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Women’s Issues

May 14, 2014

Bring Back Our Class

What was Ann Coulter thinking when she mocked the hashtag effort for awareness of the Nigerian girls who were kidnapped for sale as prostitutes and slaves? Why would a “female” public figure go against a public effort to raise awareness of such a catastrophic event that dishonors women and children?!

 

Have we found new ways to not accept world responsibility? I remember the Viet Nam war. The veterans. The people. Americans bought into the hideous idea that the veterans were killers! It was that horrid hate that our veterans returned “home” to. In that case, we as a people followed our leaders right into the destruction of our warriors – the very men and women who put their lives on the line to give us that very freedom. They did what they were told and the people followed what they were told! No thought of the affect.

 

The public is a powerful branding and movement tool. To see the support that is offered by the people for the young women/children is the key to this effort! It lets the world know that as people we stand strong against these behaviors and values! In our own country, we have teens who are kidnaped or bought into prostitution as runaways. In our own South-Florida backyard, we have Covenant House that does its best to rescue, protect and house those young lives.

 

Furthermore, what are we thinking when, as leaders of the American people, they are condemning and mocking the voice of the people??? I am truly lost at the purpose of this outrageous attack on people around the world uniting in their emotional support of an effort to protect these young women. Is it selfish intent? I do not know. What stops these men and women from seeing the effort as a positive an powerful display to be used toward a common goal?? Why would we need to see this as a negative?

 

Let’s go back to the power and honor of women. We as people and, in particular, as women, need to unite to increase an awareness and consequential movement toward honoring women! This kidnaping is a world statement of Nigeria’s views and valuing of women! Furthermore, it feeds the same views and values where they exist in the world. The Twitter community (and, in general, the internet community) has stood up to say “NO!” and to further support the need to honor life, women, and children. There must be a powerful uniting of people to open awareness to this misuse and devaluing as well as to the further destruction of women and their graceful power in other areas of the world.

 

I leave you with theses thoughts: If you have or had a daughter, how would you like her to be valued and honored? If you are a daughter, how would you like to see the world support unfold?

 

October 23, 2013

Women’s Empowerment?

Women do not need to be empowered!! That implies they don’t have the power. But women are power — graceful, beautiful power. They are a source of power and an expression of power. The problem is that women have been subsumed into a patriarchal structure for so long that they forgot where they hid their truth! The truth of who they are as magikal, healing, powerful women. And so, women need to learn how to unveil the very power that is their’s and then it will become a natural part of their expression in their lives. Women will then begin to teach their daughters and other women.

 

To the indigenous people of the land, women were honored for who and what they were/are. They created life and community. They were protected. That honoring was the same for all indigenous people on all continents. At that time, people enjoyed the balance of the male-female energy in genders and in life. The men would hunt and the women would gather. It was a simple but deep appreciation for the differences that so beautifully complimented one another. Then society began and the warriors became the leaders and society became patriarchal and women became possessions: shamed and oppressed. Over time, women bought into their status and began to identify themselves through men’s perspective and wants.

 

Women have been through a lot over this time. For example, they have been accused of evil, shamed for having their own thoughts, and have been sexualized. With the advent of Christianity, only male priests were allowed to heal. So, all of a sudden, anyone else healing was practicing the work of “the devil”. That resulted in women being accused of being witches if they healed. Witches became perceived as evil rather than the healers they were. While it’s impossible to have an exact number historians estimate at least 35,000 to 100,000 were burned and tortured from 1450-1750AD. Women have also been kept by patriarchal structures that shame them or destroy them for having their own thoughts or desires. Some of those cultures are still castrating their women! Many cultures don’t pay a woman the same as a man, (The U.S. included! Click Here for some interesting stats. ) a very subtle form of shaming a woman. Women have been extensively sexualized. They are sex objects in movies (even if they are the hero!!!), tv, media, life. Over time, as can be seen through these examples, women have been destroyed: physically, emotionally, and energetically. Consequently, the balance shifted to an imbalance of male energy in a patriarchal environment and women bought into the fear that they could be destroyed. Women then submitted at various levels. (This is a blog entry in and of itself.)

 

As women gain an awareness, a comprehensive awareness, of how they have been remodeled to the needs of the male, they can begin to see the truth of who they are as women and in absence of the male definition that historically they had to buy into. It is at that point that women will begin to heal. They will begin to unveil and step into their power. Women will then begin to define and create their own experiences in their lives and for others. Women will no longer wait for men or society to define them. What a beautifully powerful place to be.

 

October 17, 2013

Success and Anorexia

Many strong, successful career women seem to have had eating disorders in their past. And many of those women seem to have married or are dating men who are much more attentive to the home and children. It is as if the roles and definitions have been reversed.

 

In my experiences, it appears that, in general, strong ambitious women do not learn how to define themselves in this culture so they identify with men in their need to find acceptance. When young, they may struggle with their female curves and body and, more often than not, work to eliminate it with the eating disorder. It seems to be of continued importance for them to maintain an attractive figure and appearance in adulthood. They also continue to develop a more male-oriented position in life through career and providing. They tend to have a hidden judgment about being taken care of and so make sure they do not need to be “taken care of” by providing for the family. It may be important for them to feel in control. Again, this may be due to the need to identify with a man’s world and find acceptance through being good enough.

 

But why do they tend to marry or date less ambitious men? It appears to represent their need to feel accepted without having to work so hard at it; to be able to relax and not take things so seriously. It appears to be a compliment to their intensity. It is as if they are learning to love the very part of themselves they used to hate. As if they are accepting the very characteristics in their partner that they desperately needed accepted in their Self as a child.

