Thursday, 27 January 2011

If I were you……

Morning all from a frosty Corfu. Yes – yesterday -1. Hey – for us, this is positively Arctic.
So, today I thought I would rant about that one little phrase that drives me crazier than any other. I wouldn’t put up with that if I were you. Well, you are not me, are you? In the words of Mr. Bond…never say never.

In a way, this rant is a follow on from the last blog post in so much as it touches on another issue raised in my novel, Fragile Dreams.

Why did Lisa always feel it necessary to remind her of her husband’s iron-rod of control? But that was women; secretly delighting in even their friends’ less than perfect marriage. It drew the spotlight away from their own miserable existence.

Ellie is a women trapped in a loveless marriage. Worse, her husband is a psychological bully. Before I go any further, I must stress I am not going to discuss domestic physical violence. I am not qualified to do so. It is a whole different ball game. No – I would like to focus more on the subtle mind games many men play on their partners. It was a comment made by a friend of mine that led me to consider this topic. We were discussing a mutual acquaintance who, for want of a better word, is controlled by her spouse. His wants always take first place in their household. She bends to his will. My friend’s comment was….how do these women get themselves in that situation…..if that were me, I wouldn’t put up with it. Stop right there, I said. How do you know what you would do? Second, who the hell are you to judge?
I am sure no one sets out for this to happen but that is the thing about control freaks. They are clever, they know what buttons to push and before they know it, their victims are sucked in, seduced maybe by a sweet smile and deceiving words…it’s because I care about you. I can understand how seductive it is in the first throes of romance to believe your man is so possessive because he adores you. A pattern is set, one that is hard to break and once the children come along, it is often too late to change it. More often than not, a woman will put up with the verbal abuse, the constant nagging to try and keep the peace. Of course, for those foreign women there is the added problem; if they were to leave, were can they go? Back to their home country? Not always feasible. One has to look at it from the children’s point of view. In their hearts they are Greek. They do not want to leave everything familiar to them.
My point – do not be too quick to judge. In fact, by coming out with this rubbish, all you are doing is making this person feel even more inadequate. It’s added pressure. If you know someone in this situation then try to be supportive and understanding. What they need is a friend, not a jury.
But what is it about women? Why do we always have to judge? If it isn’t about relationships, it’s about how we raise our kids? Judging, judging – always judging. You don’t let him/ her do that do you? I wouldn’t put up with it. If he was mine blah blah. Oh please – we all have our ideas on child rearing and while we are on the subject of child rearing, what is it with this competitiveness? You know the parent I am talking about. Whose sole conversation revolves around her children’s achievement and begins every conversation with and what is such and such up to, purely so they can ram down your throat what a band of budding little geniuses they have stashed at home. Please – let your kids breathe. Let me breath. Life is not a battlefield. There are no winners or losers. And – I beseech you, less of the…if I was you…

Let’s move on to a happier topic. Music. Where would we be without it? It certainly rocks my world. It is the inspiration behind most of my work. I hear a song and – whoosh – it gives me the mood and atmosphere I am seeking. Do I play music while I write? Not initially, while I am scribbling out my first draft. I am too immersed in my story for any distraction. If I were to play my favourite artists, I would lay down my pen, pick up my air guitar and burst into song or worse – leave my desk completely and jump into disco mode. However, once my tale is down on pc and I begin the tweaking process, then it’s no holding back. The music blares from all speakers. My play list? Depends on my mood. For those who know me, Savage Garden and Darren Hayes are at the top, closely followed by anything heavy metal and rock. I do confess to being a huge Gaga fan. There is something about that feisty, talented, arty young woman that appeals to me. What I do have is particular songs to fit the mood of each one of my stories; a set of lyrics which helped me form the characters.

Cold, Cold Heart – Daniel: ‘Mine’ by Savage Garden
Actually, Daniel has two songs: Electricity by Anathema

Dreamweek – Izzie: ‘Pour Que Tu m’aime Encore’ by CĂ©line Dion

Fragile Dreams – Ellie: ‘In Your Eyes’ by Darren Hayes

Written in Stone – Cassie: ‘I Just Want You to Love Me’ by Darren Hayes

Class Act – Rebecca: {still looking for a home} ‘Name of the Game’ by Abba
Past Undone {wip} –Lily: ‘You Can Still be Free’ by Savage Garden

Spin – Sara: {ongoing project since…ever, really} ‘Sara” by Fleetwood Mac

Class Act – Rebecca: {still looking for a home} ‘Name of the Game’ by Abba

Well, I hope you have enjoyed my little selection. If I had to pick an all-time favourite? It has got to be Sara – Fleetwood Mac.{Well I always wanted to be Stevie Nicks}. See you next week. Back to frivolity and my Top Ten Twenties Moments.