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Bookish Badger

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28 minutes ago, Bookish Badger said:

Thank you for your compliment! And that particular section really hit me. Between hitting one of my own landmark birthdays and seeing how my parents and in-laws have aged, it has me thinking a lot about the body I want to carry me into my final years. And what IS the point of trying to prolong life if it only prolongs decades of misery and dependence? I don't want to "live well into my 90s," I want to "live well, into my 90s." (Actually, I want to live a lot longer than that but only if I'm not sick and immobile while doing it!)

 

Never heard the bolded expression before, but I really like that. I'm a little younger (36) but I worry about the same things. I've been coasting on youth and luck for far too long.

 

My grandparents visited us over the US Thanksgiving holiday, and seeing my grandmother's situation especially was a visceral reminder for me of why my health goals need to be priorities now. She's 84 and has really bad joint issues, caused in part by genetics and partly by many years of being moderately overweight, and she's in a lot of pain right now and has really limited mobility. Like when we went to the mall to buy my grandfather a new iPad we had to carefully plan which entrance to use to minimize walking distance. She hates walking with a cane, and finds it really frustrating. At the end of the day her ankles are swollen and red and her lower legs throb with pain. She keeps telling me not to make the same mistakes she did. 

 

Were you around when we talked about the research study that showed that people think of their future self in the same way, neurologically, as they think of other people? There was a whole discussion about how we can work to make connections with our future self in our mind so that we're more motivated to take care of that person. In the study, even something as simple as showing someone a digitally aged photo of themselves made them more likely to choose things that were harder or less pleasant in the short term but better for them long term. I'm still trying to figure out how to make future consequences feel urgent now, to help me stay better on track. Anything you discover, please share.

 

And it sounds like the Darebee program is a great fit for you right now. If it feels half easy and half challenging, and you feel it later on, that seems like just the right mix. But oh yes, that all-or-nothing mentality.

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With the gratitude journal, I'll have a page (or section of a daily or weekly page) labeled "Gratitude" or "I am grateful for..." and then just list things. I prefer having it all on one page, cause I get weird about repeating the same thing. It also gives me something I can pull out and look at if I'm getting depressed and fall into the "everything sucks" line of thinking.

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On 1/6/2018 at 12:03 PM, Bookish Badger said:

And for such a staunch feminist, she sure uses the language of body shame. When relating her weight struggles she never just gained weight, she "larded on 8 pounds" here and "packed on the lard" there. Every time I came across a "lard" reference, I wanted to smack my belly and shout in my best redneck-truck-driver-stereotype voice, "I gotcha lard right here, bitch!" 

 

She even, with great difficulty, admitted that her weight had reached a high of ... wait for it ... 140 pounds! 

 

.........

 

It's.... I..... 

 

As I was growing up I always wondered what do people that fit in normal sizes think about. 

 

But it I must say. My sister fits into a size 3 or 5 and I've been a 14-16

 

one day she was telling me "I feel so fat" and I said "dude you're not allowed to say tha-"

 

She interrupted me saying "Butternut, you can't say I'm not allowed to feel that. Those emotions of feeling 'fat' are the same feelings you have. We maybe different size but it's the same feeling" 

 

You (using this as generally speaking) maybe used to seeing 200 on the scale. But when you see 235 you have a sense of urgency, shame, and insecurities. The same feelings a woman with the scale showing 150 when she is used to seeing 125.

 

It still has always bothered me though when someone uses the terms like "fat" or "lard" when they don't know the true feeling of not being able to fit into "normal" sizes 

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12 hours ago, Bookish Badger said:

Between hitting one of my own landmark birthdays and seeing how my parents and in-laws have aged, it has me thinking a lot about the body I want to carry me into my final years. And what IS the point of trying to prolong life if it only prolongs decades of misery and dependence? I don't want to "live well into my 90s," I want to "live well, into my 90s." (Actually, I want to live a lot longer than that but only if I'm not sick and immobile while doing it!)

