Women just can’t win

4 Mar

I’ve been stewing on this article for awhile.

I know it’s opinion. I know that everyone is entitled to their opinion.

But shit, can’t a woman catch a break?

I’ll state for the record that I respect Angelina Jolie, the work she does for refugees with the UN, and how she shares her life with children from around the world. I believe that many of us could do well to focus on a cause the way she has.

So why all the hate?

The fact that this article calls her child “human fashion accessor(ies)” really stuck in my head. Because it’s not just attacking her. It’s attacking any woman who dares to have children and a job.

Oh! they complain, she’s travelling all around the world, dragging these kids with her, or leaving them behind! Oh the horrors! They use nannies! They act like human beings! She can’t possibly be a good mother because she has a passion and a job outside of her children.

Are we back here already? She’s less of a mother because she adopted, and because she tries to continue her good works as a goodwill ambassador? What would they say if all the kids were from her own womb? We celebrate the Duggers, don’t we, for having produced a bloody football team, but when someone famous adopts children because they can afford to provide a good life for them, we jump on them. They can’t possibly be a good parent because they aren’t in one place all the time.

We all know that all parents sit at home with their kids all day, not working, and not having lives or interests of their own. And we know that adoptive parents are even more sainted.

We can’t paint any woman, or mother, with this brush. We shouldn’t assume that we know what is going on in her life, or her adoptions, any more than we would feel the need to stick our noses in the lives of our coworkers. Regardless of what this woman does-she will not win in the public eye. Because now she’s too “good”. So stories must be invented about how jealous she is, how she bribed officials, how she grasps her children too tightly. She cannot just be a good mother and person-she must be defective somehow.

What if we were all judged so harshly, for trying to grow a family we can call our own? What if we were all considered bad mothers because we didn’t sit at home cooking cupcakes all day. No one points this at men, but women continue to be held up as examples of martyrdom parenting-we must sacrifice, we must be lessened, in order to grow our children.

14 Responses to “Women just can’t win”

  1. stylin' March 4, 2007 at 10:51 am #

    I don’t know. It is an article, so it is meant to be over the top. But I am a working mother, and I was not offended by it, and I got the point. I am not a fan of Angelina, however I am glad that she gives these kids a chance for a better life. But it does bother me the way she uses them as a media opportunity, posing with them on the cover of every magazine, waiting for the scores of accolades for her selfless acts of kindness and generosity. She seems to adopt these kids more for the cause and the publicity than for the kids themselves. As for her own child, well, we see a lot less of Shiloh than here adopted kids, now don’t we. I wonder why? I suppose Shiloh just doesn’t feed the media machine like the other kids.

    Really, right now she has3 kids, including a baby who is not yet one year old…I don’t think it would kill her to spend some time focussing on the kids she has instead of taking off to look for a new one.

  2. sweetsalty kate March 4, 2007 at 11:15 am #

    Unreal. My first red flags went up at the site’s tagline: “a sinister cabal of superior writers”. And that’s when I threw up in my mouth a little bit.

    What a joke. The leaps of logic… I’m sure the case against celebrity child-pimping has been better stated by a team of highly trained monkeys. In any case, I don’t buy it. I don’t buy the ‘Angelina Jolie is a hero’ crap, and I also don’t buy the ‘Angelina Jolie is a publicity whore’ crap. I think she’s just a very wealthy person with genuine interests in international issues, and thanks to her relatively bottomless pockets, she has become somewhat addicted to providing homes for these kids she comes across in such miserable conditions. Wouldn’t anyone? If she has the resources to make it happen, than why not? What right do we have to question her motives when she’s one of a million people actually *doing* something?

    And my god, to state that she’s faking sadness over the death of her mother? When I see stuff like this on the Internet, it makes me want to live off the grid. Why would someone make such assumptions about anybody?

    And one last thing… you couldn’t pay me all the money in the world to be as famous as Angelina Jolie. I just can’t imagine how that would feel, to be stalked everywhere you go, to have hounds on your trail taking pictures of you and your kids, making vile remarks, to have no privacy whatsoever.. to never be anonymous, with so many sick people out there…

    Not that famous people should be exempt from criticism, or pitied for their wealth and fame. Yes, they did “ask for it” and many do seek it out… don’t you wonder sometimes why they don’t just live more under-the-radar lives than they do, if they really don’t like the attention? Why eat where the paparazzi wait for you? Well duh.. the answer to that is obvious. Those ones clearly want it, and are selling their souls for fame. But I think that will come back to haunt them, as we’ve seen so many times.

    Much of the time, I look at the tabloids and feel sorry for celebrities. To live their life, for me, would be to live in prison.

