Thursday, August 05, 2010

Woman Law: She Ain't Heavy, She's My Sister

My homies and I are embarking in a series of posts we are attributing to a list of Woman Laws. Previous posts can be found at the sites of The F$%k-It List, Smarty Jones, Bangs and a Bun and Rei..., err I mean, Volde..., um I mean She-Who-Should-Not-Be-Named (and right about now I'm waiting for Muireann's brain to explode because I referenced Harry Potter). Read them at your leisure. Here's my contribution.


I have a Penzo cousin who is two months younger than me, and growing up her mother used that as a spring board to launch some ill-advised competition with my mother called, "Whose Daughter Is Better?"

We were sent to the same school, forced to play together and compared to one another by my Penzo aunt at every turn. I specifically remember her saying that I was accepted to Brooklyn Tech- a school my cousin most certainly did NOT get into- because it was a lottery. Not my intelligence but rather chance. My name was pulled out of a hat and her daughter was not so lucky.

#sidenote: I do believe the competition ended when, at the ripe old age of 17, while I was filling out college applications, said cousin had a baby. Game. Blouses.

I never really understood why my aunt was so hard-pressed to have her daughter be "better" than me and why it was even something she should have aspired to. We are FAMILY. Shouldn't we be encouraging one another? Supporting each other's dreams and whatnot? And more than that, as women of color, hell WOMEN, PERIOD! shouldn't we have each other's back?

It's no secret that a big huge difference between men & women, especially in the professional world, is that more often than not men will vouch for and mentor and help each other. Women, instead, keep other women down. Why is that? (Please NOTE: I don't have specific data and I'm not saying this is EVERY WOMAN, just the business women I've observed myself. And TO HELL WITH YOUR SENSITIVE ASS for making me write this disclaimer!)

Given all the strikes already against us, wouldn't you want to help all the women in your field do well?

And while we're on it, would it kill us to genuinely compliment one another? Instead of being mad that someone has on the latest Prada slides you can't afford, be happy for her and the fact that she's able to treat herself to such luxuries. Tell her her shoes are cute and keep it moving. Stop cutting down every woman you see in the street because deep down you're jealous and feel that pointing out HER flaws will make YOU seem better.

Don't be my Penzo aunt!

Love your fellow woman. Take her under your wing or seek out her advice. Disregard what's wrong with her lacefront and admire what's right about her accomplishments. Don't begrudge her the promotion or opportunity you wanted for yourself when she clearly earned it, and just promise yourself to work harder.

Honestly, no one can pull off green all the time.

*smooches...too busy striving to be a hater*
well, not anymore anyway. it doesn't happen overnight, it has to be a conscious choice to STOP COMPETING and before you know it, it's old hat.