When I was a young girl I was raised on subliminal misogyny.
The kind that is there, but disguises itself so well that you can barely see it,
the kind that you internalize and hold for a long time because it buried itself so deep inside,
the kind that controls you and tricks you into thinking it’s your own doing.
My very first experience with it was many years ago when it told me that I must hate the color pink, in fact, not just hate, but despise the color pink with everything in my soul. It told me that only girls liked pink, but not powerful girls, only weak girls, because the powerful girls liked blue, green, and camo designs that they wore on their clothes when they played with the boys.
I decided that I would hate the color pink for my own sake and for years I did just so that I could feel strong and be taken seriously as a young girl.
I would hate the femininity of it,
I would hate the softness of it,
I would hate the beauty of it,
or at least pretend to.
I would say that I hated each and everything about it because I didn’t want to be seen as the “weak girl” or the “stupid girly girl”. Little did I know how brainwashed I was. Now I love the color pink and I embrace it. No amount of subliminal misogyny can kill that for me because I now know that pink is really the strongest color of all.
Christina Nelson-Keller is a poet and previous contributor to Pink Things