Category Archives: Love

Real love or just another magazine cover?

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The other day I was happily lying by the pool reading my Glamour magazine (living in Madrid definitely has its perks) when I read a really interesting article entitled “Are celebrities ruining our loves lives”. At first I thought, that’s impossible, how can people we don’t even know be affecting our love lives?

But the more I read, the more I realised I definitely have some of the symptoms so I think I might also have a bit of  ‘Celebrity Comparison Syndrome’! Not great I know but it could be worse, at least there are no nasty spots or a rash involved…

Apparently this is a very real thing which has been diagnosed by psychiatrists because more and more people have begun comparing their lives and especially their relationships to those of a celebrity couple. Seeing a picture of Brad & Angelina and their 27 beautiful children or hearing about David Beckham taking Victoria to Richard Branson’s private island for their anniversary, is enough to make you look at your love life and wonder why the same doesn’t happen to you. I mean these pictures do make me feel a little bit envious.

Unfortunately, it’s just not realistic; most of us don’t have the time, money or the personal trainer to make us look like these people. Plus we don’t have the same pressure to smile all the time when we’re in public in order to avoid break-up rumours getting spread all over the press if we look less than ecstatic together. And anyway, do we really want our lives to be the same as theirs? Everyone seems to have forgotten that Brad actually cheated on his other gorgeous wife to be with Angelina, maybe not so perfect after all.

My favourite quote in the article which made me feel a bit better about myself was this one: “Celebrities’ claims of domestic bliss bolster their public image and enhance box-office appeal, but their ‘perfect’ image is frequently nothing more than a facade.”

Many of the so-called perfect couples in Hollywood reportedly don’t even sleep in the same bedroom together, let alone have sex 4 times a day like they lead us to believe.  So maybe we should go easy on ourselves, I mean you can’t feel bad about your boyfriend not looking like Ashton Kutcher if you don’t look like Demi Moore…. Plus it doesn’t matter what they look like if they are not happy because in the end they’ll feel just as crap as the rest of us after a big argument or a break-up. So don’t be fooled, maybe it’s not real love but just another magazine cover or a press stunt.

The phenomenon of Twitter, Facebook and other social media doesn’t help matters much either. Following these people daily and reading their constant updates is supposedly one of their reasons why we confuse our lives with theirs.

That reminds me, I better go post my thoughts on Twitter and see what Britney Spears has been doing today……

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Some fashions never change

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I mentioned in one of my earlier posts that it seems to be getting harder and harder to keep up with ever-changing fashion trends nowadays. However, I’ve recently realised that there are some fashions which never change.

Think about a wedding or a funeral for example. It’s just expected that the bride wears white and at a funeral, everyone wears black. In fact, I remember once at a family funeral, one of my cousins wore a bright green coat and everyone acted as if there was an elephant in the room. The older generations just shook their heads while the younger family members stared in shock. Personally,  I just kept thinking “good on you! everyone’s sad enough already, we don’t need all this gloomy black on top of it!”  But I was still sitting there in my black dress and coat and will probably continue to do so at other funerals.

To be honest, I think I actually like it, the stability and tradition of it all, something that seems to be disappearing in so many other ways. I just find it surprising that the custom has stayed so strong. As I am writing this, I am thinking of one of my ‘readers’ who I know for a fact didn’t get married in white… dark red I think it was actually… but she’s a special case! ;)

I also know that this isn’t true for all religions or cultures so I am generalising slightly but it does seem that black funerals and white weddings are two things that have definitely stuck.  When you were young and you thought about your dream wedding, I doubt that you imagined yourself in a purple or a blue dress! And if you have a funeral to go to, I bet you’re not worrying about what colour dress to buy either.

I know that there is reason behind these things; white is meant to show purity and black is worn as a sign of respect but doesn’t anyone else think it’s strange that everything else seems to be continuously changing and evolving yet this stays the same? I certainly know that people aren’t as ‘pure’ at their weddings anymore yet most dresses are still white… Maybe it’s true what they say: people just don’t like change.

