Skip navigation and jump to content
Welcome to Ireland's Youth Information Website
Follow us
Facebook Twitter Instagram YouTube Snapchat

Accessibility Options

High Contrast Text Size

Why we all need to address sexism in our lives

Rossa talks about the impact of sexism in our society and why things need to change


Written by Rossa Gilsenan and posted in opinion


This is an opinion of a young person and does not necessarily reflect the opinion of SpunOut.ie. It is one person's experience and may be different for you. If you'd like to write something for SpunOut.ie please contact editor@spunout.ie.


Share this article -

Sexism is ingrained in our language, our jokes, our actions, everything. It can be remarkably hard to pinpoint at times, with small comments from others that are degrading, but explained as “just a joke” or “I didn’t mean it that way”. That is really the problem. Some people, mainly men in my opinion, don’t question their actions enough to realise the meaning behind their words and actions, which results in sexism carrying on into today’s world.

Our words have an impact

Small comments or minor actions develop into bigger issues like the gender pay gap, lack of female political representation, domestic violence, rape culture, all problems that are primarily based on misogyny and sexism. I hate the discrimination against women that I notice everyday.

The gender pay gap is such a problem, with massive companies refusing to address it when it is so wrong. In the recent Irish general election, it was really hard to stomach that women only gained 22.5% of the TD positions. Men have always dominated the political scene and it has taken hard work and determination from feminists across the country for women to be taken seriously in the political scene. There has been slow progress in women gaining seats at the political table and it is something that we all have to continue to push for.

As a young woman, I can see that it will be challenging at times in my future. I know I will have to fight to be taken seriously in the different industries that I am involved in. I will always stand up for women getting equal opportunities while we don’t have them. Sadly, I don’t know any women in my life that haven’t experienced some form of casual sexism, or haven’t been discriminated against because of their gender, even just on the small scale.

We need to have more conversations about equality

I won’t stop addressing these issues, even if it makes others uncomfortable. It is very obvious that some people hate having these difficult discussions but we all have to push past that. If any conversation feels like you are being pushed out of your comfort zone and you don’t like that feeling, you should question why you feel that way.

There is a spectrum of sexism and bad behaviour. We all should try to do what we can to address it, from the massive widespread issues, right down to the more minor instances of sexism. There are so many reasons to shout loudly and clearly about this issue, and wanting a better situation for future generations is an obvious one, but as well as that we need equal opportunities for women today.

Calling our sexism in our lives

We need equal opportunities for women in today’s world and if there is anything within my power that I can do about it, then I will use that power. Even if all I can do is have conversations with someone that will listen about sexism, then so be it. If all I can do is call out small instances of sexism, I will do that. I will always be the one that won’t let small comments slide and I am happy about that. Everybody has a responsibility.

Share this article -

Published July 9th2020
Can this be improved? Contact editor@spunout.ie if you have any suggestions for this article.

Need more information?

Request to speak with a youth worker in your area over the phone, by email or text. They may be able to assist you by providing further information specific to your needs.

Youth Work Ireland - Crosscare - YMCA

Contact via: Phone E-mail Text
By clicking submit you agree to our terms and conditions. ​Please note that this service is run by Youth Work Ireland and Crosscare​.​ E​nquiries are not handled by SpunOut.ie directly.
Jump to related articles
Was this article helpful?