Banning Bossy? How Bossy!

Recently I became aware of the global Ban Bossy campaign that’s been going on. It seems to be spreading like wildfire over all social media platforms, (Twitter, Facebook, Youtube, there’s even a website dedicated to the cause) and so I thought that I might as well throw in my two cents.

Facebook chief operating officer Sheryl Sandberg and her celebrity cronies are kicking up a fuss about the term ‘bossy’ which they say prevents schoolgirls from seeing themselves as future leaders. ‘The B-word’, as they’re calling it, demeans women and destroys their confidence. Therefore they think that parents and in particular, teachers, should avoid using the word because it puts girls down… How bossy of them!

Now, personally I’ve had the ‘bossy’ label attached to me since my toddler days. And I agree that I do have some bossy tendencies that like to make an appearance every now and then, but I’ve never lost sleep over it. At the end of the day that’s me and people can either accept that or take a hike! Being ‘bossy’ lets people know that they’d be crazy to mess with me because I’ll always give as good as I get. And so I view it as an empowering term that’s given me thick skin, rather than something that holds me back in any way. Furthermore you can’t escape being labelled, that’s life; we’re all stronger people because of it and banning one word will not by any means change that.

Additionally, I don’t believe that ‘bossy’ is a gender-specific term; my dad and 18 month old nephew are two of the bossiest people I know! So why Beyonce is trying to convince the world that ‘bossy’ is a soul-crushingly negative term reserved just for women, is beyond me. Oh Mrs Carter I had faith in you, why did you jump onto this ridiculous feminist bandwagon?!

The truth is that young girls these days suffer from much bigger issues than being called ‘bossy’. If Sandberg’s main priority and concern is to boost girls’ self-esteem, the place to begin is by altering their body-image perceptions. Because honestly that’s much more of a prominent issue.

So Sandberg and Beyonce, if you really want to help young girls then consider banning labels like ‘fat’ or ‘ugly’, not ‘bossy’ because it’s unnecessary and pointless. Forget this ridiculousness, people need to be paying attention to the real issues and epidemics going on in the world. Stop wasting our time and let us crack open a newspaper, skip ahead to the global current affairs section and remind ourselves of what real  problems look like.

20 replies

  1. Very well put! At the risk of sounding a bit bossy myself, I think all this is because some people like any old excuse to make a splash in the media and they have way too much time on their hands, obviously. Some people ARE bossy. That’s a fact. I agree… there are much bigger fish out there to fry…

    • Definitely agree with you! There are much bigger fish to fry out there, but sadly in the media the focus always seems to revolve around insignificant topics such as this. Thanks for stopping by 🙂

  2. Good post!

    I think we should ban well off famous women from speaking about “problems” as if they have any idea about what those really are. I mean sheesh, talk about bossy, trying to control what words we can use..

    • Haha I agree with you 100%, it’s ironic that they can’t see the bossy connotations of their own actions through this ridiculous campaign! Thanks for stopping by, I appreciate your comment 🙂

  3. “Additionally, I don’t believe that ‘bossy’ is a gender-specific term.” Good point. I think genderizing a gender neutral term encourages sexism rather than decreasing it.

  4. I love this! People wear tons of labels, and if bossy is one of them, then that is not so bad! And we may call girls bossy and boys aggressive, but “bossy” girls likely don’t care.

    • Very true, speaking for myself I couldn’t care less if someone called me bossy, it is just a label at the end of the day… people in the media, like Sandberg, need to take a deep breath and relax. Thanks for your comment 🙂

  5. I don’t necessarily think bossy is a bad thing. That is is becoming a movement is puzzling to me (I’m so far out of the loop, this is the first I’ve heard of it!) I like Totsymae’s comment… couldn’t agree more 🙂

    • If topics like this are making headlines these days it’s probably best to stay out of the loop lol! Thanks for your comment Janna, I’m glad I could get you up to speed with the ridiculousness of the media!

  6. I don’t see a rational reason to regard the word “bossy” as inherently evil.

    On another note, the word “bossy” is related to the Dutch word “baas” (which means “master”).

  7. I really just enjoyed this post. People don’t realise that these viral campaigns are geared at improving the image of these people and are simply marketing strategies and nothing more. If you could pay hundreds of thousands in retainers to a PR firm, you would get your own viral campaign. Too often we swallow these things without reading the label.

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