Girl Crushes

Helloooo helloooooo friends! Well gee, I took a longer blogging hiatus than I intended. My apologies darlings! If the reasons for my absence were interesting in any way I’d certainly share them here, but alas they’re not. Just modeling, scheduling modeling, commuting to modeling, coming home from modeling and resting from modeling. Sounds monotonous I’m sure, but I wouldn’t have it any other way to be honest. Throw in the occasional drinks with friends and yoga classes and that’s my life summarized. I can’t complain.

Also, lately, I’ve been inspired and impressed by the actions of young women I’m privileged to know. Both of them are teenagers. One is my niece Olivia, and the other, M, is a girl I know from my church. Without going into any details I’ll just say that they’ve demonstrated the admirable ability to assert themselves, and push back against uncomfortable situations, in ways I was never able to do at their age. I envy them. And I applaud them. For far too long we’ve raised girls to be people-pleasers, to be “nice” and to “smile”, to “find a husband”, and be “supportive” and prioritize other peoples’ happiness while neglecting our own. That’s a toxic recipe for a life as a future doormat. When I was 13 years old my grandmother told me that I’d repel men if I had too strong “opinions”. In a family full of old country Armenian immigrants, in which sons and men were valued far more than girls, the message wasn’t exactly subtle. If you’ve never been a girl raised in that environment you can never understand. And even though I’m a grown woman now who has moved well past all that shit, I’m still thrilled to see young women taking the reins of their own lives and standing up for themselves, without getting ‘permission’ first.

Me in watercolor by Sylvia Ryder:

12 thoughts on “Girl Crushes

  1. Grier Horner says:

    My compliments to Olivia and M for pushing back, and to you for writing so well.

  2. scultore says:

    Beautiful, I wonder how the
    human race managed to continue for so long treating half the population the way men have

    • artmodel says:

      Bruce,

      This is so well put. When one thinks of it that way it’s even crazier and more enraging! It’s comforting that there are men like you who “get it”. But I’ve been rather horrified lately at the the great many men who really don’t get it, at all.

      Thank you so much for your comments!

      Claudia

  3. Bill says:

    Personally, I was never attracted to compliant women (He: What do you want to do? She: Oh, I dunno — what do YOU want to do? I’ve had those conversations — it sounds like dialog from a bad Seinfeld episode.) Besides, life can get a little tough sometimes — and I always wanted to have someone with the strength of character to have my back. I think the key is to realize that you can be a warm, caring human being without feeling that you can’t stand up for yourself. R-E-S-P-E-C-T, as the song goes.

    • artmodel says:

      Bill,

      I really do feel bad, in a way, for good guys like you because in my years of experience as a single, independent woman I’ve witnessed the latent misogyny come out in men from whom I didn’t expect it. Very distressing when that happens. Oh I could tell stories! Another time perhaps. But I’ve reduced my percentage of truly good men among the entire male population down to around 10% at this point. I used to think it was 30 or 40. Not anymore. Not with all this “bro culture” shit spreading like wildfire.

      Thanks for commenting!

      Claudia

  4. Ken says:

    I completely agree I just don’t get how people can even mouth such words (as your grandmother did) in this day. Everyone should contribute without restriction (internal or external). I firmly believe in synergy. I want everyone to contribute/weigh in. Everyone benefits. I even had a guy I work with internally edit what he did, because he didn’t want to rock the boat. Actually infuriated me, because I thought we were working on a team, and I needed his entirely valid input.

    And girls standing up for themselves? It shows maturity and wisdom. It’s the way it should be.

    • artmodel says:

      Ken,

      Thank you for supporting strong girls! We really really need to start raising them differently. It’s enough already with this stupid, archaic idea that women’s lives/validation are defined by men and their relationships to men. Wife, daughter, sister. Please. We don’t do that to boys. We shouldn’t do it to girls. My niece made a decision with herself in mind (for a change) after months and months of not being listened to. I listened to her and her mother listened to her. But others didn’t, and they were taken aback, responding to her strong decision with guilt-tripping and crazy accusations. That’s what happens when a young woman asserts herself. People lose their shit. They can’t comprehend that a girl can have a mind of her own. Maybe they should have been more attentive in the first place.

      Thanks for your comments Ken!

      Claudia

  5. Always continue to move “well past all that shit”

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