What is being a Woman?

Camila Ribeiro
4 min readMar 8, 2022

Today is the International Women’s Day and I got questioned “What is being a woman?”

Well, I am not going to lie, I am mad, I am upset, I am angry…every year, at this date, we got questions like that and everyone wants to “listen” what we have to say, but do they hear us?
Every year we receive flowers and chocolates from our boyfriends, bosses, at work or at home, but I want to talk about what they give to us in the streets, in all the other days of the year.

Doesn’t mater which type of clothes you are wearing, they will look at you, they will stare you, they will make comments about your body and clothes. If you walk fast to try to scape, they will be faster. If you say that you didn’t liked the “comments” they will say: “oh you are so ungrateful, doesn’t know how to react to a compliment.” — if you are lucky enough, this will be their reaction, but we all know it can be worse.

They call me “rebel”, “angry”, “hysterical” when I raise my voice to be heard, they look at me and tell me to: slow down, be patient, learn how to accept compliments, learn how to talk and WHEN I am supposed to talk.

They pretend to respect me, they pretend to hear me, they pretend to see me, but they only hear and see what they imagine of me, what they want from me, what they expect from me.

Am I a woman because I born with a vagina? — omg, Camila, are you going to publish something with “that” word in your text? — Every day they make us to feel uncomfortable, to feel afraid, to be cautious…and every day they are talking about our breasts, ass, hair…body…but, when we try to talk about it we are vulgar.

No, this is not a bad word how they want us to believe, such as: menstruation, period, body hair…

They steal our voice every day but, it’s ok, they give us one day in the year to talk about ourselves.
“What is being a Woman?”, they give us chocolates and flowers and it’s everything ok.

How many trans woman you actually see out there talking about this date? How many people out there you hear talking about this without being censured by someone? By the company they work for, by the fear of putting themselves out there, how many?

Now let’s add something extra to myself, the immigrant factor. Why no one is talking about this? Being a woman is not hard enough, but being an immigrant woman is what? Ohhh I remember now: playing the victim.

So my experience is denied by them, my feelings are forgotten and my fight is pure hysteria, because I am playing the victim.

I will never be good enough for they: too fat, too skinny, long hair, short hair, vulgar, the victim, cis, trans, bi, lesbian, work too much, don’t work at all, have a big family, don’t want to have kids, spend too much money, don’t work enough to have money, too much makeup, no makeup at all, she is catholic, muslin or have no religion at all.

But I am happy for not being enough for them, I want to be good enough for me, for other women.

So, before I forget to answer the main question here, being a woman is: never stop fighting, is terrifying, is being brave, is taking care of everyone while no one looks for you, is everything that I wrote before and much more, is having the certainty that I will walk in the streets and be harassed, is the certainty that no one cares about this text but, the most important, even tho no one reads this, being a woman is having the courage to put this words right here.

This time I won’t apologize myself.

Ah, now you ask me “who are they?” Because you know, “not all man are like this”

You know who they are and, if you are a man, and you got offended by any of my words, it means that you didn’t understood anything that I am trying to explain and, at the same time, this makes me realize which type of man you are.
Also, don’t get me wrong, “they” are also woman, because “they” got “them” blind enough to be against the rest of us. This is a fight for everyone, hope that one day you will be able to actually see.

Be brave, be strong, be who you are, go after your dreams and let them call you crazy and hysterical. I am with you and I bet that there’s more people here too.

And this, dear people, is not even close to the great experience of being a woman.



Camila Ribeiro

UX/UI Designer | I am a mess, and here is where I share some of my mental confusion.