The Balance of #GirlBossing

It’s been more than a year since I blogged.

I know.

What used to be a near-daily occurrence has become something that now, I wish I had time to even read.

But such is the balance of #GirlBossing.

Welcome to the family, Liam! He like to make quite the entrance.

Since last we spoke, my darling readers, if there are any of you left, many things have change. Two jobs, one graduation, a dog and a move later, life has become much more complicated than it used to be.

And surprisingly, I don’t hate it.

Girl Bosses have always been the women I’ve looked up to; the Blair Waldorfs and Carrie Bradshaws of fiction became the Carly Heitlingers and Aliza Lichts of my real world. These fabulous ladies kicked butt and took names, and made a name for themselves in the process.

And suddenly, I look back at the last year, and realize that I, myself, have essentially been busy #Girlbossing. And sure, I’m still a work in progress. But if this is what Girl Bossing feels like, then I’m okay with that. Because at 21, I’m sitting in a pretty good place.

So what have I learned in the last year that has made me want to suddenly return from my blogging sabbatical?

To tell other future #GirlBosses in progress that not reaching perfection is okay.

In the last year, I’ve been developing my life in all aspects; personal, professional, even my side hustle took a good turn. But where I used to try and focus on everything at once – always putting 101% of my time into everything – I have learned that sometimes, it’s okay to put things on the back burner until you have the time, and the brain space, to focus on them.

Like blogging.

I kid, but still.

The time I spent trying to do everything at once made me sick, both physically and mentally, to the point that I couldn’t put 100% into anything, much less everything. But what I learned is that the balance you put into your life, the time you spend focusing on work, with a little bit of social life and other projects here and there, can mean the difference between succeeding at the things you put time into, or half-assing the stuff you try to do while dividing your time into ten different projects.

Such is the balance of #GirlBossing.

And there will be people who try to tell you no. There will be friends who don’t understand why you aren’t always out with your Girl Gang. There will be bosses who think you should quit those extracurriculars because you shouldn’t put your fabulous mind to anything but what they want you to do. And there will be partners who simply don’t understand or support someone with as much drive as you.

Those are the branches you trim from your life.

And as a #GirlBoss, there will be obstacles in your way. There will be companies who give you a job that entails sitting pretty and taking notes – you know that’s not for you. There will be members of the “Old Boys Club” who will assume that you are either too young or that because you’re a woman, you can’t do the job you’re interviewing for – or already have. Time to find somewhere new.

It’s time to embrace the things that make you the amazing #GirlBoss you are.

Granted, this method may not work for you – you may be superwoman, able to juggle 100 things at 100% all at once.

Cool beans for you.

But at 21, I’m tired.

I was starting to feel burned out, to want to tell the organization’s I’d worked with for years that I was done, to put 1/2 the effort into work, to spend less and less time with even the most understanding of friends because all I wanted to do was sleep (and snuggle with the new puppy…).  I was so busy juggling that while I was trying to keep all these things in the air going at 100%, I was forgetting to take care of the most important person in my life: me.

But there comes a time when you have to tell even yourself no.

So this is me, telling those Girl Bosses in progress, that it’s okay to say no.

It’s okay to stop juggling and start balancing.

In the words of another amazing #GirlBoss Emily Ley and a favorite verse from 2 Corinthians, I will hold myself to a standard of grace, not perfection. Perfect is often unattainable, but grace sets you apart.

A Year of Surprises

If 2014 was the year of careful planning and cautious thought, 2015 was my year to throw caution to the wind and have an adventure.

While 2014 ended on a quite sour note, flying back to Texas mid-vacation for a funeral, 2015 could not have began much better. On the first day of the New Year, while still mourning the loss of one of my closest family members, I was surrounded by friends, spent time at one of my favorite places in the world, Melbourne Beach, and continued what ended up being one of the best trips I’ve had to date.

Yes, 2015 was the year of flying high and living big. Fifteen flights, over 11,000 miles and a twenty-day extended solo roadtrip to Florida that have given me memories and friends that I wouldn’t trade for the world.

2015 was also a year of friends. It was the year I reconnected with those I’d lost during some of the most turbulent times of my life, and those who’d moved away and I’d thought were never coming back. It was the year of saying yes to spending a Saturday night out and about instead of at home with Netflix – and for that, I am incredibly grateful.

