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Ep. 85 Defining My Own Womanhood: Accountability, Joy, Spirituality, and Unconventionality

"Welcome to this week’s episode of Charlie’s Toolbox. Today, I discuss womanhood and how you should be instrumental in defining what it means to you. My journey inspired this podcast episode, and I am excited to share it. But before we get started, please like, subscribe, and follow my podcasts at Charlie’s Toolbox. If you are interested in more resources, please go to So, let’s get started!

Since 2022, I’ve been "no-contact" with my mother. Though it was a hard decision, it was necessary because it limited her bad behavior and gave me the space to breathe. During this time, I’ve disentangled myself from our codependent relationship, which helped me stop prioritizing the needs and opinions of others. I also addressed enmeshment and learned boundaries to differentiate myself from my mother. As time passed and I worked on these patterns, it became clear that some developmental stages were disrupted. As the theory goes, if a developmental stage is disrupted, you will revert until it is addressed.

The developmental stage that was disrupted for me was the adolescence stage in Erikson’s 8 stages of development. This stage centers around identity and role confusion. Between 12 and 18, you develop a sense of personal identity and establish goals and priorities for your adult life. This stage is why teenagers must go through their rebellious phase; it helps them differentiate themselves from their parents and develop a strong sense of self.

So, when this stage is disrupted, and you aren’t allowed to differentiate yourself from your parents, you lose individuality and have difficulty distinguishing your thoughts, feelings, and identities from those of your family members. That is what happened to me. The lines were so blurred that I took on my mother’s history as my own. I’d operate from a place of her hurt, though I never experienced it as my own. I’d see life from her lens and adopt it as if it were my own.

So, the time spent away was to carve out room for myself. It is time spent defining what matters to me, and one of the places I examined was my womanhood. I needed to feel and think through what I wanted my adult life to look like as a woman who decentered men. centered herself and lived joyfully. I wanted to unblur the lines and create distinct boundaries around my thoughts so that I know I am living completely for myself as I live.

But before I talk about womanhood, I’d like to talk about what has given me the best mornings of my life: my new favorite drink, Magic Mind Focus Energy Drink. When I first started drinking this, I didn’t understand why I had so much energy and focus. And If you have ADHD like I do, you know how valuable focus is. So, seeing properties good for ADHD, like bacopa monnieri made me a believer. I genuinely recommend Magic Mind. You can purchase it at and use TOOLBOX20 to get up to 56% off your first subscription or 20% off a one-time purchase. That’s TOOLBOX20 for 56% off. This code also works for existing subscribers on their subsequent payment.

When I thought about womanhood, it was always defined by my mother and grandmother’s experiences. It felt like men were the only way to get true fulfillment out of life, so I decided to define it for myself.

To me, womanhood is about accountability, joy, spirituality, and unconventionality. Of course, this isn’t an extensive list. Instead, these are a few feelings and actions that showed up once I decentered men and my parents.

My womanhood is accountable because I gave myself the responsibility to care for myself, and when I mishandle that, I must take responsibility for those actions. For example, I’ve recently had a challenging experience in my life. At first, I went to my first defense and blamed others, but then I accepted my part in the outcome. I wasn’t entirely blameless. I wasn’t wise in some of my choices, but I can learn from them and apply them to my next stage in life.

When you lack accountability in your womanhood, you keep yourself in victimhood. Nothing is ever your fault. Everyone is always jealous of you. People always do you wrong, and you are always on the receiving end of some BS, but that point of view is not the complete picture. You are living your life, so you must own your role. You may have been genuine, but did you lack boundaries? Someone may have been jealous of you, but did you watch the character? And sometimes, things are out of your control, but you have the authority to turn it around.

Accountability happens at different levels. The first is taking responsibility for your past actions and understanding how you got here. The second is deciding to take responsibility for your life now. The life you have now is your doing. Whether passive or active, your decisions and lack of decisions resulted in where you are now, and when you change some of those habits and decisions, you ultimately impact your future. So, womanhood is taking full responsibility for your past, present, and future.

Along with accountability, I want my womanhood to be enjoyable. So much of womanhood is defined by suffering. We become young women and are pressured to conform to beauty standards, and we hate ourselves. We date and suffer in relationships because we are socialized to be giving, and as a result, we are exploited. We are coerced and manipulated into sex and feel used. We marry and become mothers and discover that our partners are selfish, inefficient, and taxing. All the stages of womanhood seem to be accented by suffering, and I don’t want that to be my story. So, I am choosing an unconventional path defined by joy.

I won’t consider what I “should” be doing as a woman at 30, 40, or 50+. I know the conventional route for womanhood does not bring me joy. I know that I cannot fully define my womanhood based on the experiences of my mother and grandmother. Instead, I must dial into myself and ask what I want, what is important, and what brings me joy. So, I leave you with those questions, and I hope you can use them to define what womanhood means to you.




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