Recently people on social media have been sharing articles, written by women, explaining what it is like to be a woman. Well, I happen to be a woman and I disagree with their explanations.
The first article explains the real reason women drink. The author claims that women drink to hide from their sad lives where they are constantly being held back by men.
I, for one, do not drink to hide from my problems or to cover up the things that make me unhappy. You see, in general, I am a very happy person. I have a job I enjoy where I feel respected. I am married to my best friend, and we live with an elderly cat. I love where I live and I have lots of hobbies to keep my mind and hands busy.
Sometimes my job is very stressful but I don't run home and crack into a bottle of wine to hide from my stress. I deal with it.
Sometimes my husband and my diabetic cat (did I mention that the elderly cat is diabetic?) drive me crazy but I don't meet my girlfriends at the nearest bar and drink myself into oblivion. I deal with it.
Sometimes my old house threatens to fall down around me but I stay sober and deal with it.
Drinking to hide or run away from problems and dissatisfaction doesn't work. Alcohol is a depressant; it's not going to make you feel better if you already feel down.
So, why do I drink? I like a beer or a glass of wine with dinner and I like to celebrate the joys and successes of life (probably why mimosas are one of my favorite drinks). I drink to celebrate the happy times, not to hide from the difficult ones.
The second article discusses what it is like to be a woman and a vegetarian. The article's tagline reads "Making apologies and being invisible are what I'm pre-programmed to do." The author's premise is that as a woman she has been taught to be invisible and think of others first, so she doesn't tell any of her friends that she is a vegetarian and feels guilty when she passes on the beautiful meat dishes they have made.
I have been a vegetarian for about twenty years now. Even worse, I am a vegetarian who doesn't like cheese. I am not allergic to cheese; I am not a vegan; I have no good reason to go around requesting that dishes be made with no cheese. I still do it. Why? In the words of L'Oréal, because I'm worth it.
Reading this article made me feel very concerned about what we are teaching our youth. Are we really teaching girls to be invisible and not stand up for their own wants and needs?
Personally I was always taught to stand up for myself and to make my needs clear. As a child, I was a picky eater (hard to believe, I know.....a person who doesn't like cheese, picky? Not possible). I did not like sauces. My parents still took me to nice restaurants and encouraged me to ask for the meal the way I wanted it. My mom always referenced the restaurant scene from When Harry Met Sally but I don't think I was that bad. If the chef could accommodate, great, and most chefs would.
I have never gone to a friend or family member's dinner party without letting them know about my dietary needs. I know that I would feel like shit if someone came to my house to eat and couldn't eat anything I had prepared. I don't ask anyone to prepare me a special meal but I want them to know why I am not eating the fancy steak they prepared.
If I had an allergy, I would tell everyone. Why should it be any different with other dietary restrictions?
Sorry for the rant but like I said, these articles did not sit right with me. Hey Internet! If you are planning to publish an article that tells me and other women why we do things or how we should act, please stop and rethink. Write it in your journal and move on. Thanks.