Girls who can drive have the freedom to choose. When we master the steering wheel, we can carry the people we want to carry, go to the places we want to go, and we don't have to wait for the gods and goddesses to appear, we will walk on the road of independent life.

The day after I graduated from high school, my dad took me to sign up for a driving class.

At that time, I was bent on going out to play, but I was really reluctant and secretly complained: "If anyone graduates from high school, they will immediately find a class!" Exhausted!"

My dad, who was driving in the front seat, heard my muttering and laughed and said, "This [driving] is very important!" When you have the ability, you can go wherever you want, and you don't have to be subject to people."

Even if you don't have to drive for a while, you must practice driving a sports car

When it was time for the first class, I got into the coach car with some nervousness and watched a short, stout middle-aged man with an inch head walking toward me in the distance.

As soon as the coach got into the car, he asked, "Is your family in business?"

"Clams?" No a!" I replied with some doubt.

"Is your family rich?" The coach continued to ask.

At this time, I was even more stunned, wondering if the coach was the wrong person, but still pretended to calmly reply: "No, our family is ordinary people."

Then, the coach's eyes widened and his tone rose and he said, "You didn't want to drive a truck, and you didn't want to drive a sports car, so why do you learn to line by hand?"

After three seconds of stunnedness, I figured out what the coach was talking about, and then replied with some embarrassment: "Because my father said that learning hand volleyball only added 500 yuan, and they all learned hand volleyball in that era, he thought I should learn it...

"Recently, in the whole coaching field, you are the only girl who learns to line up!" The instructor pointed to several hand-pulled cars in front of them, and there were indeed boys sitting on them.

"Yes! So am I cool? I can't see if I have a sports car in the future!" Although I know that with the situation of our family, the current chance of a sports car driving is not large, but I still reply to the coach with a humorous and somewhat unwilling tone - who said that girls can't learn to hand row?

In the process of studying, I found that the coach was very conscientious and taught very well, and did not treat me better because I was a girl.

He taught me as a future official road driver, and he stressed that he would not release water when it was time to be strict, because natural and man-made disasters would not be treated differently according to gender, and I had an obligation to protect myself and other passers-by.

Later, I understood that the funny conversation that the instructor and I said in the first class was just to let me relax my nervousness, but this experience also allowed me to see some of the situations that female drivers are facing.

(Same scene: Why do women want financial independence?) To have money is to live with confidence)

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Encounter gender stereotypes on the road

After successfully getting a driver's license, driving on the road, and occasionally passing through the scene of a car accident, regardless of whether the person on the car is a family member or a friend, you will always hear the following similar conversation:

  • "Do you see who it is?"
  • "It seems to be a woman driving, looking at the marks on the ground, it should be a turn to hit Abel riding a motorcycle."
  • "Yes! It turned out to be a girl, and she must have been frightened... but she was too careless to bump into the old man?"

If the driver was a man, the response could be very different.

  • "Did you see who it was?"
  • "It looks like someone who just got off work, it must be that Abel riding too slowly!"
  • "Possibly!" There are so many cars after work, and the number of seconds to turn is so small, of course, it is easy to have accidents...

Seeing this, do you also think of the familiar dialogue scenes in your life?

In the event of a traffic accident, if the protagonist is a woman, people will subconsciously focus on the discussion of gender; If the perpetrator is male, people are more concerned about the incident itself, but tacitly ignore the gender difference.

This phenomenon reflects the distrust of female drivers by the collective subconscious of society, and it is even very easy to pass on this unequal consciousness to the next generation.

Imagine if the above daily conversations occurred between a couple while the child sitting in the back seat silently observed the parents' reactions and evaluations of the event.

Over time, the parents' behavior is internalized as part of the child, there is no need to wait for the child to grow up, and once a similar situation is encountered again, it may be these children who say these words.

(Extended reading: Traffic signals should not be represented only by men!) Switzerland promotes signs for pregnant women and the elderly to promote gender equality)

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Is female driving really "triple-treasure driving" and not worthy of being trusted?

Calculated according to the 2021 Gender Statistics of The Highway Administration of the Ministry of Communications [1] and the Road Traffic Accident Statistics of the Police Department of the Ministry of the Interior [2], the accident rate of male drivers is about 3.2% and that of female drivers is about 3.5%.

