So this week I just want to get something off my chest. It's not a big deal but it does affect me a little. So here it goes.
As a women, I'm normally expected to greet people with a kiss or a hug. You see it in films quite a lot (normally the posh women give two kisses on the cheeks).
Now hugs, I don't mind so much. I mean to me, I don't really hug people I don't know. I know some people don't necessarily like others in their 'space', and I guess I qualify. It's just when it's strangers.
Once I was out in the village with some friends and we were leaving a pub. At this particular pub most stand at the entrance to smoke, mainly regulars anyway. And one of my friends knew a guy stood outside with a few others. She proceeded to say goodbye to this man and kissed him on his cheek. Fair enough, if shes happy to that's completely fine but then he leaned in to me as if I was going to kiss his cheek too and I just looked at him confused and disgusted and then at her for reassurance. She did confirm that she knew him, and its 'fine' to kiss goodbye. I just said 'No, sorry I just don't kiss people I don't know.' That was that and I went home.
But the fact that people are conditioned to think this is what every woman wants to do when she says goodbye. Maybe a handshake or yes, even the hug is better to me.
I also want to touch on another subject (pun not intended). At work, we obviously get regulars and get acquainted with a fair few. I remember their names and give a welcoming smile. A lot of times the customers will shake hands with my co-workers (who are ALL male, is that relevant? maybe), but I just get a 'Cya love' with a wave. Only once has a customer shaken my hand as well as my co-workers. I actually quite like him, he's polite and actually shows an interest in me as well as the others. Him and his dad will stand at the till with me and chat while they wait, and I do like it.
It's rare that I get a handshake and I appreciate it a lot when it happens. But it should't be rare. I should be looked at the same.
The fact that only one out of the many customers we get bothers me. I don't think this is as big of an issue such as the pay gap but it matters to me, personally. I'm just as professional as my co-workers and I think that should be recognised more. I feel like this could be relatable for a lot of people.
It's just something to think about.