You Need a Hug

posted 4 months ago in Relationships
Post # 31
1171 posts
Bumble bee


mrsautumn36 :  

If this is about perspective then 99.99% of the questions asked here on the bee are indeed terribly minor compared to the world wide horrors being inflicted on women all over the globe. You are correct.

But being told by someone to smile is still showing contempt for women. Same with the condescending dismissive attitude that we just need a hug when we are expressing a concern or are showing anger or frustration. That our feelings are not valid or worthwhile and that a simple hug will fix all, we can be patted on the head like a pet. It is the idea that women are objects that need placating and are here just to look pretty, smile and be pleasant and nurturing. As the little things like this are accepted then slowly more and more of our value as a voice and a person is decreased, ultimately escalating towards the point that “No” doesn’t mean no anymore and our bodies are not our own. Demonstrated so aptly by your examples.


Post # 32
1361 posts
Bumble bee

mrsautumn36 :  But don’t you think that sexism and the belittling of women are at the root of all the things you described?  And that it’s easier to fight off the small battles, try for some equilibrium now than later, when things are much more severe?  Fighting at the edge is generally more effective than fighting in the deep.  The goals of equality are harder to gain the deeper inequality is entrenched.  And the fight will always exist in whatever degree as long as humans are around.  

No one is saying “eff this place” over being told to smile or that they need a hug.  It’s just a discussion.  Some, many probably, find it a worthy one. 

If your Christmas carols remark is about baby it’s cold outside I couldn’t agree more.  I don’t know what other holiday songs caused a ridiculous amount of outrage so I’m guessing that’s it.  However that song was written by a Jew and is completely non religious so it can’t be called a Christmas carrol.  

I personally don’t think that not being stoned to death over what I wear is a luxury.  Do you? 

Post # 33
7919 posts
Bumble Beekeeper

mrsautumn36 :  just because someone else has it worse doesn’t mean people need to accept things that upset them. Should we tell a woman who had her breasts groped that it isn’t a big deal because someone else was raped? Or should we tell underpaid employees that there are people without any job at all so they can’t complain? Of course not. Saying “it’s just not that serious” is super condescening – people are entitled to their feelings. Just because something doesn’t bother you doesn’t mean it doesn’t matter. There is always someone who has it harder than us – but the doesn’t invalidate our problems. 

Post # 37
754 posts
Busy bee



Is there no way you guys can just ignore these statements and keep your cool? 

Or tell the person offering it… “yeah I do. But not from YOU!” And that will be the last you hear of them. lol!


Post # 38
8327 posts
Bumble Beekeeper

SASSY, I am with you in spirit over all of it, the fucking smile thing (l once told a guy that my mother died last night, smiling for a stranger is not high on my present priority list . She hadn’t , it was a wicked lie lol)

The hug thing, the calm down/ relax thing above all. H has come closer than he knows to death over this latter.  Also, starting a sentence with ‘what you need to do is../you need to start….”

And as for things with the dogs..if l say one more time “ stop waving your finger at her and then getting pissed off because she bites at your hands . Can you not just once do as l ask over this!!

l hope things get better dear sassy, keep coming back here won’t you ?



sassy411 :  

Post # 40
871 posts
Busy bee

desiderata :   wildflowerz :  LilliV :  All of this. 

sassy411 :  I’m sorry you’re going through a hard time right now ๐Ÿ™ I hope you’ll stay too. 

And I’m thinking I’m probably guilty of saying ‘you need’ rather than ‘I suggest’, and yes language does matter, something I’ll try to be more aware of in my own responses. 

Being told to smile is inherently sexist, it’s rarely said to men. It does give the impression that women are supposed to be Stepford Wives with plastic smiles on their faces in a male-run world.

But it’s also, as elderbee : illustrates, the height of insensitivity- you don’t know what is going on in someone else’s life. That woman in line at the grocery store you just told to smile- maybe she has lost someone recently, maybe she’s not feeling well, maybe she’s worried about something, maybe she’s depressed or has severe social anxiety and it had been a triumph for her just to leave the house and now you’re insinuating she’s not doing it properly (aka with a smile on her face), this seemingly trivial comment could send her rushing back to the sanctuary of her house feeling like she’s such a failure at fitting in to ‘normal society’ that even a stranger in a grocery line notices. You just don’t know. 

Post # 42
871 posts
Busy bee

sassy411 :  there is a touching moment on the Simpsons cartoon where Lisa is told to smile even when she doesn’t feel like it- she wants to play the blues on her sax and others are telling her to smile, lighten up etc and her mom Marge gives initially bad advice to smile on the outside even when you don’t feel it- then realizes this is a product of how she was raised. And when she sees Lisa faking smiles she doesn’t feel she gives her a lovely ‘honey you be yourself and if you’re sad you be sad and we’ll ride it out together, but you be you and only smile when you feel like it’ 

I think I’ve thought this through because this was an issue with my husband early on when we were dating- lots of things make me smile, but I also tend to be more serious, even cynical. I’m involved in various political/ anti-racism/ anti-homophobia/transphobia, women’s rights etc on campus and also a wanna-be writer (just a hobby) whose writing tends to be dark/ bleak often. And a classic over thinker. My husband on the other hand is an easy going optimist and he’d say to me ‘smile! would’ja smile!’ at random moments. I let it go the first few times but then he said it at the wrong time and earned himself a death glare. And I told him, seriously, that if he wanted someone bubbly and perky 24/7 he should probably date elsewhere. This might sound an over-reaction to some, but it made me feel that he wanted me to be something I wasn’t. (To his credit, he completely stopped saying this and hasn’t for years). 

Post # 44
400 posts
Helper bee

FYI on this thread – about how annoying it is being told to smile or relax when you are upset, or if someone just happens to not like your resting bitch face, and posters are venting about being told to do that when we dont particularly feel like it – there are Bees posting, ‘Well, why dont you just stay calm when that happens?’ hmmmmm.

Post # 45
4064 posts
Honey bee

I’ve never had anyone tell me to smile or that I need a hug. Good thing, because it’s condescending as hell and I’d probably waste no time informing the commenter that he’s an idiot. It’s totally sexist, no one ever says smile to a man. And why the hell should I smile when I’m just walking around and thinking? It’s not my job to make my countenance more attractive to a stranger. And what if I had just suffered a tragedy? Fuck you, I’m not smiling and in a minute you won’t be smiling either buddy.

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