For some reason, this discussion seems to follow me everywhere these days. I know that feminism is a popular thing for women my age, and older.
First of all, I am not a feminist. I am not a misogynist. I simply believe that I should be treated as a person, regardless of anything else. I don’t cry discrimination unless I’m being discriminated against, and I don’t feel like killing off female characters for the development of male characters is any extreme anti-feminist statement.
If you expect someone to treat you a certain way, it seems to increase the likelihood that they will, in fact, treat you in that way. Like in The Perks of Being a Wallflower, “We accept the love we think we deserve.” Likewise, we expect to be treated a certain way, others then begin to think that that’s how they should treat us, regardless of whether or not we actually desire that treatment. Why, then, should I go out into the world expecting to be oppressed or discriminated against? I’ve found that by giving people the benefit of the doubt, I’ve very rarely been treated poorly for gender or ethnicity. In fact, almost all cases of this were when minority groups criticized me for not struggling with them. Why should I force myself to struggle against something that isn’t usually a problem for me? If I’m mistreated, sure, I’ll struggle, but why go looking for a fight?
This came up partly because in my writing, I’m looking into writing a story in which two female characters die and the two male characters bond over their deaths. This could easily be taken as an anti-feminist move, but I’ll explain why it doesn’t have to be.
First of all, had the characters been different, this might have been the men who died and the women bonded over the losses. But you see, these female characters could never have bonded as they are occurring to me, and so the men, who are capable of doing so, leave the story on a much happier note. Secondly, the specific commentaries and tragedies occurring are all pregnancy related.
And I do not write male pregnancies. I refuse to do it.
Just because things are done frequently doesn’t mean they should be, but just because killing off a female character for male character growth happens a lot doesn’t mean that it’s always a bad thing. Similarly, if we killed off a bunch of male characters for female character development, it wouldn’t always be right, but it wouldn’t always be wrong. If someone’s legitimately being misogynist, I have a problem with that, but I have an equal problem with people whose first instinct is that anything negative happening to female characters in somehow misogynist.
Nothing is black and white.
I have more I could rant about, but I’m sure this is going to make me unpopular enough as it is, so I’ll just finish off with the fact that not every woman feels the need to go out and make herself feel ’empowered’, and if that’s your thing, great, but don’t force it on others. People have a right to choose whatever they want for themselves.