Nicola Harrington - guest blogger living in France with 7 holiday rental gites

Nicola Harrington

During my ten years in France, I have come up against sexism on numerous occasions, and it doesn’t seem to be improving.

A couple of years ago, Mark was called by the bank manager, whilst I was waiting at the counter as I wanted to withdraw 100 euros from our joint account. On another occasion, our insurance rep knocked on the door with a cheque in the sum of 36 euros made payable to me, just to me, but he refused to leave the cheque with me and came back when Mark was in.

Man in suit sitting at desk raising hand-laptop-glass of water-documents My latest sexism encounter involves our car. We need brake pads. I call the garage. They ask to speak to my husband. I say that he is not in. They refuse to discuss brake pads with me and ask, very politely, that my husband calls when he returns.

I fume all afternoon. Mark finds the whole episode hilarious, calls the garage, and arranges for new brake pads to be fitted.

Just how do single women cope in this country? And I would love to know the percentage of female directors in France. No, I won’t explore that any further.

Editor Note

Some interesting examples, and I’d like to hear from others in France if they are experiencing similar issues. Also, why do you think this still happens? France is one of the most developed countries in the world… what must it be like elsewhere? Let us know by commenting below.

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