Today, I have a somewhat heavy topic to discuss.
That is, the blessing and a curse that is the anonymity of the internet.
Dun dun duuuuuunn!
Don’t worry, I’m also sharing this sensational recipe for curried potato noodles with kale, which will become your new go-to side dish at dinner.
You may have seen on the Inspiralized Facebook that my mother and I were interviewed for an article in the New York Times about mothers attending their daughters’ bachelorette parties.
When my mother asked me if she was invited to my bachelorette party, I was caught off guard. I wasn’t caught off guard because I would never want my mother there, I was just caught off guard because I didn’t know any other friends of mine who had their mothers there and didn’t think it was “normal.”
Now, let’s talk about normal for a second. What is “normal” for a bachelorette party?
Whatever normal is, I don’t care. It was my party – I’m celebrating a traditional milestone with my closest friends and sister. The bachelorette party is one of those fun times you get to be silly with your girlfriends, in anticipation of your big day. It’s basically an excuse to do something big and celebrate!
After that initial shock when my mother asked me if she was coming, my only reservation was my friends – would my friends be okay with it? I didn’t think twice about my mother being there, but I wanted to make sure it was a trip that my friends felt comfortable on, out of respect for their feelings and happiness.
When I asked my friends, they, in unison, said something to the effect of, “Oh my gosh, that would be SO MUCH FUN if your mom came!! She has to!”
My friends wanted my mother there, like I did, which was a relief and so I “formally” invited my mom. My sister bought her a cute “mother of the bride” t-shirt to wear while we were in Miami, which she really appreciated and loved.
While my mother stayed in a separate hotel from us (to be somewhere nicer and give us our space, if needed), she was there for every minute of the festivities – whether it was laying on the pool making us “Karen specials” (a drink we named after her – she makes a great grapefruit-vodka drink) or dancing at LIV, she was there.
Not only did I feel safer having my mother there (you always know your mother will have your back), but she added so much to the trip – she gave marriage advice to all of us, we talked about being women, and my mother shared some of her funny stories from first meeting Lu. She even pulled a mom move and got us a better table at LIV (none of us girls would have had the – ehem – balls to make that request.)
So, enter this New York Times article regarding said bachelorette party and my mother being there.
After reading one of the comments on the article that equated my mother to a Real Housewife who is “partying and dressing like [she’s] still in [her] 20s”, I almost wanted to cry.
My mother has been married to my father for 31 years, raised 3 children and has never worn a stiletto in her life (or at least not that I’ve ever seen.)
Then, I saw someone comment, “why would anyone want to trade-in being a mother for the role of older sister? They need to grow up.”
My mother is my mother, my role model and not an older sister, she’s a best friend. If I couldn’t confide in my mother the way I do, my life wouldn’t be nearly as great as it is. I’ve had to come to my mother with terrible news, and if I wasn’t as close as I am/was with her, those situations would have turned into worse ones.
I don’t want my mom to just be a “figure” and someone I keep at a distance. She’s someone I can go to when I need help or if I’m hungover and want to recap the night and laugh.
Finally, I stopped reading the comments when someone said: “Now you have to include your mother, as well as all your friends, in all you do for YOUR wedding? So much for the event being about you and your soon-to-be-spouse!”
This person obviously doesn’t have a close relationship with her mother, like I do. It’s not about “having” to do anything, it’s about wanting her there and a part of the process. And as I mentioned before, having my mother there actually made it more about Lu and the union that is marriage. She told hilarious stories about Lu and gave us all tips on how to make a marriage work.
Long story short, when I saw the nasty comments rolling in, it definitely took a little away from the fun process of reliving my bachelorette through the interviews with the journalist. It took away from the day we had when a photographer came to my apartment to capture a sweet moment between us for the article and then we took a little stroll through my neighborhood and had lunch.
It got me thinking about these poor people (especially teenagers) on social media who are struggling with much bigger issues than this, such as coming out about sexuality or struggling with mental illnesses or something like obesity. They’re getting taunted to the point of considering suicide.
I know I have to grow a thicker skin, but at the same time, do I? Why have we accepted that Internet bullying is “normal”? Why does it have to happen? Why are people so nasty (I personally have never and would never comment anything negative on someone’s page if I knew it would remotely offend them)? Why do people think saying something nasty will add value?
Definitely to each their own, and I know that I chose a career where I’m putting myself out there and should expect commentary, but at the end of the day, treat others as you would like to be treated.
My mother taught me that.
Nutritional Information & Recipe
Weight Watchers SmartPoints*: 4 points