Yes, I Am A Bitch, And I'm OK With That

Yes, I Am A Bitch, And I'm OK With That

You can call me whatever you want, just know that this bitch is going places.
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I don’t know if it’s because I recently moved below the Mason-Dixon Line and my New England sarcasm doesn’t translate well, the current change in political climate or what, but I have been called a bitch more than anything else in 2017.

As with most things, I try to find the positive side, so I’ve decided that the haters are right.

I am a bitch.

But you know what? I’m okay with that, and you should be too. So, here is how I am deciding to change the meaning of being a bitch.

Beauty

Being a boss bitch is about self-confidence, which means loving oneself inside and out. No one loves how they look all the time, but bitches have the confidence to rock what they’ve got, even after feasting shamelessly on a 20-piece chicken nugget meal and a self-tanning disaster. If you want to slay like Beyoncé, you have to own it because when you know you’re a goddess other people see it too.

Intelligence

Perhaps Lisa Kleypas said it best: “A well-read woman is a dangerous creature.” Dangerous because women have been limited culturally for thousands of years and now they are finally being acknowledged as inventors and scientists, as athletes, journalists, heads of state, supreme court justices and activists. Dangerous because we serve the greatest threat to patriarchal traditions. As a boss bitch your only limit is you, glass ceiling or no glass ceiling, and it always benefits you to be smarter than the next guy.

Tenacity

Albert Einstein, the Nobel Prize winning physicist and one of the most brilliant minds of the 20th century, was unable to speak fluently until he was nine-years-old. Michael Jordan, the man who could never seem to retire and was responsible for 6,672 rebounds, 5,633 assists and 32,292 total points, was once quoted, “I’ve missed more than 9,000 shots in my career. I've lost almost 300 games. 26 times, I've been trusted to take the game-winning shot and missed. I've failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed."

Being a bitch is about never giving up. It’s about acknowledging shortcomings, learning from mistakes and relentlessly working towards success.

Courage

Take it from George Addair who was quoted as saying, “Everything you’ve ever wanted is on the other side of fear”. Being a boss bitch means taking chances and not letting fear influence decisions.

Humility

Knowing your worth is different than elevating yourself above others. Being beautiful, intelligent, tenacious and courageous has no meaning unless it is balanced by humility. Bitches have to be self-deprecating because there is always room for personal growth and there is no greater hindrance to success than hubris, just ask any protagonist in a Greek parable.

We have to stop attacking the Hillary Clintons of the world based on their demeanor when in the race of grumpiest politician I think we can all agree that she has some pretty impressive male competitors.

You can call me whatever you want, just know that this bitch is going places.

Cover Image Credit: 123rf

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31 Reasons Why I Would NEVER Watch Season 2 Of '13 Reasons Why'

It does not effectively address mental illness, which is a major factor in suicide.
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When I first started watching "13 Reasons Why" I was excited. I had struggled with depression and suicidal thoughts for a long time and thought this show would be bringing light to those issues. Instead, it triggered my feelings that I had suppressed.

With season two coming out soon, I have made up my mind that I am NEVER watching it, and here is why:

1. This show simplifies suicide as being a result of bullying, sexual assault, etc. when the issue is extremely more complex.

2. It does not effectively address mental illness, which is a major factor in suicide.

3. The American Foundation of Suicide Prevention has guidelines on how to portray suicides in TV shows and movies without causing more suicides.

"13 Reasons Why" disregarded those guidelines by graphically showing Hannah slitting her wrists.

4. It is triggering to those who have tried to commit suicide in the past or that struggle with mental illness.

5. It glorifies suicide.

6. It does not offer healthy coping solutions with trauma and bullying.

The only "solution" offered is suicide, which as mentioned above, is glorified by the show.

7. This show portrays Hannah as dramatic and attention-seeking, which creates the stereotype that people with suicidal thoughts are dramatic and seeking attention.

8. Hannah makes Clay and other people feel guilty for her death, which is inconsiderate and rude and NOT something most people who commit suicide would actually do.

9. This show treats suicide as revenge.

In reality, suicide is the feeling of hopelessness and depression, and it's a personal decision.

