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    Women Are Sharing Subtle Behaviors And Habits They Were Taught As Children That They Later Realized Were Designed To Benefit Men

    "Underwire bras. They're such a scam. The only way I'm wearing a wire under my breasts ever again is if I become an informant for the feds."

    Ever since they were little, women have been taught certain "societal norms." But when you really think about some of those norms, many were either in service of men or meant to put down women in one way or another.

    A girl being teased by a boy

    While there are a lot of reasons that these tropes have become normal in our society (and yes, some men even combat these "norms"), a lot of women are now realizing in their adulthood how negatively impactful these ideas and pressures were to them in their lives.

    A couple fighting

    To get a better understanding of these situations, Reddit user u/neonroli47 asked, "What is something you once accepted as normal, but now it boggles your mind that you ever thought that way?"

    And their answers were vulnerable and incredibly honest — so we rounded up some of them for you to read below.

    1. "Men get grumpy when they don't get enough sex. You have to have sex with your man frequently or he'll get annoyed. That's just the way men are. Turns out that no, that's not how decent grown men are. That's just how immature man-boys are."

    A couple upset while they sit on their bed

    2. "Haha! You got beat by a GIRL!' said by the girl herself when she beat a guy in a game. This was common in the '90s/early '00s."


    3. "Women letting men be in charge of, like, everything. I don’t just mean politics. When I was younger, I had boyfriends give unsolicited opinions on how I should wear my hair, dress, and use/not use makeup. It blows my mind now that any of that seemed normal and OK."

    The back of a woman's head while she's outdoors

    4. "Believing that if a boy teases me, he must have a crush on me. My daughters are being raised differently."


    5. "When men would catcall, grab me in clubs, and touch me without consent. I’m going back about 11-plus years, when I was out partying a lot. It was so commonplace, we all just accepted it. I’m disgusted by it now and sad that we all had to deal with that."


    6. "A woman's purpose is to serve the Lord, stay pure until marriage, and serve her husband. Being raised with this mentality led to being pressured into giving up my 'purity' before marriage and feeling as though I had to stay with that man, waiting on him hand and foot, because that's what I was 'supposed' to do. Religious trauma is real and is a terrible thing to live with. I'm thankful that I am no longer in that situation."

    A wooden cross on top of the book

    7. "That marriage would make me feel complete or happy. I still struggle with the same personality flaws and anxieties that I had when I was dating or single. No one can solve your issue but you, regardless of their title or role in your life. It’s nice to know I have someone on my team, but it’s never enough."


    8. "That men are incapable of self-control, so you better be 100% committed to sex before so much as kissing them, because they can't stop once they get started, and if you change your mind, tough luck. I was taught this by my mother, who still, to this day, fully believes it. Maybe TMI, but even right at his peak, if my demeanor changes at all, my mate stops to check in and makes sure I'm still fully engaged. And if, on occasion, for whatever reason, I need to stop, he stops immediately and doesn't make me feel bad about it. No guilt, no shame, no failure. Ladies, please don't accept less than this in a partner."


    9. "Being unhappy in a relationship, always walking on eggshells around them."

    Woman upset while her boyfriend consoles her

    10. "Men will fantasize about every woman in their life. My ex really messed with my head, and I’m beyond relieved to know that’s not usually the case."


    11. "Traditional gender roles in a household."

    "I grew up in a Southern Baptist family where the women would cook and clean at family events and the men would sit around and talk and drink. Even the kids were forced into these roles. I just thought it was normal.

    "What's especially bad is that these women also had jobs of their own. You can argue that it's an equal partnership if the man works and the woman is the homemaker, but when the women are expected to cook, clean, host, do laundry, care for kids, and hold a job, that's just wild."


    12. "That my worth is about how likable I am and how I can serve others around me. I tried so much to meet the unrealistic expectations and gave up when my dad got cancer and literally no one tried to be there for me except for a few friends who are now my ride or die — and they didn't do it because I was likable or serving them. They genuinely love me for who I am. That experience changed my entire perspective on life."

    Friends hugging each other

    13. "That girls were naturally catty and you just deal with it because of growing pains. Nope, just like terrible little boys who use aggression and violence to solve all their problems because their parents didn't bother raising them to communicate, girls are not naturally catty, and using misogyny to excuse the insane, cruel, and abusive stuff girls did to me or each other is doing NOTHING for the gender."


    14. "Underwire bras. They're such a scam. The only way I'm wearing a wire under my breasts ever again is if I become an informant for the feds."


    15. "Having sex even though I didn't want to or didn't feel like it at the moment, because I thought the guy I was with at the time was right when he said, 'There is something wrong with you.' And I didn't question it because he 'never had a girl act that way before,' and I was supposed to satisfy the guy whenever he pleased 'cause I thought that was the way you were supposed to act when you date someone. Turns out, I didn't want to be with the guy because deep down, I didn't like him and wasn't attracted to him. Should've listened to my body. Never again."

    Woman holding her arms

    16. "Men being controlling, possessive, and overall toxic in relationships. The movies tailored to me from childhood all showed me that if a man wants me, he will be possessive and not want any other guy to even look at me. I thought it was romantic. I used to feel undesired, as if he didn’t really like me if he wasn’t controlling and didn’t get jealous if a guy stared at me too long."


    17. "Men won't like or talk or be attracted to you if you look/dress/behave a certain way. I shaved my head and still got men's attention. Good, decent men will care about and love you for you. Everything my mom told me I was doing that men wouldn't like about me was wrong."


    18. "That women shave every day."

    A woman holding a razor

    19. "Defaulting to prefer male bosses, heroes, politicians, pop stars, actors, everything. It wasn't until my 30s that I realized the systemic nature of this. It's so pervasive, you don't even notice. Now I support fellow women, LGBTQ people, diversity, and minorities all the way."


    20. "Thinking that weight is health and that smaller is better."


    21. "Pretty much my entire family dynamic growing up, and a lot of subtle sexism (e.g., being the 'responsible one' and being expected to cook/keep an eye on my older brother so he didn't burn the house down, instead of just...holding him accountable and teaching him to cook?). The guy basically had to do a chore badly once and it became my responsibility to teach him or do it myself, even though I was cooking full meals and doing my own laundry as a kid."

    A stew cooking in a pot

    22. "Women keeping quiet when a man says something rude or stupid. I never saw a woman stand up for women when I was growing up."


    Note: Some responses have been edited for length and/or clarity.

    Are there certain subtle societal norms you had to deal with as a woman that you now realize are far from normal? If so, tell us what they are in the comments below.