from In Praise of Reading and Fiction by Mario Vargas Llosa
Dear Linda Stasi of the New York Post,
As a woman and feminist, I want to apologize for what I am about to call you. A BITCH. You are a bitch. And not a good bitch like the ones on Bitchmagazine.org who blog about how popular culture impacts our rights as woman and feminists. I am talking about the kind of bitch who makes fun of other women for being fat or ugly. And that is NOT okay.
If you need a refresher as to why I am calling you bitch, you might want to read your little article about Lena Dunham and “Girls” you wrote back on January 4, 2013 here: http://www.nypost.com/p/entertainment/tv/new_girl_on_top_mBHbR1rcwafv9yieVNDWfN?utm_source=SFnewyorkpost&utm_medium=SFnewyorkpost
Okay, remember now? Remember how you said that Dunham is “blobby”? Oh and how could I forget this little number:
“It’s not every day in the TV world of anorexic actresses with fake boobs that a woman with giant thighs, a sloppy backside and small breasts is compelled to show it all. It’s a boon for the out-of-shape, and perhaps a giant economic loss for high-end gyms, especially in Brooklyn.”
First of all, SO THE FUCK WHAT? Who cares if women are not stick thin or perfect, as your so much loved character, Marnie. You’re sad that she’s not getting any love? Maybe it’s because she has a stick up her ass and does not understand how to be a good friend or a loosen up at all. Gee, I can’t imagine why any guy wouldn’t just love having sex with an uptight, prissy girl…
But enough about Marnie, let’s talk about Lena Dunham herself. You are pretty gutsy in admitting that she’s less than perfect, so I would like to ask you this - WHY DOES IT MATTER? Why does it matter that women that relate to Lena’s character (and Lena herself) are not stick-thin and have their “act” together. Do you know how hard it is to be 26 years old living in this fucking economy? Man or woman, it sucks! There are virtually no jobs, and the ones that are out there are completely mind-numbing or butt-fucking (and by butt-fucking I mean that one has to bow to the feet of some idiot misogynistic male boss who has no idea what it’s like to live in the real world). Lena actively portrays this not only in Girls, but also in her film Tiny Furniture. She relates so greatly to our struggles. The struggle of being used by men who want nothing more than sex but we stoop to that level because we just want to find someone who loves us. The struggle of working in a crappy, dead-end job when we have a college degree (do you know how many times I’ve caught myself saying “I’m too good for this, I have a college degree!). The struggle of trying to embrace ourselves for who we are and what we look like and not compare ourselves to anyone else and especially not the horrible skinny women on TV and movies. The struggle to make ends meet because our parents decided that even though we are not in the same place they were when they were our age, that we are “old enough” by now to not need any support. DO YOU KNOW THESE STRUGGLES?
“Maybe the grittiness, maybe it’s the reality, and maybe the knowledge that I’m not that young or that broke. Anymore,” were your last words in the article. Really? Maybe? You think? Honestly you should not be writing the article if you have no idea what it is like to be young and broke… oh and FAT. Seriously, if you’re going to write incredibly bitchy, pointed articles, please leave it to someone who at least remembers what it’s like to be young. This show is meant for young women to relate to it, but more than that I think it’s meant for other people to truly understand the depth of problems that young people our age are going through. It’s not the 90’s anymore. The times have changed and our generation is suffering from the lack of understanding we receive from the older generation like you. Dig really deep, was life always this easy for you to be a bitch?
Lena Dunham has a beautiful mind and she’s not afraid to show it. She wants people to know that it’s okay to be exactly who they are, and that opinions from people like you are ill-informed and out of touch. I am completely inspired by this woman and what she has done, and she is the same age as me. I do not know what my future holds (it is truly a scary world out there) but I know that I will hold my head up high being thankful that I am me. A little blobby, maybe, but at least I have my dignity and I can be more empathetic to others than you are. I will keep my blobby body and forgo the plastic surgery and anorexia. I like eating food and my boyfriend seems pretty okay with that.
And by the way, blobby girls are capable of being lusted after or loved too. Because, you know, there’s more to human beings than just their looks. It is a little thing called character.
20-Something Blobbly Girls/Lena Dunham fan who thinks you are a total bitch
Lately I have been thinking about the difference between not giving a shit about what other people think and just plain having a negative attitude. I think I need to find the common ground.
I have seen a lot of shitty things in my life, but to get screwed over by two friends and then see the one friend screw the other friend over this hard. It’s just sad. And now neither of them have me there to help them. I am not saying I am a great person by any means, but all I want out of life to to give my love. I don’t have to search and try anymore. I have gone through terrible things and lived through them. I have stood in front of a mirror and thought of the different ways in which I didn’t deserve to live.
