On this week’s “So You Think You’re an Adult?”, one woman is questioning her relationship after watching Barbie with her boyfriend.
“His reaction to the film has shown a side to him I didn't know existed,” she told Moncrieff.
She said she “really resonated” with the film as “it shows how difficult it can be for women in the patriarchy” - but her boyfriend thought Barbie was “completely inaccurate”.
“The moment we left the cinema he started saying how ridiculous it was and how the patriarchy doesn't exist,” she said.
“I'm really upset about this because it makes me feel like he doesn't pay enough attention to realise how much I relate to these women.”
The listener doesn’t know whether she’s overreacting or if this a red flag from her boyfriend.
'It's a lived experience'
Writer Barbara Scully said the listener should remember “living in a patriarchy isn’t as obvious to men” as it is to women.
“To her, this is personal because it relates to her lived experience. To him, it’s kind of a bit more obscure and a bit more abstract.”
Barbara said she shouldn’t immediately choose to break up with her boyfriend but try to educate him first.
“You need to start gently opening his eyes to what living in a patriarchy still means,” she said.
“There's still so many things when you are living in a society such as ours as a woman that men don't see because they don't experience the world the same as us.”
Actress Mary McEvoy said it’s not even the “big things” such as violence and workplace inequality men need to be aware of, but the little facets of sexism in society.
“When you’re trying to explain it, it’s like trying to break through something that you can see through, but you can’t get to,” she said.
“Some men think ‘I don’t stalk people, I’m very nice to women, therefore I’m not of the patriarchy’... but it hurts women in very subtle ways.”
Mary agreed with Barbara that the listener to educate her boyfriend before considering a breakup.
“If she was to talk away now or dump him, all she’d get to do was be right,” she said. “She never changes any situation.