That is why when I learned about it in therapy, I stated well gee if there was ever a term to be easily misconstrued ... this is it.
My therapist stated huh?
I stated (upon the first contact) you realize if a person's depth of gender and sexuality was one inch deeper then the other it will cause pain?
My therapist said I am confused Al what do you mean?
You just said I am toxic.
No, I didn't she said ... I said this is simple, men are simple and if you don't have the education you have let me lay this logic train out for you.
I am a man. I have masculinity. A direct association of a descriptive adjective is *directly* associated with masculinity. This is done without context, without meaning, and you as a woman just labeled me in the same way that you stated is vile and wrong.
Wow, Alan. Wow.
I stated you know me. We have built trust up, you know my shit and you have explained yours. I know right now you are trying to help me so "I will trust
So as I know your statement of "wow" from a woman says you are dense, now it is your turn to tell me why you are taken aback since what you just said was "toxic".
Check one for Alan ... she had a look of OMG I was not ready for this. I stated gee doesn't feel good, does it?
So this went on for several months where we set time apart each session to work more through it.
In the end I suggested and she agreed, the term should be "toxic culture within/of masculinity".
We also agreed, this is a topic and definition that was brought up after the full discussion was made as a conversation ender. This phrase ends conversations it doesn't start them.
The Shock and Awe value of the phrase is so powerful it kills conversations, and creates enemies, and requires context as you state.
Now, for some when the shoe fits and "thank you, Karen, for donating your name to the cause of education".
The harsh phrase that ends conversations and takes people back? You betcha, As women gain power and equality (and in some areas, they have it now), this will rise up as women are human just like men and toxic knows no gender.
If one needed a quick catchphrase
Toxic gender could be used but as you see it is less clickbait.
A man did create the phrase and he knew it would create a harsh response. If a man says it, in the rule of guy if it is a stranger, the usual response if pushed hard enough is a fist to the mouth.
I am game for a discussion on this always and trust you so I am cool with this 110%. Should it be retired? No, but it should only come in situations where context is made and there is a level of trust.
If it is to be used, then toxic feminity is to be used at the same time and defined since life is about the yin-and-yang. Men and women have equal power with words in social constructs. In some ways, given women’s precision and experience honed by centuries of the fear of death, are far more ninja precise than men’s, so as such they are more powerful with their words. That means women’s words can hurt as much as a mans’ implied threat of violence.
Neither has a place.
Great article Yael Wolfe