Monday, July 09, 2007
That's Angry, Whiny Queen Bitch to you
These are all things that have been said about True Wife. While I have addressed a facet of this before in this post, I feel the need to explore some more.
The prime question: What is it about angry women that evokes such a strong reaction?
Is it purely because we have been socialized to think of angry women as "out of control"? That these women must be put down, or shut away? That a woman who speaks her truth can not simply be expressing an opinion or feeling, but is seen as a threat to womanhood?
The long and short of it is Yes. Angry women have historically been shut away, shut up, shut off. Sure a few get out. But Rarely. Rarely. The societal tide that keeps a tight lid on what women say and do in the public eye is still iron strong. Don't believe me? Go to your playgroup and announce that you hate being a mother. Better yet, tell a soon to be married friend what marriage is REALLY like. Everything. Even the night that you fought about why the toilet wasn't fixed. Or the fight about why you didn't have the common decency to leave me ONE bottle of Spring water. Or the compromise sex, so you can get back to what you were doing....
Dear God. The tide of women trying to sweep you out of the room and away from the true believers will be gi-normous. Nice ladies don't SAY these things out loud. They shouldn't even think them, let alone say them...or write them down.
Women's anger triggers something so fearful that it must be suppressed at all costs. If one woman breaks out of the fold, the rest are sent to reel her back in. If they can't do it nicely, they will do it dirty. The name calling, the insinuations, the out right smack down. Say you don't like your husband and you become a fucking whore who should have never gotten married.
Say you don't like your child? Why don't you blow your brains out before your child becomes a miserable bitch like you. She's going to be a useless waste of space - just like you - anyway.
Speak a truth and you become a whiner. Oh, and probably Fat too.
If the women can't reel you back in - the men start. Miserable bitches who don't deserve to be married at all. "I feel sorry for the poor guys who married these lazy bitches."
Geesh. Even Morphing into Mama got in on it. Asking why TWC didn't have a torch carrying mob beating down my door (referencing a confession about "since you gained so much weight I'm just not as attracted to you).
Oh, but I do.
The thing is? My mob is the mob of angry women. The torches they are carrying aren't against me - they're FOR me, and every other woman in the world. Every other woman who was sold these cults called motherhood and marriage and are standing up to say "Sometimes things Suck! Why did no one tell me! Why haven't I had a girlfriend lean in and say these things to me?" I'm not suggesting they let the cult down by gaining weight. That's why they aren't coming for me.
I'm not afraid of women's anger. Maybe this is because I do not fear my own anger. Yes, there are times when I read confessions and wish I could help someone process what she is feeling. There are times when I worry for someone I don't know. However, the truths that are being expressed in this venue are so potent, so gritty that it has taken on it's own life entirely.
Life is about choices. My shitload of therapy has illuminated that I have a series of choices both before and behind me. I am where I am through my own choices and it is my future choices which will lead me to where ever I land.
I did not start at this place, however. At first, it was all my parents fault. They were the reason I was unhappy. Then, it was my boyfriends fault for being so controlling. And when it stopped being everyone else's fault, I saw it was my choices - my ownership of the place I was choosing to be now. You can't be a victim if you choose to Not be a victim. You become, in that moment, a survivor. The power dynamic shifts.
For some of the women writing to TWC, I look at this as a step in the journey for them. Some call it whining, I see it as testing an unused part of their inner voices. The part that will some day awaken to the choices they have both before and behind them. I will have been honored to have even the smallest part in that awakening.
Originally published on I am doing the best I can on 7/06/2006