Don’t Assume

Lately there has been a lot of crap floating about the tabloids and across Twitter. None of it good, useful or kind. I’ve seen women tearing shreds off other women for not doing what they think is “right”. It’s not “right” for Lisa Curry to have a baby at 51. It’s not “right” for Taylor Swift to have lots of boyfriends. It’s not “right” that Nigella Lawson is letting her husband get away with physically abusing her in public.

Don’t assume you know what’s going on in other people’s lives.

Don’t assume Lisa Curry is using someone else’s eggs to have a child at 51. She could be using her own. After all, women MUCH older than 51 have fallen pregnant naturally. A family friend got pregnant naturally at 49 last year. She spent the entire 9 months in a state of shock and she was very uncertain and scared about having a child so late in life. But she did, the baby is perfect and she is in love with a gorgeous little girl.

Don’t assume Taylor Swift is a “slut” (damn I hate that word!) simply because she’s had more than 3 boyfriends in her 22 years. Has it occurred to people that maybe blokes don’t stick around because maybe she doesn’t give them what they want? Maybe she loves being in love? Maybe she just likes sex? None of that is a crime and none of it deserves judgement.

Don’t assume that Nigella Lawson hasn’t filed a police report after the weekend’s horrific events. If you were famous, would you want the whole world to know that you were in a violent marriage? Would you announce to the paparazzi that you were just popping down to the police station to file a report? Whilst there are NO excuses for violence, there are (very occasionally) reasons – perhaps he has dementia or a mental illness and she feels it’s her duty to stick by him? Or perhaps she feels compelled to make the marriage work no matter what?

These statements aren’t necessarily my personal opinions or thoughts. I’m just trying to say – don’t believe everything you read, don’t assume you know the intimate details of other peoples lives and don’t assume it’s okay to perpetuate rumours.

Celebrities live under a microscope. There are thousands, sometimes even millions, of people just watching and waiting for them to do something “exciting” like hook up with an A-grade celebrity, go through a nasty break-up, have a baby out of wedlock (oh the horror!) or leave the house without knickers on.

Let’s put me under the microscope: Husband has physically manhandled me out of a cafe when I was having a panic attack – it looked pretty brutal to other people, but I need to get out of there and I could barely move. If I’d been stalked by the paparazzi, then I’m sure the headlines would’ve read “PerthWife in abusive marriage!” Husband and I have also had a fight in public. It didn’t turn physical, but we didn’t like each other very much at the time. We’ve also had some uh… quality married time in a semi-public place. I regularly leave the house with no knickers on. Then there have been my weight issues where I got fat, lost weight then got fat again (thank you insomnia meds!) Very exciting stuff if I was Kim Kardashian. Not so much because I’m just a dull overweight wife from the suburbs.

I guess my point is, nobody looks good under a microscope. And you know what, most of the time it’s none of our goddamn business what other people get up to.

As my grandmother always used to say, if you don’t have anything nice to say then keep your lips zipped.

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The Line

{I’ve been a bit hesitant to press the ‘Publish’ button on this blog post after the events of the weekend. But I’ve decided to go ahead with it.}

I hate pranks of all kinds – I find them cruel. They can begin in good humour and quickly turn bad. I’ve seen pranks end with people feeling humiliated, embarrassed and hurt (both emotionally and physically – one prank I know of ended with a trip to the hospital and a dislocated knee). When I hear a prank call come on the radio, I always change the station – they make me uncomfortable. I find them in poor taste and as unfunny as slapstick humour. But of course, humour is subjective.

So when I heard of the prank phone call to King Edward VII Hospital regarding the Duchess of Cambridge, I thought it vile. Not only was it a tacky “joke”, but a group of people (in this case, two radio DJ’s, their producer(s) and other 2DAY FM station staff who were aware of the phone call) attempted to invade the privacy of another person who was in hospital receiving medical treatment. Whether the person was a duchess, president, Grammy-award-winning singer, D-list reality TV “star” or just the average person like me is irrelevant. It was wrong. It was an invasion of privacy. And the invasion of privacy is not a joke – it shouldn’t be something we laugh at as we eat our breakfast or drive home from work.

I can’t comment on whether or not the nurse (the second nurse who divulged the medical information) involved in this incident has done something wrong. I don’t know the privacy policy of the hospital where the Duchess of Cambridge was receiving treatment so I’m not going to speculate. But the two DJ’s and the radio station who then broadcast what that nurse said (ie: confidential medical information) to the world are, to me, immoral, unethical and repulsive.

I know a lot of people say we shouldn’t treat the Royal family like gods, but it’s not about their position or status or title. It’s about privacy and not invading it. It doesn’t matter whether the patient is fighting cancer, passing a kidney stone, being treated for hyperemesis gravidarum or getting a splinter removed from their finger – a patient receiving medical treatment should be granted the right to privacy.

I know there’s a market for gossip magazines and websites. I’m cool with that – if you want to read about which celebrity couple are possibly getting married, see the photos of that singer and decide if she’s pregnant or not, discuss who looked better than who on the red carpet of some award ceremony, then read away! I’m as nosy as the next person and enjoy reading the occasional trashy gossip magazine.

