The Girl with the Lower Back Tattoo
Note: The title of the article is the actual title of the book, I could not find a better one…!
Amy Schumer’s book is one of the best read I had in a while. You should seriously consider reading it, wether or not you like her – am a huge fan but I can understand that some people can be more averse to vagina jokes than I am. Well first, the girl is so much more than her jokes – which I personally find hilarious. She is as brillant as funny and is totally one of my role models – my role models list is a bit what the fuck and include women such as Sheryl Sandberg, Lana del Rey, another Amy (Poehler) or my grandma.
The book made me cry out of laugh but that’s not what’s most important – making me laugh is not such a hard task. What matters is that she used her voice to point out so many things that are not ok in women’s life. Summary.
Women in Hollywood, Women in Comedy, Women in whatever women do… I am not in the show business but it’s the same in most industries. I have always felt reluctant to be part of any Women in tech kinda movement because I don’t want to position myself as a WOMAN WHO WORKS IN TECH because I just work in tech and I happen to have a vagina (I know that’s the second time I say vagina in the article already). She explains how tired she is to have to answer questions such as « What does it mean for you to be a women in comedy ? » or « how hard is it today to be a woman in comedy ? ». I totally second her on that. I obviously find myself in slightly less interview situations but it’s super tiring to always be perceived as a gender before an individual. So please stop asking how we feel as women in X. No matter what industry we are in, we are ANYWAY likely to answer « it’s hard as fuck because we have to constantly prove that we are legitimate doing this or that but you know…. ».
Body, eating disorders, self confidence…
Beauty standards is a topic that comes back a lot – in the book but also in her media appearance in general. She points out that she might not exactly fit Hollywood beauty standards but she does not give a fuck because she is the only one who can say if she is beautiful. She insists on the importance of loving ourselves before seeking other people’s approval and she’s 100% right. Eating disorders are destroying so many people’s lives, it’s time for society to stop pushing bodies that could only be real if we’d ate one carrot a day. And even without going as far as eating disorders, we are all under a lot of pressure to be perfect in all ways – career, culture, health, body, sport… Instagram and co pressure us so much to be balanced, positive, healthy etc. Sometimes I just want to switch off everything, get drunk with bad wine and order pizzas. And it’s fine. We are humans. I am always trying to become a better person but I don’t want to be a perfect version of myself because it does not exist and it never will.
PS : To people out there suffering from EDs, you can make it, I promise. But that’s an other topic.
Sex and domestic abuse
We can never say it enough. It can happen to everyone. Anywhere. Amy opens up on her owns experiences to show how abuses can come from persons you trust. Rapes don’t only happen in dark street at night by creepy strangers. Too many people still believe that rape in a couple does not exist, because we live in a patriarchal society that -more or less consciously – still consider that women are primarily existing to fulfill males’ needs and to make children. But sexual abuse in a relationship is a huge topic that is not taken seriously enough. There is no arguing or debating over the definition of rape: any kind of sexual act MUST be consented. There’s no such thing as marital duties. Sex is great. One of the greatest thing ever with pizza and white wine. But it’s a great thing if and only if there’s consent. The worst thing about sexual / domestic abuse and any kind of violence in relationships is that most women feel guilty and never tell about it. Because somehow maybe something is wrong with them. Maybe they should be a better girlfriend or wife. Why would someone so close hurt them ? Amy Schumer reminds that it’s NOT normal and that NOTHING is wrong with you if your loved one turns out to be an horrible person. Something is wrong with him.
I really loved the book because it managed to be both hilarious and empowering. The three topics I mentioned are so important for women. The worst times of my life were related to those three topics. I spent a lot of time recovering from everything that happened to me. I am stronger than I have ever thought I could be today, but I have been endlessly lucky to be surrounded by wonderful people who helped me. Not everyone is this lucky, and some women have to deal with it alone. Sexual abuse, violence, sexism, eating disorders, they all are the results of how we position women in society, in family, in the workplace, at school etc. today.
I am now an even bigger fan of Amy Schumer because by opening up, she helps women empowering and feel good about themselves. When I closed the book (well, not literally, I was reading on my Kindle), I also closed some chapters of my life.