It looks like the incidence of traffic accidents doesn't create a big gap between the different genders, right?

In contrast, people generally recognize unsafe driving behavior, and men's performance is very prominent.

According to the statistics of cars with traffic violations in 2021, the number of male highway speeding cases is about 7 times that of women, 8.6 times the number of cases of not wearing seat belts, 11 times the number of drunk driving and drug abuse cases, and the number of unlicensed driving cases is as high as 19 times.

The result of this reminds me of "toxic masculinity": under the patriarchal system, most men are required to show masculinity, hide femininity, and even be forced to implant behavioral procedures that "cannot easily admit defeat".

Reflected in the driving situation, masculine thinking may produce definitional distortions, such as:

  • "Anyway, I'm a boy, if I violate the law, the man dares to do it, and it's a big deal to be punished."
  • "I know I can drive, but I can't drive because I don't have a driver's license?" No, this is too faceless in front of my friends, I want to prove it to them...

Of course, compared with most safe driving, violators are a minority, and it is undeniable that the traditional consciousness of "going forward" and "showing independence" does deeply affect the majority of male friends.

But I believe that regardless of the gender of the driver, as long as it is a safe driver with a legal driver's license and can control the steering wheel, he is an independent and autonomous individual. He can decide where he should go, and he can be the most reliable shoulder for any passenger when riding.

(Guess what you want to see: "Toxic Manhood" Illustration Collection: Men Can Hurt Too and Want to Cry)

Photo | Photo by Ketut Subiyanto on Pixels

Girls who can drive can not only be independent, but also convey the love in their hearts

I remembered the first time I had dinner with my boyfriend, when we were not yet in a relationship, but I was accidentally invited by him to a high-class birthday dinner.

After walking out of the restaurant, I felt a little embarrassed that there was nothing to give back to the other party at the moment, so I made an invitation along with the small talk.

"How did you get to the restaurant?"

"I'll walk here!"

"Although the sun is out today, the winter wind is still very cold!" How do you get home later?"

"It's okay!" I've only been walking for 15 minutes, and I'll walk home slowly later."

"That's not okay, I'll take you!" My car is parked in the parking lot next to me."

Then I acted as a "grass messenger" and sent him home safely.

It wasn't until one day after we were together, when we were discussing the time of the meal, that I curiously asked him how he felt about being loaded.

"At that time, I asked you if you wanted to hitchhike, what was your idea?"

"It's cool!" Except for my mom and my sister, I rarely seem to ride in a girl's car."

"So how do you think I was driving back then?"

"Except for the S-shaped driveway out of the parking lot that almost scratched the rearview mirror and startled me, everything was pretty good!" It's nice to have a girlfriend who can drive, you see, today you didn't drive me to Miaoli to play?"

At that moment, I saw a trace of bird-like gaze in my boyfriend's eyes, and I thought about it and felt as if I was a little handsome, and I actually sent the boy home for the first time.

Photo | Photo by averie woodard on Unsplash

The key to unlocking a new experience in life

To this day, I have never driven a real sports car, and even as the coach said, I have no chance to drive a handcar, but I can gradually understand what my father said earlier.

Now I am 25 years old, and I have entered my 8th year since I got my driver's license at the age of 18.

I am very grateful that I have always paid attention to safety, and because I can drive and dare to drive, I have some special experience. For example: a college friend carrying a full truck around half of Penghu for a full day; He got up early to work as a pseudo-parent and helped pick up his elementary school cousin to school.

I also found myself going to an electric playground with my friends to drive a car, and I was no longer a rookie stuck in the middle of the road, but a virtual racer who could rush into the top two.

Holidays want to go out for a walk, enjoy the Me time, just bring a key and a driver's license to go out; Occasionally driving in the dark, playing favorite songs, and driving alone are also very good.

Most importantly, I have the ability to choose to leave whenever I feel uncomfortable or tired.

Even if I were a running Cinderella, I wouldn't need the Godmother to appear, because I was my own pumpkin carriage and could go wherever I wanted.

Woman fan editor Haoting

I don't have to be afraid that when the time comes, the freedom I have will not change, because all this is not falling from the sky, but what I have spent time practicing and trying to learn.

Honey, if you don't know how to drive, I highly recommend learning this skill, not only as an investment in yourself, but also as a key to a new experience in life.