When it comes to girls and women, there are some things that only girls and women understand. Boys and men are essential to include in the conversation on gender parity — and people of all genders should read this list of challenges — but there are some things that make being a girl a literal pain in the … well, uterus.
Misery loves company, so if you need to be reminded that you’re not alone in your experiences of gender inequalities, here are 25 challenges only women understand.
Did it hurt when you fell from heaven? (And other lines that don’t work):
1. Being told to “smile,” when you don’t feel like smiling (like during your 8 a.m. commute).
2. Taking the “scenic route” so you don’t have to walk past a group of men and risk being harassed.
3. When a guy insists on buying you a drink you didn’t want, and then acts like you owe him something.
4. When you hesitate to tell a cabdriver your exact address because he keeps asking, “Do you have a boyfriend?”
5. When you tell a man you’re gay and his response is “But you’ve never been with a guy like me.” Barf.
6. When a person asks you to make out with a woman to “prove you’re really gay.”
Is it that time of the month? (And other #PeriodProblems)
7. Wondering if it’s wise to wear white pants on your period.
8. Walking to the bathroom with a tampon hidden up your sleeve so nobody knows you’re on your period.
9. Really anything period-related (ie. cramps, pads, tampons, PMS, etc.) We’re so over the stigma.
Do I look fat in this? (and other wardrobe worries)
10. Deciding whether or not you’ve shaved recently enough to wear shorts.
11. Your swimsuit selfie runs the risk of getting you banned from Instagram or Facebook, while men are free to post those shirtless mirror photos.
12. Spending hours (and $$$) trying to find high heels that you can actually walk in.
13. Never having pockets and carrying a 10-lb. bag instead.
14. Getting funny looks for shopping in the men’s section — since it’s taxed less than women’s products. We’re over the #PinkTax.
17. When you’re trying to find your keys and something “embarrassing” falls out of your purse.
If you’re at work, who’s watching the kids? (and other “lean in” struggles)
18. Being told you’re pretty good at ______ for a girl.
19. The awkward pause when you tell people you just aren’t interested in having kids.
20. Doing the same job as the dude next to you, but earning 21% less.
21. Being called a “bitch” instead of a “boss.”
Why is all my stuff pink? (and other gendered assumptions)
22. Bathroom lines! And the alternatives…
23. Getting a pink Barbie as a gift when you definitely wanted that new Hot Wheels racetrack.
24. Secretly wanting “home economics” classes to make a comeback but not wanting to appear anti-feminist. Can’t we all learn cooking, finance, and home repair skills?
25. When you don’t fit the “LGBT stereotype” and someone assumes you have a boyfriend.
Cue respectful mic drop.