The struggle of being a woman in a predominantly-male modern workplace is indescribable. I attempted to skim the surface by compiling a list of personal examples in which I have been undermined and belittled by the terminology being used in the modern workplace by the men who were both my coworkers and in positions of authority over me. The vast difference between how I am talked to as a woman vs. how I would be spoken to if I were a man is appalling, demeaning, and unacceptable.
Because I stand up for myself, I am a “Tough Cookie” and I have “spunk”. If I were a man, I would be confident and have self-respect.
Because I stand up for and support my male coworker, I am his “cheerleader”. If I were a man, I would simply be his friend.
Because I call out a male coworker and ask him why he is constantly micromanaging, questioning, and harassing me for the way I simply do my job, I am “antagonizing”. If I were a man, I would simply be communicating.
Because I walk away from a disrespectful situation with a male coworker, I am called a “bitch” and “manner-less”. If I were a man, I would be smart.
Because I inform my male coworker that he makes me uncomfortable with the way he sometimes stands a little too close, I am “flattering myself”. If I were a man, I would be setting and protecting my boundaries and personal space.
Because I laugh at my male coworker’s jokes often, I have a “little crush”. If I were a man, I would simply have a great sense of humor.
Because I am a consistent presence, I am asked by male coworkers why my boyfriend “lets me” work so much. If I were a man, I would simply be a hard worker of my own accord, undefined by anyone else’s permission to do so.
Because I have a voice that I am not afraid to use, I am “needy”, “whiney”, and often dismissed. If I were a man, I would be self-aware, communicative, and taken seriously.
Because I am eager to make my own money, build a life, and support myself, I am “trying to prove something”. If I were a man, I would simply be surviving.
Because I am influential, confident, and driven, I am “manipulative”, “conceited”, and “doing too much”. If I were a man, I would be a force to be reckoned with.