Saturday, December 26, 2015

Thank you, Self Daily, for knowing what matters to a woman

‘Twas the day before Christmas
And email was coming
Including one from Self Daily
To set my mind thrumming.

Okay, I give up on trying to make this like ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas because, well, too much effort. And if I wanted to put effort into anything, it would be doing my arms workout so I could be “Star Wars-Worthy.”


That’s what I just said.

I need to get a new arm workout from Daisy Ridley of Star Wars so that I, too, can be “Star Wars-Worthy.”

Now, I’ll give Self this much credit: at least the article wasn’t how to get your make-up “Star Wars-Worthy.” And it wasn’t how to lose enough weight to be “Star Wars-Worthy.”

But why do women have to be “Star Wars-Worthy” at all?

I didn’t see anything about how men how to be buff to go see “Mission Impossible.” Why should women need to add an additional arm workout to any exercise routine in order to be in good enough shape for Star Wars?

And, yes, I get it. They don’t really mean that you need to work out in order to go see the movie. But their tagline of “The force is with your arms, back, and shoulders…” really makes me wonder why they expect that women should need to add a workout to look as good as a woman in a movie.

I suppose the real issue, when you drill all the way down to it, is that they aren’t looking for ways to get healthier. They’re looking purely at the physical appearance. A woman’s self, Self seems to be saying, is based on if she’s looking as good as someone in Star Wars. It’s based on if she’s “Star Wars-Worthy.”

Me? I’m definitely not “Star Wars-Worthy.” And I’m okay with that. (Although I am definitely curious about “12 Problems Sex Therapists Hear All The Time…”

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

National Domestic Violence Awareness Month – So Get Aware!

On September 30, President Obama proclaimed October to be National Domestic Violence Awareness Month. In his proclamation, he states that, “Nearly 1 in 4 women and 1 in 7 men in the United States have suffered severe physical violence by an intimate partner. Victims are deprived of their autonomy, liberty, and security, and face tremendous threats to their health and safety.”

Think about those numbers. One in four women. If you have a daughter, a sister, a mother, and a grandmother…one (or all) of them are at risk. Men are not just abusers, either – one in seven are also abused by domestic partners.

And the problem isn’t limited to adults.

In Ohio on October 11, a little girl – FOUR years old – needed stitches because a boy hit her. The employee at the hospital told her “I bet he likes you.”

She needed stitches, and that’s a sign of liking someone?

The sad thing is, that’s not surprising.

Back in January, an 18 year old girl announced that her boyfriend hit her because he loved her. After all, she reasoned, not many boys are willing to hit their girlfriends, and the fact he’s willing to risk jail for her is a clear sign that he loves her. Because, you know, he’s only hitting her because it helps her. The crazy part is that while a lot of people rejected her hypothesis, she also got fans because of it.

Why do people keep insisting that hurting someone equals loving them? It doesn’t matter if you’re four. If you’re 18. If you’re 50. If you’re 80. No one should hit you and claim to do it out of love.

Now let’s throw in something else fun. Also back in January, some boys were introduced to a girl and then asked to slap her. Not surprisingly, most were shocked and didn’t want to do it. They didn’t want to hit a girl, especially one they didn’t know.

So why is it then okay to hit a girl you do know? Or hit a boy you know? (Remember the statistics – it’s not just girls who get hit!)

Simple answer: it’s not okay. It’s never okay. And it’s never the fault of the victim.

What to do if you’re witnesses or suffering from domestic violence?
Call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-SAFE or visit

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Ride the train, they said…

Looking for the light at the end of the tunnel...

I love Facebook sometimes. It might be full of a certain level of crazy, but it’s also full of some inspiration and some fun.



Someone shared a piece that a guy wrote. The piece was all about how he traveled across the country using the train for only $213. Awesome deal. So impressed.

I’m not sure he included the cost of his meals in it. And I didn’t see any mention of the lack of showers for those four days.

But most importantly – it was written by a guy.

Wait, hear me out.

This fit right into a thought I had last night. It’s all connected.

See, someone’s car got broken into. The criminal who broke into the car stole some stuff…and a gun.

I began by thinking, geez, what kind of idiot leaves a gun in their car?

Woah, I told myself. I was victim blaming. And I was. But that’s as far as that went. When it came down to it, I blamed the criminal who stole the gun. Yeah, maybe a gun shouldn’t have been in a car, but regardless, the criminal who stole the gun made the choice to break the law, to break into the car, and to steal the item. It was the criminal’s fault.

Following me so far, right?

Okay, but if that had been a woman being raped, how many people would have said, “Yes, it was the criminal’s fault for raping her, but she shouldn’t have been [fill in the blank here].”

It wouldn’t come up in court that the gun was “asking” to be stolen.

It wouldn’t matter in court that the gun “shouldn’t have been there.”

It wouldn’t come up in court that the gun “was too tempting.”

It wouldn’t come up in court that the criminal “couldn’t help himself.”

The quality of locks and the alarm on the car wouldn’t be presented as evidence to mitigate the seriously of the theft.

Have I lost you yet?

I hope not.

Because here’s the connection: if I rode the train the way that guy did, just buying a cheap ticket and sitting and sleeping in a general shared compartment without being in my own sleeper with a lock on the door. If I did that, and if I got sexually assaulted or raped, someone – or a lot of someones – would cry out that it was my fault. Why had I slept on the train? Why wasn’t someone watching over me? Why had I dressed in a way that allowed someone to rape me?

See, I think that I have the right to ride that train in peace. I have the right to take the same trip the guy took. I have the right to do that, and the right to feel safe doing it. But I don’t feel that way, and I’m betting I’m not the only woman out there who would not feel safe. And part of that lack of safety is knowing that, if anything happened, and if it happened to make it to court, I would be put on the stand and questioned. I would be accused. I would be just as guilty simply because I had existed in the same space and time as the criminal.

When it comes to a gun sitting in a car, we don’t blame the owner of the gun or of the car. We blame the criminal. We put the criminal on trial. That’s what we should be doing. Putting the criminal on trial.