I am so there with you!  The worst thing is that I'm seeing the health deterioration in my own siblings - I'm the "baby" of the family, and my parents passed away last millennium.  My mum died at 68, from diabetes complications and my dad died at 77 from occult lung cancer.  I don't smoke, which he did, and I have reversed my T2D, which she could not - although we didn't know about low carb/keto at the time.  But ultimately, I want to live a long and happy life (110 is my goal ;) ) - I want not just to survive, but to thrive!   To achieve that goal, it seems that diet and exercise are paramount.  Plus purpose and community. 

 

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11 hours ago, Severine said:

She's 84 and has really bad joint issues, caused in part by genetics and partly by many years of being moderately overweight, and she's in a lot of pain right now and has really limited mobility. Like when we went to the mall to buy my grandfather a new iPad we had to carefully plan which entrance to use to minimize walking distance. She hates walking with a cane, and finds it really frustrating. At the end of the day her ankles are swollen and red and her lower legs throb with pain. She keeps telling me not to make the same mistakes she did. 

I am sorry to hear about your grandmother's pain and frustration.  Is she doing any physio/exercises to help with the joints?  There is a book by Katy Bowman called Dynamic Aging, where she asks "What if your pain and lack of mobility isn’t due to your age, but your habits? What if changing how you move can change how you feel, no matter your age?" which might be of interest.  Also, bone broth / collagen and good fats as building blocks for the joints.  With the genetic component, obviously, whatever she does may not lead to complete healing, but it might help alleviate some of the symptoms.

I hope I'm not being obnoxious in offering unsolicited advice; it's just an idea to look up (or not!) which you may not have seen before.

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13 hours ago, Bookish Badger said:

 

Thank you for your compliment! And that particular section really hit me. Between hitting one of my own landmark birthdays and seeing how my parents and in-laws have aged, it has me thinking a lot about the body I want to carry me into my final years. And what IS the point of trying to prolong life if it only prolongs decades of misery and dependence? I don't want to "live well into my 90s," I want to "live well, into my 90s." (Actually, I want to live a lot longer than that but only if I'm not sick and immobile while doing it!)

 

And what am doing about it now?? These are the thoughts going through my mind these days.

 

This I can totally agree with. While my parents are not yet that elderly,  (neither has retired yet) they both are not doing as well as they could. In fact, one in particular has admitted to me that her step tracker "would explode" if she got more than 4000 steps and that standing long periods is not an option anymore. I want to be able to do things when I hit that age, not be regulated to a chair. I have a coworker who has celebrated her 50th wedding anniversary and she is still working and travels the world all the time (to be fair, she is extremely part time so vacation isn't a thing) but if you didn't know her you wouldn't think she was that old.  Looking at these 2 options, I know which one I would rather try for.

 

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11 hours ago, Butternut said:

As I was growing up I always wondered what do people that fit in normal sizes think about. 

 

But it I must say. My sister fits into a size 3 or 5 and I've been a 14-16

 

one day she was telling me "I feel so fat" and I said "dude you're not allowed to say tha-"

 

 

 

This...

 

I remember one day in college, I was about a size 12 at the time (And I was skin and bones pretty much, and the fact I was tall meant larger pants) a girlfriend of mine said "I feel fat. My size 0s are getting tight." Me and another girlfriend of ours (who was maybe a size 14 at most) both looked at her and said "Nope, not allowed to complain". We loved her, but she would do this when she wanted someone to tell her how cute she looked. Looking back, we may not of been nice about it (since it was a touchy subject for the other friend), but when standing next to 2 other women we are definitely not that small, it sounded more like gloating or maybe when you are that small, you think about it more than those of us who don't since its "expected" of you to be little than those who people go "Oh well, shes not too fat" .


I am not in that category anymore.

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2 hours ago, Vibrantella said:

I am sorry to hear about your grandmother's pain and frustration.  Is she doing any physio/exercises to help with the joints?  There is a book by Katy Bowman called Dynamic Aging, where she asks "What if your pain and lack of mobility isn’t due to your age, but your habits? What if changing how you move can change how you feel, no matter your age?" which might be of interest.  Also, bone broth / collagen and good fats as building blocks for the joints.  With the genetic component, obviously, whatever she does may not lead to complete healing, but it might help alleviate some of the symptoms.

I hope I'm not being obnoxious in offering unsolicited advice; it's just an idea to look up (or not!) which you may not have seen before.

