Wanna hear the real kicker? Men know. On some level they know.
How do I know? Because for almost fifty years I thought I was one of them. I tried to never be a dick to women but… I discovered on transition that I’d not been socialised male as too many FUCKING IGNORANT PEOPLE tell me, I’d been socialised, as we all are, in the whole dynamic of gender. When I started living as a woman I IMMEDIATELY realised I knew the rules. Shit I’d merely tried to be respectful of, like crossing away from a lone woman at night so she didn’t feel threatened, showed themselves to be deep-seated. And became my own struggles.
The only thing that surprised me at all was the ubiquity and scale of the issues. And even that was more of a mild ‘well okay then’ than any amount of shock.
My credibility in conversation dropped several notches overnight. And I was damn complicit. I self-policed. And my wife would point out when how I behaved was ‘unladylike’. She too, complicit.
We just all seem to buy into the motion that gendered expectations are too monolithic to break down.
If you need me I’ll be over here with this sledgehammer.