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2015 was the year I finished my term as an Executive Officer, a dream I’ve had since I was a starry-eyed high school junior just starting her term as Texas DECA State Reporter. And while standing on stage to pass on the gavel was bittersweet, Team 55 has made a name for themselves with an incredibly successful Collegiate Leadership Academy, which I was blessed to be able to attend and assist with this fall.

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2015 was a year of surprises – both personally and professionally. And while my romantic life may be a bit of a mess, there’s no denying that, it’s only because I’ve been so blessed to have been put in the position I am in professionally today. It’s hard to find a match when you’re an adult trapped in a college students’ body.

2015 was a year of self-acceptance. As crazy as it was, especially during my extended trip in the spring, and the fall where I was home for one half of weekend, and no others, between Halloween and Thanksgiving, I found myself more happy and at-peace than ever. Because, while at times, I was sick with stress and ready to pull my hair out, I was doing what I love, and those who love me were supportive of that, and checked in to make sure I was still alive occasionally.

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While 2015 was a year full of memories and excitement, it was also a year full of blunders and drama that I for one am happy to close the door on.

So here’s to a 2016 that’s fun and full of growth for myself and those around me, but maybe a little calmer than the year that preceded it?

 

And for your 2016 soundtrack:

For the record, his entire album is FANTASTIC. And this is coming from someone who really doesn’t like country.

 

 

 

Be Careful What You Wish For

I used to dream about being skinny. Legitimately, there were days where I would think about how my life would be different if I was a size 6 instead of the size 10-12 I’ve maintained since the 11th grade. I thought about all the fun trends I could try out that aren’t really viable options for plus size girls. All the stores I’d be able to shop in because things wouldn’t fit me so weirdly. I thought about how much more people would like me – how much more I’d like myself – if I lost the weight been trying to shed since freshman year of high school.

When I moved to Los Angeles briefly in 2009, I lost about 15 pounds. I came back, and got all these compliments and comments about how good I looked. The few pounds I’d lost had made a huge difference in the way other people saw me, and how I perceived myself. Of course, going back to my old eating habits, I gained the weight right back, and from then on tried all sorts of exercise routines and weird diets off and on throughout high school to loose that weight again – and more, I hoped. I made some stupid decisions, some really stupid decisions, regarding my health that I still regret to this day. I was a little girl with very little self esteem, and not a lot of people rooting for me at the time.

Getting smaller was always a goal in the back of my head, nagging at me when I’d go for a third slice of pizza or regular soda instead of diet. That was, until I got sick.

In March of 2015, I started to notice I was waking up feeling nauseous and all around gross. I would have to drink water to settle my stomach, and my appetite decreased significantly to the point where I couldn’t eat more than a meal a day, if that. I began having regular stomach pains and indigestion, coupled with other digestive issues that left me in bed, in the bathroom or staying at home for fear of embarrassment until I left for my month long trip to Florida in April.

I didn’t tell many people outside my family because I didn’t want them to worry (I still haven’t told many outside of work/friends, who might be with me when I experience symptoms), but a doctor’s visit before I left for Florida left me with only muscle relaxers in hand and a suggestion to “check back in” when I returned for further testing. I had already begun to experience some weight loss, because of the decreased appetite, and dropped about five pounds before my trip.

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When I left for Florida, I weighed roughly 170 pounds. I was a size large to extra-large, 10-12 in all my clothing.

Upon returning, I saw a new doctor who scheduled tests for mid-summer and put me on a few different medications to ease the various side effects I was experiencing, all but the decreased appetite. The testing didn’t reveal much, other than it was not cancer, an ulcer – as we suspected – or some sort of gluten intolerance. So on the medications I have stayed, waiting it out, going in for regular checkups and praying for some change to occur.

I hid being sick from most everyone for a long time, because I didn’t want to seem like I was complaining or being a hypochondriac. But there were weeks where every day I would have to force myself to get out of bed, go to work, and the second I would sit down I’d have to run to the bathroom, about to throw up all the medications I’d taken that morning simply because the nausea was so extreme.

In the nine months since I first became sick, I have lost almost 30 pounds, and nearly four dress sizes.

