female empowerment redux, please

In the misguided quests for attention and acceptance of outside others in our viralized society, do Mommy Victims and Compromised Socialites employ regressive tactics? And what can we – we women – do about it? This must evolve, as women’s rise in society has historically done, from within. Considering our place in time, we women are inconsistent with our social agendas and playing victim cards tinged with hypocrisy. I would like to see/hear some honest dialogue on this.

Mommy Victims:

I recently unfollowed a social media contact I will dub Mommy Victim, as I could no longer tolerate her posts, lengthy exposés on her general malaise as mother and on her ill-behaved children, whose misbehaviors she took great pains to illustrate via attempts at dark mommy humor. This is a pervasive blog n post trend among young mothers, published in major online news entities or countless, marginally clever blogs or as social media quips, thanks to impetus the un-vetted, non-meritorious mega voice the Internet has gifted them.

While Mommy Victims could be engaged in the rearing of their children (not as entertainment lackeys but as parents – what I have written on as the EZ Appeasement Parenting conundrum), or while they could be using precious quiet time to intellectually re-energize self or to improve their basic health (which would help combat our demographic’s ever-expanding waistlines), these women are instead taking to social media and their billion blogs in order to whine and bitch. They do this not to educate themselves via information sharing, nor for cathartic self-help in order to grow up and out of their purported condition. Their only goal is the quick-click attention and acceptance of outside others.

Mommy Victims seem to revel in a self-claimed victimization of what always was and always will be, due to bio-reality, their very own procreative efforts. Whether or not they have chosen to reproduce, and how often, while fully something each woman can and should control herself, it is their biologically justifiable job to have done so. The fact that they have time to write/whine about it means there is time to spare. These bloggers and posters view their children passively, as if from the outside, writing of their children’s unmannered, naughty behaviors as if they had not the first thing to do with them. Moreover, Mommy Victims delude themselves into thinking they are talented comic writers – Mommy Victim blogging is rant-toned and often profanity laced for cheap laughs. Their children’s bad antics are illustrated with the clear intent to entertain nameless/faceless others at the cost of the kids themselves. This blogging and posting, done in lieu of actual parenting, if done to satisfy social media mandates, requires a constant stream of fodder, its own time consuming monster, for even if only tapped for consumption its addictive qualities are today’s social albatross.

Is this a selfish quest for attention via the concoction of victimized drama in what used to be a most customary and honorable undertaking? Is this a new form of “high maintenance” female posturing, as if all those hapless males out there, who wish to be fathers, have chosen precious and fragile, china doll human partners, far too delicate to do the follow up work that their procreative abilities engendered, who are above the dirty and mundane aspects of child care and rearing, no matter how shared it is between the couple? And God forbid these empresses do any housework or, worse yet, deign to actually cook in their 6-burner, granite clad kitchens. “I don’t cook” is a homemaker’s boast I hear and read too often. Who has not heard this?

Why has Mommy Victimization become de rigeur among young mothers? Is it yet another manifestation of millennial entitlement? As its pervasiveness suggests, Mom Victim is being virally accepted as a form of entertainment. Are we not coddling only further these young parents with our clicks and our lol’s, and at what cost to their children?

The young adults now in reproductive mode were raised by what I have called EZ Appeasement parenting methods (see my article on this), where the offspring ruled the roost and every whim was catered to. As children, they never had to overcome hardship and were protected from all criticism and correction, leaving them ill equipped to handle the noble (difficult but worth it) task of parenting. Given our viralized society, where the masses have forged their voice thanks to the click-addicted ones with the most free time on their hands, and given that attention addiction has brought individuals to new lows of connectivity, where those closest to them are left behind, we must contend not only with damsels in de-stress (faux feminists who seek to blame everyone and everything but themselves for their conditions and places in life, no matter how privileged [aka finance-founded support] their state is), but also with their ceaseless broadcasting of their various “demises,” inspired solely by their misguided quests for attention and acceptance of outside others.

A manifestation I’d like to point to is the communicable disease resurgence as a direct result of new parent immunization refusal. This refusal, when one reads past the media-fed surface that is celeb-driven, viralized 18th century paranoia (a blog and posting world onto itself), lies in the cowardice of EZ appeasement parents who were themselves raised with hardship avoidance at all costs. This now results in their patent refusal to allow for even the momentary trauma of their child receiving an injection, combined with their blanket refusal to allow for any infinitesimal risk of illness or suffering of their child as a result of being subjected to a micro-exposure of the disease. The cost to society takes a back seat to their kid’s comfort and zero-trauma healthcare. The measles outbreak in Disneyland is quite perfect as an ironic illustration of what happens when immunization refusal spawns the resurrection of a disease.

