When I was in high school, I had this amazing physics teacher. She was both incredibly intelligent and intensely principled. She introduced us to a lot of different ways of seeing the world – even in ways physics couldn’t explain. One of the ideas she emphasized the most was the problem with women’s tendency to apologize. She believed an apology is in order only if it is truly and intentionally your fault. If you bumped into someone or dropped your pencil at an inconvenient moment, you are only obligated to say “excuse me” and never “I’m sorry.”
Even if you don’t realize it, apologizing forces you to internalize blame. This can be problematic when you have no control over the situation. It can cause you to have lower self-esteem and discourage you from leaving a dangerous situation, because, in your mind, you are the problem and there is no escaping yourself. While every situation might not be so serious as to put your life in danger, feeling guilty over things you can’t control will always inhibit your ability to love yourself. That said, Laura Argintar of Elite Daily has put together a list of 20 things women should no longer have to apologize for. Check it out:
1. Having our period
There’s a lot we can say on the topic of periods because, frankly, the idea of having to apologize for enduring one week each month in which we cramp, bloat and worry about bleeding through our pants — all so that we can bear children and bring more hemorrhaging females into this world — is absolutely preposterous. We can all be leaders, not just bleeders.
2. Sexual preferences
Regardless if you love men, women, both or trees, you don’t need to justify whom or what you love. Sometimes, I have intimate feelings for cookie dough ice cream and lip balm, maybe even borderline pornographic dreams about bathing in a tub of one or both, and I never feel sorry about it.
3. Farting and pooping***
Okay, so maybe the polite thing to do after you pass gas is to excuse yourself, but that kind of formality is reserved for nuns and student tutors. Not to be graphic, but unless you took an award-winning dump that smelled so bad, it evacuated an entire Murray Hill pregame, you don’t need to show any remorse! Where do you think the classic “hit and run” criminal routine came from?! The sh*t and run, of course! ***(Personally, I like to call it “making a doodie,” but I’ve been told this is childish.)
4. Bra cup sizes
Big boobs, flat chests… I’ve always said, “Hugs over jugs,” and I maintain that. No matter where you lie on the spectrum, be grateful you have some. Even if you have none, love one: http://www.keep-a-breast.org/programs/i-love-boobies/.
Being able to take care of yourself and rely on yourself is a wonderful thing. Whether it’s financial independence, emotional independence or just being able to sit alone sipping iced coffee on a bench, it doesn’t matter, there’s no feeling bad about it. Anyone who makes you feel less for your strong sense of independence can go suck it.
6. Painting our faces
If you feel more confident wearing makeup, then, by all means, wear makeup! It’s fun and makes us feel like our best-dressed selves — what’s so bad about that? Even more, if you like to wear the entire CVS beauty aisle on your face all at once, then go for it — just so long as you don’t apologize for looking like Lil’ Kim.
7. How many people we’ve had sex with
We’re putting this whole “kill-count” debate to bed. How many people a girl sleeps with is only one, very small statistic in her romantic history. Especially when it comes to Millennial hookup culture, once the New York Times gets around to writing about it, it’s safe to say we ladies have already discussed it over many Sunday brunches.
8. Being Type-A
You love making to-do lists and hate being late almost as much as you hate when other people are late. As long as you don’t implode and leave your torched bits scattered everywhere, you don’t need to say sorry.
9. Looking like hell
Apologizing for the way you look just gives others the go-ahead to mock your appearance. Unless you’re of the Gwyneth Paltrow variety, no one expects you to look flawless all the time.
10. Not enjoying giving blow jobs
Wait, you mean you don’t like shoving a long stretch of human flesh into your mouth while bobbing face-first into a man’s crotch as he tests your throat for strep? You should never have to defend what you put in your mouth — dick or otherwise.
11. Being girly
Since when did being “girly” become a bad thing? Why do we have to feel bad about obsessing over each other’s hair, watching “How To Lose A Guy In 10 Days” on repeat and indulging in manicures? Girly stuff is really, really fun and it sure beats watching guys tackling each other for four hours.
12. Popping pimples
Pimples have no other purpose being on your face than to be popped, and resisting the urge to do so is like telling a toddler not to press the elevator buttons. While we know excavating your face isn’t the best idea, don’t let the dermatologist pimple-shame you for trying to solve the problem the good old-fashioned way.
13. Putting our relationships first
Valuing your relationship and making it a priority is what being with someone else is all about! If your significant other is most important to you, that is an exceptionally rare and beautiful thing to hold on to. If it means making personal sacrifices for this other person, you don’t have to justify its worth.
14. Eating healthy
Can’t a woman refuse the cookie plate without having to explain her desire to eat right? We fat-shame, we skinny-shame, and now we’re feeling shameful for making healthy choices? Your body should be thanking you, not saying sorry for it.
15. Not liking children
All children are beautiful, but they are not all likeable. Oh, your infant said another incomprehensible sentence while crapping his pants!? Zero f*cks given.
16. Making more money
It’s time we stop feeling guilty for our success and start enjoying it. Be proud of your worth and what you’ve earned.
17. Not wanting to have sex
It doesn’t matter if you just met and he’s coming upstairs, or if you’ve been in a committed relationship; if you’re not down, you’re not down.
18. Putting work first
If work is the most fulfilling aspect of your life, there is no reason you shouldn’t immerse yourself in it. There’s a big difference between letting your job run your life and working hard at something you’re dedicated to.
19. Eating too much
The only person you need to apologize to for eating too much is your body when it winds up in a food coma.
20. Being who we are
You are incredible, and haters are gonna hate. So shine on, girlfriend. Shine on.