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November & December 2015

I still have issues eating more than a meal a day, or more than a normal sized portion of anything at one sitting.  In the days and weeks following stressful events or situations, my body reacts violently with pain and digestion problems that I can only control with medications that make me sleepy and delirious. However, it is getting better. The symptoms are few and far between now, and 2016 will hopefully be a year of answers for me.

The weight loss is what has killed me, though. Because while while there is some small piece of me that is incredibly satisfied every time someone says “you’ve lost so much weight,” “you look so good!” etc., there’s a bigger part of me that knows it wasn’t my doing. It was my body’s revolt. And the moment they ask me what I’ve been doing to lose weight, there is a mild hesitation, a “should I say it?” moment, before I respond with the truth. I’ve been sick. And that’s not the answer they’re looking for – they assume I’ve dropped weight through some sort of determination of mind, like how I take on every other piece of my life. But they’re mistaken.

I knew it was time to share when, this morning, while getting gas and a drink at our local fill up station, the regular attendant, who’s known me since high school, asked how I was doing – and made a joke about my constant travel, how I need to start taking the occasional plane or car, because all this running I’m doing is making me drop weight like crazy. I just laughed, thanked him and wished him a happy new year, and left.

While my confidence has increased since I’ve lost weight, it’s also because I’m more confident in myself, not just my body. Being sick has shown me who my real friends are, and the last few months have definitely bonded myself and my family closer together. I look back on the little girl who practically starved herself to fit into the “cool kid” clothes, and I pity her. Because if she saw all the cool things she would do in the future, size 12 and all, I think she’d be pretty proud of herself.

It’s funny how life gives you the things you think you want. It drops them in your lap like “Here, you happy?” and sometimes, it’s not in the way that’s the most convenient, or the best for you. And sometimes, it ends up being a really serious case of “Be careful what you wish for.”

 

And because we all need a little Bellas happiness in our lives:

When I Find Him

bench-1052066When I find him, he will be a gentleman. He will, at first, take me out on actual dates and pay, where we get dressed up and feel like we’ve gone back in time (then, at some point, I’ll offer to go dutch and he won’t fight, because he’ll know that I, too, work my ass off for the money I earn and don’t like feeling like a kept woman). He will hold doors, and offer me his jacket when I am inevitably freezing, and help me up from chairs and car seats because he understands that clumsiness is my thing. He will know that I’m not the “Netflix and Chill” kind of girl – sure, I love Netflix, and I love sharing a relaxing weekend evening with people I care about. But he will know I’m a firm believer that chivalry is not dead.

When I find him, he will keep me engaged. Off the bat I will find him humorous and amusing and he will find ways to keep a smile on my face. And he will be able to keep a conversation because there is not only a mutual attraction, but a mutual intellectual connection as well.

When I find him, he will take an interest in my career; both the one I have now and the one I intend to have in the future – and I, his. He will ask me how I plan on achieving my goals, and then push me to pursue them. He will understand the field that I’m in, and when he doesn’t, he’ll ask questions.

When I find him, he will listen. He will listen to me rant about bad days at work, about good things going on with my friends and family, about what dresses make me feel fat and what shows I like and don’t – and he will actually remember, for the most part, what I’ve said. He will listen, and take note, and surprise me by remembering the little things that make me smile when I’m at my lowest.

When I find him, he will make me feel loved. He will be head over heels for me, and there will be no question about that. Even early on, when that four letter word is far from anyone’s mind. He won’t play these half-ass mind games of “I’m not sure what I want,” and will be up front about wanting a relationship, not this something in-between people our age are so accustomed to. There will be flowers and notes and maybe, just maybe, he’ll pay enough attention to learn what my Claddagh ring is all about.

When I find him, he will be proud to call me his. He will find my quirks endearing, not embarrassing, and may even share one or two (or lots). He will be excited to have a significant other who is accomplished, driven and bright, and whose goal is to be successful, not earn her Mrs. degree.

Until I find him, I will work on being myself, without an “and” attached. I will learn how to be a great me, by myself, so when I do find him, we’re awesome separately, but amazing together. I will bide my time, not waiting around for the perfect man or praying to God to send him to me, but getting to know the people around me. Sure, there will be a few wrong tries here and there. I will get my heart broken, I will cry more tears than I’m sure I ever planned on.

But when I find him, it will all be worth it.

