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72 Paradoxes Of Being A 20-Something Woman

This morning I woke up, turned on the morning news and immediately had to change the channel. The headline story read something along the lines of, “Best Anti-Aging Creams: How to Turn Back Your Face's Biological Clock.” Really? Some woman's non-existent smile lines are more controversial than gun control?

And yet, to my dismay and utter confusion, when I switched the channel to a different news outlet the top story was, “No Money Necessary: Be Beautiful At Every Age.” Huh? So which is it? Am I supposed to remain youthful for the rest of my life or embrace aging gracefully?

It got me thinking. This was just one small instance out of many daily occurrences in which women are bombarded with catch-22s and conflicting ideas on what we should and should not do as females. There are countless rules imposed on us, each one negating the other.

I, and many ladies like myself, simply give up listening.

We're sick of being politically correct. We're sick of people telling us what words we can and cannot use to describe us. Let us just be.

These are the 72 paradoxes of being a woman (insert a big middle finger here). These are examples of two dueling ideals pushed on us by society that just can’t reconcile with each other:

1. Banish “bossy”; be a lady-boss.

2. Own your sexuality; tone down your suggestive outfit.

3. Sleep with however many guys you want; don’t be a slut.

4. Don't date assh*les; it's okay to fall for the bad boy.

5. Call your friends your “bitches”; don’t call actual bitches, “bitches.”

6. Skip the bread basket; why aren’t you eating?

7. Stop being so dramatic; speak up more.

8. Champion p*ssy power; don’t be labeled a feminist.

9. Find yourself; find your husband.

10. Be “strong,” “fierce,” “aggressive,” “assertive”; stop trying to be a “man”

11. Stay youthful in your appearance; don't be afraid of aging.

12. Don’t get pregnant now; don’t wait too long.

13. Be Beyoncé; don’t be Miley Cyrus.

14. Be independent; “Where's your boyfriend?”

15. Inner beauty is what counts; physical beauty is most admired.

16. Plastic surgery isn’t the answer; it’s your body you can do what you want.

17. Calm down; stand up for yourself.

18. You don't need makeup to be beautiful; makeup makes you better looking.

19. Feel confident in your body; you need to work on your body.

20. Stay-at-home moms raise more stable families; “Why don't you work anymore?”

21. Break the glass ceiling; don’t make more than men who hold the same positions.

22. Don’t be such a high-maintenance princess; don’t be such a pushover doormat.

23. Don’t be too easy; don’t be such a prude.

24. Report rape; it’s the victim’s fault.

25. Accept society as it is; challenge the societal norm.

26. Real is sexy; you would look better with extensions, fake nails, colored contacts, false eyelashes, self-tanner, highlights.

27. Au naturel is a turn-on; wax your bush.

28. Age gracefully; try this anti-aging cream.

29. Earn high marks; grades mean nothing.

30. Be more nurturing; learn to defend yourself.

31. Pursue your career; don't make more than your partner.

32. Take care of yourself; let the man pay.

33. Be skinny; have curves.

34. Please your man; “she’s got daddy issues.”

35. Fit in as “one of the guys”; don’t be the girl with only guy friends.

36. Watch sports; don’t play them.

37. Be the homemaker; you’re not the head of the home.

38. Use birth control to protect yourself; be judged when you purchase the pack.

39. Don't put out on the first date; don't get called back.

40. Don't obsess over your body; constantly be confronted with body images.

41. It’s a woman's world; don’t divorce your husband.

42. Don't value material items; you absolutely need this new dress for prom.

43. Be a lady in the street; be a freak in the bed.

44. Toughen up; be a lady.

45. Don’t be too emotional; don’t be a heartless bitch.

46. You can’t think right because you’re on your period; don’t use your period as an excuse.

47. Don't spend too much money on your appearance; be presentable.

48. Drop your abusive relationship; “what did you do to make him angry?”

49. Don’t seem over-eager; be approachable.

50. You're beautiful the way you are; “20 ways to reduce your cellulite.”

51. Get married; you’ve earned your M.R.S. degree.

52. “Keep” your man; make him work for it.

53. Porn is not for ladies; porn is exclusively for ladies.

54. Be honest in your relationships; don’t be super “crazy.”

55. Play hard to get; don’t be a tease.

56. Have interests; don’t be a “basic bitch.”

57. Stop playing games with your partner; don’t be a “stage 5er.”

58. End female objectification in advertisements; praise “hottie of the week.”

59. Promote more women in tech science; uphold gender disparity in Silicon Valley.

60. Aspire to be a CEO; stick to the rules of the “Old Boys Clubs.”

61. Dare to be great; know your place.

62. #YesAllWomen; #NotAllMen.

63. Own your personal style; don't wear white after Labor Day.

64. Lose weight; stop calorie counting.

65. Send nude photos; don’t have your nude photos leaked.

66. Rachel Uchitel; Monica Lewinsky.

67. Female celebrities are “too thin”; “Is she expecting soon?”

68. Make time for yourself; “Why are you still single?”

69. Drop the toxic friends in your life; don’t be a backstabber.

70. Crop tops and miniskirts are trendy; your outfit is “asking for it.”

71. “It's hot when two chicks make out”; don’t be a “butch”

72. Be proud of your femininity; “girly” is a bad thing.

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Laura Argintar

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