I’ve never cared about fashion. Shoe shopping makes my eyes glaze over with boredom. I rarely wear make-up, and prefer to simply brush my hair back and tie it into a ponytail. I feel complete indifference towards whatever is “in” right now. I have nothing against fashion–it’s just not a thing for me.

But oh, the stuff you realize while watching public television. Their shows are totally worth the tax money.

It finally clicked for me as I was looking at the prancing birds of paradise on a Nature episode. Yeah, those birds, preening their feathers and spending hours decorating their nests in an attempt to attract Mrs. Bird. I would have to be pretty dense not to notice the connection between that strutting male’s bright red tail and the photo of the stilettos in the magazine. Every species has its mating rules. For humans, the rule is that the female wears the feathers–the make-up and heels and dress. I can’t willfully refuse to follow the mating rules of my own species and then complain that things don’t work out for me.

Does that realization make shoes and clothes any more interesting for me than they were before? Not really. I still find fashion to be dull at best and a pain in the ass at worst. But you gotta do what you gotta do, and I have a choice to make. I can remain the way I am, but then I don’t have the right to bitch about it if I don’t attract a mate in the future. So I suppose I should make at least a minimal effort at being “female”.

Or…I could do what genuinely interests me, and go back to listening to that discussion about the Keystone pipeline on C-Span. I never said I was particularly *good* at this whole being human thing….

I should give fair warning that I wrote this at the confluence of a full moon and my PMS.  But hey, if I can’t vent about this on my blog, where else, right?

This post is simply here to say that after all this time, after having been raised with feminist ideals of equality, I have learned that the people who say that men and women are different from each other are right.  I know that there is indeed a feminine part of me which is naturally wired to be gentle, nurturing and caring to others.  And I absolutely despise that part of myself.

I have spent years trying to train myself to be selfish, to pursue my own dreams and my own happiness, but the female part of me always trips me up.  This is the part of me which worries about everybody else and wants to make sure that everybody around me is happy.  The part of me which is too nice and says yes to too many things.  And when I get angry later about agreeing too much, the part which prevents me from speaking harsh words.  Because, unfortunately, I have the ability to empathize with how the other person would feel.

I was hoping that it was possible to use willpower to change myself.  To become just a little more indifferent, a little more ruthless, better at taking what I want.  But I am beginning to think that we are trapped by our biological programming, to a far greater degree than we believe we are. 

So in spite of myself, I am a woman.  I lose myself in relationships with other people until my identity blurs and I’m no longer sure of who I am.  I suppose this should be a comfort to conservatives everywhere–I have been broken down and forced to submit to the qualities of my own gender.