I’m not married because I’m a selfish bitchy slutty shallow liar

Actually, all of those things other than “liar” are totally true.

Mad Men writer Tracy McMillan explains to all of us ladies why we aren’t married (and we all want to be, obviously — just admit it, girls). How does Tracy McMillan know why we’re not married? Because she’s been married three times. Loves it. Loves it so much she does it over and over again, even with people who kind of suck. “Getting married is the best.” -Tracy McMillan. So even though she married “a very nice liar and cheater who was just like my dad, if my dad had gone to Harvard instead of doing multiple stints in federal prison,” the marital problem in America is you (“you” being you, woman). Obviously. Allow her to explain:

1. You’re a Bitch.
Here’s what I mean by bitch. I mean you’re angry. You probably don’t think you’re angry. You think you’re super smart, or if you’ve been to a lot of therapy, that you’re setting boundaries. But the truth is you’re pissed. At your mom. At the military-industrial complex. At Sarah Palin. And it’s scaring men off.

The deal is: most men just want to marry someone who is nice to them. I am the mother of a 13-year-old boy, which is like living with the single-cell protozoa version of a husband. Here’s what my son wants out of life: macaroni and cheese, a video game, and Kim Kardashian. Have you ever seen Kim Kardashian angry? I didn’t think so. You’ve seen Kim Kardashian smile, wiggle, and make a sex tape. Female anger terrifies men. I know it seems unfair that you have to work around a man’s fear and insecurity in order to get married — but actually, it’s perfect, since working around a man’s fear and insecurity is big part of what you’ll be doing as a wife.

Actually, that is totally why I’m not married (although I’ll point out that Kim Kardashian isn’t married either, so). And this is also why McMillan’s whole piece is kind of genius — in explaining why we’re not married, she makes it really clear that it’s totally easy to find someone to marry you, if you’re willing to act like a complete doormat without a personality. Leaving any halfway intelligent reader to conclude, “Hmm, maybe I don’t want to get married just for the sake of Getting Married! Perhaps I will wait to find someone who actually likes women who have thoughts.”

The rest of the list is instructive — if you want to get married, you must never think about yourself; you must have no requirements for a man’s personality or physical appearance other than his willingness to commit; you must make it clear that you want to get married without actually ever saying the words “I want to get married;” you must not have sex, except with the man you want to marry you; and after you’ve accepted the fact that you aren’t married because you’re a bitch and a slut and a liar and shallow and selfish, you must — MUST! — love yourself.

The end. Happily ever after.

Author: has written 5281 posts for this blog.

Jill has been blogging for Feministe since 2005.
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32 Responses

  1. shannon
    shannon February 25, 2011 at 12:44 pm |

    Ah, everyone gets a taste of the hectoring black women get for having standards. “Oh, I don’t want to marry a crackhead I don’t love” “OH NOES, YOU’RE CAUSING THE DOWNFALL OF THE BLACK COMMUNITY, AND KILLING THE BLACK MAN!”

  2. FashionablyEvil
    FashionablyEvil February 25, 2011 at 12:47 pm |

    although I’ll point out that Kim Kardashian isn’t married either, so

    She’s actually divorced. The HORROR!

  3. ginatrout
    ginatrout February 25, 2011 at 12:51 pm |

    Ok. If she’s been married 3x and, by her admission, currently to a loser husband then she’s doing it wrong. But then again everytime I read these types of articles, I get the distinct impression that these people like to have weddings and not necessarily a marriage.

  4. Caroline
    Caroline February 25, 2011 at 12:51 pm |

    I thought this piece was supposed to be a satirical take on condescending “relationship advice” pieces in the media?

  5. gretel
    gretel February 25, 2011 at 12:52 pm |

    But I thought men wanted to marry bitches?

    SO CONFUSED!

  6. Verity Khat
    Verity Khat February 25, 2011 at 1:27 pm |

    Caroline: I thought this piece was supposed to be a satirical take on condescending “relationship advice” pieces in the media?  

    Yeah, I thought Jill was serious at first, and then I started reading the actual piece and cracked up from all the oozing overabundance of snark. Ten points to Tracy!

  7. Sheelzebub
    Sheelzebub February 25, 2011 at 1:36 pm |

    Read the comments of the article and was gobsmacked that so many people thought she was serious. Holy–!

