She Speaks Her Mind: Why Everyone Is Afraid Of A Girl With An Opinion

by Zara Barrie

Anyone who has ever browsed the parallel universe of the Internet has borne witness to the tidal wave of negativity, the volcano of viciousness exploding over every form of social media.

The Internet is teeming with the vilest human characteristic of all: hatred. Bearing the brunt of these brutal virtual beatings are mainly girls.

Girls who sport opinions. Girls who carry independent thoughts. Girls with a bold sense of humor. Girls who dare to create.

Girls who attain the most precious freedom of all: freedom of the mind.

I’m a girl who has always and forever possessed an opinion about what my eyes and ears so keenly observe; I actually can’t quite wrap my brain around the idea of apathy — it’s a bizarre and foreign concept to me.

I mean, we arrived on earth with functioning brains, effervescent ideas and working vocal chords – so what’s the point in holding our perspective hostage within the cell of ourselves?

Isn’t the meaning of our existence defined by the positive difference we're able to make in the world? How can we make any sort of impact if we don’t speak up against what we feel is fundamentally wrong or right?

I’m not an overtly radical girl who was born free of a filter. I’m actually fairly rational, hyper-keyed into my surroundings and empathetic toward the sensitivities of others.

Yet so many people have made me feel as if I’m this crazy, shocking, wild, bold entity just because I’m not stifled with anxiety about verbally expressing my point of view.

I’ve been attempting to search for the reason that society has such a relentless hatred directed toward girls with opinions. What are the reasons for this crushing avalanche of hatred?

It's not just from men; some of the most severe perpetrators of this epidemic are other women.

After searching for reasoning behind the incessant bullying, I finally realized I was asking the wrong question. Hate is a surface emotion. There’s something bigger that lingers beneath the veil of hatred, and it’s fear.

So let me rephrase the question: Why are people so AFRAID of girls with opinions? What is the massive, pressing threat of a female with her own mind?

Is it because you think we’re devoid of feelings?

What makes people think just because we obtain the confidence to vocalize our thoughts and ideas, we must be draped in an invisible cloak of bitter cold emptiness?

While I do believe in the weight of my voice, I don’t consider my self-expressiveness to be linked with an impenetrable self-assuredness.

I’m a multidimensional, fully realized human being just like everyone else residing on the planet. I sport both insecurities and confidence, and they run side by side. One is not exclusive of the other.

You seem to think because we’re outspoken, we don’t feel. On the contrary, we have opinions because we have feelings.

We are triggered with an emotional response to what we feel is WRONG, and it cuts far too deep for us to stay silent.

What makes you think the girl who can't help but react is less sensitive than the girl who is able to ever so easily bite her tongue and stay silent about the atrocities that surround us?

Is it because we don’t always keep the peace?

We didn’t come here looking for a fight, however, if you do something we disagree with or behave in a fashion that is unjust, unfair or prejudice — we won’t sit pretty and keep mum on the matter, allowing our opinion to absentmindedly sift into the thin air. Not speaking up goes against the core of who we are.

If you’re seeking nothing more than a pleasant face and a “chill” personality, you’re not going to find it in us. Our default emotional status isn't in the resting state of "agreeable."

Our difference in opinion might cause disruption, create conflict or activate heated discussion. But isn’t it the diversity in our definition of justice what makes the world so provocative and interesting?

Is it because we take you by surprise?

When a girl is silent and represses her opposing thoughts and feelings, you never have to worry she will "throw you" for an unexpected loop by asking a question you weren’t prepared for.

This isn't the case when you're dealing with an opinionated creature of any gender.

We are superb f*cking listeners. We don't skip across the surface of the earth, tuning out the things we don’t care to hear or see. We pay attention to sh*t. It’s how we’re wired.

This makes us unpredictable. You can’t forecast our reactions. I had a teacher in school who would express profound fear every time I raised my hand to ask a question.

Funny, I thought that education meant learning through asking questions about what I don't understand.

If you’re going to so boldly dish it out, repeatedly lecture us on your impassioned theories of how the world should function – how come you can’t take it when it's served back to you?

Where is the space for conversation when we're not granted "permission" to respond? Don't you realize you can't micromanage a reaction?

Is it because we don’t hide behind the mask of self-deprecation?

Women and girls are stuck in the age-old, self-destructive habit of perpetual self-deprecation, endlessly apologizing for their triumphs and coming up with sorry excuses for their achievements.

"Oh, it was nothing" tends to be the knee-jerk reaction when a girl is hit with a compliment.

Maybe a lifetime of seeing other women get called "egotistical" or a "bitch" for simply owning their strengths has subconsciously made women shy away from owning the fierceness in their voice?

The thing about opinionated girls is while we are sensitive, we're not scared enough of you.

We don't let the fear of your negative reaction paralyze us into the death sentence of silence and "sorry."

Because we're NOT sorry for talking about sex, for having a unique point of view, for being blessed with a wicked sense of humor, so why the f*ck would we apologize?

Our apology wouldn't be genuine, and we think authenticity is everything.

We aren't going to hide behind the window dressing of false modesty in order to make us less threatening or more attractive to the outer world.

Is it because we can’t be controlled?

An opinionated girl can’t be controlled by words, as cruel, cunning, beautiful and prolific as words have the ability to be.

By now, we've learned WE are an even stronger, more compelling force in the world.

If it we were to crumble under the paperweight of your words — don’t you think we would have caved already?

Are you simply afraid of what you can't manipulate?