And sometimes, when I need encouragement, I’ll pop on tunes from my girl Ingrid…

Super Good Looking (All of the Time)

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Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch. Because who doesn’t like staring at Aaron Taylor-Johnson…yum.

While re-watching the most recent Avengers film, which, if you haven’t seen, I highly recommend, a notion occurred to me. Why is it that in super hero movies, female super heroes always look perfect? Like, their male counterparts could be covered in grime and dripping in sweat, but in the midst of a battle a female heroine is nary  a smudge, save the one that makes her look sexy and smoldering.

Seriously. Not a hair out of place. Not an eyelash uncovered in mascara. So when kicking ass and taking names, apparently these ladies are just covered in hairspray, antiperspirant and the entire Nordstrom makeup department from head to toe.

It sets a very unrealistic standard for women that notzucwfqqgsojpqdfjnec8fqpq5iitwt5xdjfj4dyvfksuiu0oxpanbynrxb3todac only should we be able to do everything, but we should look perfect while doing so at all times. Like, sorry mainstream media, but my hair is not going to look like Natasha Romanoff (pictured right).

I feel like occasionally, female super heroes might have a bad hair day, or not feel like clogging their pores while seeking justice. Top knot, anyone? How about just a little tinted moisturizer and we call it a day?

And so this just came out and I feel like I need to share.

Why I Never Want to be the “Damsel in Distress”

From an early age, girls are flooded with images of princesses and fair maidens who have to be swept off their feet in order to get the guy to like them. Boys, on the other hand, are shown images of burly GI Joe’s and uber-masculine super heroes and are told that a guy’s job is to do the rescuing.

But in a world of swiping right and double-tap to like, the last thing I’m about to do is be anyone’s damsel in distress.

As a female who’s spent the majority of her life working her butt off to get where she is – educated, employed and skilled – the idea of waiting for my life to start until a prince charming comes around is kind of ridiculous.

In today’s world, “damsel in distress” has a totally different meaning. It’s a woman who’s rescued from a broken home or relationship, a girl who gives up her education, job or another chance at bettering herself for a relationship or marriage. And while some women are totally okay with that, to resigning themselves to a life of being a housewife and room mom, I don’t think I ever could be.

I love what I do, I love having adventures, and I love having people around me who support me during the trials and triumphs. And while the idea of being a pretty princess when I walk down the isle some day, when, God willing, I do find someone who can balance out my crazy life, that is definitely not a priority to me, as much as society says it should be.

And to add notes…one of my favorite broadway songs, purely because of how hilariously misogynistic it is. I shared it in my Race, Gender and the Media class (which also inspired this blog).

Hey, Mickey

Disney, if you’ve ever looked at any of my other posts, is one of my favorite things in the entire world. I love the magical worlds they create, these beautiful scenes where everyone has a seemingly happy ending and they’re all singing and birds are chirping. But the older you get and the more critical your eye becomes, the more you see that, while magical, classic Disney movies perpetuate some serious biases.

In a recent Race, Gender and the Media class, we discussed how skewed the perceptions of relationships, race and gender roles are in not only classical fairytales, but also Disney movies, which so often portray love as abusive, race or ethnicity as a stereotype and gender as a societal norm to be followed, like staying home to make babies or charming a princess with a hair flip and well-timed sing along.

belle-angryBelle, trapped by a lonely and raging Beast, suffers from a serious case of Stockholm Syndrome when she falls in love with her captor. This sends the message to little girls everywhere that it’s okay if boys yell at you, keep you locked up and don’t let you see your family, as long as you get to wear pretty clothes and have a massive library to keep yourself occupado.

The song “Savages” in Pocahontas is probably one of the most disturbing pieces of racial hatred Disney has ever produced (after Songs of the South, obviously, but I won’t even touch that one). While it was obviously meant to portray the feelings the settlers had towards the Native Americans when originally landing in America, do you want your child running around singing a song that calls anyone “barely even human?”

And lastly, Snow White, the most classic Disney fairytale of them all, depicts a girl of 14 who becomes a victim of necrophilia when the prince she’s spent her entire life waiting for wakes her up from a “death like” sleep with “true love’s kiss.” Can you tell this one’s not my favorite?

