Jump to content

Why is it derogatory to call a male 'lady' or 'girl'?


  • Please log in to reply
26 replies to this topic

#1 Bart.

Posted 11 November 2012 - 05:56 AM

I've noticed that when you call a man "lady" or "girl", it's intended as a derogatory term.  I see it in the entertainment and media industry all the time where a group of men might be called "ladies", which is meant to talk down to them, or a weak male might be called "a big girl".

Another one is the term 'Son of a b!tch".  Surely that's more offensive to the mother than the son, so why use it?

I don't get it.   unsure.gif


#2 Monket

Posted 11 November 2012 - 06:03 AM

Ah, we women know that it is a complement....but men are too stupid to work that out!

The son of a b**ch thing I take as meaning the person is a dog, so son of a female dog.  Again, a complement in my books.  Most dogs I have met have been nicer than most of the people I have met.

#3 MrsLexiK

Posted 11 November 2012 - 06:15 AM

I don't think it is that different then saying "she's like a man" or "she looks like a bloke"

Son of a biatch well you are insulted the mother in a way yes. Most men don't like to have their mummies insulted so you are hitting them at their core.

#4 Bart.

Posted 11 November 2012 - 06:47 AM

I hadn't thought about the dog aspect.  

MrsLexiK, I see your point.  However, if you said to a group of women, "hello boys", you'd get a lot of  huh.gif .   Tounge1.gif

I wonder why it's an insult to call a person the other gender?

#5 Mrs Dinosaurus

Posted 11 November 2012 - 06:49 AM

Because being female is the worst insult possible to a man as we all know women aren't half the human men are.

Women acting like men is just as bad because it means she doesn't know her place.



#6 kpingitquiet

Posted 11 November 2012 - 06:55 AM

It's rare that maleness is used as an insult. Much more common for femaleness to be used that way.

The reason is that in the minds of many, most who don't even consider themselves misogynists, femaleness = weak, emotional, unworthy, lesser, frivolous, gossipy, etc. So, to call a man a girl, you are, in this mindset, stripping away his maleness and turning him into what he dislikes the most...a female.

Calling a woman a man is more often seen as a compliment., "You've got balls!" means you were brave, bold, fearless. "You da man!" means you took control of a situation or shut someone else down, successfully. Obviously the rare "She looks like a man" is an insult but you'd probably feel just as insulted if they said "She looks like a horse."

Welcome to gender psychology biggrin.gif

#7 caninestorm

Posted 11 November 2012 - 07:03 AM

QUOTE (Sassy Girl @ 11/11/2012, 07:56 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
It's an insult because it's not the gender they are. It would be just as insulting to call women 'men' or 'boys'

As for 'son of a b**ch', I have always felt that was a two pronged insult both to the person it was directed at and their mother.


I agree. Calling someone something they're not is generally offensive, is it not? huh.gif

#8 Dionysus

Posted 11 November 2012 - 07:05 AM

because being a woman (weak, inferior, useless) is the worst thing one can be

Actually, being a part of the female anatomy (c**t) is even worse than that

What's the equivalent of c**t?

"You are a d*ck"  - mild insult

"You cocked that up" - mild insult

"c*cksucker" is worse than both of the above - meaning you are the effeminate person in a relationship (weak, inferior, useless)










#9 Bart.

Posted 11 November 2012 - 07:10 AM

QUOTE (Dinosaurus @ 11/11/2012, 07:49 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Because being female is the worst insult possible to a man as we all know women aren't half the human men are.

Women acting like men is just as bad because it means she doesn't know her place.

Admittedly, this was closer to my suspicions.

So then if you call a guy a "big girl", then it's a double insult because you're either an extreme girl or an overweight/tall one.  rolleyes.gif

Edited by Bartholomew, 11 November 2012 - 07:11 AM.


#10 Comrade Borgia

Posted 11 November 2012 - 07:10 AM

...and why is it that a word beginning with "c" ...another word for vagina...is considered the worst insult of all, and is unprintable in most publications? Interesting issues to ponder on a Sunday morning....