Second, it takes into account the ever-higher pedestal placement of one’s offspring: While EZ Appeasement parents of millennials saw “merely” geniuses, models and sports stars in their offspring, new parents today elevate their children to deified levels (as reflections of their own superiority), insisting their children are inherently and naturally immune from disease by virtue of the of lineage, lifestyle and the organic/vegan/gluten-free/u-call-it/superior diet they receive in their non-toxic/paraben- and formaldehyde-free/u-call-it/superior homes.

Compromised Socialites:

In light of what has become the rather multi-layered, retro feminist movement, where current society still suffers from misguided sexual revolutionary notions that seemed to require zero-effort, all-access recreational physical intimacy (which in the end, then as now, only dilutes quality intimate connectivity), and in light of the more newly coined female empowerment trends (as pertains mostly to the westernized world, where virtual burquas are yet worn by intellectually complacent Goodwives everywhere), I ask: Why are we know-it-all Wonder Women so willing to cast aside our all-equating selves and open doors to our own compromised states of mind when in pursuit of social encounters with outside others, where questionable if not outright destructive scenarios result due to impaired judgement of one or both parties? Our world is ever more saturated with alcohol, old school drugs and newly concocted chemicals. Why in the face of self-claimed empowerment do women of all ages set themselves up by ingesting 1) willingly or 2) via blind acceptance of consumables as offered by outside others, that which renders them unable to make sound choices? Why are women, given all the information and news availability out there, still saying “Yes” to the above, and then additionally willingly leaving the relative safety of public locales and familiar groups for places unknown with outside others whose names they don’t even know?

 Given what defines fun and happiness, diluted and confused as are other American consumptive habits, and here as seen in context of sexually motivated social interaction, I also ask: Who truly wants and thrives through such encounters, be it in clear states of lucidity or in compromised, chemically-altered states of mind? Where casual, meaningless sexual expression is concerned, the core big question is, who – men or women – really wants/needs/seeks this kind of shallow connectivity for true, pure pleasure? I believe no one does. Ever. Therefore, these pursuits and encounters remain nothing more than performance based, fakery reliant, primitive/pre-tech attention and acceptance tally accumulating that, alongside the viralization of society, also reaches new lows, thanks to quick-click founded, viralized reality nouveau.

Once these ill-fated encounters have taken place and once regret has, thanks to both latent puritanical pull and feminist blame gaming, kicked in and been called out (accusations, arrests and legal process), society and headlines gush angrily and criminalize the male perpetrators, while handing without hesitation victim cards to the women, which imo double as behavioral get out of jail hall passes and fix not a thing within the construct of female empowerment. Rather, this continues to set women back from true empowered self-actualization. Not a single voice seems to be allowed to ask anymore, “What were these girls thinking?” or “Why do you feel you need to engage this way?” No one is questioning the causal connection of a woman’s disabled mindset to her resulting situation and why she sets about stetting herself up in these situations. No one is demanding that a woman should, in this day in age of equality and female empowerment, share in the responsibility of joint social-sexual encounters or find some way to dismiss serial sexual “conquests” from her feminine resume building/life experiences. And because it is so common, no one bats an eye when by accusation alone, male partners in unfortunate sexual encounters are punished, called out and broadcast as the lone criminals and predators.

In a society that, tech-facilitated, keeps reaching ever lower for attention, the victim card, once handed over, is even saved so, like a flag, it can be pulled out and waved in the face of all future interactions and personal relationships and even granted official issue status by a media that must be fed 24/7. It is the 18 year old “man,” who did his 17 year old girlfriend (a girl who lied about her age to him and pursued him with gusto), that is legally and socially branded for decades. As for victims and “victims,” in a world where attention mongering has grown to Munchausian levels, and where illness and shortcomings are whitewashed via PC poetic re-branding, we no longer chalk up to experience ills and events in life with the intention of moving on; we have been conditioned to wear our ills like badges, indefinitely or even permanently, thanks to the monster that is profit-based, share-holder driven healthcare and our very own billboarding of self.

Having been a girl and then a woman in the western world, out among others and alone, with mistakes made and lessons learned, with responsibility taken for myself, I feel I have a right to ask these questions of my fellow so-called liberated sisters. I also question wholeheartedly the denigration of men as the echo effect of women’s inconsistent pursuits of empowerment. We women need to look inside and start at home and be willing to embrace the empowerment we seek 24/7, even if it is at the cost of attention or acceptance of outside others.

Although originally written by men, for men, as historically most everything was, we women too are the sum of our deeds as fellow humans. That includes what we do for attention and acceptance of outside others. Let’s leave the damsel in distress (self subjugation as remnant of aristocratic passivity and inability) and the damsel in de-stress (contemporary woman who blames everyone but herself) behind. Let’s approach the Attention and Acceptance Olympics with the wherewithal we have worked so long to embrace. We need to accept responsibility full circle, including in pursuits intertwined with our inherent femininity, sexuality and maternity. And we must teach this to our sisters and daughters by example. With 24/7 full circle empowerment, we can re-define feminism as pro-power + pro-maternal, pro-female and pro-feminine.

November 2016