WHY I DESPAIR OF SOME WOMEN TODAY

Hello guys,

You know I’m a vocal proponent for equal opportunities and freedom of choice for females and males actually. But, seriously, sometimes I really do despair of some women today.

A few weeks ago a couple of my writing buddies, August McLachlan and Ginger Calem mentioned a weird and spooky trend among brides to be for ‘the drip diet’.

Called the ‘K-E’ diet it involves 800 calories being dripped into a feeding tube inserted up the nose. The idea being that if food bypasses the mouth and throat you can drop a dress size in ten days.

Apparently a bride, Jessica Schnaider went on the diet for ten days before her big day to lose weight. The flawed thinking behind the idea is that she’d look wonderful for her new husband and look good in her wedding pictures. This in my opinion meant the bride had totally missed the point of getting married in the first place. You’ve got to live with your husband for the rest of your life. And my wedding album has at various times lived quite happily at the bottom of a cupboard or in a box under the bed with all the other ‘important stuff.’

But this story, as a mother of two daughters, really pressed my hot button. I vented on August and Ginger’s blogs and left it at that.

Anyway, I thought that was as low as a poor deluded bride and certain high profile celebrities were prepared to go until I heard of this new tender morsel of lunacy. Have you heard of ‘bridalplasty’? Brides are now spending more on Botox, breast implants (don’t get me started on my mastectomy) and ‘hand-lifts’ for close up wedding pictures of the wedding rings and cutting the wedding cake. It’s made me wonder if their husbands are not expected to be a long term feature in the lives of these women? Perhaps they’re just for photographs? Or will they too end up under the bed with ‘important stuff’?

I don’t know whether to sob or spit nails. What the hell does this say about us as women? What message does it give to our daughters? Just today I saw in the news that schools in the UK are showing girls as young as seven a film of how their favourite actresses and models (males and females) are touched up, their flaws airbrushed out and perfection brushed in, by advertising companies and magazines. Woo Hoo! At last.

But then, have we made a rod for our own backs? I’m not dipping my big toe into politics. I don’t have an opinion. BUT. Remember Secretary Hillary Clinton dared to attend a meeting wearing glasses with her hair in a ponytail and no make-up? I remember thinking, ‘very brave, good for you’ but others savaged her for it. The press were more interested in that than babies being blown to bits.

She tore herself away from dealing with death and despair and said, ‘If I want to wear my hair back I’m pulling my hair back. At some point it’s just not something that deserves a lot of time or attention.’

You go, Hillary, babe.

Come on, girls, gird your loins and tell me right now how can we help those poor deluded brides?

Is a man just for the big day or for life?

What do you believe marriage is all about in 2012?

And give a big cheer right here and now on Fizz & Fangs for H.C.

I know I have been uncharacteristically quiet but I’m writing and editing two books at the same time. Good job the Editor has a sense of humour!

Chapter thirteen of Desert Orchid was put up and pulled down due to a technical glitch by me. But it’s back now. I’m on the home straight with it. Just about to turn the screw on Khalid in the next few chapters. Bless him. Enjoy!

40 thoughts on “WHY I DESPAIR OF SOME WOMEN TODAY

  1. Oh no–this is so depressing, C.C. I have a daughter and I worry about the messages she receives daily about how women should look. We don’t talk about fat or thin in my house, we talk about healthy.

    The bridal industry has gone overboard in selling a princess fantasy. I feel sad for these poor women and I see them as victims of Madison Avenue. So you get Botox and breast implants and starve yourself in preparation for one day–how can there be anything but disappointment when it’s over and you’re no longer the center of attention? Ugh, I’m so saddened by this.

  2. Hello Natalie,

    Lovely to see you here. I know, it’s appalling. You could be right that it’s an attention seeking thing. The love of drama and me, me, me. By the time they realise beauty comes from within they’ll resemble Goldie Hawn and Meryl Streep in ‘Death Becomes Her.’ That film always pops into my head when I read this sort of thing.

    Thank you for commenting.

  3. Hi CC

    A tube up your nose to drop a dress size ten days before a wedding? Don’t you think her priorities are a little mixed up if she only worries about it ten days before her wedding and then goes for the most extreme thing possible? A process that sounds like it was made it up on the basis that there are a lot of people like said Jessica Schnaider?