  8. Jessica Isabel
    Jessica Isabel February 25, 2011 at 1:40 pm |

    I think this writer really shot herself (and her credibility) in the foot. The successful marriages I’ve seen are not about tiptoeing around each other. They involve serious acceptance of each others’ flaws, and celebrating the little things together.

  9. I’m not married because I’ma selfish bitchy slutty shallow liar – Feministe (blog) » Kim Kardashian Superstar

    [...] I'm not married because I'ma selfish bitchy slutty shallow liarFeministe (blog)Here's what my son wants out of life: macaroni and cheese, a video game, and Kim Kardashian. Have you ever seen Kim Kardashian angry? I didn't think so. You've seen Kim Kardashian smile, wiggle, and make a sex tape. Female anger terrifies men. …and more » [...]

  10. Sid
    Sid February 25, 2011 at 2:47 pm |

    you must have no requirements for a man’s … physical appearance other than his willingness to commit

    I think this is more stereotype than actually true: OkCupid had an interesting blogpost awhile back which showed how men rated women’s attractiveness as more or less with a Gaussian distribution, whereas women rated the vast majority of men as unattractive.

  11. Tori
    Tori February 25, 2011 at 2:52 pm |

    My mom just asked me yesterday why I’m not married yet (also why I haven’t had a hysterectomy yet). It’s nice to have at least one link to show her.

  12. Thom
    Thom February 25, 2011 at 3:03 pm |

    I only fear female anger if it weilds a knife and all I asked was if someone could please pass the salt. And also if it is wearing a hockey mask. Scary.

  13. robobt
    robobt February 25, 2011 at 3:07 pm |

    Full disclosure, I’m a married hetero male. I hate columns like this for a million reasons, one being that they are always directed at women (who, of course, ALL crave marriage at all costs!!!); another being that they ignore anything but heteronormative sexuality, and present the clear picture that women are X and men are Y and you’re just in denial if you think otherwise.

    Having read McMillan’s article, I really really want to believe it was intended to be satire. In away though it doesn’t matter because, as other commenters have pointed out, a ridiculous number of huffpo readers took it to be very sincere and poignant. I’m stunned and horrified, but no longer surprised.

    It’s much the way I’ve come to see Mad Men itself: I think the show tries to show a complex world of moral ambiguity, where gross sexism is nonetheless presented without punches pulled and in a way that displays just how far we haven’t come at all since the 60s, and why. (For me, it has often succeeded; for my wife, less so.) But I have to accept that most of the viewers of the show just see beautiful people in stylist clothing looking cool. And the tangible results? Victoria’s Secret and I’m sure other similarly wonderful monuments to misogynist consumerism have brought back the garter belt. Seriously. What? This is a show in which Don Draper, a remarkable anti-hero, has repeatedly engaged in shockingly inappropriate behavior—in what is absolutely (but never explicitly called) rape on multiple occasions—and gotten away with it because he lives in a world where that’s how things go (ours) and the show’s writers seem to believe strongly that things do not happen “for a reason.” Unfortunately, the nuance is lost, along with anything good that could have come from it, on most people. Or maybe I’m too eager to see something good where there’s really just a beautifully polished piece of trash? (This is an ongoing debate at home.)

    In any event, I was at least relieved to find out that Tracy McMillan has only written one episode of Mad Men. So say what you will about McMillan—and if the article was written in earnest (I mean, her twitter handle is @whyurnotmarried and it’s so absurd that I have trouble believing is not an Andy Kaufman-esque farce), she certainly deserves a few harsh words—but to characterize her as a “Mad Men writer” is unfair…to the show.

  14. ozymandias
    ozymandias February 25, 2011 at 3:20 pm |

    This is one of those classic “good idea, bad idea, good idea, WTF NO WHAT PLANET ARE YOU ON idea” pieces.

    For instance: getting in a relationship with someone who doesn’t want a relationship? Bad idea. As a woman who has had a fuckbuddy who decided we were OMGINLOVEFOREVER when I had no such ideas, it’s basically a trainwreck for everyone. And “if you’re not enough by yourself, you’re not enough when you get married” is sensible advice. And marriage is supposed to involve sacrifice by both parties.