 

Thanks for input, and absolutely no need to apologize. A large part of the problem is that she spent decades (literally decades) ignoring it and denying that it was happening, refusing to go to the doctor, etc. She's very much a 'stiff upper lip, show no weakness' kind of person. Thankfully she is now, finally, doing something about it. Out of desperation, sadly, but better later than never. Late last year, she started going to a woman who does acupuncture and therapeutic massage and it's helping. 

 

I've tried suggesting other things (nutrition changes, PT exercises) but getting her to make changes has so far proved near impossible. Attitude is a powerful force.

 

Anyway Badger, sorry for hijacking your thread!

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2 hours ago, Marauder said:

Shamelessly stalking for Hobonichi and pen chat and following for your delightful wit.  

New friends are always welcome!

 

30 minutes ago, Severine said:

Anyway Badger, sorry for hijacking your thread!

Apologies are never needed. Hijack away.

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"'It's time for a few small repairs,' she said." - Shawn Colvin

 

 

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On 1/6/2018 at 11:03 AM, Bookish Badger said:

I just finished reading Older, Faster, Stronger by Margaret Webb. The book is about the author's attempt to become "super-fit" at the advanced age of 50, which she defined as qualifying for the Boston Marathon - with a time that would qualify an 18-30yo woman - and being on the podium for her age class at the World Masters Games half-marathon in Italy.

 

To accomplish this, she bartered with a nutritionist/personal trainer to trade writing advice for nutritional and training advice (this nutritionist is clearly Paleo-ish, and the chapter where she tells Webb, a conventional-wisdom long-distance runner, to give up grains and legumes is hilarious - a major freak-out ensued). She also used her running and writing credentials to interview a number of sports and aging researchers who are studying the world's elite elderly athletes, and was able to meet and train with several of these very athletes. 

 

The book was entertaining and mostly interesting. There were some parts where IMO she spent too much time talking about the "women's running boom" that started in the 70s and tying it into feminist movement happening at the same time, and then doing the same with "the new resurgence of women's running" and the second (or are we now on the third?)-wave feminist movement. It read to me like she was trying to make it bigger than just one person getting in better shape, and justify participating in such a time-consuming and sometimes expensive hobby - which should need no justification in the first place.

 

And for such a staunch feminist, she sure uses the language of body shame. When relating her weight struggles she never just gained weight, she "larded on 8 pounds" here and "packed on the lard" there. Every time I came across a "lard" reference, I wanted to smack my belly and shout in my best redneck-truck-driver-stereotype voice, "I gotcha lard right here, bitch!" 

 

She even, with great difficulty, admitted that her weight had reached a high of ... wait for it ... 140 pounds! 

 

I'll pause for y'all to un-clutch your pearls and wave your smelling salts. Please continue when you've regained your composure.

 

Yes, that was snarky, even for me. Yes, I know that 140 pounds is probably heavier than a 5' woman would like to be, especially a marathoner. But, really? When I read that "admission," I imagined it being said in the kind of hushed, shame-choked whisper of an addict admitting that she'd sold her baby's formula so she could buy heroine. 

 

But overall, I'd recommend the book to anyone who is interested in long-distance running or being athletic in later life. 

 

One thing really struck me, so strongly that I had to write it down and post it where I can see it daily. She was attending an aging conference in San Francisco. Most of the attendees were well-heeled folks in their later years, all looking for the fountain of youth. The "fountain" that all of the presenters gave them - eat well and exercise - was not the answer they wanted. Webb's comment: 

 

"I couldn't understand their desire to live longer when they didn't seem interested in living stronger and more fully in their bodies now."

 

Every thing you said here is beautiful. You're also beautiful. Please never change.

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3 hours ago, Laghail said:

 

Every thing you said here is beautiful. You're also beautiful. Please never change.

 

I second this :)

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"One should eat to live, not live to eat." -Molaire-

"People always forget their hangover" -My dear ol' dad

"People are born to live, while some are born to evolve." 

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Yesterday was a tough day in some ways. Nothing specific, just that I let the usual annoyances get under my skin so by the end of the day I was feeling very put-upon and unappreciated. It was quite the pity party.

