Thought Catalog
February 19, 2014

21 Differences Between A Southern Belle And A Modern Woman

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What is the issue?
I am a woman. I am an adult. I am a wife and mother. I am college-educated, hard-working, and active in my community. But I don’t like what the idea of a “modern woman” has come to be, and the expectations it has. Some of us still prioritize family over finances, love over labor, and femininity above all. For me, these women are Southern Belles. You might not be one, but they definitely exist. Here are the biggest differences between Southern Belles and Modern Women.
(Note: A Southern Belle can be from anywhere, it’s not geography, it’s mentality.)

1. Southern Belles take care of their partners, and value relationships more than just hookups or partying. They can have fun but at the end of the day they want someone to come home to.

2. They take care of themselves and the way they look not because they want to please a man, although that can feel good, but because they know that looking put together means the whole world takes you more seriously.

3. Even though they work out and take care of their bodies, they aren’t afraid of eating, and would not be caught dead picking at a salad on a first date. (Nothing is sexier than a woman with an appetite.)

4. They have the gift of gab. They know how to charm anyone, and can get valuable information from anyone they need to.

5. Not knowing how to cook is just not an option for the Southern Belle. They were raised to know how to make a good meal, to feed themselves and the people they love, and to have people looking forward to coming over for dinner. When you go to their house, you know that you are going to leave full and happy.

6. Family is the most important part of their life, and having frequent phone calls/meals/quality time with the people they love is essential. They are not the kind of girls who just call their mom on mother’s day and dad on father’s day.

7. Unlike the Modern Woman, the career is not the most important part of the Southern Belle’s life. They work and can have professional, high-earning jobs, but they know that a career or a promotion or an extra thousand dollars a month isn’t going to be what keeps them really happy or makes life worth living.

8. Southern Belles never take pride in being “awkward” or “adorkable.” They are ladies who are proud of their social skills, and know how to put people at ease.

9. Unlike Modern Women who are taught to evaluate options and go with the best deal, they are LOYAL. They would never turn on family or friends, even if one of them made a mistake.

10. It may sound like a cliché, but only because it’s true: Southern Belles are not afraid to get dirty, to do hard work, and be “one of the guys” when it’s needed. Most of them have done field work, shot a gun, or driven a tractor. It’s not a country song, it’s real life.

11. When it comes to taking care of their families, no one is more dedicated or takes it more seriously.

12. They understand that a lot of relationships and love means sacrifice. They know that saying “I do” means accepting that isn’t all about you anymore. Sometimes, if love means they have to move to another city or change careers or raise a family, they are ready to do it.

13. They are not afraid to cook with butter.

14. They know that curse words are something that can be used to enhance conversation, but shouldn’t be relied on as the basis of a vocabulary.

15. Even if they don’t fit into them perfectly, Southern Belles are not afraid of gender roles. They are not afraid to admit that men and women are different, excel at different things, and serve different roles biologically and socially. It doesn’t mean they’re not equal, it just means that they both have their value.

16. While Modern Women might look down on things that are too traditionally “girly,” femininity is something that Southern Belles embrace fully.

17. Yes, this means that cheerleading is considered a real sport and discipline for them.

18. They are human and make mistakes like everyone else, but it’s important for Southern Belles to always keep a brave face and a strong back for the other people in their lives. They know, especially when they have families, that people depend on them to keep calm in the face of chaos.

19. When they invite someone over, they always have the best gossip ready. And they know that gossip is an art form.

20. They can party, but they are never (or at least almost never) sloppy or blackout drunk. They know that it’s just not a good look on anyone — male or female.

21. Southern Belles don’t care if not every woman wants to be like them, or if they’re considered too “traditional” or “old-fashioned.” They are happy to live the life they have, and be who they are, without pleasing some feminist or businesswoman who wants them to be more “modern.” They know how much better life is when you live it in style. TC mark