Pink Toolbox

Before your mind slides into the gutter, this has nothing to do with sexuality and EVERYTHING to do with sexism. I am a girl, a lady, a female, and sometimes a "girly girl." I am also a strong woman.

In the women’s empowerment movement, equal rights are at an all-time high as women move into high-powered, high-paying positions. That’s awesome! Good for them! And good for you if you are a female AND if that is the life you choose.

I was recently interviewed by a college student due to both my ethnicity (she said she needed a "white" person, lol) and my age, though she did not include age as a criterion I assumed it mattered. The timing was perfect. With the media pushing women's empowerment efforts, as a woman, I had opinions I was willing to share. Below are her questions and my answers to those questions. I'm sure you have opinions too. Don't be shy if you feel you're bursting at the seams to state them. That is what the comment box is for and I value varying beliefs! It's what makes us unique.

Interviewer - How did you perceive gender when you were growing up (what did you believe about the nature of men and women and their place in society)?

My answer - My perception was prejudiced by the fact that my parents had very traditional beliefs about gender-specific roles. I rebelled against those beliefs as I felt that I should have every opportunity like my brothers. This made me a strong woman in many aspects. I developed skills beyond the traditional, stereotypical female that have served me well as a woman. I was always unaccepting of the word “can’t” simply because it did not fit into female gender expectations.

Interviewer - How did gender affect your life choices- what was expected of you as a girl/woman and how did your choices either conform to those expectations or rebel against them? Were there moments when you felt limited or discriminated against because you were female?

My answer - I was honestly discriminated against in my own childhood home. I was taught that I should be the caretaker over the males in the household and that my only hope of a life outside of my childhood home would be if a man magically appeared to marry me so I could continue the tradition of housewife and mother. I was my parents' most rebellious child. I was confused by the ever-changing societal climate vs. trying to live up to the expectations of my parent’s beliefs. This did not serve me well in my youth, as I struggled with “finding my purpose” in life. Because of the paths I chose, I learned many difficult but valuable lessons that have served me beyond my imagination in my later years.

Interviewer - Has your perception of what it means to be a woman stayed the same or changed over the years?

My answer - This answer may come as a great surprise considering my previous answers. As I have aged, though I value the lessons, opportunities, skills, and values I have had and/or developed in my life, I can’t help but think that it would be a joy to not have to be so strong and taken on so much as a female. Of course, this would be in a perfect world where women were highly regarded even as housewives, mothers, caretakers, etc. I believe that all humans should be valued for their gifts, regardless of gender, disability, level of education, social status, income, or ethnicity. (I use the word ethnicity because I believe the word “race” is a term used for a competitive sport and not a means to describe the physical attributes of human beings.)

Yes, my perceptions have changed somewhat perhaps due to the struggles I placed upon myself. I have been described as "fiercely independent" and had neighbors tell me I worked harder than most of the men in the neighborhood. I have a lovely pink toolbox, equipped with all the tools that I would need to repair just about anything broken in or around my home, for the most part.

While it's good to be a strong woman, as age begins to take a toll on my physical being, I think sometimes it would be wonderful to have men be the stereotypical providers, strong father figures to children, and loving support partners and women be allowed to be the stereotypical kind nurturer enjoying the freedom of not having to work so hard. But of course, in a perfect world…..

~Lacy Gray


Pink Toolbox fit for a Lady

4 thoughts on “Pink Toolbox”

  1. I can relate to being discriminated in your own home. My sister and I were expected to be housekeepers while our stepfather sat around drinking his beer and my younger brothers went and played. I rebelled as you did too.

  2. I love it and you are so talented and I think this one will be great and I will keep watching for them 😊

  3. This is a powerful interview. I want to be independent, but also have the support of a loving husband. This is where I am now and I love it. I can make it in this world alone, but I don’t have to.

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