Ok a bit late to this one but I am still seeing all sorts of ‘anti’ 50 shades stuff over social media.
Firstly, I will admit that I am going to go see this film ( this week hopefully) and I have read ALL of the books ( my views on these you can see here) so you can judge me right there if you like.
Secondly, I DO get the ‘domestic abuse’ issues/ angle totally and can only imagine what a living nightmare it must be to find yourself trapped in that situation.
However, that said I am a 44 year old woman who has been married for almost 21 years, I have two teenage boys and feel that I am sensible enough and have enough ‘life’ experience to be able to separate a so called ‘romantic fantasy’ from an actual real life ‘loving relationship’.
I know there are people who will see these books and film as being what ‘real’ romance or relationships should be like. The ‘excitement’ and ‘obsessive control’ being mistaken for what love is. But surely that’s where we come in as parents ( for our teens at least). As I mentioned I have teen boys aged 14 and almost 17 years old. Surely one of my parental roles is to show them what a ‘normal’ loving relationship should be like. So, whether married, or in a long term relationship, same or different sex it doesn’t matter in my eyes provided the relationship is stable, consensual, equal, respectful and loving. I think that’s what’s important here. Obviously there are those who like to live unconventional situations in which BDSM is part and parcel of their normality and again that is great providing it is consensual and no one is in danger obviously. Let’s face it the world would be pretty Stepford Wives and boring if we all liked the same things, had the same opinions and lived the same way.
So with my boys I will aim to teach them that they should take a responsibility to practise safe sex when the time comes for them both, covering both unwanted pregnancy or STD’s for either party. Also I think it’s important that we teach them that what they may see in pornography films or magazines is a far cry from what a real loving relationship is like. I will as the only female in the house impress on them to respect the opposite sex and treat others how they would want to be treated themselves. They will experiment as they get older I am sure but hopefully they will learn to see what they are comfortable with and what they need from a relationship.
With all the talk around this film at the moment I will make sure my eldest is aware that your average old married’s do not all have a hidden ‘red room of pain’ locked away in the house somewhere! Let’s face it Hollywood will romanticise anything from war or sex to relationships or jobs to bloody vampires and zombies and everything in between. But I can see also how teenage girls could be taken with the ‘excitement’ of someone who ‘loves’ them so much they are almost stalked and totally controlled. I don’t have girls but I know my close friends with girls would be making sure they didn’t allow them to fall into the trap of perceiving Hollywood romance to be what’s expected in everyday life. I adore the horror genre of films but I do realise that vampires and zombies are NOT real ( although in saying that I would be EPIC in apocalypse- just saying).
I do not want to seem flippant in any way about domestic abuse which I have been very lucky never to have experienced myself or know of any of my friends who have, however, I do not think that’s what the film/books are fully about. Yes they are graphic in what they take part in but surely one of the main threads is that Christian Grey actually starts to change and become reliant on her love over what he had experienced on the lead up to their meeting.
So what I am saying is that of those of us who ‘choose’ to go and see the film or read the books should not be hounded, shamed or ostracised as though we do not take domestic abuse seriously. Our choice is exactly that- our choice. We may not be condoning or advocating either side of the discussion but merely happy to escape work, family or stress for 90 minutes of total Hollywood escapism with the gorgeous Jamie Dornan thrown in for good measure. Let’s face it we all adored him in the brilliant The Fall where he was a fecking murderer for goodness sake.
The great thing about the film is that it has us all talking, whatever the views, surely that can only be a good thing raising awareness of domestic abuse but also opening conversations about teaching and educating teenagers of what is considered acceptable or not in a long term loving relationship.
***Here is your warning that I’m going to go all ‘Katie Hopkins’ about this one and I appreciate some of you will hit the unfollow button but hey ho!
So all over social media I see this on a daily basis, ‘date night with hubby’, or lunch date with OH or even ( scrapes the bottom of the barrel) ‘coffee dates’ with the love of your life.
