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Go Away, Gwyneth. You're Ruining Everything for Everybody

gwyneth paltrow, goop, harper's bazaar, quotes marriage and family, working mothers

You're not doing anybody any favors, Gwyneth.

I love Gwyneth Paltrow. I’ve said it before, even as I’ve openly mocked her in post after post. I mean, you can’t not get a kick out of someone whose life revolves around fashion shoots and interviews and red carpet events but who is still JUST SO DAMN DOWN TO EARTH. And by “so damn down to Earth” I mean “such a wealthy, privileged hippie.” She’s the perfect combo of well-meaning and oblivious, which is what makes her as adorable as she is annoying.

In her latest spread for Harper’s Bazaar, Paltrow looks incredible. Too skinny almost, but super-duper muscular in a dress with so many cutaways it would make Nicki Minaj blush. Justine Picardie is kind when she writes, “As she falls naturally into yoga stretches during the course of the conversation, supple as a cat, you realize that this is a woman for whom working out has become essential.” A lesser journalist may have penned, “This bitch cannot sit still!”

In the piece, which is so flattering to the 39-year-old Oscar winner it’s nauseating, Paltrow says she doesn’t like Botox but she admits to getting laser treatment. (Quoth Jezebel: “That’s cool. I’m sure they’re organic lasers.”) She talks about adopting a clean living philosophy as a result of her dad’s cancer. I can relate, tho unlike Gwyn, I’m not on a “no gluten, no dairy, no sugar” diet. But most importantly, Gwynny dishes about her favorite subject, her family life. She says she gets up at 7 every day with the kids and brags that either she or her hubby Chris are always the ones to do the school run, despite the fact that they have a nanny. I gotta give her props for that. I also love the fact that she admits she always thought her daughter would be a “really cool butch lesbian,” but alas, she thinks if Apple is gay, “she’s a lipstick lesbian.” All this retro terminology makes me miss the 90′s!

The striking thing about this profile, in fact, is that it proves just exactly how retro Paltrow’s views are. She’s sure to set an alarm bell off in any modern woman’s mind when she says, “I have little kids in school. I want to maintain my marriage and my family, so I have to be here when (my husband) comes home.” Later she adds, “Gloria Steinem may string me up by my toes, but all I can do is my best, and I can do only what works for me and my family.”

I don’t dispute that keeping a marriage together requires a lot of effort, but of course that effort should come from both parties. And based on her description of their life, Paltrow’s husband Chris Martin seems willing to do his share of accommodating family life, despite the fact that he’s a still-touring rock star. Paltrow also doesn’t deny that she is sometimes in other parts of the world for work. So it seems flat-out silly to me that Gwyneth is trying to portray herself as an old-fashioned hausfrau who sits at home all day waiting for her man to return from a hard day at the office. I get the sense that Gwyneth has an idealized version of herself in her mind, a June Cleaver 2.0 who is dedicated to home life above all else. That’s fine. But it doesn’t represent reality. So for Paltrow to suggest that married women must never leave the hearth in order to make their relationships last is irresponsible. That idea is patently false, a fact that she herself has proven with her jet-setting lifestyle. Paltrow may see herself as a homemaker and wife, but truth be told she’s as business-driven and busy as any of the world’s most powerful women. Paltrow may not be the film star she once was, but her website, GOOP, “has more than a million viewers a week and is relaunching next month,” not to mention her modeling gigs, cookbooks and television appearances.

In other words, “This bitch cannot sit still!” I just wish she would admit it. You’re not doing anybody any favors, Gwyn, by pretending that one can be a super powerful working mother AND a full-time wife/mother without having to give a bit here and there from time to time. (Though I’m sure it’s easier to be all things to all people when you have a staff.) The reason why Paltrow rubs so many people the wrong way is because she’s so out-of-touch without ordinary people’s lives, and if this quote about marriage and family is any indication, it looks like she’s out-of-touch with her own life, too. So go away, Gwyneth. You’re ruining everything for everybody. p.s. – Tell Beyonce I said hello.

Photo by Terry Richardson for Harper’s Bazaar

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