Thursday, May 14, 2009

Damsel In Distress (or, Why Women Need Strong Men In Their Lives)

actress, Anne Hathaway with father, Gerald Hathaway

I'm going to get in trouble for this one.

Did anyone see this year's Critic's Choice Awards? Anne Hathaway tied with Meryl Streep for Best Actress. When Anne accepted her award, many noticed the steely eyes of Angelina Jolie (she lost by the way). Angelina's reaction is actually laugh out loud funny but what I noticed was how Anne thanked her father who "protects me and shows me that there are good men in this world."

My parents divorced when I was 4 years old. My father stopped contacting me when I was about 12 or 13. The child support came in, and he made an effort later in life... only to fall off the face of the earth just about 2 years ago. I grew up with a step-father who didn't really know how to connect with me. By the time I was in college, he was out of our house. The best man I knew was my brother who is 5 years younger than me, and still growing up. I'm not asking for a pity party, I'm just painting a picture. Until recently (about 4 years ago), I can't say what Anne said. My partner, my BF, my love, Nick, is the first man that has protected me and showed me that there are good men in this world.

If only I had him or someone like him when I was growing up.

We are a generation of women that grew up without a father. We get our cues from our mothers: "Get by, fend for yourself, find a man with money but you can live without them, I certainly did well without a man." When it came time that guys were noticing me, I glued myself to any guy that gave me any kind of attention. I didn't know how great it felt for a guy to notice me and tell me nice things. This made for some turbulent relationships and serious insecurities.

Why do you think girls are wearing barely anything?
Why are girls sexting?
Why do girls put so much value on sex-appeal?
Why do girls date asshole men?
Why do nice guys finish last?
Why are women hating on men?
Why are women getting basted without a husband to help them?

We've lived our lives without men. Imagine being a girl living in a household where men were barely there (if at all), total screw-ups and they did nothing to show they weren't total screw-ups.

Now that we're women, adults, we need to rise above our raising. Before I met Nick I was a huge man-hater. Every guy I knew (with the exception of my brother) did a great job showing me how bad men made lives. Until Nick. Not only did he prove me wrong... he helped me stop being so resentful for being without a strong male figure in my life.

I get it dudes, you grew up without a father too. The media is telling you that it's totally okay to be lazy and useless (not that you are!). It's supposedly normal to let a chick have your baby and not be in the baby's life. All of us have to grow up and learn. What is it they say?

“When the sins of our fathers visit us we do not have to play host. We can
banish them with forgiveness.” -Fences

So, here is where I say it: I forgive you dad.

Love, Olla


  1. I couldn't agree with you more!

  2. Ay, I hear you and I hear you. These guys don't know what kind of chain they set off. My father was in my life, though my parents were divorced, but my mom's father bailed on her and she ended up being a terrible parent. So while I had my dad, I still got caught up in the chain of neglect. I still don't think she sees what kind of effect that had on her maybe cos it's actually very much socially acceptable and the standard in latin american countries.