I work at a big campus, and do a lot of walking to get from place to place. Often I'm walking with a coworker, and my coworkers are all men.
It's common for these guys to approach a door first and hold it open for me. I thought nothing of it for the first few weeks, I just thanked them and walked on through. I'm used to guys holding doors open at social functions, I appreciate it. It's not that I can't open a door myself or find it difficult, it's a man-woman honor thing, in my opinion. A man should be honored to spend time with me, therefore I shouldn't have to open doors myself.
But lately I've been thinking about it more, and this week I started walking a little faster so I'd get to the door first, open it myself, and walk through. Questions...
1) If I held a door open for a guy, would it be totally weird? Is that what you should just do when you're the first person to get to a door, hold it open and wait for the others to go through?
2) If I let the guys hold the doors open, am I setting my personal feminist agenda back centuries? Can they see me as an intellectual equal while being chivalrous?
3) If not, should I be so bold as to wait at the door and imply that they should go through first, or will that be totally rude? In most situations, I believe that being polite is more important than being a feminist. Impolite people don't get far in the world, and if I don't get far I won't be much of an inspiration to other women.
4) Am I going to draw attention to myself by speeding up when getting to a door?
5) Am I overthinking this entire situation, like I do most situations? Oh hell, I know that one's a yes...