#11 Drowninginferal

Posted 11 November 2012 - 07:21 AM

I think for the vast majority, it isn't about misogyny or being better than women. The insult is meant to imply that they don't know how to be a man.





#12 Mrs Dinosaurus

Posted 11 November 2012 - 07:24 AM

The c word is the worst insult because it belongs to loose women - nice girls have *cats*

Alas it (gender warfare) is still alive and well - my 3 1/2 year old informs me he doesn't want to go to school with girls because he doesn't like girls! Ah the fun to come!

#13 Bart.

Posted 11 November 2012 - 07:30 AM

It's incredible how common the insult is, though.  My sister called her husband "a big girl" when he didn't want go to Canberra because it was cold.  I asked her what was wrong with being a girl?  After all, she was going and she was a girl.  She honestly hadn't thought about it before and said, "then he's a wuss". laughing2.gif


#14 wombat

Posted 11 November 2012 - 07:31 AM

I have a friend who's husband used to tell thier boys to "stop acting like a girl" whenever they complained about anything.  I pointed out to my friend how wrong this was, that I thought it was giving the impression to her boys that girls were inferior and the absolute worse thing in the world you would want to be.  She said she had never thought of it that way and asked him to stop.  I also secretly wondered what thier relationship must be like if her husband had such a low opinion of females, but I get that to my self wink.gif

#15 Mrs Dinosaurus

Posted 11 November 2012 - 07:46 AM

Oh Wombat you're nicer than me, when a friend (one in particular) does that in front of me and my sons he cops it on the spot. His wife isn't a lot better though, she has said some of the most shocking things I've ever heard, and then he says "I think we should agree to disagree" and I say "no, you are a sexist pig, it's not a disagreement it's a fact" laughing2.gif

He hasn't said anything like that in a long while though, probably just not in front of me but to be fair I haven't heard it from his son either and he is well of the age of repeating everything.



#16 wombat

Posted 11 November 2012 - 08:04 AM

QUOTE
Oh Wombat you're nicer than me, when a friend (one in particular) does that in front of me and my sons he cops it on the spot. His wife isn't a lot better though, she has said some of the most shocking things I've ever heard, and then he says "I think we should agree to disagree" and I say "no, you are a sexist pig, it's not a disagreement it's a fact"

He hasn't said anything like that in a long while though, probably just not in front of me but to be fair I haven't heard it from his son either and he is well of the age of repeating everything
.
Good for you!!!  As the mother of a daughter I find it hard enough as it is to provide her with positive re-inforcements about her gender, given the stupid things people say.  Another of my favourites is "oh you know, girls are so b**chy at that age"  (apparently at any age according to some people).  I've even been flamed on EB for daring to suggest that this is not true, particularly in my house. Apparently I am wearing rose coloured glasses and my DD MUST be a litlle b**ch, because she is genetically programed that way and it is unavoidable. No wonder males grow up with such a low opinion of women, with so many people re-inforcing this sexist crap. In fact it is just lazy parenting - lets just let the kids act anyway they want and blame it on gender.  People are so stupid it makes my head hurt. rant.gif

#17 Space Ninja Jetson

Posted 11 November 2012 - 08:14 AM

Because according to people who think this way, there are two types of people:

1. men (default)
2. sub-humans (women and gay men).

To call a group of men "ladies" is to insinuate that they are sub-par humans, that is, inferior, weak and incompetent. It's nothing to do with simply being called something they're not.

#18 Mrs Dinosaurus

Posted 11 November 2012 - 08:21 AM

QUOTE (Madame Catty @ 11/11/2012, 09:19 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
There are women who are offended by the term "lady" as well; just so you know.  I can't say I'm thrilled about the term myself.


Why?

#19 Sweet like a lemon

Posted 11 November 2012 - 08:22 AM

QUOTE (kpingitquiet @ 11/11/2012, 07:55 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
It's rare that maleness is used as an insult. Much more common for femaleness to be used that way.