720852dddfa1c9c894b30120d824bbf2While classic Disney movies have become the target of criticism for their role in perpetuating biases, more recent franchises have launched oodles of “Let it Go” wailing young fledglings who are now obsessed with a movie, Frozen, that teaches them about the importance of sisterly love, versus the primary focus of relationships and romance.

Though, with that particular film, I will point out that Anna does almost marry a man she met that day. However, Elsa does point this out, but it’s not the first time a Disney movie has done that, as many claim. Robert, the male lead in Enchanted (2007), questioned Giselle’s impending nuptials to Prince Edward after only a day as well. He was also the first Disney prince to ask why everyone is always breaking out into song, despite the notion that Flynn Rider was the first to do so.

In addition, one of Disney’s most overlooked princesses, Merida, who is actually one of the only princesses to be royal not by marriage but by birth, sends an incredibly positive message to viewers of Brave. Merida’s refusal to marry a man she doesn’t love simply to keep her crown (similar to Mia in Princess Diaries 2) and willingness to go to any length to save her family from the consequences of her own mistakes is refreshing compared to the doe-eyed Rapunzel following Flynn Rider around like a lost puppy.

It’s up to you to make your own conclusions about Disney films. They’ll always be a huge part of my life, and hopefully my kids’ lives too, someday. But it’s about asking the right questions, keeping an open mind, and teaching those who may not to do so when the time is right.

Confident

music_album_dontforget_57150e72The first blog I ever wrote was a review on Demi Lovato’s Don’t Forget album in middle school journalism class. It seems only appropriate to come full circle with a college journalism class, and Demi’s new album, Confident.

We had a great discussion a few weeks ago in my Race, Gender and the Media class during a presentation on Mariah Carey, and her transformation from innocent musician to sexy diva over the span of her now 14 albums. We discussed how the media portrays women as needing to be sexy, as I’ve discussed on this blog before, but also how the music industry as a whole transforms singers.

When Demi first started out as a shy, gap-toothed awkward girl on Camp Rock, she was one of my favorite performers. Her voice was powerful, she was just rebellious enough to be fun, but not a bad influence, and she was friends with the Jonas Brothers. To middle school Holly, this was idol-worthy.

But then, over the course of a few years, things changed. When Demi started on her Disney channel show Sonny With a Chance, she changed. A lot. Her red carpet looks got less her, more glam. She lost a LOT of weight, which made me, as a curvier girl, feel uncomfortable. And then, on her world tour with the Jonas Brothers, she got into a fight with one of her dancers.

Demi had gone from being my innocent idol to a Disney rebel in what seemed like no time flat. And I lost the few connections I still had left with someone I’d looked up to.

It took a while for me to find reasons to like Demi again. I watched her climb back to stardom after entering a rehab facility, finishing treatment and very soon after making a statement that she had not only had a mental breakdown, but was dealing with addiction issues and bulimia, which explained why she had lost so much weight. Most of the issues she was facing were due to the pressures of being a teen girl – who started at 15 – in an industry that pressures women to be perfect and perky all the time.

But there are so many stars who try to come back after these big incidents and blame the events in their lives for all their issues, either pretending they didn’t happen or falling back into the cycle time and time again. What made me respect Demi again is that she used her issues as a platform to help other people – she’s spoken out against media that belittles eating disorders, created a foundation for mental illness after her father, who also struggled with mental illness, passed away, and has become an anti-bullying advocate, due to her experiences with bullying during school.

While her three other albums Here We Go Again, Unbrokenconfident-demi-cover and Demi weren’t my favorite, the messages Confident sends are very similar to Demi’s first album, Don’t Forget. With tracks like “Stone Cold” and “Confident,” it’s definitely got a similar vibe of girl power and “I don’t need a man for my happiness,” which is what originally made Demi successful.

And as for Demi becoming an idol again? Well, her relationship with Wilmer Valderrama is pretty damn adorable, but I feel like Demi’s still too much a part of the machine for my tastes – and all the studded jumpsuits are a little scary.

But hey, you never know. Artists reinvent themselves all the time. We could see a return to old school Demi. But if not, I’m okay just listening to her music on the radio if it comes on.

In the mean time…

Geeky for girls: Why does it have to be sexy?

The objectification of women in media is not a new concept. As long as there have been films, television, books or advertisements, the cultural norms of treating women like sex objects has been a steady part of every day life, seeping into generation after generation through the media we digest.

