December 28, 2010
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As we don’t have an advice columnist, we’ll do the reverse. Contributors can ask a question and receive advice from readers. This is a more structured call-and-response system that the usual comments.
The course of true friendship never did run smooth.
Especially since I’m not sure if this is a friendship anymore.
I have a dilemma. I have a friend I have known since the early days of elementary school. Now we only see each other once a year, and this was fine until recently. About a year or two ago, she did something I still cannot entirely forgive. It’s not something she did to me, but to people I know. It makes me angry to think of it, and I really don’t think I want to spend any more time with her.
If it were just me, I would let the friendship peter out, as it seems it one day will. But I cannot get out of this once-a-year meetup. Our families mesh well, it’s a group event.
So, what do I do this year?
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August 26, 2010
via Flicker user gilmoth
Every week, I go to the allergist for shots, to beat down my body’s hyperactive response to things like pollen. The shots are working.
But this past week my health insurance hit its maximum limit. So now I have to pay $40 out of pocket, every week, until January. That’s multiple hours of work to pay for one treatment.
This happened last year, too. In fact, it happened insanely quickly. I started with this insurance in May, and I’d hit the limit before fall was over.
The state of medical insurance in the United States is a horrific mess. For me, it’s yet one more factor contributing to my negative cash flow.
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July 25, 2010
Active Woman Magazine // flickr user modashell
Check it out, The Thinking Housewife can be snarky!
LAST MONTH, in an interview with the ever-incisive Katie Couric, Gloria Steinem noted, while offering a philosophical overview of contemporary society and world history, that there are relatively few women plumbers. This insight struck me like a lightening bolt. It showed that Ms. Steinem continues to be a penetrating thinker. Now, I have never met a single woman who wanted to become a plumber, let alone a woman who wanted to become a plumber but was prevented from fulfilling her dreams, but Ms. Steinem is probably very plugged in to the feminine plumbing subculture. Almost everything that is humanly possible exists in this world and I don’t doubt there are one or two frustrated women who have unclogged drains since early childhoo
d and have longed, to no avail, to commit themselves to the lonely, back-breaking labor of the plumber’s life.
I am here to tell you that it is not just plumbing that remains a closed field to women.
Look at this New York Post photo of the crew that just completed a new subway tunnel in New York City. Does something seem amiss? You are right. There are no women in this picture. Where was Ms. Steinem when this photo was taken? Her presence was needed. Ladies, oppression is real. It is real and ongoing. From the bowels of the earth, men are ruling the world.
She mocks us. She mocks feminists, she mocks Steinem, she mocks women in trades. That’s ok, we mock her back, just as snarkily.
The thing is, I kind of want to thank her for bringing this up. I did a quick search for “women plumbers” and was fascinated by my findings.
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July 23, 2010
Courtesy of Marie Claire
So, a lot has happened since the last time I wrote about the issues with my boyfriend. At the behest of a few of the readers, I wanted to update all of you.
Things haven’t gotten much better since I wrote my last post. That is really why I have been MIA for the past few days. I have been so upset, disappointed, and depressed that I really have had no energy for much of anything. I have noticed such a drop in our relationship that it is hard not to notice.
Take this weekend, for example. SB did not have to work this weekend, but yet he decided to sleep the entire time. He barely stayed conscious for longer than two hours the entire weekend. This has been a repetitive offense, occurring more often than not now. I basically expect one of two things when I get home from work: 1) SB is back at his parent’s house yet, playing Call of Duty, or sleeping, or 2) he is back at my place doing – what else? – sleeping. Now, this isn’t to say the man can’t sleep. He works overnights at a hospital; I would have to be the biggest bitch ever to not allow a cat nap before he goes to work. But these “cat naps” have grown into an all-evening event, not even allowing us to see how each other’s day went. I almost feel like he is trying to avoid me in a passive-aggressive way, which naturally upsets me like it would any woman.
