April 2015 archive

Alpha Mom, Emasculation and Helicopter Wife-ing

“I’m Not Bossy, I’m The Boss.” – Beyoncé. Queen of All Things.

I am the boss of my house. I believe everyone that lives here will agree to that. I am the Alpha Mom.  I am not bossy, but I do tend to steamroll decisions for most things, making them go my way.

It’s a tough job, but someone’s got to do it.

Well, yesterday I was called out by a family friend for “emasculating” my husband. Now, before you go getting your hate on for me, let me explain…

First of all, we are urban city folk, through and through. My son thinks camping is sleeping in his Spiderman tent in the living room. Our hiking is through High Park, ending off at a wine bar to celebrate us getting out there and enjoying nature! Our “backyard” is a 200 square foot area that we fondly refer to as “The Dirt Pit” and right in the middle of this is a cluster of old, rotten tree stumps.

My Husband wandered in from the back, in his “gardening clothes” which consisted of expensive gym shoes and his leather gloves he wears to work, and announced he was going to buy a chainsaw. He said he can’t dig the stumps out, that the roots run too deep, he needs to cut them.

I laughed and said “OH NO YOU’RE NOT.” He then said he could rent one.

“DOUBLE NO.” I laughed even harder.

“NOT EVEN AN AXE!” I yelled as he headed back outside.

So, I ask you, was that emasculating? Maybe.

Want to know what else is? CHOPPING YOUR LEG OFF IN YOUR OWN BACKYARD.

My husband is great at many things. He can hold his own tasting first growth Bordeaux with a Baron in France, and can sing Karaoke backed by a live band. He’s funny and charming, but he has never really used any sort of equipment like this.

So I am straight up saying he’s not allowed to have a chainsaw. Or really any other power tools. My mocking tone was very similar to Ralphie’s mom in a Christmas Story. I won’t let my husband “shoot his eye out.” Moms are right, everyone else is wrong!

I wouldn’t necessarily say I am a Helicopter Parent, but I have been known to make my son get out of the tree, because I’m quite sure he’s going to fall and impale himself on the spiked fence below. I also yell “HOLD THE RAILING” every single time he comes down the stairs, because I am certain one of these times he’s going to fall, knocking out his front teeth. So, maybe I tend to over worry…

You’ve heard of Helicopter Parenting? How these parents won’t let the kids have any fun on their own? How they hover around making sure they don’t fall in the playground, making them wear safety gear to ride their bikes? Never letting them out of their sight, and making sure every activity they do is safe and structured?

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Well, I am Helicopter Wife-ing.

If my husband really wants to use a chainsaw, he will have to take a class. If he wants to throw an axe, he can join the Axe Throwing League. I will only let him do these activities in a safe, controlled environment. I will pick him up after his class, take him out for a drink, and ask all about how it went, just like I do with my kids. Fun right? Problem solved, no more worrying about backyard dismemberment!

Maybe he will be really great at using these types of equipment, take a real shine to it, and will end up being quite the Handyman. But, until then. NO CHAINSAWS!

So maybe this is emasculating. Maybe I tend to hover. Maybe I worry too much, but I just want my family to be safe, including my Husband.

I love him to pieces.

But I do not want him in pieces.

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I Choose to #NotChoose (AKA) #DoveOff

SO, it’s the day before my 44th birthday. My gift to myself was a promise to, from this point on in my life, NOT get fired up over stuff on the internet. Yep. No more fighting. No more tears, no more anxiety, NO SHAMING, no NOTHING. I will NOT INTERNET ENGAGE. From this day forward the only time I will internet cry, is when I watch You Tube videos of War Vets being reunited with family members and pets. Or, if I need a break from that, my new favourite You Tube sensation, people meeting their deceased loved ones’ organ recipients. These things are just feel good, healthy ugly crying clips, not things that make me question my past parenting or life choices. I have plenty of real day to day goings on that I overreact to, so no worries, I will still be able to get my kookoo on just fine!

Well, that promise lasted until 11am, when I stumbled across DOVE’S newest campaign. #ChooseBeautiful

Now, I know, it’s my own fault. I shouldn’t have watched their video. BUT I had to. I couldn’t help it. For those of you who are unfamiliar with Dove campaigns, here’s how they go. FIRST, they make women, REAL women, make some sort of a choice, which will make them feel bad about themselves. Then they sit them down, show them the video of them making a choice to make themselves feel bad, point out they did this, making them feel bad about feeling bad, and then tell them their products will help correct the damage we women have done to ourselves and to our daughters.

WHAT HAVE WE DONE TO OUR DAUGHTERS!!??!!

You get the point. After some quick internet research, (you know, how I find ONLY the comments I want to find, proving my point, and my point only!) I have found a lot of people are unhappy with this campaign. It seems we are getting wiser to the ways of advertising, and how they totally prey on Women’s insecurities. Advertising will always target women like this, it’s how stuff gets sold. BUT the thing that bugs me the most about Dove, is that they do it in an underhanded way. Choose Average or Beautiful. Wait, you’re ALL Beautiful, can’t you see that? They could have chosen any words in the world, but they chose a negative and a positive, with both choices leaving you feeling bad. (The signs were also installed by men. Did you catch that irritating point??!!??) Yes, they could have chosen other words, like Smart or Funny, but you know what? Women are ALL THOSE THINGS. We don’t need to decide what we are, or how we see ourselves while heading to work or the mall. Everyone has great days, and everyone has bad days. Some days I think I’m Kate Upton, other days I catch a glimpse of myself in a store window and say “WHAT THE FUNKY FUDGECICLES, I LEFT THE HOUSE LIKE THIS!!??” I am super sick and tired of so many media forms making people feel badly about themselves. We all do this without any help. I would sure love it everyone who feels like me would go to their hashtag and let them know what you really think of their #ChooseBeautiful campaign. In case my internet rage isn’t enough to convince you, did you know that Unilever, the company that makes Dove and these ads, also makes Axe for men. In case you’ve forgotten how much Unilever cares for women, and how we see ourselves, watch this:

Well, Happy Birthday to me. I will not engage in internet rage. Starting…TOMORROW.