Friday, 9 November 2012

Learning to be Lady-like

Image - Flikr.com (goddessofchocolate)

LadyLike

Websters New World College dictionary:

 Ladylike describes behavior considered appropriate for a well-mannered female. (adjective)
Crossing your legs gently at the ankles in a proper feminine way is an example of behavior that would be described as ladylike.

This is what the Oxford English dictionary defines as lady-like:

ladylike, adj.
1 a with the modesty, manners, etc., of a lady. b befitting a lady.
2 (of a man) effeminate.

I was interested to see here, that as well as 'modesty' and 'manners' etc.,of a lady, and b befitting a lady, they have written the second definition - that in a man, to be ladylike is to be effeminate. In Mrs Helen Andelin's book 'Fascinating Womanhood' (which you can purchase from Amazon by clicking the link on this page), she explains how the feminine manner, dress and behaviour  in women most often brings out the manly, masculinity in the men around them. And one can observe that the opposite is true too.

When I was a little girl, I would often hear people say things like 'You look very ladylike in that dress' or 'that isn't a very ladylike thing to say' or 'Can you sit in a more ladylike way, please?' I really, really wanted to be a lady, and I remember how nice it felt if people commented that I looked like a lady.

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But over the years, feminism has turned the term 'ladylike' into an insult. It vehemently espouses that women must turn their back on such ridiculous desires within us to act as ladies, and that girls must suppress those nasty little inklings if they wish to gain any self-respect for themselves. I have a picture in my mind of these demanding and angry women turning quite purple in the face, as little girls persist and delight in making ladylike tea-parties (and considerately pouring little cups of imaginary tea for their thirsty teddy bears), and compassionately tucking up poorly dollies in their own little beds,(pillows prettily plumped) and sitting in their best frocks, listening and conversing kindly with their guests.

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So, in my little series 'Learning to be Ladylike' I am going to be exploring  what it is to be ladylike, and devising some interesting lessons and challenges that we might like  to try, in our roles as home-makers, mothers and daughters.

Let's celebrate being Ladylike LADIES!

I do hope you'll join in the fun. Look out for Lesson One soon


12 comments:

  1. It does indeed sound like fun, and I'd love to join in! My two-year old daughter spends most of her day arranging pillows and blankets for her bears and babies to sleep on, and just the other day she picked some berries (non-poisonous) in the yard and placed them in heart-shaped ice cube trays to freeze for treats. :)

    Love,

    Marqueta

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    1. Oh that is so sweet Marqueta. She sounds adorable - and a most ladylike little girl!

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  2. The warm fireplace9 November 2012 15:46

    This sounds great and looking forward to reading your series.
    sue

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  3. There's certainly nothing wrong with women wanting to learn to be more ladylike. I'm looking forward to reading your new series. :)

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    1. Thank you. I am excited about this series. I hope you'll enjoy it. Thank you for joining in.

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  4. I love being a woman, and I love wearing modest and feminine clothing. It's a fact that men treat a woman differently when she behaves 'ladylike', I saw it with my own eyes!!! On Jury Service once, I was the only woman dressed like a woman (!), and the only one who talked like a woman, and who didn't try to meet the men on their own ground with the kind of crude banter they were engaging in. And without a word of a lie, I was treated differently, and with a great deal of respect. I could hardly believe my eyes. But it was a lesson. Can't wait for more of your blogs!!

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    1. Liz, I have had the same experience! It is so surprising to notice the difference in the way people treat you! I would like every woman to experience this in their own lives.

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  5. The last few months I have been perusing Sheryl Shade's AS A LADY WOULD SAY and Candace Simpson-Giles' HOW TO BE A LADY. Your new series of classes will be a delight to participate in! I will look forward to learning from you :)

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  6. When I was little my grandma was always telling me to act like a lady. I was a bit of a tomboy and used to chasing after my brothers, so she was always trying to get me to be calm and play with my dolls instead of climbing a tree, lol! To her, that wasn't ladylike (and it especially wasn't while wearing a dress.....).

    This will be a great series!

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  7. Many thanks for the exciting blog posting! I really enjoyed reading it, you are a brilliant writer. I actually added your blog to my favorites and will look forward for more updates. Great Job, Keep it up.. :)valentines teddy bear

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  8. Welcome Valentines teddy bear.

    Thank you for your kind words. I am very much enjoying writing the series.

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