We feel things like anger and jealousy. AND THAT'S NORMAL!
As someone who often wears her heart on her sleeve, I often get comments about the way I feel.
“But look at everything you have to be thankful for!”
“You’ve come this far. Stop worrying!”
“Count your blessings. Don’t be greedy.”
I’m a writer. So, by nature, I tend to talk about my feelings, a lot. I will tell you when you piss me off but I will also have no qualms about telling you how much I love and appreciate you.
Lately though, I have felt a bit restricted in what I could say online. I’m a white cisgender woman who has a roof over her head and food on the table. I can’t possibly want anything more, right?
I work my ass off every day to be a better mother, a better wife, a better writer, a better woman.
If I want to complain, I have every right to. Yet, I feel that if I were to post such things on social media, I'd be hit with a barrage of "you're so privileged and entitled" responses.
Because God forbid, a white woman has feelings other than to be sad for everyone else around her who has less.
It’s like when you refused food at the dinner table as a child, and your parents would say that there’s starving children in Africa. I GET IT! But that doesn’t invalidate my feelings at the time. If I don’t like spaghetti and meatballs, I don’t like it!
If I was excited about a potential promotion, but was looked over, I have every right to feel disappointed. It’s not selfish; it’s human nature.
So, let’s talk about Jennifer Weiner, a successful author who is active on social media and most recently, explained her feelings about being passed over for an Oprah Book Club pick. She was hoping new personal essay book, Hungry Heart, would somehow be mentioned by Oprah. Who doesn't want to be mentioned by Oprah, right?
In a since deleted post, Ms. Weiner expanded on her failed movie deal and goes on to write:
"Then I find out that Oprah’s chosen a memoir about marriage and motherhood as her new book pick. “It’s funny!” (OhmyGod). “It’s frank!” (OHMYGOD). “It’s brave, and it goes to the dark places every woman’s been!” (OHMYGODOHMYGODOHMYGOD). Maybe the magazine didn’t cover my book because Oprah’s going to pick it! Maybe God shut that window because She’s going to open the BEST DOOR EVER.
And then — ha! — it’s someone else’s book.
Yes, I have my own career, and my own path, and my own purpose. I know who I am and I know who I am here for. I know that the universe provides an abundance of favor and love, and there’s enough for all of us, and we shouldn’t tear each other down when we don’t get what we want, and there are better things ahead.
And I’m proud of where I am, and proud that I got here not because some big-deal critic told the world to read my books, or some talk-show host anointed me, but because my books connected with readers.
But I am not going to lie and tell you that I haven’t been really sad about this....or that there isn’t a voice in my head (a small, sad voice) that sees a slim, blond, traditionally attractive woman getting something great and thinks, Oh, well, of course. Of course that’s why. Nobody wants someone who looks like you in their magazine or on their TV show. It’s crazy and untrue and I’d never let a friend talk to herself that way...but there it is."
If I ever sell hundreds of thousands of books and then say anything like this, please call the cops. pic.twitter.com/9wC809XgZc
— Kenny Coble (@KennyCoble) September 13, 2016
Jennifer Weiner sure spends a lot of time attacking other women authors for someone who pretends to care about helping women authors.... — Lincoln Michel (@TheLincoln) September 13, 2016
So, what I'm seeing here is that no one ever, in the history of the world, has ever felt jealousy?
Jezebel wrote a piece about how Jennifer "Wigged Out" over the Oprah deal.
In yet another deleted post, Weiner writes:
"According to my sisterfriends at Jezebel, I was not just being honest. Nor was I merely being vulnerable. I was, according to their headline…wigging out.
I thought I was being honest and vulnerable – honest about screwing up, honest about being envious, and about how, still, even at my age, even with what I’ve achieved, there remains a still, small voice inside of me that says, If you’d been a more successful bulimic, that could have been you."
I'm so angry FOR Jennifer. Here is she, a fellow writer (though I'm far from being anywhere in her league), and she's still being bullied.
So here is my response:
I love your books. I love your style of writing. You are someone I've looked up to for a while. Your posts made me feel better about my own self-doubt. Because it was honest and raw, people can't handle it. But just know that you've reached at least one person in this whole mess, and that one person appreciates your honesty. Thank you for all the times you've uplifted other women. Thank you for all the work you do to empower women.
Thank you for being you! Can't wait to read your newest collection!
With love and admiration,