 

And when I got home, my new medical insurance cards had arrived, but they had the old plan number on them because of course they did. Which is a problem, because our PCP is in-network on the new plan but out-of-network on the old one.

 

Plus, Mr. Bear was feeling lousy and so hadn't done anything in the dinner department (he's taken over the cooking chores since he lost his job). 

 

You already know where this is going. Follow the bouncing ball and sing it with me: We got a pizza. 

 

That's ok. One pizza (one half pizza, actually) isn't going to undo my progress or make me a bad Rebel. Onward.

 

To quote @Tanktimus the Encourager, today is a good day.

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"'It's time for a few small repairs,' she said." - Shawn Colvin

 

 

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12 minutes ago, Bookish Badger said:

That's ok. One pizza (one half pizza, actually) isn't going to undo my progress or make me a bad Rebel. Onward.

 

To quote @Tanktimus the Encourager, today is a good day.

 

We all have these days. The day where nothing goes right, where the world is against us. So you got pizza, it happens. Today will go better. Just keep moving forward. 

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If pizza is the worst slipup that happens at the end of a hard day, I'd almost take that as a good sign. 

 

Boo about work frustrations. We appreciate you, though.

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On 1/4/2018 at 4:28 AM, Bookish Badger said:

To all of you seasoned gratitude journalers (is that a word?) out there: What format do you use? I believe the process is a good one, but I feel a little awkward writing "I am grateful for..." over and over. 

 

Any suggestions for different formats?

Not sure if you need any more suggestions, but I usually just write "Gratitudes:" and then a bulleted list. I also usually designate a page per month or so and go back at the end and copy over all the gratitudes I like best on reflection, to help really cement them. 

 

On 1/6/2018 at 9:03 AM, Bookish Badger said:

There were some parts where IMO she spent too much time talking about the "women's running boom" that started in the 70s and tying it into feminist movement happening at the same time, and then doing the same with "the new resurgence of women's running" and the second (or are we now on the third?)-wave feminist movement.

We are now technically in fourth-wave feminism. But apparently third-wave is defined by being confusing and hard to pin down and fourth-wave is social media feminism so who even knows anymore. 

 

On 1/6/2018 at 9:03 AM, Bookish Badger said:

But overall, I'd recommend the book to anyone who is interested in long-distance running or being athletic in later life. 

Sounds like an interesting read. I'm not really in the "aging" demographics but I am interested in getting into distance running and I do have what my GP calls "some very adult numbers" in terms of health markers, so... >_>

 

On 1/7/2018 at 5:47 PM, Butternut said:

You (using this as generally speaking) maybe used to seeing 200 on the scale. But when you see 235 you have a sense of urgency, shame, and insecurities. The same feelings a woman with the scale showing 150 when she is used to seeing 125.

 

It still has always bothered me though when someone uses the terms like "fat" or "lard" when they don't know the true feeling of not being able to fit into "normal" sizes 

I have always been the largest of my friends and it bothers me too, when smaller people make comments like this. Their feelings are real and we're all being inundated with the same social stigma against having even an ounce out of place, but don't they notice how much harder it is for me?! But if I take a step back, all of my friends are way more active than I am and also, if I'm being honest, much more interested in attracting a mate. (That's not to say you have to look good to get a boyfriend, but just since I never wanted one I never cared about that particular struggle and never had that impetus to get fit.) 

 

But sometimes here on NF I feel like I'm the skinny one out. Some people here are trying to lose an entire me, and here I am trying to figure out how to safely lose 40 pounds and keep them off. No one here has ever made me feel like my feelings are immaterial compared to theirs, or that my journey doesn't count because my hurdle is lower, but sometimes I catch myself telling myself not to kick up such a fuss anyway, just in case. It's dumb. 

 

7e474561622586c012867c78f4ad8787.jpg

 

On 1/8/2018 at 5:12 AM, Bean Sidhe said:

 

This...

