Questions for women over 40:

Hello! I’m hoping for women over 40 to answer these questions to help out with a homework assignment I have. Thanks so much for your time!

Was the feminist movement visible in your life around the 70s/early 80s? How so?
How did the feminist movement affect your daily life?
How did the feminist movement affect your long-term perspective on life?
Do you feel that the feminist movement was successful? How do you define successful?
What were your feelings toward the feminist movement while it was happening? What are your feelings toward the feminist movement now?

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5 responses to “Questions for women over 40:

  1. Was the feminist movement visible in your life around the 70s/early 80s? How so? Yes. When I was a child in the early 70s, feminist spokeswomen were frequently on TV and featured in magazines.
    How did the feminist movement affect your daily life? The feminist movement was influential in showing me that women could do an be whatever they wanted. As a result, I have two masters degrees, and I have held very high-paying positions in my career.
    How did the feminist movement affect your long-term perspective on life? The feminist movement changed the perspective that women should necessarily rely on a husband for financial support. It’s a tragic reality of life that many women, particularly prior to the feminist movement, were widowed, divorced or in abusive relationships that left them financially destitute or in desperate straights. The feminist movement has the potential to help women out of that situation.
    Do you feel that the feminist movement was successful? How do you define successful? Mostly, yes. It was successful to the degree that it opened doors for women that were otherwise closed. These days, whether you are a stay at home lady or a working gal, you have choices that were not available to my grandmother’s generation (she was divorced – and had a tough time of it because you didn’t do that in those days). Women did not work, worry about financial planning, or have a life outside of the home. Whatever we do, we have the choices we have because brave women before us called some attention to the inequities in society.
    What were your feelings toward the feminist movement while it was happening? What are your feelings toward the feminist movement now? I was young, but when our family faced tough economic times, my mother felt empowered by the movement to join the workforce and help my dad put food on the table. A mistake some in the movement made was directing a lot of wasted hostility at men in general, I think. Rather than consider men partners in a movement that helps all of society, the movement has become the target of right-wing and conservative misogynists who misrepresent and distort the good the movement has done. Young women in particular often have no clue that the freedom in society they now enjoy – whatever they want to do, from working (or not), buying a home or conducting simple financial planning – they owe in part to this movement.

  2. Thanks for taking the time to respond. It’s great to hear about your experiences and best of luck to you in the future!

  3. Yes, the feminist movement was visible in my life. I saw more divorces and more women going to work. When I was trying to figure out what to do in life it just made me confused. As for my long term perspective on life it has caused me to figure out what I truly believe. No, I don’t think the feminist movement was successful. I think it has caused men and women to compete with each other instead of working together. Also, I think it has made women think men are buffoons and completely unnecessary in their lives. While it was happening I didn’t pay much attention to it. My feelings towards the feminist movement now are that it has helped to destroy the country in several ways. There is more pollution because there are more cars on the road, more traffic congestion. Children are obese ( as is a good portion of the country ) because women aren’t home cooking. Children are without both parents in the home because of so much divorce. I feel women are now less willing to try to work at their marriage. Children are home alone more so there is more freedom to be in trouble. Unwanted pregnancies and more abortions. Drug use. I also think there is more crime because women are not in the neighborhoods watching what goes on. Also more sexual abuse and other kinds of abuse because parents are no longer watching over their children. Those children are in day care,with a babysitter, etc. I also think it has pitted women against each other. I don’t think either side respects the other. If you are a stay at home mother you are looked down upon now. If you are a working mother you are looked down upon by the stay at home mother. When there is a story for Mother’s Day on t.v. or in the newspaper you never see a stay at home mom. They laud working women, because they are so busy, as being the best kind of mother. She spends less time with her children but she is perceived to be a better mother. There is no longer a place for putting your own desires and wants aside until the children are raised. I don’t think many people even consider this as an option. I also think children feel unimportant to their mothers because the mother is so busy with so many other things in her life. We have gone from one extreme to another in this country.