Secondly, and perhaps one of the most worrisome, is that our sex life has taken a total nose dive. In the past week, we have had sex all of once. Meanwhile, previous to this, we would enjoy each other’s company every day. I love having sex every day. I have a high sex drive, and I have no qualms in saying so. I’m a woman, I have hormones, as well as a va-jay-jay. If I can have sex with my boyfriend every day, I would be an idiot to refuse. And it has been pretty great sex up until recently, where he has seemed…I don’t know how else to put it…unenthusiastic. I really have to spent an extended amount of time trying to even get him to the point of moving and taking off his boxers. Of course, this does a number on my self-esteem. It makes me wonder all of these things, and I end up having an internal dialogue similar to this:
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July 16, 2010
I recently went from working as a temp at my current job to being shifted to perm with the company itself. That means getting a salary, insurance benefits, paid time off — all of that. I actually got a higher salary than I was expecting, which was awesome. I was literally so excited about it all I could hardly sleep last night, and I have had to cover this smile on my face for over 24 hours now. Except, there is now an issue at hand because of all of this: my boyfriend SB.
I told him yesterday while I was at work that my boss was putting me on the company payroll, and at a higher salary than I expected. I also told him that my boss was going to put me on the insurance plan ASAP as well, when I would have to wait three months, usually. What was his response to all of this? “When do you get your first paycheck?”
No congratulations, no enthusiasm, no happiness for my success – nothing.
Instead, he wants to know the exact day I will be receiving my first salaried paycheck. He doesn’t just ask once – he asks three times. I tell him I wanted to get about $300 in new clothes with my first paycheck, which is certainly doable after I pay the rent and get some food and the like. My boyfriend starts telling me that I should shop at H&M and The Gap because they are cheaper, and to not spend all of my money and be irresponsible. I got incredibly irritated at this. First of all, I have been paying 6/7 of the rent. I buy most of the food. I only get $25 a week from SB for the rent, as well as maybe $30 in food after the normally $60 or $70 in food I buy runs out. Which leaves him with about $185 for himself since he says he makes $240 a week through his temp agency job at a hospital in Brooklyn. When I was working the temp agency thing at my job, I paid 6/7 of the rent like I said, and I would buy the majority of the food as well. Then I had to get my MetroCard. Let’s not forget my doctor’s visits and prescriptions I had to pay for with no insurance. That left me with nothing usually; either that or I had to call my parents and ask for help monetarily. Yet he’s bitching about no money? It really got to me, considering I sacrificed for that.
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July 10, 2010
MomsRising.org has a petition urging Senators to pass the Paycheck Fairness Act.
From the letter:
The Paycheck Fairness Act, which has already passed the House, would deter wage discrimination by closing loopholes in the Equal Pay Act and barring retaliation against workers who disclose their wages. The bill also allows women and men to receive the same remedies for sex-based pay discrimination that are currently available to those subject to discrimination based on race and national origin. In addition, the bill would improve the collection of pay information by the Department of Labor and the EEOC to enable those agencies to evaluate pay disparities; facilitate class actions in Equal Pay Act claims to ensure that the rules that apply to civil rights lawsuits generally also govern the Equal Pay Act; and spark the development of salary negotiation skills training.
Fair pay is especially critical in this tough economy because more and more women are the sole breadwinners in their families. On the whole, women working full-time, year-round make an average of 77 cents to every dollar that men make. This means that the average woman loses $700,000 in pay due to gender discrimination in her lifetime. For women of color, this number can be even higher. That’s a lot of money that would come in handy right now for America’s women and families.
Sign the petition, pass it on, and check out MomsRising.org.
June 24, 2010
Today, when I was browsing through The Frisky‘s archives I read the following article. It’s made me think seriously about women and money, I hope the ladies at BAL (and the four other people who read this blog) can help me out.
Jessica Wakefield — a Frisky contributor & the author of this piece — writes about her desire to marry a man for his money. Or, as she writes, “Bank accounts—and debts—do matter. And acknowledging that doesn’t make me a gold digger akin to Anna Nicole Smith—it makes me smart.”
Her post reacts to a book that I haven’t read. It’s called Smart Girls Marry Money. Based on the product description I’ve read on Amazon, I don’t want to read it. It looks like post-feminist shockumentary nonsense. If it were in my power to get rid of every book in the genre I would. I swear. But since I can’t, I just pretend these books don’t exist.
(So here I am, breaking my own cardinal rule. Yay.)
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