It’s important to acknowledge that the only way to truly support all women is to practice intersectional feminism. In order to truly seek equality for women, it’s essential to make sure every woman’s voice is represented, including that woman in the bathroom with you who is really letting her shit fly. Here’s how to support all women, particularly the one in the stall next to you going through it.
Advocate For Others
If you’re a woman with power, use your platform to advocate for others. Your privilege can be used to draw attention to the difficulties other women are facing that you may not have considered. It’s important to include everyone, including the woman in the stall next to you with blue Nikes on, pooping her heart out. Hand her toilet paper or ask her if you need someone to go get more toilet paper. Now that’s support!
Listen Before Talking
Being a woman is different for everyone, so make sure you’re letting other people share their ideas and experiences before you chime in. Chances are, you’ll gain more from listening to someone else before saying what you think. That’s why, while that stranger’s bowels are putting her through hell, stay silent. The most supportive thing you can do is let her shit, clean her butt and leave without seeing you. You are the revolution!
Don’t discredit the experiences of other women. When a woman shares a vulnerable experience, believe her and acknowledge her strength. When a woman is taking a terrible shit in the stall next to you, believe her and tell her that her experience is valid. It takes a fierce woman to lose major turd weight in a public restroom, and she’s doing it.
Keep Yourself Accountable
It’s essential to approach your feminism with an intersectional lens, instead just taking into account what you’ve been through personally. Even if the rancid dump-fest going on nearby doesn’t sound like anything you’ve ever been through, remember this is a brave woman whose experience is real and at times incredibly painful. Don’t start asking questions about what she did to get herself to this point. This is not her fault.
Do your best to support all women, especially the ones doing bad shits in tangential stalls. And if you ever see those shoes walking around, the best thing you can do is give her a knowing look of support that conveys you know what she’s been through and that you are an ally. Poop on!