Being a strong and independent woman isn’t being a career woman who is proud of having a job and secretly looking down on housewives.
It isn’t dressing “tough”, in chains, spikes and combat boots, and saying “fuck” a lot.
It isn’t refusing to accept any help, especially from men, because you think it makes you weak.
It isn’t “standing up for yourself” to a violent barely contained person, to teach them a lesson.
It isn’t smiling to yourself each time someone comments that you’re masculine in some way.
All those things reek of insecurity. (and not all just in women) I really hate seeing this. Not because I loathe people who exhibit this, I usually just feel bad for them now. I just hate to see it. It’s annoying, it’s embarrassing and pitiful.
Don’t misunderstand, it’s ok to wear boots, chains and spikes for its own sake, and being proud of doing a good job at something. Being proud of your accomplishments is natural.
But when someone defines herself as career girl, “tough girl”, or masculine girl and makes it into an identity they are proud of, it feels weak and pathetic to people apart from those who want to be like that themselves. It’s like they define themselves as their job, clothes or swearwords they use. It’s like they couldn’t find anything good about themselves and just thought “Femininity is pathetic, I’ll just be a guy, that’s so much cooler”.
All this can’t be called strong. And it’s as dependent as it can get. People who conform define themselves by other people’s standards by not wanting to upset anyone. People who don’t conform define themselves by other people’s standards too, because they do want to upset everyone. Being different just to be different is not very different from being the same for the sake of being the same.
When it comes to neutral traits, it’s ok to be like everyone else if that’s how you naturally happen to be. And it’s ok to be different if you happen to be unusual.