Culture

All The independent Women Are [INSERT HERE]

ALL MY WOMEN WHO’ INDEPENDENT…. (What the deejay doesn’t tell you about independent women)

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[Beyoncé recreates iconic poster]. (2014) Retrieved May 15, 2016. from http://www.mtv.co.uk/beyonce/news/beyonce-recreates-iconic-we-can-do- it-poster-at-ww2-museum

How many times have you been out with your girls and fell victim to the deejay pump up session?  You know the one, “If you’re a real woman, that takes care of your business, and don’t need a man for nothing, make some noise!”  This is followed by a good bit of screaming, finger pointing, and high-fiving. We’ve all been there.

Just recently, I went to the movies with a group of friends.  After the movie, we all said our goodbyes and headed to our cars.  I was parked a little further away, so my friend, (a male) offered to walk me to my car. Before I could give my response, my other friend replied,” She probably wants to go by herself since she’s so independent.” Then she laughed.  I smiled and said, “I am and very proud of it.”

I was confused.  When did independence become a laughing matter?  When did it become something to be ashamed of?  Where was the club deejay when I needed him?

I like many others, come from a long line of independent women.  From the time I was a little girl, it was instilled in me to be smart, strong, and successful. Go to college.  Start your career.  Never depend on anyone for anything.  These are the things that have carried many women throughout their lives.  Interestingly enough, these same things have caused many of us to experience guilt, heartbreak, and even shaming.  The same crowd that encouraged our independence now shames our lifestyle.  As I approached 30, I began to hear things such as “Maybe you should tone it down a little.” (Tone down what? Are you referring to my hair, my clothing or my entire personality?)  Another was, “How do you expect to have a family?”(Because successful career women could NEVER maintain a family life.)  My least favorite is, “All you women screaming ‘independent’ are going to end up old and lonely.

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Mohadesa Najumi quote. Retrieved May 16 from https://www.pinterest.com/pin/170855379590373883/

In a perfect world, women could have it all.  The house. Great relationships with our children.  Loving marriages.  Booming careers. Although we would like to have it all, most women will admit that having it all is a challenge.  Women are expected to take on many roles, without letting any of their responsibilities slide.  We are expected to be good wives, mothers, daughters, friends, workers, cooks, and a host of other roles. What’s worse is the idea that any woman who is independent will slight any man who desires to be with her. This is  far from the truth.  Don’t you wish that the club deejay was around every time you needed to get your independence on?  It seems everyone listens when he has something to say!  Here are four things the deejay DOESN’T tell you about independent women.

1) Our independence is not our way of shaming your manhood. (Nor it is a disclaimer for “I will not be submissive to you.)

Talk to any woman and she will tell you that we go through many emotional struggles.  When you have felt weak for so long,  it feels good to find your own strength. For many women, this can be found outside of the typical roles of wife and mother.  Women are very multifaceted.  We possess the ability to be nurturers as well as fighters.  While we can’t promise you a Florida Evans, we can promise you a lifetime of happiness. Balanced woman will always recognize the need to create a positive environment at work and in the home.

2) There is a difference between us “needing” a man and “wanting” a man.

When women say that they do not “need” a man it is usually referring to financial stability.  I will agree that we all need love in order to reach our fullest potential.  So while I may not need a man in matters of money.  I do desire to have one in matters of the heart.

3) We do not want to do everything alone.

Inside of each independent woman is an innate desire to let go and relax.  She does not always want to be in control. She is utterly exhausted and wishes that she did not have to handle things all of the time.  No matter how strong you are, it is always comforting to know that someone has your back.

4)  Deep down, we really just want to be respected.

I am in awe of the things that I hear from women on a daily basis.  Have a talk with any woman and you will hear stories of pain, heartache, disappointments, triumph, ridicule, and many other life struggles.  Throughout all of this, I am encouraged by women who continue to move through life and fight any obstacle, even if they must fight alone.  This is what being independent is all about.  It is the recognition of our strength and respect for our efforts.  We are more than just wives.  We are more than just mothers.  We are pillars of strength and determination.  We are the inner workings of major corporations.  We are the backbones of families. Through all of this, we still desire to respect and love.  Instead of shaming us, try instead to understand us.  Then maybe you can appreciate what it means to be an independent woman.  Tell the deejay to turn us up!!!

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Girly girl. Thrift junkie. Lover of life, God, and laughter. Professional over thinker. Straight shooter. Blog link: love-jojo.com

Written by: Michaela JoVon Phelps,  Staff Writer, #mygirlsquad

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