Unsplash | Priscilla Du Preez

Women Are Sharing 'Normal' Experiences That Shouldn’t Be Normalized

It should come as no surprise that women put up with a lot of crap from society.

The sexual assault rates are higher, the gender wage gap is still vast, and we feel the most confined to stereotypical gender roles.

And yet, most of these experiences have become "normalized." Well, no more. Here, women are sharing which experiences need to be stopped.

Being told “learn to take a joke.”

Unsplash | Priscilla Du Preez

When people say this, it's usually right after they delivered an insult, not a joke. And then we're the ones who are seen as "uptight" if we don't smile or laugh.

Being expected to be nice when a man is overstepping your boundaries.


"As soon as we express any discomfort we're made to feel we should be nice to them. Eg: it was only banter, lighten up, that sort of thing." - u/infamyinfamy

Being "nice" can be seen as leading someone on.

"The fear of expressing too much comfort around male friends who might see it as a sexual opportunity. Too many of us experience this." - u/Ripple935

Asking someone out until they say yes.

A lot of men have been given the advice, "keep trying until she says yes." This actually pushes so many boundaries and makes women feel uncomfortable. No means no!

Downplaying how horrible periods can be.

Unsplash | Jonathan Borba

"I've seen so many men act like women are being babies on their period and it's just enraging," wrote this Redditor. The same goes with downplaying our emotions while we're on our period.

Feeling “expected” to sleep with someone.


"I experienced this a lot when I was younger and I’m sure I’m not the only one. Like, I thought if I was kissing a guy 'well, now I’m expected to have sex with him because he’s turned on. I guess I have to.'" - u/GreenMountain85

People saying, "if a boy hits a little girl, he likes her."

Unfortunately, inappropriate behavior is often taught to men from a young age. With this saying, some men grow up and believe there's no repercussion for violence.

Downplaying the pain of childbirth.

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"The way the medical community seems to approach childbirth. I've watched documentaries etc (no kids myself) and what really struck me is how patronising everyone was to these women who are going through perhaps the worst pain of their life, and how things like LITERALLY CUTTING THEIR GENITALS are seen as no big deal." - u/AirStoned

Society valuing men's time more than women's.

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"My husband and I both technically have flexibility in our work schedules but guess who does all the doctor appointments etc for the kids? Me. Because God forbid a man miss work in the middle of the day, or take a day off because his kid is sick." - u/nefariousmango

Being a woman means doing most of the housework and childcare.

Unsplash | CDC

There are far more stay-at-home moms than there are dads.

It's become an expected role in society for women to take the brunt of the housework and childcare, even if they have an outside job.


"That condescending and infuriatingly arrogant tone that some men take on when explaining something (be it a hobby, some interesting fact, or the fundamentals of this and that) when their listener is a woman." -u/Marjory_SB

Commenting on a woman's appearance.


"There have been way too many times where someone feels they need to point out my 'physical flaws' just because, ex. acne, dark circles under my eyes, body/ facial hair, too pale, etc." - u/mermaid_with_pants

It's a woman's job to manage her husband's affairs.

Unsplash | Eric Ward

Women already have children; they don't need another one.

Yet, many women feel pressured to care for their husbands by making their appointments, buying clothes for them, and managing the household.

Women being called "girls."

"Whether it is conscious or not, it implies a lack of maturity and, therefore, deserved respect. Among countless other places I have heard this, I attempted to watch a season of The Bachelor (bad decision for many reasons) and I could not stand how often the women were called 'girls.' I couldn't bring myself to check out The Bachelorette, but I suspect the men are never called 'boys.'" - u/merrypoppin

The pleasure gap.

Unsplash | Womanizer WOW Tech

"That sex is finished once the man has an orgasm, regardless of whether the women has finished. So many women (myself included) were sexually active for YEARS before they ever had a male partner prioritize their sexual climax." - u/hoipolloisoyboi

Getting hit on by men at a young age.

Sadly, many women have stories of older men hitting on them when they were 13. This could be a random man cat-calling them in the street or even their dad's friends.

Tolerating partners who drain energy.

Unsplash | M.

"Relationships ARE work and conflict is bound to happen, but I see so many women doing all of the work all the time and blaming themselves when their men don't get better." - u/ohdearsweetlord

Being pressured to have kids.


It can be a terrifying experience for a woman to tell her family that she doesn't want to have kids. She may be lectured about it or made to feel guilty for not conforming to the norm.

Having to live with double standards.


"Like we see it but we’re so used to living with it we never call it out. It’s normalized at such an early age we’ve grown numb of it. Girls can be rough and tumble too. I’ve seen so many shamed for it like it’s unnatural. It’s not." - u/supersarney