good climate

Karen Allendoerfer ravena at cco.caltech.edu
Fri Jun 21 11:48:04 EST 1996


In article <4q6po1$duf at abel.cc.sunysb.edu>,
DK <dkat at psych1.psy.sunysb.edu> wrote:

>Yes!  This is where I think women have a serious disadvantage.
>Particularly the young women who are very much interested in being
>liked and approved of by the men and hesitant to be labeled a "bitch"
>(either definition 1 or 2).  

Yes, I have to agree with DK here, also.  It seems very unfortunate
that what should be a noble and selfless desire on the part of women,
to be liked, to get along, etc., seems to sometimes make them their own
(and other women's) worst enemies.

>The most successful woman I know did not allow herself to be talked
>over but she was always polite, very professional, and competent in
>all  ways.  She thought highly of herself and of others.  People would
>listen because she had good things to say. 

This is great.  I would say the same thing about my (female) thesis
advisor, who is highly successful.  But it stresses me out trying to
emulate her.  She has the perfect resume and a wonderful career.  I
admire her, and I wish her nothing but the best.
It's hard, though, when one is only a mere mortal, to view
someone like her as a role model.  It reminds me of the old adage that
whatever women do, they have to do twice as well as men to be 
thought half as good.

 I have seen many women in
>the business make it in one fashion or another but most of them simply
>did not know their own worth.  If they became attached to a male
>student, they tended to value his work above their own even when it
>was often the case that they were doing much higher quality research.

Ugh.  This is really maddening when it happens.
>
>
>I do believe that as women age they become less dependent upon the
>opinion of others but that may have to do with the security they have
>attained and it does not address or help this problem.  How does my
>saying to a young woman that in twenty years she isn't going to fall
>over backwards to please someone going to help her now?  

I agree this is a tough problem, but to befriend her and to TELL her
that she has worth may help her; maybe not immediately, but later, as
she thinks about it.

I know that the friendship and support of women (and some men) has
helped me in this regard, but gradually.  Ten years ago when I was
an undergraduate I was pretty bad about the wanting to be liked and
needing male approval, and I've gotten better, not just because of
getting older, I think, but also because of having had the support
of good friends.

>will be kept and if you plagairize someone else's comments, you will
>be penalized!  What very much needs to be done is to reach females in
>grade school on up and teach them that they are worthy on their own,
>not just as someones mate or daughter. 

And how!  You forgot "or mother."  

I saw some literature from an organization recently called "Girls, Inc."
which had a "girls bill of rights," and one of those was that girls
have the "right to be themselves, people first and females second, and
the right to act in non-sex-stereotyped ways."  I thought it was sad
that there are still enough people around who don't think this is
self-evident, such that there needs to be an organization to promote it.

Does anyone know anything about Girls Inc., what they do, and how
they are promoting this kind of idea?

Karen A. 





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