 

I remember one day in college, I was about a size 12 at the time (And I was skin and bones pretty much, and the fact I was tall meant larger pants) a girlfriend of mine said "I feel fat. My size 0s are getting tight." Me and another girlfriend of ours (who was maybe a size 14 at most) both looked at her and said "Nope, not allowed to complain". We loved her, but she would do this when she wanted someone to tell her how cute she looked. Looking back, we may not of been nice about it (since it was a touchy subject for the other friend), but when standing next to 2 other women we are definitely not that small, it sounded more like gloating or maybe when you are that small, you think about it more than those of us who don't since its "expected" of you to be little than those who people go "Oh well, shes not too fat" .

Honestly it seems like your friend was just looking to be told how cute she was. And it's not that that isn't also legitimate -- people need reassurance! -- but the fact that she specifically called out that she's size 0 is like. Really? Idk something about the specificity there sounds more like showing off than serious concern. But of course, there are all kinds of other problems that overweight people don't see: for example, sometimes people who are underweight have an eating disorder, and when they start to heal and put the weight back on they're torn between being happy and healthy and proud and freaking out because omg what if they're not skinny anymore nooooo. It's tough for everyone. 

 

On 1/8/2018 at 5:12 AM, Bean Sidhe said:

I am not in that category anymore.

I don't understand where it comes from or where the limit is, but you're right, there is kind of a sense that once someone has reached a certain weight, they don't care about being trim anymore. Like if you have to shop in the oversize section, you're not even dreaming of the single-digit sizes anymore. It's bullshit. 

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Okay, so I truly hate that anyone "lard" or any similar statement when talking about their weight. It always reminds me of:

 

542c6ca62ab6ac57a03f33ba914b43be.jpg

 

But I also seriously love that there is a nice, respectful conversation around this. 

 

15 minutes ago, Wobbegong said:

Some people here are trying to lose an entire me, and here I am trying to figure out how to safely lose 40 pounds and keep them off. No one here has ever made me feel like my feelings are immaterial compared to theirs, or that my journey doesn't count because my hurdle is lower, but sometimes I catch myself telling myself not to kick up such a fuss anyway, just in case. It's dumb. 

 

This is definitely me. Some people here start out at the weight I am trying to get to. Or talk about when they were the weight I am now. Then, there are people who started at where I was that think getting to where I am now is so far away. But then I talk to people larger or smaller than I am and we all have the same struggles, which is amazing because solidarity.

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I love this community. So many varying viewpoints, all expressed respectfully and with consideration. If only the rest of the internet were like this!

 

We're all programmed by media cues about artificial "ideals" and struggle with the damage they do. It's real. The fight to lose 20 pounds can be as bitter and long as the fight to lose 200. The fight that a life-long anorexic has to gain healthy weight can be even worse and failure can have higher consequences.

 

So I wasn't trying to put down anyone's struggle just because I'd love to weigh 140 pounds. (Besides, I know me. When I hit that target, I'll start eyeing 120 because why not.) What I was reacting to was the implied assumption that the author's weight of 140 pounds was somehow shameful.

 

It may be too much for a short, competitive marathoner to carry safely. (At one point, she crunched the numbers for amount of force absorbed by every footfall when running downhill and calculated how many tons of force was saved for each pound of "lard" she "whittled" off.) It may be unhealthy. Some might find it unattractive.

 

But none of that = shameful. I found it odd that a feminist who believes in the power of women to change the world through sport would still be entrenched in such a destructive mindset. I felt like I was back in the 50s, when "a lady never reveals her age or weight" since those numbers could devalue her. Sad that we haven't gotten past it.

 

For a complete 180 from that stance, I offer A Beautiful Work In Progress, by Mirna Valerio. She's a marathoner and ultra-marathoner who makes no apologies at all for her size.

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"'It's time for a few small repairs,' she said." - Shawn Colvin

 

 

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17 hours ago, Wobbegong said:

We are now technically in fourth-wave feminism. But apparently third-wave is defined by being confusing and hard to pin down and fourth-wave is social media feminism so who even knows anymore. 

I like to call third-wave feminism “Spice Girls feminism” personally.  :P

 

17 hours ago, Wobbegong said:

But sometimes here on NF I feel like I'm the skinny one out. Some people here are trying to lose an entire me, and here I am trying to figure out how to safely lose 40 pounds and keep them off. No one here has ever made me feel like my feelings are immaterial compared to theirs, or that my journey doesn't count because my hurdle is lower, but sometimes I catch myself telling myself not to kick up such a fuss anyway, just in case.

