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Why is it weird for a woman to do stuff alone


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#1 Guest_AllegraM_*

Posted 08 January 2013 - 01:03 PM

The 'Do you go to the movies alone' thread got me thinking.

Why do some people see it as odd if a woman does something alone? I am the first to put my hand up as an introvert but even so, I find it strange.

As a single woman, I camped alone, drove all over Australia alone, lived alone, walked alone at night, ate at restaurants alone and went to the movies alone. I loved it. Now that I am married, I do most of these things with DH, but even so, still do a fair bit alone.

When I was single, I would get a lot of concern from well-meaning people about my 'strange' habits. And there was always the underlying view that it was a bit pathetic and sad. People still get weirded out now if I stay at a hotel by myself at night for a mini-break. Apparently if you are part of a couple, it is Just. Not.
The. Done. Thing.

In fact I know a woman in her mid-thirties who has never spent a night alone. Ever. Not in a hotel, not in her own home. If her partner is away, she makes arrangments for friends or family to come and stay. I find this situation beyond bizzare but no-one else seems to really think so.

So I am reading too much into this? I often wonder if deep down, people think 'little girls' should be sensible and stay at home until a man rescues them and shows them the world from the safety of his care.

#2 Expelliarmus

Posted 08 January 2013 - 01:05 PM

QUOTE (AllegraM @ 08/01/2013, 02:03 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I often wonder if deep down, people think 'little girls' should be sensible and stay at home until a man rescues them and shows them the world from the safety of his care.

There it is.

Plus the stereotypical crap of how women have to go to the bathroom together etc etc. It's like a cultural 'thing', I think.

#3 Phasmatis angelam

Posted 08 January 2013 - 01:07 PM

I think it depends what you're doing.  If it's something that's usually a social thing - like going out to dinner - doing it alone can seem a bit strange.  If it's just going-about-your-life stuff, I wouldn't register it as odd at all.  If it's seen as a "high-risk" thing to do - like using public transport late at night - it can seem a concern just from a personal safety point of view.

I'd also think it odd if someone couldn't do things on her own, or spend the night on her own, or whatever.  That bespeaks a certain dependence to me.

#4 Nanaimo Girl

Posted 08 January 2013 - 01:09 PM

It's completely effed up.

I constantly get told from one "well meaning" family member that DD and I won't be a "real" family until I find a man and get married.

#5 #YKG

Posted 08 January 2013 - 01:09 PM

TBH I find it weird if you are never alone.

I live alone, go shopping on my own, movies, travel because sometimes I want to be on my own. I honestly think if you can't be or aren't ever alone there are bigger issues.

Just because your on your own doesn't mean your lonely. I have been in a crowd of people who I know and have felt more lonely and isolated then watch a movie at home alone.

Each to their own I guess

#6 Nanaimo Girl

Posted 08 January 2013 - 01:11 PM

QUOTE (Nanaimo Girl @ 08/01/2013, 01:09 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
It's completely effed up.


Just realised that looks wrong lol. I mean it's effed up that people would view doing stuff alone as weird.



#7 ~shannon~

Posted 08 January 2013 - 01:14 PM

I believe that if you can't enjoy your own company, then that's a problem you should face.

I've been to the movies on my own, lived on my own and loved it, and absolutely relish in my alone time now that I have kids and a husband. Nothing strange about that at all!

#8 HRH Countrymel

Posted 08 January 2013 - 01:20 PM

QUOTE (~shannon~ @ 08/01/2013, 02:14 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I believe that if you can't enjoy your own company, then that's a problem you should face.


Indeed!

My Aunt can't cope at all if she is alone in the house at night -  I honestly don't think she has ever done it, not once!  

Unfortunately she is in her early 70s and her husband is - well - 'not very healthy'.

I honestly don't know what she will do when he goes.




#9 .Jerry.

Posted 08 January 2013 - 01:24 PM

In line with the other thread about women, I do think that society generally raises girls to be sweet and pretty  and delicate.  Girls are to be protected and adored and rarely get to experience being on their own when young.  Perhaps this contributes to some women feeling that they cannot make it on their own.

