To bash behaviour and not the person, let me say – Dylan Mulvaney’s TikTok videos and ‘rise to fame’ based on a series of videos titled ‘Days of Girlhood’ are a sick joke. Why? Because they’re a mockery of women, in plain sight.
Some thoughts on the change of feminism
Gone are the times when I considered myself a feminist. Back in February 2015, during half-term holidays, I visited my friend who at the time was in her third year of studying economics at the University of Warwick. I made great use of my time there going to Tesco and buying Ben & Jerry’s ice cream (Phish Food was a must!) and frequenting the university campus, trying to take in all the studious, academic atmosphere that being around university students granted. I remember I felt freedom and wondered endlessly what university will be like for me – I longed to finally be done with my A Levels and go to university!
One day I visited the campus bookstore and bought a book – “Reclaiming the F Word” by Catherine Redfern and Kristin Aune, with its white cover with purple and green bold typography. I remember feeling bold – that day I also bought Fairtrade Clipper coffee, and thought of myself as a fighter for a better world, educating myself on serious matters such as gender inequality and Fairtrade bananas. (I also bought a book about the history of the Fairtrade movement. I never finished reading it, though).
The book talked about what used to be considered feminist issues – pay inequality, celebrity and diet culture, cosmetic surgery, domestic labour, sexual freedom… generally, things that affected women.
Feminist today concerns itself with a rather different set of problems. More and more visibly, feminism is concerned with the problem of men – specifically, men who seem to have decided that they want to be girls. A perfect example of such specimen is Dylan Mulvaney, an overwhelmingly popular TikToker who for almost a year now has been posting on their account a series named ‘Days of Girlhood’.
‘Days of Girlhood’ are a manifestation of delusion
What Dylan Mulvaney presents in the ‘Days of Girlhood’ videos are a one-dimensional caricature of what they perceive girls to be. I’m nothing if not open-minded, but I don’t believe that such passion Dylan displays for becoming a girl is healthy in any way. Dylan started putting on make-up, wearing pink clothes, high heels, and tight clothing that is meant to reveal their body in a stereotypically ‘feminine’ way.
If you’ve read some of my other views on ‘femininity’ and ‘masculinity’, you’ll know that I don’t like using these words, mostly because I haven’t figured out yet how to use them without propelling the stereotypes of how women and men ‘naturally’ behave or dress. According to the Cambridge Dictionary, the word ‘feminine’ means “having characteristics that are traditionally thought to be typical of or suitable for a woman”. Therefore, it would be theoretically appropriate to say that Dylan Mulvaney dresses in a feminine way. However, generally any person could rephrase this as “Dylan Mulvaney dresses like a woman” and this would be accepted as a correct paraphrase. But I don’t think this would actually be correct. You can’t just say that “women dress this way”, “women dress that way” – so you can’t dress like a woman! There are many women who don’t dress in high heels, tight, revealing clothes, make-up, and colorful childish hairpins (see pictures below). But for people like Mulvaney, this doesn’t seem to matter – a woman is defined by the clothes she wears, the make-up she puts on, and the way she acts and behaves. Nothing else, because apparently trans-women are women – and there even appear claims that trans-women are biological women, which just clearly isn’t true. But that’s not the point of the post today.
Dylan Mulvaney presents themself as a sick caricature of a woman who is delusional enough to think that by changing the way they dress, they can somehow alter both their chromosomes and their biological age and magically become a girl. To whomever would like to approve this – know that this isn’t possible. It’s an unhealthy way to reinforce the stereotypes surrounding the two sexes in the society and limit the perception of women as creatures who can’t walk straight in the woods, mostly because they’re wearing an outfit totally inappropriate for their environment, and spend much of their time being overdramatic and caring about their make-up and clothes.
Don’t let people like Dylan Mulvaney keep boxing women into these harmful stereotypes and spreading behaviours based on delusions and clearly an unstable sense of self.