From the dangerously vivacious Victoria’s Secret models, to the Botox-ed and implanted Real Housewives, the unrealistic standards media continually set for women creates a vicious circle that, unfortunately, won’t break until society’s views change.

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Clearly you see the problem here.

Recently in my Race, Gender and the Media class at UNT, a student in my class did a media analysis (similar to my own) on World of Warcraft, and how the male characters were portrayed as varied versions of male creatures, with different features and body types. Female characters were primarily portrayed with minimal armor, despite it being a battle-based game, with skimpy outfits and unrealistic body types for women who would, presumably, be fighting to the death with other characters (see – left).

What every sensible Gryffindor needs. Photo courtesy of Hot Topic.

I’ve been a part of a few different nerdy cultures – namely Potter and Doctor Who – for a while now. And if you look at the products that are “unisex” or clearly labeled as men’s/male, there’s no hint of sexyness or really any gender bias. Men’s tee shirts aren’t form fitting, their socks are a little bit bigger, and their accessories tend to be a little less sparkly. That’s about it.

If you look at the products made for women, especially clothing, it seems like designers go out of the way to make nerdy women “sexy.” From pinup dresses with fandom prints, to six-inch stilettos with your favorite characters on them, the products pushed at female fans are hardly ever at the same price point or the same level of usability as those pushed at males.

Of course, this is all part of a larger issue – males in any role are going to be viewed very differently than females, and they should, as, inherently, we have very different characteristics as genders. However, there’s different, and then there’s unequal.

For example, my Race, Gender and the Media professor recently re-tweeted a post boycotting Party City, after the clear objectification of CHILDREN through their costumes.

Because somehow, all female cops are sexy. Even if their children.

Again, I just threw up in my mouth a little.

I think it’s interesting to go back and look at some of the costumes Party City has, not just for children but also in the different fandom areas – if I see one more “sexy” wizarding costume that looks like something out of that Hogwarts scene from Epic Movie, I may scream.

But in the mean time, I’d love to hear what my fellow female nerds think. Do you have an issue with the products being pushed at you? Do you like suppliers making you feel like you HAVE to be sexy?

And, because it’s gotta happen…

What “The Intern” Says About Women In Power

intern_poster1-thumb-600x888-97076When a long-time friend and I went to see The Intern on one of my first free days in weeks, I don’t think either of us were expecting the story line the movie went with.

The film follows Ben Whittaker (Deniro), a 70-year-old widower who applies for a “senior” internship at an online retail startup run by the young Jules Ostin (Hathaway).

By the title and tagline of the movie, you’d expect a comedy all about Ben’s struggle to keep up with 21st century technology, working in a fashion-based company and of course, the aspect of being one of the oldest (if not the oldest) employee in the place.

And while there are a few jokes in each of those areas thrown in to add to the comedic aspect of the film, what we really got was some much more deep: a true look into what it’s like to not only be an entrepreneur in the digital age, but also what it means to be a female at the top of the heap in business, and in a relationship.

Jules, to start out, is by no means a bitch-boss. This was pleasing, as typically when women are seen as leaders, they’re shown to be mean or catty, unnecessarily adding to the stereotype2006_devil_wears_prada_003  that women are inherently not meant for positions of power, simply because they can’t keep their cool. The first thing that struck me about Jules, and this is primarily because I’m a movie addict, is how STARK of a contrast she is to the many of the female bosses we see. My favorite, of course, to compare her to was none other than fashion icon Miranda Priestly, purely because Anne Hathaway shines just as much in The Intern  as the did in 2006’s The Devil Wears Prada.

No, Jules is sweet and honest and appreciative of her staff, but the flipside to this is she works so hard for so many hours daily on a growing company company that has become her baby that file_607859_intern-trailer she’s 1) begun to neglect her health, forgetting to eat and not sleeping enough, and 2) lost valuable time with her young daughter and husband, Matt. This, we’ll get to in a minute.

Jules glides around the office on her bike, managing crisis after crisis, until she’s told by her right-hand-man that the major investors in her company want to bring in a “more seasoned” CEO to offer her assistance. I’d like to note that ALL the CEO’s she interviews, as recommended and approved by her major investors, are male.

