“Toxic masculinity” has been the topic of many conversations in society in recent years. Most of us understand it to be referring to views of “masculinity” that perpetuate harmful stereotypes, racism, sexism, homophobia, and ultimately cause harm to people of all genders. Aggression, bottling up emotions, and the insistence that there are things that “manly men” do or don’t do in order to be “real men” are all recognizable facets of toxic masculinity.
But toxic femininity isn’t discussed anywhere near as often, at least as an umbrella term to identify problems with stereotyping what “real women” should be in the same way toxic masculinity does that to men.
Some people insist there is no such thing, while others are torn between arguing that it’s just women reinforcing the gender norms created by a patriarchal society or that it’s actually a result of going too hard trying to course correct a sexist, male-dominated world.
And now the conversation has moved to Reddit, where people are offering up what they believe to be examples of toxic femininity, sparking debate alongside a desire to understand how to make the world a better, more understanding place for everyone.
Mothers who treat other people like crap and then justify it by saying they’re a mama bear.zanovar
Women minimizing other women’s pain. Happens all the time in health care, for instance.OutrageousMoose8
To me it would mean women who bag on other women for womaning differently than they do.echano2340
Thinking men can’t be abused or raped by a woman.Few_Cup3452
Probably the whole “I’m not like other girls” thing. What’s wrong with other girls? You can value yourself as special without shitting on others.Phil_Drill
“If you can’t handle me at my worst, you don’t deserve me at my best” Sorry – that’s not how life works.badlilbadlandabad
Double standards in dating. I hear this a lot personally with my mother, but if her boyfriend goes somewhere without telling her she freaks out and throws a tantrum (yes, literally). Yet if he asks anything about her then he’s a douche trying to control her and cheating.Vampawa
I know several women who rely on the fact that when it comes to his word vs her word she is usually believed unless he has evidence. Its never gone to that extreme for me but I document the HELL out of things at work because of it.varthalon
The sheer terrifying glee they have at tearing down someone who’s made a mistake or is somehow lacking in their eyes. I worked at a doctor’s office with a fifty person staff, forty five of which were women. Like they were so fake and catty and just outright hateful to each other.Fremenade
I’m a lesbian and I’ve had plenty of straight women react to this with complete puzzlement. Have I ever TRIED having a boyfriend? Who fixes things around my apartment when they break? Who kills bugs? You know, there ARE good guys out there…scm96
Some women are so judgemental about other women, particularly when it comes to looks or fashion. Also the women who seem to enjoy forming cliques and cutting out anyone they deem to be an outsider.BringBackRobotWars
When we crap all over men and boys, while calling it “Modern Feminism”. We don’t have to deconstruct and destroy everything masculine just for women to be equal. That is literally the opposite of equality and should be offensive to everyone.DancingAssClown
This also applies to toxic women who feel it’s okay to harass women who have stated plainly that they don’t want to have children. “Oh! Are you sure? I wouldn’t feel complete if I didn’t have children!” … There’s no one way to woman and motherhood is only one of them.leopoldisacat
Went to a birthday party for daughter’s friend and was having a casual conversation with one of the husbands. The group of women stood in a corner staring at me, and the wife came up and grabbed him by the arm and started doing that strange possessive peacock dance. What were we talking about? Real estate prices.YourMothersButtox
Body-shaming, whether overweight or underweight. I had an old classmate who called me anorexic for a year straight, anytime I tried to stand up for myself I was the bad guy because ‘she just wants to be as thin as you’. I was 21kg at twelve and her calling me anorexic fucking killed.Bitchgotbitten
Women who think other women that enjoy cooking, child rearing, and homemaking are perpetuating stereotyped gender roles enforced by the patriarchy. Tearing other women down because what they enjoy doesn’t fit into the tiny box of what YOUR version of feminism should be is toxic femininity to the max.Oichbro550