Even when these guys married, they still married someone who dealt with this stuff solo. There might be stories and gripe sessions, but they tended to try to equate some part of their experience to the woman’s. Sure, you’re told to be beautiful, but I’m told to lift heavy things! Same, right?
Then, they had daughters.
Kids are very good at not dealing with their own shit. It’s not their job. It’s yours. Suddenly, you’re shoved into a toy aisle where there’s nary a Lego or car or building block, but instead, rows and rows of dead-eyed dolls. You realize how hard it is to find play clothes for a girl, because everything seems to be optimized for ‘cute’ rather than ‘comfort.’ You hear people compliment your daughter only on how pretty she is, and never on how smart or clever she is.
The girl goes to school, and you watch how she’s never called on. You hear someone insult someone else by calling them ‘a girl’, and it stings. Your little girl is awesome! She’s brave and smart and funny! Why would anyone use that as an insult? Then, you remember all the times you did it.And then, you realize that, all along, you’ve been a part of the problem."