While this crisis in her work life is going on, the “senior” internship program has placed Ben with Jules, something she’s not entirely comfortable with. Why? Because he’s too observant, THE INTERN and she’s got “a lot going on.” That “lot” is later revealed to be her cheating husband Matt (Anders Holm – Workaholics, The Mindy Project), a formerly successful marketing executive who quit his job to be a stay-at-home dad when Jules’ company took off.

The roles for Matt and Jules are completely reversed – she comes home and stays up late working, he stays home and attends school functions with their daughter, Paige. At one point, he began a sentence with “I don’t want to sound like the other moms, but…”

So this begs the question – can a woman in today’s world have it all?

Jules finds, like many women, that the moment she becomes more successful than her husband and he resents that, he begins to look for affection somewhere else. And while her hectic schedule and insane work ethic leave little to no time for him and her daughter, there’s a point where you sit down and have a discussion with someone, not cheat on them.

On the same line, would the major investors of her company have reacted the same way if she had been a male CEO/President? Her startup was seeing record profits and new customers, but as happens with young companies, they didn’t think that she and the staff of 220 she had built up could handle the success they had worked so hard to achieve.

The problem, as I’ve mentioned on here before, lies in the stigmas we as a society put on women in power. She has to be nice, but not too forgiving. Firm, but not too aggressive. Nurturing, but not hovering. And attractive, but not too sexual. And above all, we have to make time to do what all good women are supposed to do – settle down, have a family, and take care of our men in every way possible.

Did that make anyone else gag? Not just me? Okay, good.

Drunk Anne Hathaway - probably one of my favorite parts of this movie

Drunk Anne Hathaway – probably one of my favorite parts of this movie

As someone who’s experienced the problem of running into one too many misogynistic coneheads who don’t seem to understand that women, too, can be leaders, it’s hard to fathom that in ten years or so, when I imagine myself (hopefully) being settled down and ready to start a family, I won’t run into the same issue Jules does. Even now, at 20, I’m out of town or working so frequently that I rarely have time to finish my school work, much less do enjoyable things. Hence why seeing this movie was such a treat!

I’ve been in that situation of feeling like you’re giving all you can to a relationship and it’s still not enough, and, frankly, if someone doesn’t love what you do, than I don’t think they can really love you. And being put in a place where you have to choose between something you’ve worked your whole life towards, and someone who’s supposed to be there to support you no matter what, well, I’m not sure if that’s love at all. But maybe that’s just my inexperience talking.

So now, in the society we live in, it’s not far fetched for someone like me to look at Jules and think “this could be me, if I don’t clearly outline my expectations in a relationship from the start.” And what are those expectations? Well. I think it’s gonna take a little more self-discovery to figure out, but I know one thing for sure. Every strong woman needs a partner – someone who compliments you, not completes you, and who both understands what you do and is proud of your success, not scared that you’ll abandon them or overshadow them by the amazing things you accomplish. It doesn’t hurt if they’re a good gentleman, like Ben, either.

My parents are prime examples of this; a lawyer (Dad) and a political fundraiser turned real estate agent (Mom), and they’ve been together every step of the way, with my dad just as supportive of my mom’s crazy antics now as the day they got married. And for the record, my dad, like Ben, still carries a handkerchief.

But I digress. In Jules’ case, Matt does figure his ish out in the end – I won’t spoil that much for you, but let’s just say I almost started crying in the theatre!

For now, change has to come in the way women are viewed by men in the workforce, unfortunately. My hope is that this generation of women, those raising boys now, will teach them how to respect and understand women who may be more successful than them. They’re the start of the change we want to see.

On a less-serious note, this movie was filled Photo credit to Warner Bros. Pictures with some PRETTY hilarious moments, as mentioned above. Any time you mix Deniro with actors from newer generations it gets pretty funny, and his interactions with Jason (Adam DeVine – Workaholics, Pitch Perfect) and Davis (Adam Pearlman – The Inbetweeners) are ace. There’s a particular one involving a masseuse in the trailer that had my friend and I laughing pretty hard, and if the scene to the right doesn’t have you rolling by the end, you have no sense of humor.

I kid, obviously.

The Intern is in theaters now, and if you haven’t had a chance to see it, I highly recommend it! Check out the trailer below:

ANDDDDD Bonus video because the soundtrack on this movie was also rockin: