Respondent 501

Does patriarchy exist?

Yes

How would you define patriarchy?

Oh crikey. This survey’s a lot harder than I thought it would be, and this is only question two. Umm… the way that things usually conspire to favour men? I don’t think patriarchy is a deliberate conspiracy – no James Bond style villian in an underground volcano arranging for men to be better paid, more powerful and less raped than women – just that that’s the way it works out.

How has patriarchy hurt you?

Patriarchy favours the confident, which I’m not. It can be restrictive – on the roles that you’re meant to or not meant to follow. It’s hurt those I love, which hurts me in turn. I think patriarchal attitudes or ingrained thinking could be behind some forms of homophobia.

How have you hurt people in a way influenced by patriachy?

I’ve worked in several careers where women are in the majority – in roles more senior than me and as my equals. But there have been times in work and outside where my brain has clicked into assuming an individual woman has been behaving in particular ways because of some sort of preprogrammed, almost instinctive sexist attitude on my part – and been bad to them as a result. I wish I could go back and prevent old me from doing that then.

How would you define masculinity?

Strength, confidence, something linked to virility, protectiveness, responsibility. I’m not that sure, really. That all reads a bit stupid.

Does misandry exist?

Maybe

Misandry as a structured systematic equivalent of the patriarchy against men? No, that doesn’t exist. Man-hating? There seems to be a few women, who genuinely aggressive against men, which seems rooted in some principle of wanting to hurt or disrupt men as part of their belief system, rather than in a wider pathological hatred of people in general.

Have you experienced gender and/or sex related prejudice?

Yes

Drunk men picking for fights, or men trying to prove something by trying to start something with me. Some of the rest thats negative I’m not sure how much is gender and how much is sexuality – probably a mix of both. And for any women reading, I know the gender prejudice I’ve had pales in comparison with yours.But it still exists, and I want it all to stop.

What best describes you?

A feminist

Only last year that I realised that a feminist just wants equality for men and women and those who identify as other genders. It’s not about the Society for Cutting Up Men. Still feels odd saying “I am a feminist”.