The Patriarchy Kills People

[Content Note: Self-harm; bullying; misogyny.]

Reading this profoundly sad and enraging article about a 7-year-old boy who hung himself as a result of bullying, I was already heartbroken, and then I got to this part:
The mother told police that her son "had been depressed due to her recent separation from his father; the fact that he had been bullied continuously by the children at school, in addition to the constant teasing that he had endured because he was the only boy in the home of eight females," a report says.
And that's when I burst into tears. Because the world hates women so much that little children bullied a male classmate just on the basis that he lives with eight of them, and subjected him to so much (probably homophobic and transphobic) bullying on that basis, on simply being a boy among women and girls, that he killed himself.

And obviously there were multiple factors at play here, but his father's absence was what made him the only male person in the home, and the constant bullying about it was a reminder of his father's absence, so it was a vicious cycle centered around gender, each issue exacerbating the other.

The Patriarchy makes an absolute fucking trainwreck of the lives of so many boys and men, too. Feminists are stereotyped as man-haters, but I am a feminist because of this story as much as any woman-centered story I will ever write about. As long as women and men are not regarded as equals, no one is truly safe.

My sincerest condolences to his family and friends.

[Via Andy.]

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