Now I stand in front of a mirror and think “Damn I lived through it and lost the assholes along the way. Thank God for therapy, a few good people I have left, and the love of my life. And just, thank God!”
So I would like to say a final goodbye to the part of my life in which I let people pin their shit on me. No one can pin it on me anymore. I am not the same person that I was before. I do not have to prove that to anyone, either. I have proved it to myself and that is enough for me.
A theme that has been on my mind lately - Coming to terms with the past is the key to moving on with the future.
This weekend really opened my eyes to embracing myself and not worrying so much about the past or what people have thought about me or do think about me. The truth is, they know nothing at all of my heart. For many years, I hid who I was. I hid it because I thought I was different, weird, ugly, odd, not normal, and all of the other painful reasons someone might hide themselves. I had so much shame and sorrow, and I laid all the guilt and blame on myself.
As each week and month passes in therapy, situations become easier for me to manage. I have learned to forgive, love and trust myself. I have learned how to love another. I have learned that sometimes cutting toxic people out of my life is the best thing to do, instead of clinging onto those deadly relationships.
I saw a lot of former friends at the fall festival this weekend in my small hometown. Some I wanted to see, some I did not. I played nice with family I am fighting with, and was ignored twice by someone I thought was a friend. I had to see the face of a woman that used to call me her best friend, and it did not sting nearly as hard as I thought it would.
And the biggest part of this weekend that helped me walk around with my head high was this: People did not dislike me or make fun of me when we were growing up in middle school and high school because I was weird, different, fat, ugly, odd, etc. They made fun of me because they were jealous - they thought I was stuck up because I WAS different, I was myself and I did not always conform to their standards and I made my own. The problem was, I did not see that at the time and was made to believe by both them and my father that I needed to be someone else.
I am done fighting that battle now, I am done being anyone but myself. I will speak if I need to speak, cry if I need to cry, and open my heart to the idea of loving myself and the child within me. I did not understand until this weekend what it is truly like to move on, forgive the wrongs of others and most importantly, forgive and love myself. So I would like to say thank you to those who helped along the way, and thank you to those that hurt and judged me. If it was not for them, I would not be standing here as I am today.
Though maybe the hardest part is over now, I still have along way to go. But I would like to think that facing those demons we call the past and laying them to rest once and for all, seeing myself fully for who I WAS instead of seeing myself for who I was NOT, makes it that much easier to smile and say “I have won.” This WILL be a winning battle.
A few days ago, after a particularly rough day, my truly amazing boyfriend sent me this message:
The greatest battle is not physical but psychological. The demons telling us to give up when we push ourselves to the limit can never be silenced for good. They must always be answered by the quiet the steady dignity that simply refuses to give in. Courage. We all suffer. Keep going.
Just to have a few strong and supportive people there for me, to truly find out who will stick by my side when the waters get rough, when the storm gets too hard to weather by myself, that has been a blessing all in itself. I have honestly been left with only a few standing, even a few family members have not been tough enough to stay by my side, even one I thought would be by my side to the end. But I cannot grieve those relationships for too long - and the list continues to grow - because what is the point if they are NOT grieving over me? I have way over-extended myself to help others and put their feelings before my own. I have given people all of my and never expected ANYTHING in return. That is just who I am. The only difference now is that I can recognize who will appreciate it, and who will throw it in their bottom drawer, so to speak, never taking a second glance, and moving onto the next “friendship” in their life.
Everything is different from one year ago, when I got too drunk and made a fool of myself and my depression and chaotic troubles were just rearing their heads. People showed their true colors since one year ago today, and I am so thankful for that. I would not have my life now without the pain I went through. The hurricane has finally, passed, and now it is clean-up time. There will be other storms, but I will rebuild this beautiful me and say FUCK YOU to anyone that tries to bring me down.
“I wish you could see me, I wish I could show you how I’m not who I was. I used to be mad at you, a little on the hurt side too but I’m not who I was. I found my way around to forgiving you, but I never got to tell you…” - Brandon Heath, I’m Not Who I Was
The Casual Vacancy is J. K. Rowling’s upcoming novel and will be published on the 27th of September, 2012. Sounds inviting (because it is, J. K. Rowling!), but I think we better read reviews about it before purchasing.
I’ll want to read either way…
“Though sometimes I want to crawl into a dark place and hide from reality, and other times I want to give up completely, I go on. I don’t know where this ‘healing’ will lead me. I live on other people’s hopes. I live on other people’s faith that life will get better. I continue to wonder whether it is worth it, but I go on. This, then, is healing.” - unknown