The Traditional Rules Every Woman Should Break Before She Turns 30
Your teens and 20s are a time for breaking down societal constructs. Yes, you're a woman, but more than that, you're a person and a human being and because of that, you've got every right to tear down barriers and borders that are holding you down.
Sometimes these walls are invisible – and sometimes they're caving in on you. Sometimes they're breathing down your neck and other times, they're the retro “rules” that have carried over from generation to generation and have long since stopped making sense.
But because we're making way for a new age of woman, there are some “rules” never worth listening to. So, to hell with the status quo.
“Let him pay for the first date.”
If you want to, let him pay – but don't feel obligated to pass on the bill just because you think it's what you're supposed to do.
Some guys may insist, some may be floored by the idea of being treated to a meal by a girl they've just met and others might be more comfortable splitting down the middle. Regardless of what the outcome is, it doesn't hurt to ask. Especially if you've got the means to afford it.
“Wait for him to open the door.”
Let me clue you into a little secret here: No woman, not now, not then, not ever, has gotten anywhere in life by waiting for a man, woman, dog or small child to open the door for her, proverbially and literally. So don't start waiting now.
“Buy a business suit – you don't want the men in the office to catcall you.”
I'm sorry, since when did men in the office – or anywhere, for that matter – become endowed with the right to catcall any woman? Hint, they weren't. If you don't want to spend a fortune on the business suit, don't.
Wearing Ann Taylor or Armani Prive doesn't make you any more or less capable to fulfill the role you were hired for.
“Don't give your opinion until you're asked.”
You know who says this? Parents. To their children. Who are small and young and little and may or may not know better. Here's a tip: You're not a child. There's never been and never will be any reason to hold back your opinion unless you want to do.
“Act like a lady.”
Excuse me, but f*ck that. Act like a ham. A meatloaf. Act like a man. Act like a cat. Act like a baby. There is no rule book that lays down the true definition of what it means to be a lady, which means that the word is as open to interpretation as it is amendment.
You are a lady, through and through, so there's no point in anyone trying to tell you that's not what a “lady” would do.
“Don't give it up on the first date.”
Everyone loves to share an opinion when it comes to sex. These people want to tell you when to have it, how often to have it, how to do it and where to do it – but the one piece they love giving is about when exactly you shouldn't fulfill your basic needs: on the first night.
Even though their intentions are good, you and you alone can decide when you want to seal the deal, date one or date 100.
“He should plan your date.”
No. Even if you are perfect strangers who stole fleeting glances at each other before leaving the bar, if you have a favorite place you're just dying to take this guy – or any guy – offer it up.
There's no reason to leave it in a man's hands, ladies. Like so many other things in this world, it is better when left in a woman's hands.
“Order the salad.”
When, in the history of the universe, has a salad EVER been filling enough to be satisfying as a dinner entrée? You are a human. You need nourishment. Order the steak and potatoes, with an extra side of veggies. Skip straight through all the “don’ts” and order the spaghetti, extra sauce.
To top it all off, tuck a napkin into the neckline of your white blouse. Order what you want to eat – and revel in the fact that by the time the meal's done, you're full of food and conversation.
“Don't be 'bossy' in the office.”
You absolutely should be bossy – that’s what bosses do — and not feel an ounce of remorse for going after what you want, or speaking up when you think something is wrong.
Of course, it matters how you say it, but that goes for everyone. Just because you're a woman, don't feel cajoled into the corner or that your thoughts and opinions aren't valued. They absolutely are – and if they're not, go somewhere where they will be.
“Wait until he calls you.”
Ladies, if you like the guy and want to see/sext/text/call him, then do it. Don't feel like you're being “too easy” or “too clingy.”
Not playing “hard to get” shouldn’t hurt your chances with him in the long run just because you're the type of person who likes to know where you stand. If he's the kind of guy who’s turned off by that, then trust me, you're better off weeding him out now.
“Don't make the first move.”
You know what, ladies? If you feel that strongly about the person that you're out with that you can't leave this date without rounding second base, go ahead and make the first move.
There's no reason you should hold yourself back, especially if you're both interested in each other. Waiting for your S.O. to make the first move is so 2001.
“Men are the breadwinners.”
Unfortunately, society is working hard to make this remain true, but it doesn't mean that you shouldn't work just as hard on your climb to the top. The wage gap is real, which makes it really frustrating to be a woman in the workforce right now.
So while it's commonplace for guys to actually take home more than a woman does at the end of the day, that doesn't mean they're the only ones bringing home the bacon.
Photo via Wildfox Tumblr