masculine.

A few weeks ago, Diesel had their “Hate Couture” event in Yorkville. This campaign made me feel all sorts of emotions from anger to happiness. The point of the campaign was “the more hate you wear, the less you care”. Interesting. I had always opted to think less about the hate people throw at me, much less wear it. Nonetheless, I attended the event and boy, was it heart warming. 

Upon arriving at the Diesel flagship store, we had an up close look at the different pieces available. Some read “Diesel: not cool anymore” covering the logo, and others had patches covering the logo left, right and center, and some were just plain white tees. There was so much to look at! 

My twin sister and I both decided on matching yellow sweaters to “destruct”. We stood in line and waited to have our sweaters plastered with the hate we’ve gotten throughout our lives. 

I thought long and hard about what it was I wanted to put on my sweater, and finally came to the conclusion of “masculine”. Before I get into this story of why, I’d like to check my privilege here and say that I am not a member of the LGBTQ+ community. While my experience is dis-heartening, I am 110% privileged as a cis-gendered woman. The story I am about to tell reflects my life as a young girl growing up different than the girls around me. I experience these same comments to date. By no means am I claiming that I experience the same disheartening and heart-wrenching situations that my trans-folk undeniably face.

Now. Onto the goods. 

As a young girl, I was always very interested in sports. I grew up around “the gym”, watching my dad and all of his friends play basketball every Sunday. I practiced my basketball skills nearly every chance I got with them. It didn’t stop at basketball. I would play volleyball, I danced, participated in track and field (100m and shot put), kickboxing…you get it. I was the Jane of all trades when it came to sports or anything that allowed me to kick, punch, lift etc. Yet, instead of receiving the “congratulations” that I sometimes yearned for from certain people, I heard that I was becoming “too masculine” and that if I kept it up, no man would ever want to marry me because of it. I'd freak people out because of my big, muscular shoulders and people would think I was a man. 

This didn’t stop there. I’ve been told to choose a more “suitable” job because the jobs I wish to flourish in are too masculine, and I’ll run off any man who would have any wishes of marrying me. I’ve been told that just about nearly everything I love is too much. 

I’m too strong.
Too driven. 
Too masculine. 

Listen. As a sociology student, I’ve studied gender and the roles it imposes on people far-and-wide. In Western culture, women are to be docile, remain in “pink-collar” jobs such as becoming a nurse, a teacher or a stay-at-home mom. There is nothing wrong with these jobs at all- I have a high respect for the people who do them. They simply don't fit what it is that I'd like to accomplish in my lifetime, I had (and still have) dreams of becoming a lawyer, head of my own firm. Fit beyond belief and focused on becoming the best version of myself I can be. I had to learn that if that meant being “too masculine”- then I was indeed masculine. I’m strong-headed, I want what I want and I’m always willing to go the extra mile to get there. I'm passionate about the work I do and  I don’t care if that means I scare off men- that means they were to weak for me to begin with. 

After getting the word sewn to my sweater, I had people come up to me and express their disbelief in what people had, and still say about me. I can’t believe that in 2018, I have to explain to folks that my goals of being successful, strong and in-charge eliminate my own womanhood. Yet, here we are. 

I’ve learned to appreciate these things about myself. I love my broad shoulders and my defined legs. I love being able to walk into the gym and lift heavier weights than the men there. I love speaking up for what I believe in and running over anyone who doesn’t think I’m capable of it because I’m a woman. I am proud of who I am.

Beyond my own story of being bullied and constantly facing these words of hate, I’m extremely grateful that I am able to say that wearing the word made me embrace it. I laugh at those who thought they could get me down- and now I wear their hate. It’s empowering and satisfying all at the same damn time. Shoutout to yall!

To Diesel, I thank you for this campaign. It’s tough finding ways to navigate through the negativity. I never thought that wearing my hate would make me love it. 

Here’s a look at how I styled it, too: 














How will you wear your hate?! 


xo,

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