International Women's Day

Hi folks! Adriana here. 

March 8th marks International Women’s Day. It was first observed in 1911 in Denmark, Austria, Germany, and Switzerland. Over the years it has come to represent a celebration of women’s achievements, to raise awareness, and to advocate for equity. 


This year’s theme is Choose to Challenge - to choose to challenge and call out gender bias and inequality. 


For me, I have chosen to challenge and reflect on my own gender bias. I grew up with amazing parents. Looking back now, I don’t think I truly realized how amazing my mom is and was. She moved to a new country to marry my father; couldn’t work her chosen profession because she wasn’t a citizen; raised two children (only one year apart) while working part time retail jobs; decided to go back to school full time to become a librarian - all while putting up with the fun of raising two teenage daughters in the 1990s (yes, I went through my goth/“I hate the world phase” - sorry mom). 


Even as a teenager, I never wanted to get married or have children - at 41, I still don’t. The awesome part with both my parents - is that I was never bugged about that. I *never* heard “Adriana, when will you settle down and have kids?”. I of course heard that in the culture I was raised in. Whether it was the tropes in films that couldn’t have a strong female lead character that was not helped by a man or “swept off her feet” by a man, or the “are you married” questions I was asked when I met new people, it is hard to not take those influences in your life and not begin to internalize them. Should I be married? Am I not a whole person because I don’t have a partner? Am I not contributing to the future by not having children? It are those internalized gender biases that I continue to wrestle with everyday. 


I am happy to identify as a woman, I am happy to continue to Choose to Challenge the biases in the world (especially women of colour; transwomen; women with various abilities), but also the biases I hold to myself that prevent me from being happy with who I am - outside of the comparisons I have to make against men - and also other women. 

How will you Choose to Challenge? 

Thanks for reading. 


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