A friend told me the other day that because her boyfriend is her same height, she doesn’t like to wear high heels so that she doesn’t look taller than he. I think this is a fairly common sentiment, but it got me thinking. If we’re restricting what we wear because of a man, what other areas of our lives are we inhibiting because of what people will think of us?
I noticed this happening just the other day, while hanging out with 3 of my male friends. I could feel inhibitions settling in, and though I scolded myself for allowing these guys, merely by their presence, to have so much control over what I said, I still found myself sitting quietly, laughing politely at things that weren’t particularly funny to me. I noticed that I was restraining myself from saying anything that wasn’t clever, witty, or otherwise profound, as if I were representing all of womankind.
This is not a healthy environment if a woman is to be free to be herself. If we keep acting like we’re expected to, nothing will change. Women will continue to sit quietly, laughing politely at misogynistic comments, choosing flats to make a man feel more masculine. It takes courage to act unexpectedly, to risk ridicule or judgment. It takes courage, but courage we’ve got.
So wear those high heels. Speak your mind. Don’t laugh if you don’t think it’s funny. Instead of portraying to the world the role of a predictable woman, why not dazzle them with your unexpected inner beauty? You might surprise yourself.