#10 Guest_AllegraM_*

Posted 08 January 2013 - 01:30 PM

QUOTE (Madame Catty @ 08/01/2013, 01:11 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I think most people would find it strange to stay in a hotel by yourself if you have a partner; whether you're male or female (unless it's a work trip or something).


A blissful night of peace, room service and reading while DH and DS hang out at home versus having DH (and most likely DS) along, with the loud foxtel, stinky toilet, snoring and bed-hogging.... It's a no-brainer!

#11 heffalumpsnwoozles

Posted 08 January 2013 - 01:32 PM

I'm perfectly happy to do things alone. The only time I felt a bit weird was when I'd gone to NZ with DH for a week and he'd gone home while I stayed on for a conference. The conference didn't start until the next day so I had one day all to myself, which was fine - I went on a bus tour. But that night I had dinner in a restaurant all by myself, and that felt a bit weird and sad. What are you supposed to do while you're waiting for your meal? I read a book but it felt somehow wrong, I was always raised not to read at the table. Tounge1.gif

#12 Leggy

Posted 08 January 2013 - 01:36 PM

I backpacked around the Middle East alone and people were horrified. The thing is, I was doing all the things a couple would do O/S to be safe, or a single person at home, like stay away from the borders with war-torn countries, don't wander down back alleys by yourself, and have a back-up plan if something starts to feel weird or threatening (like go to a hotel lobby or some other busy public place, strike up a convo with a local woman, ask a cop for directions).

I think it often is an idea that women need looking after and that we shouldn't put ourselves at any kind of risk. I feel that it's my life and if I want to take a risk I should be able to without having to endlessly justify myself; also that many "risks" are nothing like as bad as they are perceived to be.

As to the safety angle...well, there's common prudence, which is fine, but there's also this attitude that if you went into an area that is remotely risky and something happens to you, then it's your fault and you deserve no sympathy. Like when Jill Meagher died I heard people saying, "That poor woman...but why on earth was she walking alone at night? That's so silly (or less pleasant words!)" It would never have been put that way if a man had died. Why exactly are women supposed to give up their rights to move freely around their own community just in case someone breaches that right?

#13 bambiigrrl

Posted 08 January 2013 - 01:37 PM

your not the only one! I love doing things on my own, it rarely happens now i have 2 toddlers and a husband, and i do miss it. I used to love going to the movies, shopping, lunch at cafes etc on my own, i enjoyed it immensly! I know people also who would never dream of going somewhere alone! I remember skipping school when i was 16 once, i just went into the city, had lunch at a cafe, went to the art gallery and shopped all day, all by myself. i had a lovely day! I personally think its a sign of insecurity if your not comfortable going out by yourself. i love my own company!!

#14 .Jerry.

Posted 08 January 2013 - 01:39 PM

QUOTE
I think most people would find it strange to stay in a hotel by yourself if you have a partner; whether you're male or female (unless it's a work trip or something).
- Why is it strange?

I love having a night in a hotel by myself.  Bed to myself, do as I please, stay up late.

Mind you, I can do all of those things at home too, I just really love hotel rooms! laughing2.gif

#15 teaspoon

Posted 08 January 2013 - 01:48 PM

QUOTE
Why exactly are women supposed to give up their rights to move freely around their own community just in case someone breaches that right?


Couldn't agree more, Leggy. I often ponder why I don't "feel" I have the same comfortable access to the city as men.

My rational mind tells me I do have access, but I would absolutely baulk at going into a pub by myself for instance. If I'm meeting a girlfriend, I'll sit in the car til I know she's also arrived :-)

Having said that, for many years I travelled solo overseas (mainly for business) so I know needs must and it can be done, but still I feel a sense of unease.

Just to add, I've been a sole parent for 5+ years so spending time by myself at home and getting on with things is the norm! but I think the difference is spending time alone in public.

#16 Squeekums Da Feral

Posted 08 January 2013 - 01:49 PM

Time alone is bliss!
I used to love my night walks and miss them so much now. Was called weird, crazy everytime and got comments of how I shouldnt be out alone after dark.
I used to reply back 'well if im  crazy that I walk alone, I should be safe, no one wants to kidnap a crazy chick right'
usually shut people up

Whats weird is not being able to be alone ever.