    Good luck with the editing 🙂

    Cheers!

  4. I was nodding right along until you mentioned “hand lifts.” Hmmm. You see, I have little-old-lady hands at the ends of my arms. Yeah, it surprised me, too. Seriously, I’m sorry these brides don’t believe their grooms love them and will keep loving them as they are, especially since little-old-lady hands are going to turn up thirty or forty years hence.

    • Hello Patricia,

      Aww, hands, what can I say? And it’s not only their little old lady hands that’ll turn up thirty or forty years later. Think of the knees and the elbows and the way everything drags towards gravity. And if they have children, well, that’s another whole can of worms. What I want to know is why don’t men’s bits droop? A lot of men I know seem to improve with age. Why is that? And they don’t get cellulite either. How fair’s that?

  5. This is just so terribly sad. And it makes me angry. And terrified for the future generations of young girls growing up in a society that places looks (and money — although that needs it’s own article) above all else. If men don’t feel the need for all of these “enhancements” then why should women? Why should anyone? We should be able to feel loved and desired as we are.

    • Hi Rhonda,

      From your mouth to God’s ear. What concerns me are the vulnerable girls in their early teens when hormones are raging and they worry about skin issues and are they pretty enough. As mothers we need to be vigilant and that means leading by example. I’m just as guilty as the next person for moaning about a few pounds of weight gain especially when I was convalescing. Fortunately my girls just pooh poohed me and told me to get a grip. I did a good job with them, thank goodness.

      And how boring if women all end up looking like clones? It’s a person’s uniqueness and individuality that makes them attractive. Add in a beautiful mind and that makes them incredibly special. That’s the message we need to send out.

      Loving every single one of these comments. I adore all you guys!

  6. Christine, it’s nice to have a topic that inspires us! Are these girls crazy? You and I have been married for quite some time. As you put it, “we have to live with our husbands for the rest of our life.” Well, in today’s world, that unfortunately doesn’t happen much. These young women and men are used to living in the now. And if they don’t like it, they move on. The media today has made people fixate on how they look as a key to happiness, rather than the importance of the relationship. It’s all topsy turvy.

    Cowabunga girl for digging in and getting those edits done! But I still think you should look into the Tesla. It is the up and coming luxury sportscar my friend. It’s eco-friendly electric motor makes it faster! It’s one beautiful car! I think you should switch it up a bit. Just sayin’. 🙂

    • I’ve been waiting for someone green to come in and kick my ass about cars. Might have known it would be you, Karen! Actually, all the car companies including the luxury car makers are launching eco-friendly electric hybrids sooner rather than later. Hugo’s keeping a weather eye on it, so worry not. We can’t go fast in this country anyway. The motorway police are bandits and get you every time. Not worth it.

      And you’re right about the media and the ‘I want it now, today, this minute mentality’ and if it’s not working instead of fixing it they move on and make the same mistakes again. So many girls are looking to men to ‘make them happy’ without realising they need to be happy with themselves first.

      Marriage is hard at times, no doubt about it, I don’t love him all the time. And I bet if Hugo was asked he’d say there have been times when it’s been hard for him. I know it’s hard to believe but I am not a perfect person (!) Anything but. But it’s so nice to have someone in your life who loves you and who’s on your side no matter what. Commitment in a relationship makes us stronger not weaker – if it works of course.

      And the edits are actually really good fun, who’d have thought it?

      Thank you so much for stopping by.

  7. I’m seriously with you on this one. When did it become all about the “big day” and not about all the years to follow? When did we start spending more on the wedding than a down payment on a home would cost?

    • Prudence!

      Absolutely right! I know one girl, about seven years ago, very pretty. She spent £45,000 on her ‘big day’ (US$67,500) in a castle in Scotland. She arrived by helicopter. The guests had personalised his/her gifts of sterling silver necklaces for the women and cuff links for the men. Her dress was amazing. I won’t even go into how much each thing cost. Her mother said ‘Who on earth do you think you are, The Beckhams?’ The marriage lasted four years and it was an ugly, messy divorce. Thank the Lord there were no children. And she told me that looking back she was so stupid and it was such a waste. She’s still paying for the day and will be for years to come.

