I'm not sure if it's because I've gotten older
or more aware and political, but it gets more
difficult for me to blow off sexist, especially
violent, images I see in the media. I don't watch
television, but I watch a lot of movies, old
and new. Some of the "classics" have upset
me for weeks. This may be more a question
for a psychologist, but when I see a violently
sexist movie or magazine ad, I find it very difficult
to deal with men for a while. I find myself
blaming my boyfriend, family, male friends and
coworkers for these images. I can turn
off the movies, but I have to deal with men every
day. Any advice?
Reading your note, I was reminded
of an argument I have heard Gloria Steinem
make, which is that women get more radical with
age. We do so because we see that playing
by the rules doesn't always reward us, especially
as we grow older and our sexual power is diluted.
I do think that it gets harder to tolerate
sexism - in part because we learn that there
are negative consequences and two because we
have the expectation that each subsequent generation
should know better -- and thus do better. When
that doesn't happen, we are more likely to
feel frustrated that we haven't contributed
more toward eliminating it.
That said, certainly
act on your anger -- write letters, tell
other people, start groups, subversive
ads of your own.