Mateship, according to several English dictionaries, is “a mode of conduct among Australian men that stresses equality, friendship, and solidarity.”
For those of us who live down under, we are aware that mateship promotes an unwavering bond between blokes. Mates have the power to forgive all wrong-doing amongst themselves. Mateship can overcome all barriers and treats every heinous action as forgivable.
I wonder, if ‘femship’ were to be included in the English dictionary and applied solely to women, would we see a change in behavior amongst the felines? Would women react like men?
Maybe, maybe not. The other day I was at a gathering. It was a particularly cold winter’s day and all the blokes gathered around the barbeque; the women chose the comfort of the interior. I went in, got another jacket and headed out for a plate of crispy salad. Whilst deciding from the large selection, I noticed that two of the guys were wearing the same jumper.
“Great minds think alike,” I said and pointed out the obvious. “Nice jumper mate,” said Axel to Xavier; they proceed to happily high-five and proclaimed they were ‘brothers’!
I’ve seen the exact opposite occur when two women were in the same room wearing the same thing. It borders on a fashion of crime to be caught wearing the same outfit as another. The only reason they don’t murder each other is because they are in public; but they ensure everyone in the room is aware that the dress looks much better on them than it does on their ‘rival’.
Dirty glances ensue, friends must take sides and offensive descriptions are detailed.
Why do we not embrace one another when one is successful, comes up with an idea or achieves something the other has not yet done? Even if, god forbid, we happen to be wearing the same dress or shoes at some stage when our paths cross, or should that be collide?
We have many challenges as women and this past few months it seems to me as though we want even more; the Queen Bees are in full swing and ready to attack from any direction, it seems.
We women are the majority in our society and often our own worst enemy. Perhaps this is why we are not yet equal and at times considered inferior.
I imagine a day when the word ‘femship’ is in the English dictionary; introduced because women are performing the act and using the term in social engagements, in sport and in business.
Perhaps we can start now - today. We have the power of the purse and we love to shop; we make 85% of consumer decisions. So can we start the new femship trend by buying from women, with other women, for the profit and future of women?
According to the University of Stanford, ‘collective impact is now seen as a new and more effective process for social change' around the world. So based on this principle, femship would be an emotionally intuitive initiative for women and could be the impetus that precipitates change for the better and for all women! Imagine that!
If we expect society (men mainly) to treat us as equals, we need to start from within. Remember that the best way to learn is to teach – in this case, teach ourselves.
When we begin to practice femship, others will learn, the Queen Bees will have to stand alone or aside and the F-word will finally appear in our English dictionaries.
So let’s unite under the principle of femship and give mateship a run for its money; after all, being feminine isn’t all bad.