The saying “It’s a man’s world” is one that deeply upsets me because of how the world has made it “our collective reality”.
In the world that we live in today, a woman’s word barely holds water, especially against a man’s word.
We’ve seen this play out in hundreds of sexual harassment stories that have been left without any efforts at pursuing justice, and no restitution or damages were offered to these women. Rather, they were subjected to the stigma and scrutiny of our judgemental society.
Why should we believe women more?
In Nigeria, a couple of years back some female sex workers cried out after they were raped by some officers of the Nigerian police force in the most inhuman way. What did they get in return? They were dismissed, ridiculed, and mocked and nothing was done in respect of their claims.
Shortly after, there was the news of the atrocities of SARS, a rogue unit of the police force, after many lives had been lost.
If society and systems continue to discount women’s pain and claims, how long shall we continue to suffer?
There’s also the pain bias that women face in the medical system. Thousands of women have come out to call out the discrimination that they face in the hands of male medical doctors who believe that they were exaggerating or “doing too much” during a medical emergency.
Again, why should we believe women more?
To fully understand the magnitude of this disservice done to women, there’s a need to understand the reasons behind it.
The reason for the systemic disbelief in women is deeply rooted in society’s age-long fear of “giving women too much power”. The patriarchy alongside every one of its enabling systems believes that controlling women’s voices, opinions, and gravity attached to it will in a way control their value, and perhaps they are right.
We need to listen to more women because it’s not only important, it is also fair.
We need to extend the same grace we do to men to women. We need to uproot the existing power dynamic today, to give room for female credibility.
We need to believe women more, believe their experiences, their truths, their stories just like we do men.
To achieve true equality, everyone’s word must carry equal weight.
If women live, exist, and die in the world, then it must become their world too.
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