My Name is Kate. I'm a 25-year-old Northern Welsh-Jewish Feminist (confused already?). The thought of writing a blog to some-how explain my over-whelming sense of doom and failure, obviously felt like an impossible task, but I'm beginning to take into account, the sense of my own crumbling demise, as part of the weight of responsibility that this world has left on my shoulders, and I think- frankly it needs to be dealt with. *This is in no-way passing the blame onto some-body else, before you say it mother*...
I have always been a huge advocate of the Personal being Political. That being, whatever informs our everyday lives, that makes us a little bit ragey, or tear up on the motorway, is in some way woven into how we as individual try and deal with this big ol' monster we call society. Is it just me, or is anyone else particularly confused by society at the moment? I'm finding it pretty difficult to clearly even browse the internet without being inundated with bogus articles, and selfies, and delicious instagram photos of such a great time we're ALL NOT HAVING WHEN I'M SAT ALONE DRINKING PEPPERMINT TEA. I'm starting to get what I have termed 'Virtual Anxiety'- That is, when I open my laptop, feeling like perhaps I will head online to see what’s going on with the guardian today, or search for any feminist articles to motivate me to speak out appear, I instead find myself browsing Facebook, or Twitter, or LinkedIn, Or Pinterest, and Virtually comparing myself with a mountain of my friends, forgetting that in fact in some of those photos I was there, having a good time too- and that I do actually know these people, who look so beautiful and incredibly flawless in their intelligently edited instagram shots wearing clothes I will never afford. I try to catch up, I post the pictures (mainly when I have made a particularly detailed effort with my make-up) in attempt to assert myself, wave the flag and say HEY GUYS, I'M HERE TOO! LETS ALL BE FABULOUS TOGETHER but I think frankly I'm tired of it. This weight of social media is beginning to burden me. It’s beginning to stop me thinking… It's beginning to make me realize that actually how honestly do I speak on these platforms, and if not, why not? I don't post Facebook Status's about my contraceptive pill made me depressed, Or how frankly the state of the world at this current moment often wants to make me run for the hills and attempt to make a new community, with any animal willing to give me a back massage- I instead buy into my own facade of defining myself, my career and my friendships on social media.
Maybe it us just me- and you guys are all fine, just browsing your Facebook still able to remember how great you are, but to be honest- I'm struggling. Recently I've noticed myself really bite, at certain articles I’ve seen posted on friend’s walls. Articles with sentiments I categorically do not agree with, and yet I’m happy to just scroll past it on my news feed? Well not any more. I have begun to ask myself, how would I respond to that in 'Real Life'- Would I sit with this person over a drink and nod and agree with their demeaning or misogynist statements? Anyone that knows me well is probably grimacing, as they know full well I would probably throw a drink on sed person, set fire to their hair, and then walk out of the pub, but why aren't these passionate responses acceptable on social media?
I am not writing this blog, as some-body that knows the answer to any of these vague and potentially pointless rhetorical questions. I'm writing this as somebody that genuinely, is quite lost. For the first time-
I think I've lost my voice.
I was never embarrassed to be the overtly political, and brash, opinionated loner at the party, I accepted my spot below the pedestal proudly, with a sense of liberation, as it meant I had the ability to say, and think freely without fear, but somewhere along the lines, between adolescence, university and a haircut, I’ve become perhaps a little, dare I say it… agreeable?
Which brings me back to my first point. How can the Personal be Political, when frankly you are losing all sense of who you are? I am starting to notice that I don't give my own opinions the 100% validity they deserve. Slowly, my attitude is being eroded, to make way for the fact that actually, If I do want to passionately maintain my political beliefs, I may as well cut out my own kidneys with a fork, and use my own blood to tattoo the words UN-HIREABLE on my forehead. But, yet again, I ask myself why not- why not ask the un-kind agency on the phone, why they "Do not hire females to do that"- and point out that this is in fact discrimination and take them to court, why do I 'Scroll Past' these injustices that in my head I'm screaming in the face of. I am beginning to think, that they way I use social media, the way I perceive myself online and others, is in fact a Feminist Issue. We are obviously still dealing the way that images of women are portrayed in the media, In Magazines, or Newspapers, but we need to be careful that we do not fall into the trap of portraying ourselves a certain way online. Or I know that I do- If social media is meant to be a representation of ourselves, then I am 100% guilty of mis-representing myself.
So this is the beginning of the end- the end of ‘scrolling by’, and using my voice instead, whether that be online or dare I say it, in reality…. I don’t want to look at other people as the ‘voice of our generation’; actually, I want to speak for myself.
My Name is Kate, I am a 25-year-old Feminist, and already slightly less confused.