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Ask L2: Stereotypes Are Alive and Well

"I don’t know if I should bring up to the leadership of the WIT group of how stereotypically sexist this gift is."

Disclaimer: Identities are kept confidential. The advice given here should be taken at your own risk. If you are having true mental or physical issues, please seek professional assistance.

I simply need to vent.

Last week, I participated in a career development event put on by BigTechCompany’s Women In Technology employee support group. As a thank you for my participation, the leaders of the event sent me an appreciation gift.

A box of scented bath bombs. WTF?

Could we be any more stereotypical?

Oh, but they’re commemorating women leaders! Maya Angelou. Amelia Earhart. Ruth Ginsburg. It makes a point that Ruth was quite a fashionista, adorning her black judicial robes with striking necklaces.


I don’t know whether I’m amused, sad, or angry.

I don’t know if I should bring up to the leadership of the WIT group of how bloody stereotypically sexist a bloody gift box of bath salts is.

I don’t know if they would even understand why this bothers me.

I for sure don’t know if I dare to bring this up at all since I want to get promoted in the next year.

All this says to me is that the stereotypes are alive and well at BigTechCompany. And that makes me sad.

Thank you for listening.


Wow. That is . . . tone-deaf. Women like baths so let's send them things for baths that their favorite feminist icons would have liked? Have they ever met a woman? Do they think putting a bath bomb in a mouse trap will get an unsuspecting woman to wander by and get caught?

Listen, I'm all in for some self-care, but that is not it unless it's a personalized gift that you know the person would like. Have you ever noticed that when you walk the gift aisle during major holidays at big box stores, the pre-packed things full of generic soap or makeup are always the last ones there? That's because no one wants them. Not to mention that giving someone you don't know skincare is like a WHOLE thing with allergies and reactions and HAVE YOU CHECKED THE QUALITY OF THE INGREDIENTS THAT YOU'RE ASKING THEM TO STICK THEIR WHOLE ASS BODIES INTO?

No, just no.

If it's the thought that counts, this was thoughtless and they deserve to sit in the corner and think about what they've done for a while.

Just, like, ask someone who identifies as a woman before you do things. I wouldn't give sawdust cologne and beef jerky to every dude who walked past. If you need to send a thank you gift, a heartfelt card is better than a box-checking, “Things the women-folk like” wrapped anything.

And I would describe RBG about a hundred ways, but fashionista isn't one of them.



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