I work with a bunch of blokes. We had a study done recently (nothing to do with gender) however an interesting outcome was that our directorate is 70 percent male. Of the 30 percent female only 4 percent are in non-admin roles. In my office, the only other woman is a secretary; I am management. Construction is indeed a man’s game.
I like working with men. I prefer working with men. You can have strong discussions, within acceptable bounds, and still go down the pub afterwards for a laugh.
There are limitations, such as you never get to hear any of the gossip, because it’s not what you speak of in front of a woman. You sometimes have to act differently to get what you want, some of the guys can be a little stiff, a little old-fashioned in their approach to women.
There are times when I have to ramp up the ‘helpless female’ to get a job done. It irks me, as I see myself as my role, not my gender. Don’t get me wrong, the guys I work with are not disrespectful or rude. They’re just…the guys.
The guys are polite. They are aware of what you can and can’t get away within a working environment, we all are. Their mouths are careful.
The guys I work with are confused. I am shrinking. My arse has changed shape, my clothes hang more loosely, my upper belly has retreated to reveal my staggering bust line its more defined, well-supported, wall-crushing glory. They cannot ask, they cannot comment. Their eyes betray them.
I know men look, it’s normal. Yet my perception is that men simply don’t look at me. For years I have seen myself as intellect first and physical form second. I am used to being ignored as a body and receiving negative attention based on my weight. When I join a company everyone seems to start a new diet.
Now I have to get used to this unwarranted attention. Before, in my previous half-baked attempts at weight loss, garnering attention has always been a negative. I didn’t have the skills, or the confidence, to handle it and the change in my status scared me. Falling off the wagon really was a comfort.
Older and wiser, and secure in the love of a good man, I’m finally feeling confident enough to suffer the attention and able to carry on with my weight loss plan regardless, allow myself to enjoy the fact that people are starting to notice my shrinkage. And possibly let the attention make me smile, make me feel woman enough that I might make my man proud.