I feel this too, not necessarily here on NF but definitely at work. I have to steel myself from talking too much about eating healthy and working out because people assume I’m trying to lose weight (I’m not, I’m trying to keep my arteries clear and develop better endurance), so I end up making them feel bad about themselves.

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16 hours ago, Bookish Badger said:

I felt like I was back in the 50s

 

There are unfortunately soooo many factors that suggest we are regressing as a society. I finally got a straight answer when I asked someone what was meant by "Make American Great Again," and he suggested we needed to go back to the 50's, restore the godly patriarchal household where dad works and mom stays home, bring back prayer and the pledge in every single school, deport anyone who wasn't born in the U.S., protect our borders, etc. (you get the point). He added that we also need to re-evaluate the Constitution and make sure we're following it. If we did that, he said, this country would be in better shape. I didn't mention that he seemed completely unaware of how much he just contradicted himself.

 

I'm just interested in being good to people, all people, and making them feel valuable as a person regardless of where they come from, how much they weigh, their socio-economic status, their faith (or lack of), their sexuality, or their political affiliation. And I shared this with the man because I'm also interested in encouraging and even pushing people to be the best they can be, and that means treating others with respect even if you disagree with any of the above-mentioned issues. He didn't seem to like that very much, and I probably didn't have much of an impact on his thought process, but he also didn't respond negatively. He just shrugged.

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1 hour ago, Wolfen said:

 

There are unfortunately soooo many factors that suggest we are regressing as a society. I finally got a straight answer when I asked someone what was meant by "Make American Great Again," and he suggested we needed to go back to the 50's, restore the godly patriarchal household where dad works and mom stays home, bring back prayer and the pledge in every single school, deport anyone who wasn't born in the U.S., protect our borders, etc. (you get the point). He added that we also need to re-evaluate the Constitution and make sure we're following it. If we did that, he said, this country would be in better shape. I didn't mention that he seemed completely unaware of how much he just contradicted himself.

 

I'm just interested in being good to people, all people, and making them feel valuable as a person regardless of where they come from, how much they weigh, their socio-economic status, their faith (or lack of), their sexuality, or their political affiliation. And I shared this with the man because I'm also interested in encouraging and even pushing people to be the best they can be, and that means treating others with respect even if you disagree with any of the above-mentioned issues. He didn't seem to like that very much, and I probably didn't have much of an impact on his thought process, but he also didn't respond negatively. He just shrugged.

 

That first guy's answer is a terrifying dystopia in my eyes. I'll take your Option B, please. Good for you for having that conversation.

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2 hours ago, Wolfen said:

he suggested we needed to go back to the 50's, restore the godly patriarchal household where dad works and mom stays home, bring back prayer and the pledge in every single school, deport anyone who wasn't born in the U.S., protect our borders, etc. (you get the point).

 

Off topic: The bolded makes me laugh really hard. I'd like to point out that in the 50's there would have been a significant number of the adult population that would be deported for not being born in the U.S. A good number of my family included.

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1 hour ago, Wolfen said:

he suggested we needed to go back to the 50's, restore the godly patriarchal household where dad works and mom stays home,

I always forget that when people say we need to go back to the fifties, what they mean is "white suburban fifties." Not like, the actual, broad-scope, fifties. They want to live in Leave It To Beaver land. I suppose most people who feel that way would be fine with throwing away the Civil and Gay Rights movements, but I wonder if they realize the fantasy of their wives staying home all day to cook, clean, raise the children, and organize charity events would largely go out the window with the advent of the Internet... babe's gonna be home enjoying and educating herself all day while you toil for the pride of being "the head of the household," just saying. 

 

And there has never been a time when there weren't people poor enough that both adults in their household worked, or when there weren't a few educated and strong-minded women who forced their way into more gentlemanly pursuits (even if that just meant being in charge of defending their castle while the lord was away at war, but there are other examples too -- I actually can think of several others off the top of my head). Generally speaking, the farther back you go in history the less chance there would have been for someone poor and trapped in such a lifestyle to earn enough to escape on their own, so all these people wishing to go back to the fifties should maybe... be a little more judicious with their wishes. 

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