I’ve been thinking a lot about this lately. There are [at least] 5 things that was taught to me at a young age, and every other little girl, that has royally skewed my perception of what is “normal” or “good.” Here are my thoughts on the matter, plain and simple. Disclaimer: I’ve been feeling very cynical lately which is probably why I haven’t written for a few days. The following is a PMS-induced rant.
1. If a little boy is throwing rocks at you or generally being mean, it’s because he likes you.
How backwards is this logic? I understand that this statement is supposed to perpetuate understanding and empathy on the victim’s behalf rather than anger or pain. Turn the negative into a positive, right? “He’s not calling you ugly because you’re ugly. He’s calling you ugly because he thinks you’re beautiful and doesn’t know how to tell you!” WRONG. The advice we should be giving little girls in these situations is “if someone is being mean to you, DO NOT TALK TO THEM. Ignore them. Remove them from your life; don’t excuse the behavior by believing that they have a f*cked up idea of how to show love.
2. Disney teaches us to look for Prince Charming
Not Prince Honest. Not Prince Truthful. Not Prince Loving, Caring, Genuine, or Kind. Prince Charming. Charm is defined as: “the power or quality of pleasing or delighting; attractiveness.” Where is the substance in Prince Charming? Although he is portrayed as a man who is valiant, brave, handsome, and true, today’s Prince Charmings have just about enough charm to charm (see: manipulate) you into doing what they want you to do. Phrases like “charm their pants off” or “works like a charm” make my stomach turn. YES, I’ve written and said many times that I require people to have a certain level of charm for me to be attracted to them. BUT it can’t stop at charm; there has to also be the other qualities as well, because when the charm wears off, what are you left with?
3. Focus on your career and building a good life for yourself, and the rest [love] will fall into place
Sorry, girls. This is FALSE. Yes, it’s important to be independent. It’s also important to be educated and well-spoken. BUT, men don’t seem to like girls who are too together. Men apparently like to fix things. Men are intimidated by strong women who don’t need someone to protect them every moment of every day. Men feel more like men when they can roll their eyes at their girlfriend/wife because they are just a mess. Every girl I know from high school and now college is engaged or married. NONE of them are as stable in their own lives, pre-man, as I am or ever was. Looking for a man to be your bestfriend, lover, confidant, and partner in life, not your leader, guide, or instructor, is FAR MORE CHALLENGING than anyone tells you. Want a nice man to marry you? You have to be a little bit of a mess for them to be interested.
4. Love conquers all
Except when it doesn’t.
5. Patience is a virtue
Except they leave out the information that too much patience will get you walked on. Waiting for that promotion or salary bump at work? Don’t be too patient. Do you keep getting passed over when it’s your turn in line? Speak up! Patience may be a virtue in certain situations, but there are quite a few where too much patience will get you taken advantage of. When someone [like the cellphone company] tells you that you have to wait 14 days for an answer, you tell them that you want your answer now before you leave the store. When your thesis adviser first wants to schedule a meeting, then drags her heels setting a date, you tell her that she can meet with you on this specific date or she can email you. No biggie. Patience is somewhat equal to being forgiving. One really mustn’t be too forgiving under certain circumstances.