      My youngest daughter’s told me that if she ever meets the one, it’s a beach with bare feet and flowers in her hair and immediate family and friends. That’s it. Because it’s all about promising yourself to one another for the rest of your lives. She’s twenty-nine and single and gorgeous. She’s not going to make do. In the meantime she works hard and is happy in her own skin. And loves her family. Can’t ask for more.

  8. Well, Christine, you know my opinion on this subject. 😉 But seriously, as a mother of a daughter, I feel a huge responsibility to have her believe in her worth and honor herself. We value strength and health and integrity in our home. Another perspective is how to raise sons to respect women for who they are and not how they want them to look.

    A small example, my 16 year old son’s girlfriend wanted to put some pink streaks in her hair. It’s all the rage, heck, I just traded out my purple swoosh for a turquoise one. He doesn’t particularly care for wild colored hair and mentioned it wasn’t his favorite. He didn’t tell her not to do it, just said it wasn’t his thing. She did it because she wanted to and had her parent’s permission. I told my son that I was proud of her for doing what she wanted and not changing her mind based on what ‘her boyfriend liked’. Too often, starting in their teens, girls act, dress, etc in order to please boys.

    Anyhoo … great topic. Good luck in the edits!

    • Hello Ginger Calem,

      I loved your post. And when I heard the news yesterday I had to do a post. You’re right! And I have a son too and he knows better than to comment. His hair’s so wild he dare not comment. A lot of this comes down to core values, a healthy self esteem and being true to yourself.

      It’s never been easy being a teenager. But the pressures today are insidious and worry me very much. You’re an awesome mother.

      Thank you for stopping by.

  9. Wedding craziness has notched up since I got married. Women do disturbing things to themselves just for one day. I’m really happy plastic surgery is still very frowned upon in Finland. And it’s silly to not make the wedding ring your nr 1 investment since you’ll be hopefully wearing it forever and your dress and everything else is just for the day.

    Good luck with writing and editing. You’re an inspiration 🙂

    • Hello Reetta,

      You’re celebrating the longest nights in your neck of the woods. And partying too no doubt!

      Yes, the ring is the most important thing. I wish plastic surgery purely for vanity was frowned upon here too.

      You are too kind, darling, to say I’m an inspiration. I suspect Hugo has another word for it. How did your poetry reading go?

  10. In my 20’s (20 years ago) I used to say “I weep for my gender” and it seems it’s only got worse. I do understand wanting to look your best on your ‘big day’ but it saddens me to see how far some are taking it. How about…accepting yourself, as you are? Yes, if you want to make lifestyle changes for health reasons, by all means go for it. But this extreme obsession with being thin and model beautiful is distressing, not to mention unrealistic. You have to be happy with yourself first, and I sincerely doubt anyone has found true, inner happiness at the end of a surgeon’s knife or nasogastric tube.

    Personally, Hub and I eloped to Vegas. We won the trip from a radio station, and all together our wedding cost less than $200. Got the license, rented a limo and did the drive-through wedding chapel. We stood up through the sun-roof of the limo to exchange our vows, then had drive through Carl’s Jr. for our wedding dinner (Hub had never experienced the sheer joy of a Western Bacon Cheeseburger). It was our version of a perfect wedding. I never could understand spending 10K, 20K or (yikes!) even 50K on just one day. I’d rather take that money, and go some place really cool for a honeymoon. Like Fiji, or Tahiti.

    • Hello Serena,

      What a wonderful story and so romantic. Imagine winning the trip from a radio station? What did you have to do to win it? Yeah, take me to Fiji too! You could write a book!

      You’re absolutely right about weeping for our gender. It has got worse as time’s passed.

      Delighted your back with us and feeling well.

      Thank you for stopping by I appreciate it.

  11. That’s just crazy! Like you said, our wedding albums aren’t always on display, so it’s just one day of pictures. Unless they are going to keep up with the maintenance for the rest of their lives, which is ridiculous to say the least, why do it? I’m sure their husband-to-be’s loved them just as they were. It’s so sad they feel they have to completely revamp themselves for a wedding. I think the best thing we can do is teach our daughters to love every flaw they have. Big legs? Just means you have sturdy supports for your body. Sometimes there is nothing to be done, but laugh and love yourself. Like my crazy cankles. I could probably have some weird surgery to give me more of a slender ankle, but then they wouldn’t be my cankles any more. They would be frankenankles and who wants that? Not me!

