Jen­nifer Anis­ton: ‘I’m Fed Up With The Way Women Are Treated’

Look’s olivia Foster says Jen’s right: it’s time we changed the way we talk about women


When Jen­nifer Anis­ton re­leased her ‘For The Record’ es­say last week, ad­dress­ing her feel­ings on those preg­nancy ru­mours, her body, her hus­band and the pres­sures fac­ing women in 2016, she did it in true Jen An fash­ion. She was calm, she was ar­tic­u­late and her mes­sage was clear. She is, in her own words, ‘fed up’.

She ex­plained: ‘If I am some kind of sym­bol to some peo­ple out there, then clearly I am an ex­am­ple of the lens through which we, as a so­ci­ety, view our mothers, daugh­ters, sis­ters, wives, fe­male friends and col­leagues. The ob­jec­ti­fi­ca­tion and scru­tiny we put women through is ab­surd and dis­turb­ing.’

Un­doubt­edly the spate of stories and spec­u­la­tion in Fe­bru­ary – when the 47-year-old star was spot­ted on hol­i­day in Mex­ico with hubby Justin Th­er­oux, 44, and was forced to clar­ify that she was not with child but had just eaten a big meal – played a part in her de­ci­sion to speak out to The Huff­in­g­ton Post.

There’s some­thing about Jen that makes her the ‘every­woman’; as she says, ‘a sym­bol’. When she was un­cer­e­mo­ni­ously dumped by Brad Pitt in 2005, we felt her pain – it re­minded us of our own failed re­la­tion­ships. But maybe it’s time to ad­mit that we’ve been very blink­ered in our pre­sump­tion that hap­pi­ness should come in the shape of a man, a child, a per­fect body. Like Jen says, we’re guilty of it in real life too. Ask­ing that re­cently mar­ried friend if she’s plan­ning to start a fam­ily soon; the sin­gle one if she’s met any­one; the one who has chil­dren when she might have more. We tell each other we look great when we’re thin, con­grat­u­lat­ing weight loss with breath­less fever.

Should Jen­nifer ac­tu­ally have to come out and de­fend her­self? Of course not. Is it a good thing that she did? Def­i­nitely. Jen has, once and for all, re­fused to let any­one con­trol the nar­ra­tive of her life. It’s been 11 long years since she and Brad split – 11 long years of split ru­mours and ‘baby news’ (she’s not preg­nant, just FYI).

It’s also a good re­minder to treat our friends and other women with a lit­tle more kind­ness, as more than baby-mak­ers or girl­friends – to treat them as hu­man be­ings. As Jen says: ‘We are com­plete with or with­out a mate, with or with­out a child. We get to de­cide for our­selves what is beau­ti­ful when it comes to our bod­ies. That de­ci­sion is ours and ours alone... We don’t need to be mar­ried or mothers to be com­plete. We get to de­ter­mine our own “hap­pily ever af­ter” for our­selves.’

We are com­plete With or With­out a mate, With or With­out a child

Read Jen­nifer Anis­ton’s piece at Huff­in­g­ton­

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