I recently heard that I was living a “feminist lifestyle.” I’m not sure what that means. The comment wasn’t meant to be derogatory, but it came off that way, given that my “feminist lifestyle” is something that had to be approved of.

I would like to think that most women in the United States these days are living a “feminist lifestyle.” Hopefully, women now practice the right to vote, get an education, and feel comfortable making their own decisions and having their own checking accounts. I’m sure living the “feminist lifestyle” is much more than this, and it should be.

So I want to know what your #feministlifestyle is. Use the hashtag. Paste it all over Twitter and Facebook and Tumblr and WordPress and wherever else you do your social media-ing. Let’s reclaim this term as something positive.


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My #feministlifestyle looks something like this:

I’m educated. I just earned a PhD in the theory and practice of professional communication.

I’m a mother of two girls. I spend at least 5 hours each night doing homework with them, reading with them, feeding them, bathing them, talking with them, laughing with them, and learning more about them. (Oh yeah, and LOVING them.)

I spend several hours a week outside of my home. I teach college students. In the fall, I will be doing this full time for a research institution. I love it. It gets me out of bed in the morning. And I hope I’m touching lives as I do.

I clean my house. I wash the dishes. So does my husband.

I visit neighbors. I make meals for other people. I take cookies to new neighbors.

I play the organ and the piano at church. I teach Sunday School at church.

I read. I like to read. I learn things by reading, and I share those things with you.

I donate to good causes. I donate my time. I donate my money. I try to be aware of what is happening in the world and do good where I can.

I speak up.

I’m interested in history. I love women’s history.

I keep journals for each of my girls. I keep a journal for myself. I take pictures. I make family photo albums.

I remember birthdays. I plan parties and celebrations.

I drive carpool. I get groceries. I go to parent-teacher conferences. So does my husband.

I wear makeup. I like skirts. I like pants, too.

I try to exercise. I’m not consistent, but I’m trying.

I attend soccer games, music recitals, and dance performances. I’ve sat in the lobby of a large recital hall for hours on end waiting for my daughters to be done practicing for a ballet performance. I read and study while I wait. And then we go out for ice cream.

I spend hours doing legos with my kids.

I shave.

I stay in touch with relatives and friends.

I mentor other graduate students.

I present my research at academic conferences.

I travel.

I take my children to Disneyland.

I try to be a fun mom.

I nurse my children when they are sick. My oldest daughter and I recently spent a week at home together while she recovered from a tonsillectomy. We watched The Great British Baking Show.

I try to be a happy version of myself.

I’ve been depressed.

I am a sister. I am a daughter.

Most of all, I’m just me. I’m not easily labeled. I’m not to be judged by others’ conceptions of the way I live my life. I live life for me, and each day is different.

Do I really have to define who I am? Do I have to defend my life? What does it mean to be “feminist” and why do we have to police each other? Maybe it is an individual thing. Maybe we should mind our own business and love each other more.

What is your #feministlifestyle?