First of all the actual word tends to wind me right up, ‘date’ surely is one of those americanisms that have crept into our vocabulary and become the norm. Ok I get it if you are single and talk about going on a ‘date’ as it makes sense. But really as a married couple is this the thing we should be doing? Am I missing something about this? I mean I did ‘go out’ with my other half when we first got together, after a while we got engaged and then married. Surely that is generally speaking the whole point.
So why is it now the thing ( or seems to be from social media anyway) that I should go on ‘dates’ with my husband of 20 yrs. I mean we go out, sometimes have lunch out while the teens are at school, or grab a posh coffee and cake when we are out at the shops and even go out for a meal occasionally either on our own, or with the teens, or even with friends and each time have a great night. I have never, ever considered any one of those times a ‘date’. We don’t pencil a day on the calender to go for coffee or a lunch for fecks sake, we just do it if we fancy it either just for the sake of it or while we are already out for other shopping reasons. But we must be doing something right as we have been married for over 20 yrs and still going strong.
Yes we may plan a night out for our anniversaries, or birthdays etc but they are not ‘dates’ we just plan to go out and do something, cinema, theatre or a meal. We are lucky we both like the same main hobby (fishing- who knew eh?) so during the nicer months we will go out for the day for that purpose, but we don’t make a fishing ‘date'( and please, please, please shoot me if ever I say that crap). If he is off work and we decide to put a film on and have a beer or a bottle of wine I don’t consider that to be a fecking ‘date night’, we just fancy putting on a film that we like and chill out with a drink!
So I have 2 questions………
*Dates- yay or nay?
I have not made ANY resolutions this year. I have NOT set any major goals to achieve either. My reason being that if I don’t do the things I have vowed to I would I feel like a failure and look back with disappointment.
This year a few things have popped into my head that I would like to make time for, but my life wont stop, or I wont feel like a failure if I don’t really get the chance to do them. I hope that makes sense.
So here goes:
** Move More…. now due to my ME/CFS I cant throw myself into any sort of exercise as there are days where just getting up out of bed is a struggle. But I have it in my head that I would like to move more and by that I mean hoover the front room, do a half hour of ironing, go for a short walk to the shop, clear out a cupboard or just boogie to my favourite song.
** Crochet/ Knit…. I cam lucky enough to be able to do both after going on a course last year to learn crochet to which I am now addicted! But I haven’t hardly picked up a hook or any needles since about November last year, not because I didn’t want to but just because there was so much going on. So I would like to get back to it- even if I manage a quick 10 minutes or even just a row! I have been lucky enough to be able to sell some of my items so maybe concentrate on those things just so I have a purpose to it.
** New Skill…. I did this last year with the crochet and I totally love it now. But I do have a sewing machine going idle because I’m not confident enough to just get on and give it a go. So I am going to get my friend round one day and get her to show me the basics of the machine and teach me some sewing skills, not for any great purpose but just to have something else I can enjoy doing and maybe make some accessories for my home.
** Blog More…. I have loads of stuff rushing through my head but I never write it down and then later when I get on the computer my mind can go blank and I lose the will to write anything! So I would like to put a bit more time in on the blog as it is something I really enjoy doing, but it is easy to let a lack of confidence take over. I would like to write more and in turn make my photography better and improve on my technical skills ( lack of skills being the major reason why I do not tinker with things on there- even plugins!). I will probably try and get more involved with Linky’s too as I enjoy seeing everyone’s posts for different linky’s from posts to pictures.
THAT’S IT. No big major life changes or possibly out of reach goals that feel more overwhelming than invigorating! All of the above ideas for me will see me enjoy my days a little better especially over the dark winter months while everyone is at school and work, but on the flip side if time goes past and I haven’t managed any of them I don’t really think it will make me feel as any sort of failure in my eyes or anyone else’s.
What have you got planned for the coming year?