Often times women get together to complain about their boyfriends, husbands, booty calls, and attached love interests. They sit around a table, listening to sorrowful boleros from Lolita and sipping on Manishewitz grape wine. They sing along to the tunes, off key and off balance, and find support in the common misery that they’ll continue to live “for the kids”, “for the rent”, “for love”.
Mami was one of those women as were my Tia Argentina and third cousin Josely. I remember rushing by the living room, eager to play with my cousin Wendy’s new Barbie or listen to Yahaira’s salsa mixed tapes. We were unaware that the women who were our rocks were crumbling. They weren’t getting the love and respect they desired and deserved. So they chugged Jewish wine, ate their pain away con platos de locrio, and cursed men behind closed doors.
Growing up witnessing this bitter camaraderie led me down the same path. At 30 years old, I found myself partaking in the same whiny, male-bashing behavior. The only difference being a bottle of Bacardi and the oooh and aahs of Xscape in the background. So what is it about women? Why are we so compelled to suffer in silence? And how do we get what we want from the men in our lives? Here’s how:
Be the grand women that you are meant to be! The next time a little one rushes by your living room, make sure they witness smiling faces, not mascara smears. Your and your kin will be merrier because of it.