A few weeks ago, someone asked for my number, so that we could "play" sometime. I'm serious. But she didn't actually want to "play." Based on our previous interactions, I assume that by "play" she meant go out to lunch or shopping or some other type of thing that adult women mean when they choose to say the word "play."
Apparently, grown women adopting the terms they used as children is cute and trendy. They say that we want to "play," they describe all our food as "YUMMMYYYY!!!" and in general, they talk like children.
And no, this isn't a case of a Mommy forgetting to turn off her mommy voice when interacting with adults, I've heard plenty of childless women shriek like a little girl when they see an absolutely "Cuuuutteeee" skirt.
The feminist in me revolts. Especially when women of my "generation," the twenty-something women who benefit from the civil, economic, and social struggles of our mothers and grandmothers, revert to talking like a child.
I get it. It's cute. It's trendy. And most of all, it's very non-threatening. But I'm sick of hearing an adult woman talk about how "cute" and "adorable" her husband is, and how he "SPOILS ME" rotten by buying her cute and adorable presents. Children are cute. Boys are adorable. Children are spoiled by grandparents.
Adult men do not "spoil" adult women. When married or in a committed relationship, they support them in their endeavors and recognize their success as individuals and partners.
Ladies, if we want to be respected in the world, if we want to be taken seriously, we really need to stop talking like children. From wanting the world to value your decision to be a stay-at-home-mom, to wanting your boss to take you seriously, it all starts with, well, talking like a grown-up.
Oh, and treating your husband like your partner, not your white-knight. You are strong, capable, and smart. Your husband is your partner, you support each other in your endeavors. He doesn't "save" you from your inadequacies by buying you a gift card to Anthropologie.
At least, he shouldn't. Furthermore, it's interesting to note that with rare exceptions, men do not talk like babies. If they blog, they use a normal "speaking" tone. They keep the !!!!!!'s to a minimum. Their blog could never be mistaken for a seven year old's. And they certainly don't shriek when they see each other. That is a good thing.
I don't mean to imply that the gender inequality still present in today's society is women's fault. I also don't want to accuse all women of engaging in this behavior. There are plenty of articulate, non-baby-talk using women who are still ridiculed for their decision to become mothers, or miss that work opportunity because of their gender.
But the baby talk certainly doesn't help the cause. If we want the world to respect our beliefs, values, and decisions, it is important for us develop the vocabulary necessary to articulate them. As long as we keep talking like children, we can never fully participate in and influence the adult world.
I'm not trying to be a jerk. I know some things really are WAAAY cute. And my husband buys me presents all the time, so I'm not against that either. And I am also a terrible speller with limited grammar proficiency, so I don't advocate perfection. But everything in moderation. Okay? Okay. Thanks.