Like so many of you, I gobbled up the books. I live my mundane life, and get through the day to day, with an occasional date from my Match.com suitors. Living in hope that my Cary Grant or George Peppard will walk through the door. Where has all the romance gone? It certainly will not return as the norm, if women allow their husbands or lovers to think that this is the way that we want to be treated.
And also, like so many of you, we became lost in the fantasy of what those books meant to each of us. The secret housewife passion. BFF would only listen to the audio books, and she did so when she was cleaning and vacuuming. Her house was never cleaner, but her Catholic sensibilities seemed to have sensed something that I missed. Stupidly, I laughed it off, while she seemed more disturbed. “Nope. I will NOT see that movie,” she told me on numerous occasions. She saw something that either I was in denial of, or I simply missed in my lonely, husbandless state of being.
Poor Anastasia. I rooted for her in those silly books to “get the guy”, when in reality, I would have kicked his ass to the curb, at the first sight of his temple of torture. Having experienced both physical violence in one marriage, and psychological violence in the other, I am blown away by my own lack of vision. How could I have missed that our new movie hero, Christian Grey is no more than an abusive man who uses torture, violence and threats to control a young girl.
I am not the first one to write about this. Angie Aker eloquently uses the recreated movie posters of the sixth siren and extracts word for word quotes from the movie and presents us with a vision of Mr. Grey that seemed to evade so many of us as we made its author a very, very rich woman. Shame on all of us. I want a refund!
The quotes refer to the following:
– threats of violence
– verbal abuse including threats and unkind language
– threats of stalking
– threats of violence if a “safe” word is used
– fear or retribution and violence for Anastasia
– the misguided notion that if you agree to the behavior, it is not a crime ( Similar to the legal notion of assumption of the risk, only in the bedroom) Somehow, I do not think that this is what Eleanor Roosevelt meant when she said that “No one can make you feel inferior without your consent”. I completely disagree. Those who abuse have the incredible power to make us feel inferior.
I am sorry Anastasia, you are NOT my idea of a heroine. Women like you are more likely to end up in emergency rooms, than rich, happy women with handsome husbands who have exciting sex lives. The new Spongebob movie is probably more realistic than THAT dream.
Upon re-reading sections of this book, I am so upset at myself for missing it. I see the power struggle in this book, and although all she needed to do was walk away, there is a phenomenon whereby the abused fall in love with their abusers. As a child of 10 or so, I remember watching Sweet Hostage with Martin Sheen. I remember not understanding why she didn’t just run away. Instead, a relationship ensues between abused and abuser. More commonly, abusers are often protected by the abused, leaving law enforcement to shake their heads. I know that when I was hit, I was AFRAID to call the police, as if I had done something wrong.
So, call me overly dramatic. Tell me I have no imagination, or tell me that this is FICTION, and I need to relax. Having felt the back of a man’s hand, I tell you to each his own, or as my mom used to say ” To each his own, said the old maid, as she kissed the cow”. I will save my $20, and watch Breakfast At Tiffany’s – AGAIN.
I will not so silently protest this movie.