  3. bine March 4, 2007 at 12:39 pm #

    this article clearly reeks of something like jealousy or envy. i can’t put my finger to it, but i suspect that the writer feels that life has unfaily treated miss jolie better than him.
    i really know nothing about her lifestyle, career and intentions, i’m not much into celebrities.
    i don’t know how much she cares for those kids herself or how much they are left with nannies, i just think there’s not much evidence in that article that she really “abuses” her adopted children. she has a goop-paying job, she works a lot, therefore has a lot of money, why shouldn’t she use it to raise children that don’t have the fortune to live in the first world? ok, if they’re left with a nanny they don’t see mommy all that often but they will still have more of a sense of “belonging” than children grown up in an orphanage in vietnam.

    it’s a sad thing, the way people feel entitled to judge celebrities.
    maybe she’s out for the publicity, maybe she’s just taking her position as a role model serious or making a statement against racism, we don’t know. but is it really any of our business? no.

  4. Kimberly March 4, 2007 at 2:11 pm #

    ugh, I think I need a shower. That much hate in one place depresses me. The baseless accusations and personal attacks in that article were so far over the top as to be laughable. I don’t know if the writer thinks he’s a credible source, but I certainly hope no readers mistake him as such.

    Stylin’, I have to say, I think you’re dead wrong. Shiloh would send the media machine spinning off its access. And I haven’t noticed a lot of posing for the camera by the Jolie-Pitt kids. Most of the shots you see are the results of invasions of privacy by the paparazzi who hound them.

    I also have to confess that I agree with Angelina on one point, at least: Babies *are* blobs. They are cute blobs, to be sure, but blobs nonetheless.

  5. stylin' March 4, 2007 at 2:45 pm #

    I am glad Shiloh is not in the media…they are protecting her-she is for them, not the cause. I just think all the kids need a little more protection. If all the shots are truly not posed and just invasions of their privacy…then I wonder how they manage to protect Shiloh’s privacy?

  6. Mogo March 4, 2007 at 3:16 pm #

    that guy just sounds pathetic… no other word for it. he comes off like Angelina turned him down for a date once or something.

  7. feartheseeds March 4, 2007 at 6:47 pm #

    Some friends of my family have adopted a couple hundred children over the past thirty years. Angie has, what, four? It’s a good start. If Angie, or anyone else, wants to help out with the worlds orphans you could start here: http://www.childhaven.ca/capps.htm

  8. Tortuguita March 5, 2007 at 5:13 am #

    Erm .. her children “need to be taken away from her” because why? Because she carries them around with her and shows them affection? Because she exposes them to different cultures? Because she can afford to give them one on one tutors?
    Angelina definitely lost some points with me the past few months due to her rather untactful comments but this is ridiculous.
    And uncommonly vitriolic.
    Find somebody better to hate. If adopting multiple children is a sin then maybe most of us should be a little more sinful.

  9. karriew March 5, 2007 at 9:27 am #

    I’m not bothered by Angelina at all. The references to her physical attributes were just snarky and stupid.

    If she loves kids and can care for them, then more power to her.

  10. thordora March 5, 2007 at 10:50 am #

    The woman just lost her mother to cancer, and yet she’s not allowed to grieve without being examined.

    While I do believe that to an extent, celebrities do need to “suck it up” when it comes to the loss of privacy, two things trump that fo rme-kids and death. They are human, just like us. And all these kids have done is have themselves borne or brought into the family.

    The piece was obviously meant to be inflammatory, but I just cannot stand anything that smacks of “how dare you WORK and have KIDS!” It’s a thinly veiled attack on the working mother, and it’s revolting.

  11. Eden March 5, 2007 at 12:46 pm #

    That article shows just how little the writer knows about Angelina Jolie. Of all the movie stars who need a career revival, she is most definitely not among them.

    Did/does anyone say this about Mia Farrow? And how many children has the writer adopted? Angelina is one of my heroes, not only for her humanity but for her “who cares what you think?” attitude.

    Methinks the writer is just looking for attention.

  12. venessa March 5, 2007 at 2:43 pm #

    I have a feeling that if a leading male actor adopted kids from war-torn countries and acted as a childrens advocate for the UN, we would be hearing a completely different opinion of him from the public and the media. This is a good indicator that something is wrong with this article. Good for her for not giving a fuck about public opinion.

  13. thordora March 5, 2007 at 2:54 pm #

    EXACTLY. That was the feeling I got from that article-I also can’t stand how her partner is totally discounted-yet another example of men being removed from the child rearing process. He can’t possibly really want to be involved.


    I alos love her “screw you guys, I’m goin’ home” attitude. Someone has to do it. And I’d much rather see her in the news showing off her beautiful adopted children than another bald nutcase.

  14. kassie March 5, 2007 at 8:53 pm #

    Anyone that has an issue with a hardworking woman that obviously cares for needy children is an ass. The dumbass that wrote the article obviously cant handle a woman who is successful at multi tasking motherhood and work. How dare she have it all ?

    Although I dont know much about her, I kind of like her attitude.

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