The reason is that in the minds of many, most who don't even consider themselves misogynists, femaleness = weak, emotional, unworthy, lesser, frivolous, gossipy, etc. So, to call a man a girl, you are, in this mindset, stripping away his maleness and turning him into what he dislikes the most...a female.

Calling a woman a man is more often seen as a compliment., "You've got balls!" means you were brave, bold, fearless. "You da man!" means you took control of a situation or shut someone else down, successfully. Obviously the rare "She looks like a man" is an insult but you'd probably feel just as insulted if they said "She looks like a horse."

Welcome to gender psychology biggrin.gif


I could have written a response but Kpingitquiet did it so perfectly.


#20 Mrs Dinosaurus

Posted 11 November 2012 - 08:32 AM

I tend to go with A, interchangeable with woman. I would use it in the context of saying "move out of the lady's way" to DS, I also use it with two e's on the end to call my friends "awesome ladee" when they have done something awesome original.gif

I definitely don't conjure up and image of anything more than a female in my mind, but that's not necessarily true of everyone obviously.

I don't really think about the lords and and ladies context, after all Lady Di was a lady and, well biggrin.gif

I shall definitely refrain from calling you a lady though Madame Catty, if I get in your way at the supermarket which term would you prefer?

#21 Mrs Dinosaurus

Posted 11 November 2012 - 08:46 AM

I find it helpful when age is questionable, I don't want to call and adult a girl but calling a child a woman also seems wrong. Lady covers everyone.

Yes "she's no lady" is obviously an insult, I don't use it in that context laughing2.gif I haven't heard that for a long time though, I suppose the same people who call their sons girls still tell people their wives aren't ladies rolleyes.gif

I am NOT calling everyone in the supermarket madam in case I run into you - I am certain "move out of the madams way" would hold far more connotations for most than "lady" laughing2.gif

#22 EsmeLennox

Posted 11 November 2012 - 09:06 AM

The idiom son of a b**ch is actually calling a man a dog, a mean and aggressive dog. Shakespeare used it in King Lear.

I dislike the term 'lady' too MC, it makes me feel quite uncomfortable for some reason.

#23 BetteBoop

Posted 11 November 2012 - 09:12 AM

kpngitquiet said it beautiful. Insulting someone for being like a woman is obviously because women are inferior.

QUOTE (thestylemanual @ 11/11/2012, 07:21 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I think for the vast majority, it isn't about misogyny or being better than women. The insult is meant to imply that they don't know how to be a man.


If they don't know how to be a man, what is the alternative? Being a woman.

I doubt many men use gendered insults thinking they're misogynists. But when you insult someone by saying they "run/throw/kick like a girl" that only has one meaning.

I've never heard "you run like a man" being used as an insult.

#24 LynnyP

Posted 11 November 2012 - 09:22 AM

I agree entirley with kpngitquiet.  You can see this playing out in modern naming trends where lots of girls are called Cameron or Elliot or Rylie because they are spunky names but I see very few boys called Emily or Jane or Elizabeth.  You may argue as much as you like that names are just names and it isn't that you see male characteristics as desirable and female as not but until names are indeed just names and there are an equal number of boy children with traditional girls names, I'm not going to believe you.

#25 Imaginary friend

Posted 11 November 2012 - 10:30 AM

QUOTE
Actually, being a part of the female anatomy (c**t) is even worse than that

What's the equivalent of c**t?

"You are a d*ck"  - mild insult

"You cocked that up" - mild insult



But calling someone a prick is a worse insult than calling them a d*ck - not sure why - but anyway I would say that is equivalent to calling them a c***.




1 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 1 guests, 0 anonymous users

 

The day my daughter almost drowned

We had six adults standing there, so I felt like I could relax a bit. After all, what could go wrong with so much supervision?

Sydney siege survivor names baby after victim Katrina Dawson

A Sydney barrister who survived the Lindt cafe siege has named her newborn daughter after her best friend who died in the tragedy.

Banishing bloat

How to avoid a bloated tummy

Here are some foods to eat in order to escape feeling ghastly and gassy.