10. Hannah blames everyone but herself for her death, but suicide is a choice made by people who commit it.

Yes, sexual assault and bullying can be a factor in suicidal thoughts, but committing suicide is completely in the hands of the individual.

11. Skye justifies self-harm by saying, "It's what you do instead of killing yourself."

12. Hannah's school counselor disregards the clear signs of her being suicidal, which is against the law and not something any professional would do.

13. The show is not realistic.

14. To be honest, I didn't even enjoy the acting.

15. The characters are underdeveloped.

16. "13 Reasons Why" alludes that Clay's love could have saved Hannah, which is also unrealistic.

17. There are unnecessary plot lines that don't even advance the main plot.

18. No one in the show deals with their problems.

They all push them off onto other people (which, by the way, is NOT HEALTHY!!!).

19. There is not at any point in the show encouragement that life after high school is better.

20. I find the show offensive to not only me, but also to everyone who has struggled with suicidal thoughts.

21. The show is gory and violent, and I don't like that kind of thing.

22. By watching the show, you basically get a step-by-step guide on how to commit suicide.

Which, again, is against guidelines set by The American Foundation of Suicide Prevention.

23. The show offers no resources for those who have similar issues to Hannah.

24. It is not healthy for me or anyone else to watch "13 Reasons Why."

25. Not only does the show glorify suicide, but it also glorifies self-harm as an alternative to suicide.

26. Other characters don't help Hannah when she reaches out to them, which could discourage viewers from reaching out.

27. Hannah doesn't leave a tape for her parents, and even though the tapes were mostly bad, I still think the show's writers should have included a goodbye to her parents.

28. It simplifies suicide.

29. The show is tactless, in my opinion.

30. I feel like the show writers did not do any research on the topic of suicide or mental illness, and "13 Reasons Why" suffered because of lack of research.

31. I will not be watching season two mostly because I am bitter about the tastelessness.

And I do not want there to be enough views for them to make a season three and impact even more people in a negative way.

If you or someone you know is contemplating suicide, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 800-273-8255.
Cover Image Credit: Netflix

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I'm A Feminist And I'm Conflicted About Miss USA

Are pageants debilitating or empowering?
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Growing up, I loved watching pageants. The ladies were beautiful, especially in their evening gowns, and they all seemed incredibly talented. They looked perfect in their bathing suits and with the Miss. USA pageant specifically, I always had fun cheering for the different states I’ve lived in.

Now, though, I’m conflicted. Putting young women on a stage and judging them by their appearance seems awfully sexist. We don’t have young men wearing tuxedos and speedos parading their looks and talents on stage for a “Mr. USA.”

But the women we watch are more than their physical appearance— they display practiced talents and memorize dozens of important topics in order to have an educated answer for the question they’re asked on stage. There’s a rigorous selection process, including difficult questions about difficult topics, before they even reach TV. They work hard for months leading up to what we see on TV and that dedication is something I admire, along with their looks.

But there’s something debilitating about pageants like Miss USA, too. Their perfectly flat stomachs, perfectly perky breasts, and perfectly rounded butts are all on display during the swimsuit portion and I can’t help but look at my own body in comparison. I’m too flat-chested to ever look good in a bikini.

I’m barely 100 pounds, which means that I’m thin, but not toned, with absolutely no curves. Watching those women strut in their heels, I know that I will never look that good.

Beyond physicality, I compare my talents. While I can read and critique literature, write essays and craft poetry, research and analyze, I don’t have many talents that can be performed on stage.

I took singing lessons, but nothing that would make me worthy of Miss USA. I greatly admire the ladies who do practice and perfect performable talents but seeing specific talents celebrated while mine remain labeled as “nerdy” is disappointing. Am I really talented at all if I can’t mount a stage and show off?

I’m a feminist though. I believe in equality and female empowerment. How can pageants be empowering when they make so many women, such as myself, feel bad? But some women claim that pageants give them opportunities to discuss important topics and become confident in themselves and their bodies. How can I not support them then?

Ultimately those are questions that every person, especially women, must answer for themselves, and so I’ll start with myself. I will watch the pageant and admire everything that these young women have to offer while reminding myself that my value is not found in comparison to other women, but in being confident in who I am. I am beautiful. I am talented. I will never be Miss USA, but that’s ok. I don’t need to be.

Cover Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons

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