We teach girls to shrink themselves, to make themselves smaller. We say to girls: “You can have ambition, but not too much.” You should aim to be successful but not too successful otherwise you will threaten the man. Because I am female I am expected to aspire to marriage. I am expected to make my life choices always keeping in mind that marriage is the most important. A marriage can be a source of joy and love and mutual support. But why do we teach girls to aspire to marriage and we don’t teach boys the same? We raise girls to see each other as competitors not for jobs or for accomplishments, which I think can be a good thing. But for the attention of men. We teach girls that they cannot be sexual beings in the way that boys are. Feminist: A person who believes in the economic, social and political equality of the sexes.
—Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie (via jazzojazz)
Do I look pretty with my hair done, and the perfect amount of makeup on, not too much, not too little?
Do I look good when my shirt is just tight enough around my waist and looks nice on my chest?
Do I look cute when I dart my eyes down and cover my mouth when I laugh really hard because my smile is too crooked?
Do I look attractive when I keep my mouth shut all hour because I’m too focused on making sure everyone sees me at a good angle?
Or do I look pretty when my mascara’s spread to the corners of my eyes and my cheeks have flushed after crying as hard as I did for the first time in two months?
Is it sexy when I’m running as fast as I can and only thinking about how skinny it’ll make me?
How about when I draw all over my hands and wrists and imagine the cuts and burns I think too often of putting there?
Yeah, do I look pretty when I’ve burned half my hair off and have spent time putting on layers and layers of mascara when all my eyes need is a good rest?
Is it pretty when I suck my stomach in to a point where it makes it hard to breathe and pose so that my ass sticks out but my legs have a gap and my shoulders are up, back and straight?
Do I look pretty when I’m curled up in bed, trying not to see what’s outside of me or worse, what’s inside?
Do I look pretty when I’ve stayed up late due to chronic overthinking that I might not be pretty enough, skinny enough, sexy enough, good enough, and the bags under my eyes are purple and as deep as the ocean?
Do I look pretty when I’m drowning in pain but pretending I’m not?
—Kayla Kathawa - beauty queen’s and kings have been overthrown (via ninakathawa)