The big book in beautiful cover with bright pictures, which was named something like "Book for girls".
From it I had learned that being (publicly approved) girl means to:
- love cooking, cleaning and "girly" hobbies
- have a lot of dresses of bright colors with a lot of frills and don't have male-looking clothes
- being obedient and don't fight or argue with adults and boys
- don't trust too much your friends girls because girls friendship is shaky
- don't compete with boys in anything
- tacitly imply that boys are smarter and stronger (not only physically, but mentally, too) than girls in general
- if you've miraculously appeared to be smarter or stronger than boy, hide this fact (or you'll never find a husband)
- tacitly believe that every woman need a husband
- prepare to devote your life to husband and children when you'll grow up, because it is your duty.
As you can see, this book have gathered all stereotypes about girls and women and presented those stereotypes as something girls must really do.
From some point I had really started to believe that being (publicly approved) girl is nothing besides decorate yourself every day, behave stupidly, serve others and suffer from meaningless restrictions and humiliations for the whole life. I had a strong impression, that men rules, and women's fate is to play second roles, serving and supporting men's life. So, as a very radical young teen, after reading this book I've decided that...
...being girl is not for me, and from now on I'll behave like a boy, and, moreover, will change my sex when I'll grow up and have enough money for it.
It is ashame to admit how this silly book, as well as some other literature "for girls", contributed in developing misogyny in my worldview those times. So I had not only decided to not being girl myself, but also started to think worse about other girls...
It took several years for me to understand that actually being girl means nothing more besides just... being girl. Both girls and boys are humans, first of all, and civilized societies currently aim to treat them both equally like humans, and let everyone live (more-or-less) like they want to until they don't harm others. So I have no need to imitate male behaviour or appearance or turn into male to live as I want as well. And of course I have no true reason to be biased to other girls, too.
It's funny to notice, that I'm writing this post right now, wearing skirt and fancy girly coat. And also I have friend-girl, who is supportive to me for years despite I wasn't always like that to her. Girls and friendship with girls may be awesome if you let them. And authors of such a books receive beams of hate from me for misleading my young naive brain in the past from understanding this and for imagining girls life like a bunch of stupid stereotypes.