Just something to think about…  and in case you’re wondering, if I ever get married then you’ll definitely be seeing me in white!

Summer Loving?

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The summer is now upon us and I’ve recently seen and heard a lot about the increase in the number of couples breaking up during their holidays. This isn’t a new topic and I actually think that about this time every year there is a surge in information about “How to make your relationship work during the holidays” and a lot more money going into counsellors’ pockets. I’d always thought (being the eternal romantic that I am!) that maybe society was just trying to make some money out of summer. In the same way that valentines, halloween and xmas are becoming more and more consumer focussed events, well perhaps bookstores and chat shows are trying to increase their mid-year income just the same!

But it really made me stop and think when I received an email at work from the company which is responsible for helping us to maintain our ‘work-life balance’ . It said that if anyone was interested then they could request some ‘top tips on how to survive the holidays with their partner’. I thought, hang on a minute.. you’re supposed to help me find a cleaner or a dentist not give me relationship advice while I’m sitting at my desk! Things must be going bad for a lot of couples if this is what they think people need on a Monday morning in July.

I’d never really worried about holidays being a hard time for me and my boyfriend but maybe that’s because I haven’t been married for years either. I can understand what people mean though – being with someone more time than usual can be strange and all those annoying things that your partner does have even more chance to get on your nerves. But surely people notice that their other half is a pain in the ass the other 50 weeks of the year too? I don’t know, I just think it’s unrealistic of couples to say that they’re just fine and dandy until their summer holiday or the week of xmas comes along and that’s when it all goes downhill. Maybe they just don’t want to face their problems during the rest of the year, maybe they put up with less when they’re not in the their routine lifestyle or maybe the love of their life really is a nightmare at the beach!

Whatever the reason, I don’t think that society helps the situation by drilling into our heads that the minute we go away we will start to have relationship problems due to the ‘highly stressful’ nature of a holiday. Maybe if they told us that we would go away and be more in love than ever, then there would be an increase in people renewing their wedding vows this summer, who knows!

My advice would be to just sit back, relax, take in the sights and have a cocktail. If nothing else, at least after 3 Piña Coladas you’ll start to think you’re on holiday with Johnny Depp or Jennifer Anniston and who can complain about that!

Let’s take off the blindfold

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To be honest, I don’t really mind if a film has been awarded an Oscar, a Razzie or a Nobel Prize, I’ll still go and see it if it’s got a good trailer. The only thing I ask is that it makes me feel something while I’m watching it, whether this be angry, sad, happy, in love… anything!!

The Blind Side did exactly that. I had heard mixed views about the film but like I say that didn’t make a difference to me, I wanted to see it anyway and make up my own mind, and I’m glad I did.

It was one of those movies that made me leave the cinema thinking  a lot… about people, life, luck and just about how we live together in society nowadays.

The film may be a bit predictable but it’s not a storyline that’s been invented in Hollywood; it’s a true story about a real family from Mississippi who opened their home and family to someone less fortunate than themselves.

The story really touched me but at the same time it made me feel a bit guilty… how often do we really do anything for someone else anymore? When you see someone struggling on the street, asking for money or trying to talk to you on a train, do you actually take time out of your day to help them? To see what it is they are asking you? Or do you just ignore them, think “it’s not my problem” and walk on. I’m not going to exclude myself from this category because I would probably do exactly the same. I usually think that someone else will give some coins to the guy asking for money on the street or will keep the lonely guy on the train company and so I just get on with my own life.

The Blind Side made me think about if I would take someone into my home who was less fortunate than myself but to be honest I probably wouldn’t… But I would like to think that at least if I see someone today or tomorrow or the day after who needs my help then I will offer it to them and I will try to do what I can for somebody else.

So why don’t you start today too, take off the blindfold and take a look at the people around you, try and see if you can do something good for someone else without getting anything in return? You never know.. it might even catch on….

The Inspiring Thuoy Family