The great new picture book for anxious kids

My son is a worrier by nature. I learnt long ago that it was completely pointless to say to him "Don't worry about it!".

Budget stripped more than $15b from families

The combined impact of the two budgets for low and middle income people was "devastating", new analysis by the Australian Council of Social Service shows.

Pregnant women urged to get flu shots

As the winter chill starts to arrive, NSW Health is urging pregnant women to get their flu shots.

65-year-old gives birth to quadruplets

A 65-year-old German woman, who already has 13 children, has given birth to quadruplets.

What you need to know about pregnancy and health insurance

It's not just waiting periods that couples need to consider - there are other factors to consider when thinking about health insurance.

Yummy mummy

Nicole Trunfio breastfeeds baby on Elle magazine cover

Australian model Nicole Trunfio has taken the concept of multitasking to a fashionable new level for Elle Australia.

Warnings after baby girl died while sleeping in bouncer

Parents have been warned about the dangers of letting babies sleep in bouncers and swings following the death of a three-month-old girl.

Coping with fatigue as a parent

Sleep deprivation is a real hazard of caring for a baby. But there are ways to manage the challenges of fatigue better.

A very 21st century issue: parents, parks and smart phones

It's not all the parents, and it's not all the time, but there is often at least one doing it. And sometimes, that 'one' is me.

Appliances

Faulty washing machines linked to house fires

More than 80,000 faulty Samsung washing machines pose a fire threat in homes throughout Australia despite a nationwide recall of the machines.

'I had a lotus birth and I loved it'

Lotus birthing is not all that common, but for a number of women it feels like the most natural thing to do.

7 things you might not know about postnatal depression

Despite its widespread nature, there is still a great amount of mystery surrounding PND - and it's important to try unravelling as much of that as we can.

Is your family's car part of the world's biggest safety recall?

More than 50 million vehicles recalled for potentially lethal airbag fault - is your car affected?

Why drinking water can be deadly for babies

H2O is one of the necessities of life, but for babies a seemingly harmless amount of water can be fatal.

Mother-in-law faceplants during proposal

He had it all planned: a romantic proposal on a windswept beach. The whole family would be there so they'd all be able to celebrate the joyous moment together.

A preschooler suddenly goes mute - and it's not just shyness

When our son stopped talking, our sense of loss was painful and acute.

The mums who ask for a 'wife bonus'

They run their homes like domestic CEOs and work tirelessly to improve their family's social standing. And now, according to a new book, they want an annual perk from their husbands.

Woman shares photo of dimple on breast to warn others of cancer risk

A widely-shared Facebook photograph of a British woman's breast has raised awareness of a more subtle breast cancer symptom.

Starting a family despite a low sperm count

"I'd never really failed a test - how could I fail this particularly manly test?"

It's official: we must better protect our kids from toxic lead exposure

New guidelines have been released, aimed at reducing children's harmful exposure to lead. But they still don't go far enough.

Trouble-shooting toddler social skills

Chances are your toddler's behaviour is all completely normal - but here's how to tackle some common social problems.

Helping your first-born welcome a sibling

We did sigh with joy at the arrival of a royal princess - but, mostly, we sighed with pity at the sight of Prince George being taken to meet her.

Farewell, daytime nap

I've been in denial and I'm not too proud to beg, but it appears I must accept the fact that you have gone. I need to let you go.

The identical triplets who are one in 50 million

The father of identical triplets born in a Texas hospital says his three daughters, including conjoined twins, are "a miracle" sent by God.

Seven questions you should be asking about your health cover

If the last time you assessed your health cover was five years ago, there?s a chance it may no longer suit your needs. To ensure it?s still right for your family, click here for seven questions to ask.

 
Advertisement
 
Advertisement
 
 
 

What's hot on EB

How to use gas effectively in labour

Many women in labour don't use gas effectively and suffer more side effects than benefits. Here's how to get the most out of this pain relief option.

'He has gastro but that's okay, right?': sick kid etiquette

We cannot place all children who are sick in a bubble till they recover, but we can give other parents a choice about exposing their kids to them.