  4. Was the feminist movement visible in your life around the 70s/early 80s? How so?
    I am 43 yr old divorced single parent. I remember the feminist movement very well. I particularly remember Geraldine Ferraro running for president. I had a mother that believed women could do anything they wanted. A father that thought women were for beating on and verbally abusing. Although my mother believed a woman could do things she did not really reinforce the ideal to me. I always kept in mind that if Ferraro could run for president then I too could do something with my life. I remember well women marching for OUR rights. I was in an era where I was a in-between. I would see women marching to have equal pay and benefits at jobs and to get out of the kitchen and put some shoes on and stop walking around pregant all the time. Then I would see a movie normally from the 60’s or 50s and it showed just the opposite. Women just beside themself if they were not married by the time they were 19 or 20. Or the woman was only a teacher or a nurse or a sectary to some chauvinist horny pig man. And then those jobs were only to last until they got married then it was home and bare footed and pregant. Then walk out of the movies and turn on the TV and there were the women marching for rights. I choose to side with the marchers and in another question asked here I will answer how I became a “marcher” myself later on in life.

    How did the feminist movement affect your daily life?
    I did not feel pressure to get married early in life, nor did i feel pressure to have children. I have two younger sisters and i am not sure exactly why they thought different than I did. I did not marry until i was almost 30 and had my child when i was almost 30 as well. I dreamed of getting a job and living on my own and dating all the men I could possibly date without getting fined for it. lol. I dreamed of having a career that I loved. I remember watching one show in paticular, Emergency. I always thought that was so cool. But there were never women working on the ambulane or on a fire truck or in a police car. For a brief moment in time I did not think a woman could ever do that. I had a teacher while growing up that I admired for years. She was a PE teacher and a Paramedic…..very rare for that time. I admired her so much and what she stood for I vowed to always pass her class and even be an example to others in class. And i did both. I seriously failed math but in health class i excelled. Even to the point where the smart kids were looking to me for answers. I played softball my entire childhood (as my teacher and my mother did) and I played extremely well. My mother always coached my team and my father never came to one of my games but he went to all my brothers games. He really did view women as second class people and was a very negative force in my life. Lucky for me I had the outside world to look to for positve role models.

    How did the feminist movement affect your long-term perspective on life?
    I vowed to never be at the mercy of some man or agency in my life. I vowed to never be viewed as just a woman in my life. I vowed to never just be a wife and a mother in my life. Now at the age of 43, i dont need a man in my life to make me complete or whole or to support me, never have “needed” a man for much other than what they are meant for, a person to love and share life with and experience life with.

    Do you feel that the feminist movement was successful?
    I feel it was very successful. Because of it I became one of very VERY few female paramedics in my young adult life. I applied for a job as a police officer but did not get it because of chauvinism within the dept I applied to. Never really sought out being a cop again because turned out the dept i applied at end up having all sorts of internal problems so it was a blessing i was never affiliated with them. I did get hired on with a city Fire dept and was one of 4 women in a dept of 500 firefighters… My uncle who was a officer believed in me and thought the world of me because I was then and am now a empowered soul. He always told me when i was a kid I could do or be anthng i wanted to be, so he was a positve role model for me as well.

    How do you define successful?
    If a person becomes a person they are proud of being. No matter the job, social status, finincial power they may have in life. As long as a person is able to do for themself in life and always make do with what they have and realize they are able to care for themself and family and they can hold their heads high and sleep well at night, that makes a person succesful in life.

    What were your feelings toward the feminist movement while it was happening?
    I was exicted about becoming a woman one day. I was excited to start my life as an adult. To see the women take the part in such an important movement for not just themselves but for other women and for their daughters and for women in generations down the road. It was an exciting time to be alive.