 

More often than not, however, the relationship appears to take on an abusive quality. That again, goes back to the days of the eating disorder. The control of the eating, was the struggle to stay away from the judgment of not being good enough. It is that very judgment that creates shame in an individual. The judgments may also allow the woman to feel unaccepted and, consequently, not belonging to the family or group. The shame and absence of belonging are two consistent characteristics in the abuse pattern in an individual.

 

A woman of this experience may be struggling internally with being good enough and may still be looking for extrinsic rewards or reinforcers to confirm that she is good enough to be loved, accepted. Part of this may be due to the perception that in our society, women need to shut down their female aspects to succeed in business. This leaves an internal feeling of not being good enough because as a woman you cannot be who you are. It may also be that the very shame that developed in them as young women interrupted their ability to define their Self and lead to the eating disorder or more. Or, maybe, as an ambitious female, her role models were males and so she learned to shut down her female aspects to be more like a man in order to be accepted by men. This suggests women may perceive that they cannot be accepted into a man’s world for who they are and so need to be like a man to be accepted as a professional among them. It may then be more clear that they would choose a partner who is complimentary, supportive, and caring of who they are.

 

As women begin defining their Self from an intrinsic point of reference, they will begin to accept their Self for who they are which will lead to feeling accepted by others and, consequently, society. Women will then pass forward the defining of self for self and by self. This will end women defining themselves through men. I believe the ending of women defining their self through men will also have an impact on the numbers of eating disorders. Just think, mothers and women will no longer press their daughters and younger women (respectively) to be thin in order to be loved, they will begin teaching a healthy lifestyle that embraces the unique characteristics of each child. Something so many women want and try to achieve.

 

October 9, 2013

Women and Their Body

Most women would love to be known for who they are and loved for who they are. Yet, in our culture, what defines an attractive woman is her appearance and what defines an attractive man is his achievement. In a heterosexual environment, most men will never meet the beautiful woman who resides in a body that men or society deem as “not so perfect”. And yet, a woman will meet a good man who resides in a not-so-perfect body.

 

Who defines a woman’s body as beautiful? It does not appear to be women. Women work very hard and spend billions of dollars annually to create a body they feel will be good enough for our society’s definition of beautiful. Did women truly agree that a beautiful body is one that requires intense work and surgery to maintain?

 

Women very often hate their body. They are more often than not in a state of judging their body rather than loving their body. Women learn this. They learn that their body is a public viewing of how they are not good enough — not good enough to be accepted or loved. It appears to be an experience that gets handed down through mother to daughter! That suggests that women have bought into a patriarchal view that is destructive of them. A view that appears to say, “As a woman you will never be good enough to be a man.” It is the men in society that dictate what an attractive body type is. It is women who agree to attempt to create it. Consequently, it is the women who suffer the consequences of failing to meet the male expectation. What would happen if women decided to set their own standard of what their beautiful body is?

 

In order for that to happen, women would have to feel their own power. Women have learned to hide their power and play the roles dictated by a patriarchal society. Part of the hiding comes from the historic obedience to men’s desires that women have accepted. Obedience, however, only occurs as a survival mechanism. It appears to be a large part of the survival mechanism that has been learned and ingrained in women for more than 2000 years. Women have been teaching girls and other women how to be obedient to society’s expectations for a very long time. For example, in Florida the schools are now doing a brief physical on the children and sending letters to parents to notify them of overweight and obese children based up on the body-mass index. In a middle school a female athlete was sent home with a letter to give to her mother that said she was overweight. Unfortunately, they had her height off by 2 inches!! the mother of this particular student was very supportive and notified the school but what would have been the repercussions had that young, fit, healthy, teenager read the letter and had no support that allowed her see the error at MANY levels!!

 

It has been shown and discussed that women are not attractive when they are ambitious and intelligent (e.g., Miss Representation, 2012). Society has been trained to view an attractive woman as a sexy, thin woman not necessarily a healthy, conservative woman. This sets a stage for women to shy away from developing a sense of professional self. She tends to feel there is a conflict between professional and woman. Just the other day, I was sitting in a business meeting when one of the men stood to give a testimonial about the women in the group. His testimonial was that the women in the group are beautiful and manage to get up early enough for the early meeting to put on their make-up!! Seventy percent of the women were appalled and angry, while 30% giggled and thought it was funny!! All of the women in the group are high-powered business owners or professional (attorneys, doctors, etc.). Even many women who are successful in a corporate environment either shut down their sexuality and dress androgynously or overstate their sexuality and dress provocatively. Why? Because both extremes develop out of a focus on the image of what they are not. Why have women not developed a style that “suits” them in the business world. Each person can develop their own insignia rather than blending into the masses or the expectations. This is where women can begin to teach one another a new way of expressing their professional self.

 

It is in women choosing to define their Self that change will begin. Women must be willing to know what they want to experience and be willing to create that very experience. Women will need to help each other develop that confidence and inner knowing of who they are in order to initiate change in the cultural view of what they are. It is then that women will be known and loved for who they are from the inside out.

 

I am SO VERY UPSET!! We realized, in choosing a picture to represent this article that we could choose a horrific picture of an anorexic women or a media-based picture of a woman. I wanted this beautiful woman:

 

But the people of our culture have been programmed to KNOW the media’s view of women or be captured by hideous horror. It is the only view that will capture the attention of the public! So, even in my office, we chose a picture that would catch the public’s eye. How awful is this situation?! Please let me know your thoughts!

 

Please contact KB@KristenBomas.com if you have any questions about services, topics or products.

Kristen Bomas, PA
398 Camino Gardens Blvd., Suite 104
Boca Raton, Florida 33432
Phone: (561) 212-7575
Email: KB@KristenBomas.com

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Photography by Walter
"Two Eagles" Smith

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