My life journey has seen me surrounded by strong, independently minded women. To me this is the norm – and how it should be. These women’s relationships with men contain a common thread – it is based on respect and recognition that the partnerships are based on equality and that no partner has the right to govern the other.
This is the way that I try to lead my life, both at home and in the workplace. Sometimes I know I fail, but it is the principle that I always seek to apply and I like to think that I’m getting better, in accordance with what a modern and progressive society is rightfully demanding.
Sadly, I’ve seen too many situations, relationships and actions in my personal and work life that fall far short of this ideal. Situations where men denigrate, control, and mentally torment their female partners or the women in their lives. I’ve seen this on many levels whether it be at the local sporting club, down the pub, in the workplace and with close friends. These actions are plainly wrong and indicate a lack of respect.
So, for me, I need to keep living up to the principle of equality for I know that this is just and right and that it is the only fair way to lead my life. It is how I want the women in my life to be treated so that they and others get the same level of opportunity as their male counterparts.
A challenge for me, as it is with all responsible men, is to consistently challenge poor behaviour in our male friends and colleagues to stamp out poor behaviour so that our society moves forward on an equal footing as it should.
If you or someone you know is impacted by sexual assault, family or domestic violence, call 1800RESPECT on 1800 737 732 or visit www.1800RESPECT.org.au. In an emergency, call 000.
Thank you to our guest bloggers and community advocates for taking part in our Gender Equality Matters 16 Days of Activism against Gender-based Violence campaign.