#17 Maple Leaf

Posted 08 January 2013 - 02:01 PM

QUOTE
In fact I know a woman in her mid-thirties who has never spent a night alone. Ever. Not in a hotel, not in her own home.


I find that pathetic actually. What is she scared of?

DH works away a lot and I enjoy the peace and quiet! I've spent a few years alone when single and in my 20's.. also weeks on my own when DH is gone with work. I think people would look at me strangely if I couldn't manage to run a household or sleep in a house by myself.

What will she do if something happens to her husband one day? will she just move in with friends until she finds a new man?

So so weird.

Women are their own worst enemy sometimes. They wonder why we aren't taken seriously when a grown woman can't even spend one night on her own!?!

Edited by Maple Leaf, 08 January 2013 - 02:02 PM.


#18 Ally'smum

Posted 08 January 2013 - 02:08 PM

On the very rare occasions I am alone I love it!

I used to hate travelling for work but who wouldn't enjoy having a room to themselves??

I have always felt unsafe when out at night, so having a boyfriend/husband was always appreciated and I have never known how to have dinner by myself in a restaurant so I have always just had room service.

#19 Guest_AllegraM_*

Posted 08 January 2013 - 02:09 PM

QUOTE (Maple Leaf @ 08/01/2013, 02:01 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I find that pathetic actually. What is she scared of?

DH works away a lot and I enjoy the peace and quiet! I've spent a few years alone when single and in my 20's.. also weeks on my own when DH is gone with work. I think people would look at me strangely if I couldn't manage to run a household or sleep in a house by myself.

What will she do if something happens to her husband one day? will she just move in with friends until she finds a new man?

So so weird.

Women are their own worst enemy sometimes. They wonder why we aren't taken seriously when a grown woman can't even spend one night on her own!?!


I have known her since our teens. She will do what she has always done- move in with a new man asap. He won't necessarily be the right man or a good man but to her, the fear of being alone is so horrific that any man will do. I think she has always found me threatening, as my ability to be happy while single and alone messes with her belief that there is nothing more awful than being alone.

#20 Feral_Pooks

Posted 08 January 2013 - 02:11 PM

QUOTE (howdo @ 08/01/2013, 02:05 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
There it is.

Plus the stereotypical crap of how women have to go to the bathroom together etc etc. It's like a cultural 'thing', I think.


Can we keep that one, though? I love the secret women's business behind that dunny door.

#21 Apageintime

Posted 08 January 2013 - 02:26 PM

I travel with work a bit and LOVE having hotel rooms to myself so much I've done it a couple of times in a non work related way.

I used to find it awkward eating at a restaurant alone, but now I know to find one where I can sit near a window and people watch.

I also love shopping alone, I can wander is as many stores as I want, backtrack, talk for ages with a shop assistant and try on things I know will look awful 'just to see'.

#22 Ianthe

Posted 08 January 2013 - 02:29 PM

I love being alone. More than happy to go somewhere (anywhere) by myself.

#23 IsolaBella

Posted 08 January 2013 - 02:37 PM

QUOTE (.Jerry. @ 08/01/2013, 02:24 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
In line with the other thread about women, I do think that society generally raises girls to be sweet and pretty  and delicate.  Girls are to be protected and adored and rarely get to experience being on their own when young.  Perhaps this contributes to some women feeling that they cannot make it on their own.


Whereas at 18 my folks happily took my sister overseas and left me home alone which I thought was great.

I happily lived by myself for years before marrying DH. I will take myself out to lunch, coffee, dinner by myself. I did Paris by myself. But then again I was the 4yo who declared I was going tobe a pilot although in the 70's females were air hostesses not pilots. So I never bought into the gender thing. I am also a happy SAHM now, having travelled and had my career.



#24 strawberrycakes

Posted 08 January 2013 - 02:38 PM

I love being on my own.

I have a friend who can't handle being alone. If her DH goes away for even one night for work she is a complete mess & gets all frightened etc; that I think is worrisome.



#25 IsolaBella

Posted 08 January 2013 - 02:39 PM

Dp

Edited by lsolaBella, 08 January 2013 - 02:40 PM.





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