The point of my last post was simply to show that females don’t have a word to refer to the act of being deprived of their strength. Men do and that word is “emasculate.” For now we’ll say X just means what the word emasculate means and it’s gender neutral. And so, our problem is fixed… we’re just going to have to make some shit up.
Why do I bring this up? Well, there have been instances on trail where my hiking abilities are questioned because I am female. Now, I know what you’re thinking, you’re not that kind of person. And I believe you!
Things not to say to a female hiker:
“You’re fast for a girl!”
“Is your boyfriend carrying most of the gear?”
“I’m impressed that you can keep up with him!”
“Do your parents know you’re out here… ALONE?”
“Is he dragging you up the trail?”
See the problem? We need a word because these are instances where being female has a lot to do with the nature of the off-handed comment. I could say I felt emasculated by what that person said, but I’m not male. I can’t say that this person deprived me of my femininity, it wasn’t my femininity that was in question.
We could just end this discussion now and say that that person didn’t deprive me of anything because we all realize how ridiculous and out dated it is to say such things! Just know that it happens, misogyny is still around.
So when you meet a female on trail, please don’t make any assumptions.
For more on this topic, check out this article from Backpacker Magazine: http://www.backpacker.com/trips/long-trails/appalachian-trail/going-pharr-as-a-phemale-gender-equality-on-the-appalachian-trail/