I am a panromantic, but I am damned to be a heterosexual.
I know that my love for women is romantic! Because I suffer heartbreaks even in female friendships. I also spend a lot of time maintaining female friendships. I love women.
I love women even if I am in the wrong side of the argument. I want to love and support women to the point of being irrational. To the point where men will say “K, bUt ThAT’s ReVeRsE sExIsM!”. I’ll shrug because this stand is completely emotional.
I love women because I feel gratitude. I have been a judgmental misogynist, trying to not be “girly”. I have been harsh in my judgments of housewives, and career women, of girlfriends and my mother! 😛 But all I have ever received is love and nourishment from women. I have learned to live in this body, thanks to women. I have become a better feminist, because of women. I have grown intellectually and emotionally because of women. I have been mentored by some super-cool women. I have been helped, nursed, guided, understood by women. I have worked, laughed, played, cried with women. If I am a little less uptight, and so much more kinder than I used to be because I was groomed by women. I am just forever indebted to womankind for being happy, colourful and powerful despite the banal, brutal patriarchal structures.
Hence, I have decided to be a benevolent sexist— I am always going to be on the side of the woman, no matter what. Even if there is a chance, that I am supporting someone trying to misuse my trust, I will take that bet. I will be disappointed far less compared to the statistically high trash behaviour that men display and are excused for. Entertain this hypothetical for a minute– suppose, if a man is called out for being a sexual harasser by a woman, when the matter is yet to be decided on, I would take the side of the woman because I really feel that women don’t get support and are not believed easily because there is a level of harm that you will trust, otherwise it is all hysterical imagination. And again, if she was simply trying to falsely frame the guy, I would be disappointed, accept my mistake and let that be. It is not going to hurt me as much as the inverse of this scenario would do.
The inverse being where the woman has been proven to be true, and I took the side of the guy—I have been in these situations— I would hate myself for not being on the woman’s side all along. I hate to imagine that I might still have some remnants of internal misogyny.
But I think men should not be benevolent sexists like I am because when men are benevolent sexists, women don’t exist in any other frame other than fairy-goddess-princess-mother.. So if a man is a sexist, even a benevolent one at that, it is more harmful. For such sexists, if they find a woman who has done something wrong, then that women is the witch-whore-bitch-vamp that deserves whatever ill happens to her! That’s not true, of course! Since men have the structural power where their dissing of a woman hurts woman more, they should just shut up and constantly reflect. I have seen benevolent sexists who are painful to talk to, their love is so conditional to a woman’s virtue, that it really is suffocating to just imagine those standards.
So maybe I am not a benevolent sexist, after all. But it is just easier to wrap up the argument, because it never happens that I can delve into nuance. So it is easier to say that my support for women is irrational, emotional and what about it? 😛 I am aware of the risks when I am taking this stand.
I want women also to make mistakes and then I want to be their left-hand woman. I want women to feel powerful and fight the system, and I want to be their comrade. I want women to punch a guy, and I will be video-shooting that mess! But I want more possibilities for women! And that needs a bit of unconditional support that men have gotten for no good reason for generations.