    What are your feelings toward the feminist movement now?
    I am always proud and grateful for what the women in the 60s 70s and 80s did for women. Even the women in the late 1800s and early 1900s for the right to vote that they so diligently fought for. Now girls wont even register to vote much less vote. I am highly disapointed in the young women of today. They have set us back in time 50 years. Women marched and voiced and took a awful lot of abuse to not have to get ahead in life because of the way their bodies looked and for not having to flirt to get ahead in life. Seems like the young girls of today use sex as a tool more than it has ever been used in the past. These girls now days have no clue what women did for them decades ago. What i did for them when i took all the verbal abuse from men when i worked on the ambulance and abuse i took. i had to lift 100lb stretchers by myself because i cant begin to tell ya how many times i heard “if your gong to do a mans job then do it alone” and i did it alone many times….Funny i never noticed any man lifting a empty stretcher alone though but i did more times than i care to mention. Now the girls of today wait for a man to come along and help them with everything. I learned years ago to change my own tire, oil breaks……I never have sat and waited on anyone to do anythig for me…. Now the girls are handicap if they dont have a man to do for. I was gong to school recently to be a massage therapist and while on break some young girls are talking about jobs…I hear one ask, how much do they pay? the other girl…6.50 a hour….and that is great for a girl……..WHAT ???? i did not ask her once what she just said i had her about 5 times….What the hell do you mean “not bad for a girl” that is chump wages and no one should be paid so low and especiall women…we are the ones that normally have children to take care of,…..she then defended herself by saying…..well girls are lucky to get jobs where men do and if we do then we should just be grateful for the job and thank them for what they pay us………I told her about all the marching and abuse women took so she could have the right to get a job where “a man does” and therefore that gives a woman the right to earn the same wages and benefits and this crap that a man “has a family to take care of” is nonsense so do women…..these girls today have never had to earn things in life like the women before us had to. they never had to fight for what is right… somewhere someone came along and has spoiled all kids now days…. they have not had to endure hard times… I make sure my daughter knows that a woman is just as equal as a man is. Everything the women marched for in the womens movement I make sure i reiterate to my daughter… I make sure she knows that women have only been allowed to vote for 90 years and women died for that right. Women were not allowed to attend the same level of college as a man and she never was allowed to the same education and training as a man because MEN deemed it not necessary for a woman to know as much as a man because she was after all only going to keep house and bare children. the girls today are clueless and a embarrassment to the women of yesterday. women dressed in sexy clothes and showing too much body is more of a normal today than it was 40 years ago when women were fighting against that injustice and they show happily as if to compete with other women over who can get the most guys and attention. Not who can get the best job or the best grades or the best pay or the best degree. i am highly ashamed of girls now days. They are lazy, unappreciative and shallow and to be very honest ignorant and have set us back 150years….I dont think the women in the 1800s would have ever draemed of acting the way girls do now just to get what they wanted. I could go on and on but i wont. it only makes my blood boil to know many sacrificed and i did to so they could have the right to be so stupid

  5. I meant to say one more thing…Why the girls of today are not as strong as my generation and the women of the 60s 70s and 80s… This is a nation full of people with ADD….we forget things so quickly and so often. We woudl never think about Veitnam if it there wasnt a POW flag flying at every local VFW…or if there wasnt Vets alive to remind us. We would forget all about 9-11 if the anniversary did not roll around once a year. And in between people do forget until they meet someone name Mohammed then they remember and hate for the wrong reasons and the wrong person …. they hate because this a a here and now society a society of young people who never had to march and protest for anything…. A generation of kids who never had to watch someone die for standing up for what they believe in. A generation of kids on drugs and drinking and being coddled to the point of making them mentally unstable and weak. A generation that needs to suffer a bit to make them a bit more respectful for those who came and put up the good fight before them. It was to give them rights but the sacrifices of those made before them never gave the young people of today the right to forget those before them. they forget so fast the rights and privelages that many before them suffered and marched and even died to make sure the future generations would have it better. I dont think the womens movment happened to give the young women today the right to expose their bodies so freely and willingly. To assume they are entitled to everything just because they are “here” No one is entitled to anything as long as some one before them fought for what they should cherish, the right to live life and all it has to offer and never take it for granted. To do as the young adults are doing now days is a huge disrespect to those that came before them. I permanently damaged my back working on the ambulance to prove I, a woman could do the job. A year ago I called 911 because of a sudden illness and a female came with the crew and she literally acted like she could not lift a bag alone without the help of 5 men…I told her she was a huge disapointed to me and the other women i know who worked ems back in the 70 and 80s…of course she had no clue what i meant. how could she though. .. she was accepted into a world that i cleared the path for years ago. I put up with all the remarks that only a man can muster up…. I put up with all the sexist remarks that are now illegal. I had to lift things alone that no two people together would dream of lifting together without the help of 5 good strong people. I paved the way for her and that is how i am thanked….? but i know somewhere there is a female medic somewhere that is the daughter of a a paramedic of my time that knows what we went through to make her way possible. And to her i say………..as long as your a good medic and love your fellow american and take care of them to the best of your care…….then i would do it all over again……….

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