21 Lost Lady Perspectives That Do Apply Today

At the beginning of the year, I said I wanted to blog more.

Today I read SheisMore: 21 Lost Lady Traditions That Still Apply Today, and I was given that opportunity.

So, Ms. Wolfe here are my thoughts on what should and shouldn’t be  “lady traditions”. I realize I am offering an unasked for but perhaps necessary perspective on this article.

For starters, Ms. Wolfe determines that acting like a lady is carrying yourself with dignity— I however beg to differ. I think carrying yourself with dignity is something that all humans should do— regardless of with which gender you identify. If however, Ms. Wolfe does insist that carrying yourself with dignity does distinctly promote “lady-likeness”, then I would like to acknowledge that this “carried dignity” does not necessarily empower men to be gentlemanly. While the two can be compared and observed on most conservative Christian blogs, they are not in fact directly related. Ask many a dignified young woman, who walks down the street and hears catcalls. My dignity as a woman is by no means a lightning rod for gentlemanly behavior. To introduce it as such, only promotes rape culture and the mindset that women are “asking for it” by how they act, rather than by what they say. This is an incredibly inappropriate and offensive idea to post.
Ms. Wolfe’s third paragraph says that being a lady “allows you to enjoy the niceties of life with the ease of knowing how to act in all situations.” Perhaps I am not a lady— but I’ve never found that I know how to act in all situations. There are times that decorum does not dictate behavior or possible situational outcomes.
I will continue to address each of her numbered points here:
Manners:
  1. If a man wants to stand while waiting for a lady to sit- it is by no means her responsibility to ease his tired legs.  He is a man after all— so I think he can bear the burden of his etiquette and stand.
  2. Is language a representation of your mind and heart? Absolutely. Does that mean sometimes that it is behaviorally appropriate to express shocking and potentially rude things? Absolutely. Also, I will say that refraining from rude and shocking language whilst at the table, is just basic human (non gender specific) decency.
  3. Not talking with your mouth full is also basic human decency— one of the most basic decencies.
  4. Dressing tastefully does not make you a lady. Many a woman dress appropriately for the occasion— only to be told by other “ladies” that their attire is inappropriate. By Ms. Wolfe’s standards, I do wonder whether or not these other opinionated ladies are in fact ladies at all….Also which ladies are right? Who’s to say what the appropriate attire is for the occasion?
  5. The hours of 9am and 9pm are for businesses to maintain. This is in no relation to what is ladylike behavior. Furthermore, considering the time when making a phone call is basic human decency.
  6. I’m going to sound like a broken record, but basic human decency— please say more than hello when being introduced. You don’t want them to think this is painful for you.
  7. Again: basic human decency. Turning off the cellphone during meals, meetings, and church does not set you apart as a lady. But you should probably make sure it’s still turned off at a mosque, synagogue, movie theater, and during a broadway show.
  8. Using the words “nope” or “yep”, while somewhat unprofessional, have no say on whether or not one is a lady. Pick your words— and know that your lady-likeness will not vanish the moment you cease talking like a 19th century novel.
  9. Sincerity is important… yet again this is basic human decency. I sincerely believe that speaking sincerely is something we should all do… with sincerity.
  10. Shall we abbreviate here? BHD? I hope we can all help someone in need without having a gender stereotype of gentleman or lady placed upon our shoulders.
  11. By all means, please RSVP ASAP, learn to read, and do not expect the world to revolve around you. But cut yourself some slack— you won’t ever be able to thank everyone who has shown you hospitality. Oh, and your “lady-ness” won’t suddenly be revoked, either.
  12. If you can bring a gift to a party— excellent. That is a kind thing to do. You don’t suddenly get described as “ladylike” because of it.
  13. BHD. Our words should be our bonds.
Dating:
  1. Let’s not mistake today for another year in which women could not speak first. If you want to talk to him, you should talk to him. Just because a man does not call you first does not mean he is not a gentleman. There are so many other more important factors that could be considered— none of which should include who initiates contact.
  2. Time is precious and valuable. But outside of work, most of us aren’t booked up 48 hours in advance. Just because he didn’t ask you out 48 hours in advance does not mean that he does not honor your time. Acting like he must allow 48 hours in advance, when in actuality you are available before hour #48 is rather unlady-like behavior, I believe.
  3. It is not a woman’t job to make dating her convenient— nor is it a man’s job. If he has the ability to pick you up and offers then that’s wonderful. If he doesn’t or can’t that doesn’t make him less of a gentleman, and it CERTAINLY DOES NOT MAKE YOU CONVENIENT OR EASY— which is of course Ms. Wolfe’s insinuation.
  4. 10pm? I always thought it was midnight. Also— please define “good”. Because there are some pretty good things that can happen after midnight if you ask me.
  5. Ms. Wolfe now discusses appreciation— defining it as not being “entitled or snobby”. If you were to follow all of the 17 rules she’s set forth up until this point, I think you might at least border on entitled…and snobby. This is quite the bind.
  6. I would again like to chalk this up to BHD. It doesn’t matter which gender you are. If you are on the accepting end of the date, you shouldn’t order the most expensive bottle of wine. To be honest, I am shocked that Ms. Wolfe even considers the thought that a lady can drink wine on a date, and still be a lady…. wait, actually she didn’t say that. My bad.
  7. BHD. Oh, and sometimes ladies are boring. That is true. Life is not a soap opera… you will be boring, and your lack of being interesting does not make you less of a lady. Also, sometimes ladies are rude and dismissive— and it can be a good thing. Especially when dismissing certain ungentlemanly behavior.
  8. This is where I agree with Ms. Wolfe, when you go out on a date you should always be prepared for anything…and safe. (A point my roommate, Morgan, insists I mention.)
Finally— I would just like to say— Please don’t call me “princess”… I find it incredibly sexist, offensive, and degrading.
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One thought on “21 Lost Lady Perspectives That Do Apply Today

  1. Rebecca Meyer says:

    I like your response to her article. I agree that so many of her “lady” perspectives could be applied to both genders and not just women. Her ideas seem a little outdated.

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