Sexism and Psychopathology
September 25, 2009 § 2 Comments
In this first semester, I am taking a class entitled Abnormal Psychology, which is all about the philosophy, diagnoses, and treatments that surround the field of mental health. It’s been really baller so far, and my love for the class only increased when my professor lectured this week on the psychopathological effects of sexism on both men and women!!!
Overall, the sexist gender norms that men and women are expected to emulate have been correlated with post traumatic stress disorder, anxiety, depression, substance abuse, attention deficit disorder, and obsessive compulsive disorder across both genders. All us feminists know that sexism hurts everybody, but I just think it’s so interesting and enlightening to see that stupid stereotypes actually have the power to make us psychopathological. That means that some of us are altered on literally a biological level by all the oppressive bullshit out there.
My professor (who happens to be a man, makes this even cooler) also lectured on the five stages of feminism as a means by which individuals can avoid and overcome sexism-linked psychopathology. Seriously cool. Here they are:
1. Passive acceptance of gender roles.
2. Questioning of gender roles — anger at self and others for allowing sexism and inequality.
3. Reaching out to a network for connectedness — “sisterhood.”
4. Synthesis stage — own sense of identity is solidified and and the individual can make decisions about sexism by themselves on a case to case basis.
Those stuck in stage two are most likely to suffer from phobias, a feeling of alienation, depression, and anxiety.
Those who make it to stages four and five are least likely to suffer from those ailments, and are at lower risk for developing an eating disorder.
You think feminists are crazy? Think again.