininity.
And if you still think that anatomically women still can’t throw a ball as well as men, just watch what MythBusters says about that: