Personal is Political: Ms. Fix It

My bathroom door has been broken since August of 2008. This might not seem like a feminist issue, but stick with me…
I own my apartment and so I’m really proud of my space and like to make it better. So, why have I not fixed this? Presumably a door knob isn’t too expensive. It’s not a financial issue. Sure, I could claim I’m too busy, but I’ve spent time on far less immediate and important things in the last couple of years. Let’s be real, there are deeper reasons.
Part of why I haven’t fixed it is due to a nasty combo of personality and socialization–I tend to think that fixing a problem is more difficult than it is or see myself as inherently ill-equipped to solve certain kinds of problems (sadly, this feels like it started back in my 5th grade math class when I decided I was shitty at math.) In addition, I have had many experiences where locksmiths, hardware store workers, or plumbers have treated me like an idiot. They’ve tried to rip me off and/or asked to speak to my father or boyfriend. I had a terrible encounter with a locksmith late at night. Read about it here.
I’m not in the business of making generalizations. I know there are some feminist-minded folks who work in these fields, women and men alike. Unfortunately, I haven’t had the good fortune of interacting with many of them.
So I avoid fixing what’s broken in my own space. It sucks. It makes me feel like I can’t take care of myself, or get the help I need, in very basic ways. I am proud to own my apartment and I want to feel empowered to make it functional and beautiful. I could read books or watch You Tube videos about how to fix door knobs or other issues around the apartment, but I don’t learn best that way. I like learning by interacting with people. The guy I’m now dating has offered to fix it, which is sweet, but I also recognize that his generosity lets me off the hook from “figuring” this out.
Any insights?

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