    • LOL! What are you like, Tameri? Frankenankles.

      When I was school I hated my legs because they were too thin, like twigs. I used to wear tights in the winter with knee high socks over them to make them look thicker. I’m amazed my mother let me out the door. And I had one of those grow with you bras and wore it over my vest. The girls used to howl with laughter in the P.E changing rooms. They were never nasty to me, just found it hilarious and tell me that I was a late developer. I was fourteen at the time and couldn’t wait to be a woman. Sometimes I wish I could go back in time and speak to the girl I was and say ‘chill out’ and enjoy each moment because it doesn’t last.

      Thank you for commenting, Tameri!

  12. I’m saddened by all of this too, CC. I’m concerned not only about what the trend says about women in our society, but the men they’re choosing to marry. I guess we really do attract what we give off. My hubby would be so frightened about my wanting desperately to change myself and undergo risky procedures, he’d postpone the wedding. Or maybe dump me. 😉

    Similar trends run rampant in the diet and fitness world. When I feel overwhelmed by the negativity, I remind myself that there is still far more good around than bad. I can only hope that each one of those women looks inside themselves in seek of what really need fixing.

    Thank you for this post, CC, and for your huge, caring heart!

    • Hello August,

      You wrote a marvellous post about this subject. Do you have the link?

      You have a lovely hubby who makes you very happy, it comes over in your posts.

      And yes, similar trends do run rampant in the diet and fitness industries. I’m wondering if the men these girls marry just want them to be happy?

      I’m not sure what the answer is. But I do know a couple of people who’ve had cosmetic surgery. One was a nose and the other an eye lift. Unfortunately, they didn’t stop there and neither are happy with the end result. Hand on heart, I couldn’t see a difference in either. I think what both may have learned is that your feelings stay with you until you deal with them. Using a knife to attempt to change how you feel and cut them out simply doesn’t work.

      Thank you for commenting. I know you’re a busy lady, I appreciate it.

  13. Hey, CC, this is one of my hot buttons too, the whole appearance is everything, that is. And especially so much money, energy, etc. spent on the wedding day. Yes you want it to be special and wonderful, but this doesn’t mean it has to be a spectacle that it takes years to pay for. I’ve been married almost 36 years and the number of times I have thought about my wedding day after the first year I could count on my fingers. We kept it simple and inexpensive but it was quite nice.

    This is about the rest of your life, ladies! Focus on that, not the one day!

    • Yeah!

      Of course it is. A husband isn’t only for the photographs, he’s for life. And thirty six years (gulp) you get less time for murder. On our wedding day, we married in Glasgow, Scotland. The local football teams were playing in the City. Unfortunately, we left the church just in time for the start of the kick-off. So there we were in the back of this limo surrounded by football coaches with hundreds of fans shouting and making hand signals that meant – ‘Go on there, my son. Give her one for me!’ I was never so mortified in my life, or since. Still traumatised.

  14. Hey there, girl! So you’ve been busy! Awesome that it’s the good kind of busy.
    Totally agree with all the lovely ladies and their comments. It’s sad and pathetic. I’ve battled with weight all my life. So I tried to instill a better self image in my girls. Incredible how difficult it is with all those magazines, celebrities and TV shows, but you have to keep at it.
    I met my second husband on the internet (the first was 20 years of Hell) and have been extremely lucky. After 10 years, he goes out of his way to make me feel like the most beautiful woman in the world. Don’t forget that as truck drivers, we spent 24/7 together!
    Loved your post! Have some more fun on those edits.

    • Woo Hoo! And Johanna Denton is in the house.

      Really? I didn’t know you were a truck driver, where did I miss that little morsel. Boy, I bet you can tell plenty of stories. I am busy, babe, thank you for the good vibes. Yes, as mothers of girls – and boys – we need to just keep chipping away.

      Delighted husband number two is a keeper, he sounds wonderful. Goodness knows being together 24/7 is a test!

      Thank you so much for commenting!

  15. The obsession with looks seems to be a terrific way to keep women from aspiring to power. If their only value is in their looks and they spend hours a day on them, when would they have time to actually think and try to change the world?

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s