Welcome to Winter

Now that the colder months are here, Essential Baby as all the information you need for staying healthy and happy during the chilly season.

Ada Nicodemou: 'I can never be completely happy again'

Home and Away actress Ada Nicodemou has opened up about the loss of her stillborn baby.

10 things to consider when you're thinking about trying for a baby

Before you start tracking your menstrual cycle and reading up on the best positions to get pregnant, there are a few other things you may want to consider.

How special surgery and IVF can create a post-vasectomy baby

Cricket legend Glenn McGrath and his second wife Sara are expecting their first child together, thanks to IVF and a delicate surgical sperm retrieval process that helped the couple to conceive.

Belle Gibson's mother 'disgusted and embarrassed'

The mother of disgraced wellness blogger Belle Gibson has accused her daughter of lying about her childhood in an attempt to garner public sympathy.

Doctor's mobile phone 'left inside c-section mum'

A new mum claims a doctor left his mobile phone inside her after delivering her baby via caesarean section.

I'm a mum and I'm following my dreams

I want my kids to know that no matter what happens in life, you can still be who it is that you've always wanted to be.

Those first daycare days

I had this innate 'mum' moment the other day.

'If one person had listened, my life would have been so different'

Katherine's father will die in prison for the horrifying sexual abuse of his daughter. Yet she is the one with the true life sentence.

This new plan undermines breastfeeding and baby health at everyone's expense

Mothers, babies, the health system and the wider society are going to pay the price of this new budget.

Couple to celebrate terminally ill baby's birthday in unique way

Baby Jai Bishop has lived at Starship Hospital for the past seven months, with his parents flying back and forth from Hokitika, 1100km away, to be by his side.

Life On Mars

It's men who need 'retraining', not women

We are all responsible for our own behaviour. Telling victims to harden up is wrong.

Baby Gammy's dad tries to claim charity money

The biological father of baby Gammy has reportedly tried to access charity money raised for the little boy's medical costs.

Where are the childcare places?

It?s all very well to encourage women to work if they choose to, but how can the measures lead to increased workforce participation when women are once again left holding the baby?

The pain of not having babies and not knowing why

After seven years of wishing, hoping, crying, punching pillows and shouting "why me?!", the end result is more than I ever thought possible.

Getting your family finances in order

Whether you're after a new car for a growing family, a bigger house, or are just fixing up your finances, here are the basics on borrowing.

Mum shares graphic selfie to warn against tanning

A mum has shared a graphic photo of her skin cancer treatment as a warning to others.

Does parenthood make us happier?

We can certainly gain higher levels of happiness when we become parents, but the trick is to not get overwhelmed by the pressures of raising our kids.

No, having a dog is not like having a human child

It's obvious these people dote on their pets, but they're barking up the wrong tree.

 

Top baby names

Baby Names

The numbers are in and we can now bring you the 2014 top baby name list for Australia.

 
Advertisement
 
 
Essential Baby and Essential Kids is the place to find parenting information and parenting support relating to conception, pregnancy, birth, babies, toddlers, kids, maternity, family budgeting, family travel, nutrition and wellbeing, family entertainment, kids entertainment, tips for the family home, child-friendly recipes and parenting. Try our pregnancy due date calculator to determine your due date, or our ovulation calculator to predict ovulation and your fertile period. Our pregnancy week by week guide shows your baby's stages of development. Access our very active mum's discussion groups in the Essential Baby forums or the Essential Kids forums to talk to mums about conception, pregnancy, birth, babies, toddlers, kids and parenting lifestyle. Essential Baby also offers a baby names database of more than 22,000 baby names, popular baby names, boys' names, girls' names and baby names advice in our baby names forum. Essential Kids features a range of free printable worksheets for kids from preschool years through to primary school years. For the latest baby clothes, maternity clothes, maternity accessories, toddler products, kids toys and kids clothing, breastfeeding and other parenting resources, check out Essential Baby and Essential Kids.