I’m fed up.
As a woman (a plus size one on top of that) I am barraged with messages all day that tell me how I’m supposed to be. How I should act, what I should wear, the things that I’m supposed to care about and more. And when I don’t follow the rules? Shame on me. I’ve actually counted the times I said “sorry” in one week and it blew my mind how often it slipped out without my even paying attention.
The truth is that, for the most part, I’m not actually sorry. I’m not. I’m simply saying “sorry” to make someone else feel more comfortable. Or I’m saying it by default, in place of random breaths and instead of “ahhh” or “mmmm” or “like.” Which, besides being totally emotionally unhealthy, is actually pretty silly.
So I’m making a promise to myself. To save my “sorry” for when I really, truly am sorry. When I’ve wronged someone or made a genuine mistake. The rest of the times? Sorry is for the birds. In 35 years of living I’ve been bumped and bruised, I’ve banged down doors and laughed till I cried… And maybe even peed by accident from the side-splitting awesomeness. I am young enough to see a span of life ahead of me yet smart enough to have some acquired wisdom.
Here are 10 things in life a woman should never have to say she’s sorry for.
You know that time when you said that thing, and that person looked at you like you were crazy and so you said you were sorry? Or when you brought your opinion to the table at a meeting? Or to your partner? And then took it back a few seconds later because you felt silly? Or you said you sorry before even opening your mouth in the first place? Yes, those times. Just stop.
You want to say something? Speak. Your voice is JUST as important as everyone else’s. Granted there are moments in life that call for tact, decorum and social etiquette. That being said, speak on sister.
2) Pubic Hair
I’m going to say something shocking and point out the obvious. Every woman has pubic hair. It’s pretty much a biological given. While specifics will vary, if you’re a woman, you have it. So, stop being embarrassed about it. Partner doesn’t like it? That’ OK. But only YOU get to decide what you want to do with it.
In a vicious cycle of Internet-porn pressure, “men like it so women do it” and “some women do it so more men expect it” the last few years has trained us to think that the ideal vagina is perfectly, utterly smooth. Like pre-teen hairless. You want to wax your hair off? Go on, girl. You want to let it grow Amazon and free? Be wild. You want to vajazzle it with thunderbolts and kittens, do it. The point is, a woman should NEVER be made to feel guilty about something that is part of her natural body. The same goes for anything your vagina does on its own. Like secrete. Or get a little musky. I get it (ick) we don’t like to talk about this. But STOP SAYING SORRY FOR WHAT IS A NATURAL PART OF YOUR BODY.
3) Wearing Comfy Pants
Comfy pants are a gift from the universe. For real. I recommend a pair (or two) that are soft and flowy and preferably in a wild and crazy color or pattern. Do not feel bad about the calming ritual of taking off your clothes after a long day and slipping into some purple-printed PJ pants. Or that beautiful weekend you put them on and, simply never take them off.
4) Your Stance on Having Kids
5) Eating a Hamburger
Because a juicy hamburger is a delicious thing to behold. Don’t ever apologies for wanting to savor your food, dig in, enjoy without abandon and make love to every bite you eat. Never let anyone tell you that a burger (or ribs, or any damn thing you want to eat) is unladylike. Having the extra X chromosome does not disavow your right to enjoying eating.
6) Wanting to be Held at Night
For that time when you sat alone in bed in the wee hours of the night and wondered if you’d ever find someone to hold you—- never apologize. It is simply that simple.
The desire to see and be seen by another being is branded in our core. The process of giving, and receiving love, is an essential part of human nature. No matter how cynical you may feel you are, no matter how many times you’ve said you “don’t need a man” to be happy—or a woman if that’s your preference — it is still 100% natural and normal to crave physical touching and intimacy.
7) Feeling Beautiful
8) Enjoying Sex
This is a big one. Never, ever feel ashamed of your desire to have a satisfying sex life. I know, somewhere along the lines we may have been made to feel that we weren’t allowed to like sex and *gasp* ask for it. This couldn’t be farther from the truth. There is immense beauty and power in a woman who is able to embrace and own her sexuality. Whatever “good sex” means to you, go out and seek it. Sex between two consenting adults can be healthy, empowering and totally utterly enjoyable. I encourage all women to be on a first-name basis with her sexual desires!
9) Kicking Ass
Never apologize for your successes. Do not dull yourself down to make others shine more. Do not dim your own sparkle so others do not feel lackluster. If you are ever in the position where you make more money than your partner, do not feel guilty about this. You worked hard. You scarified and put in the time. You earned it. I’ll repeat.
You worked hard. You put in the time. You earned every success your inner Shield Maiden / Warrior Beast / Corner Office CEO fought to accomplish. Feel good about it.
10) Having Your Own Dreams
You may spend a big chunk of your life doing things for other people. Parents, children, spouses, whatever. It is easy to let their hopes become yours. This is OK. But while you do that, the same time, don’t ever apologize for having YOUR OWN hopes and dreams. Whether you long to squish your toes into pale, Caribbean sand or want to open a bed and breakfast in the mountains. Regardless if you dream of opening your own business or a reading a book tucked away in a cabin. Dreams and hopes belong to everyone. And staying in touch with our own means hanging on to the things that make us special, unique and vibrant human beings.
How much you chose to feed your dreams is up to you. Maybe a lot, maybe a little. But you are never too old or too busy to have them for yourself.