family and radical feminism
October 27, 2011 17 Comments
This is a personal story blog post.
My brother and I have been close every since we were in high school. We grew up in a highly conservative religious family, and so we supported each other through our rebellions, our mistakes, and our successes. We lived together once in college, and now we live together again (my partner and I live with him, to be clear).
My radical feminist awakening has changed my worldview (I was going to say it has *fundamentally* changed my worldview, but that’s not quite right. Radical feminism uses argument and logic to deliver true conclusions. Popular or “fun” feminism uses none of those things. I got my master’s degree in analytic philosophy, which helps explain radical feminism’s appeal to me. Indeed, it should appeal to everyone who takes the time to recognize the global hatred of women in our society. So in that sense, coming to radfem consciousness has expanded, rather than altered, my worldview).
I’ve made the mistake of confiding this new-found worldview with my brother. He does not get it *at all*, and so we end up yelling at each other. I am so saddened that he is entirely unwilling to bend just the slightest bit to what I’m saying. He’s always listened to me before.
I know that radfems who have been around awhile are not at all surprised to hear my story. However, the personal revelation that our loved ones are *a huge part* of the problem is a difficult one to learn for the first time.
I’ve finally decided that he and I will not talk about feminism any longer- it is the only way to save our friendship. But given how much I care about radical feminist topics, this will mean that we will grow apart if we aren’t able to share on this topic. It will also mean that if he laughs at a misogynistic joke, or drinks out of a female-bodied naked headless wine container (true), I will have to ignore his behavior, swallow my anger, and continue on. Either that, or lose him as a friend and brother. Honestly, that will probably end up happening anyway.
Having convictions sucks. It means I’m alienated from the people I care about the most. I’m deeply sad about this.
PS I want to point out that most of the defenses he levies for his views involve his claim that B (a libfem lesbian and probably his best friend- see paragraph 13 of this post for more on her) doesn’t see the problems I elucidate. To him, that means *I’m* crazy and wrong.