But there should be a line and it shouldn’t be crossed. Photographs taken of famous people in a private place, private emails made public by a hacker, confidential information obtained in a devious manner, etc. – they are an invasion of privacy. I don’t like private information being made public without the consent of the person or people involved and I think that should be the line that the media (or anyone, really) doesn’t cross – famous (and infamous) people are still human beings and should, in my opinion, have the right to privacy no matter what their title is, how much money they earn or what country they live in.

I think sometimes we just have to remind ourselves that the private lives of other people are none of our business.

{The number for Lifeline is 13 11 14.}

{Also note that if you’re going to comment on this post, keep it respectful. By all means agree/disagree and have your say, but any comments which include hate-speech and death threats to anyone involved in this incident will be deleted.} 

Stop The Bitchiness

I’m tired.

I’m tired of all the bitchiness that’s going around at the moment.

This bitchiness is sometimes disguised as humour in the popular news websites and blogs of the interwebs, although sometimes writers don’t even bother to hide the cruel words amongst a few jokes. And to be honest, all this bitchiness is turning me away from those sites and those writers. We’re told “Don’t judge, be kind!” on one site, but a few days later a nasty and disdainful piece of writing comes out disguised as a humorous opinion piece and the “no judging” concept has flown out the window.

Yes, Lara Bingle has done some dumb things in her time, but haven’t we all? There’s no need to write condescending articles about her. And perhaps the gold frock Delta wore at the final show of The Voice was not her best fashion choice (although I actually quite liked it), but instead of calling her brain-dead can’t we just embrace the fact that we all have different tastes when it comes to fashion? And don’t even get me started on the nastiness that surrounded Chrissie Swan and THAT women’s magazine article.

We’re women! (Okay, only about 50% of us, but I’m hazarding a guess that most readers here are women – feel free to correct me if I’m wrong though.) Whatever happened to the sisterhood? What happened to sticking up for each other and supporting each other? What happened to embracing differences and realizing that none of us are perfect and make brilliant decisions 100% of the time?

I’m guilty of being bitchy at times. It’s a fine line between trying to be honest and tell it how it is in that blunt and slightly sarcastic way I’m known for amongst family and friends and crossing the line into downright bitchiness just for the sake of it.

So I’m going to try and stop being bitchy. It’s juvenile and there are better ways to get my point across.

I’m not perfect, I know I’ll cross that line every now and then. But I’ll try not to, because words can hurt just as much as a slap in the face. Now if only other writers and social commentators could try and join in my “Stop the bitchiness” pledge….

Inappropriate Celebrity Crushes

We all have a crush on at least one celebrity. There are the usual’s – Brad Pitt, Ryan Gosling, David Beckham (until he opens his mouth), Patrick Dempsey, Ryan Reynolds. More recently (thanks to The Voice) the Madden brothers, Seal and Keith Urban have all seen an increase in interest. These are the men we talk about to our friends, our family (even my Mum thinks Keith Urban is scrumptious!) and to fellow social networkers. These are the men we are happy to say, “I’d bang him harder than a screen door in a tornado” to other people.

But what about those crushes we DON’T talk about? The ones we’re too embarrassed or ashamed to admit because they’re old/overweight/have grey hair/a shocking personality/no sense of humour/the wrong gender/have a criminal record – circle one or many! I’m sure there are a number of people who lust after Simon Cowell despite the fact that he’s a complete egotistical wanker.

And what about the straight girls who have crushes on straight girls? Admittedly these crushes aren’t of the sexual persuasion, but surely I can’t be the only person whose tummy does a flip-flop when I see Taylor Swift looking utterly ravishing (again!) on a red carpet or stage. Although I think this kind of inappropriate crush is more to do with “I want to be her” rather than “I want to shag her”. If only I had curly blonder hair, a slender body, gorgeous feline eyes, stunning dresses and a truckload of talent my life would surely be perfect?

So anyway, I want us (that’s you and me, my darling readers) to feel safe here. Imagine this blog as a big, giant squashy bed making you feel warm and comfortable. It’s time to fess up. There will be no judgement, no sniggers, no “REALLY?!” comments with the big capital letters and the unbelieving question mark at the end.

Who are your inappropriate celebrity crushes? 

I’ll kick start proceedings. Sadly, I’ve had many inappropriate celebrity crushes over the years – to be honest, a frightening amount considering I’m not quite thirty-years-old yet. Here goes: Nick Stokes (yes, the character from CSI, not the actual actor whose name is George Eads), Richard Hammond (from Top Gear), Brett Lee (okay, maybe that one is appropriate and my love of cricket isn’t?), Ewan McGregor’s character from the film “Eye of the Beholder” (and if you’ve ever seen the film, you’ll know why it’s inappropriate!), Gary Mehigan (from MasterChef), Anthony Warlow, Sean Connery and Paul McDermott, fur and all.

Now it’s your turn – whose your inappropriate crush? And remember, no judging – this is a safe place. Any judgmental comments will be deleted immediately. And if dutch courage is needed, I have a bottle of vodka on standby….