    But otoh: it is a good idea to date people you are attracted to! Both men and women make these mistakes! And sluttiness has nothing to do with your relationship abilities, except that it provides an efficient way to sort for people who are misogynistic douchebags!

    OZYTOCIN DOES NOT WORK THAT WAY.

  15. ozymandias
    ozymandias February 25, 2011 at 3:20 pm |

    Ugh, oxytocin, teach me to proofread my incoherent rage.

  16. bluemillionmile
    bluemillionmile February 25, 2011 at 3:34 pm |

    This is either a brilliant satire or the same old garbage that women have been sold forever about marriage, that being that to get the coin that marriage bestows, women have to sacrifices their ‘self’ on its altar. Since I can’t tell whether it’s satire or not, and, that’s the hallmark of even decent satire, I’m going to call it garbage and toss it on the heap.

    I’ve followed advice like that in the past and while it was going to get me married, it also gave me clinical depression.

  17. ACG
    ACG February 25, 2011 at 3:35 pm |

    I think my confusion with this piece parallels a conversation I had with a friend the other day:

    “Your sarcastic voice sounds exactly the same as your regular voice.”
    “Really? I didn’t know that.”
    “… Were you being serious just now?”

  18. Tony
    Tony February 25, 2011 at 3:40 pm |

    Jill: It is. I actually think it’s pretty good. &nbsp

    It seems that some people are taking it satirically and some people are not.

  19. groggette
    groggette February 25, 2011 at 3:43 pm |

    ACG: “Your sarcastic voice sounds exactly the same as your regular voice.”
    “Really? I didn’t know that.”
    “… Were you being serious just now?”

    Ha! I’ve definitely had this conversation myself before. Also, this.

  20. groggette
    groggette February 25, 2011 at 3:45 pm |

    looks like I failed html-ing today:

  21. RenKiss
    RenKiss February 25, 2011 at 3:50 pm |

    Like several people here, I’m still trying to figure if her article is satire or not. If it is, then I feel really silly for not getting it in the first place and that means she did a very good job.

  22. ozymandias
    ozymandias February 25, 2011 at 4:36 pm |

    I would submit that if it’s a satire, it’s not really that funny.

  23. Sheelzebub
    Sheelzebub February 25, 2011 at 4:51 pm |

    Were you one of my guests at my dinner party last weekend?

    Thom: I only fear female anger if it weilds a knife and all I asked was if someone could please pass the salt.And also if it is wearing a hockey mask.Scary.  

  24. Nobody
    Nobody February 25, 2011 at 5:02 pm |

    Like several people here, I’m still trying to figure if her article is satire or not. If it is, then I feel really silly for not getting it in the first place and that means she did a very good job. RenKiss

    It can be tricky because these days Poe’s law applies in so many areas besides religious fundamentalism.

  25. Lara Emily Foley
    Lara Emily Foley February 25, 2011 at 6:43 pm |

    My biggest problem is if this is satire, people sure as hell aren’t reading it as satire. Jesus Christ the misogyny that flows out in the comment section is unbelievable

  26. Henry
    Henry February 25, 2011 at 6:46 pm |

    If that’s satire, it’s the most dry satire I’ve ever read. The only part that could really be for comedic effect is the “married three times” bit.

  27. Lara Emily Foley
    Lara Emily Foley February 25, 2011 at 7:11 pm |

    Oh Jezebel, every so often you remind me why I still read you

    http://jezebel.com/#!5765202/%C2%AD10-more-re%C2%ADasons-your%C2%ADe-not-marr%C2%ADied

  28. Lara Emily Foley
    Lara Emily Foley February 25, 2011 at 7:22 pm |

    Just copy and past the link sorry jezebel articles are hard to link now.

  29. Lori
    Lori February 25, 2011 at 9:19 pm |

    This was funny and smart. And by the way, I’m married and yet selfish, bitchy and shallow much of the time (not all of the time). Heck, I think I’d like to be slutty, too, but well, it’s too late for that because I’m married and I haven’t quite convinced my husband to have an open marriage (though I’m working on it).

  30. Amanda Marcotte
    Amanda Marcotte February 26, 2011 at 7:57 am |

    Leaving any halfway intelligent reader to conclude, “Hmm, maybe I don’t want to get married just for the sake of Getting Married! Perhaps I will wait to find someone who actually likes women who have thoughts.”

    See, you’re mixing up getting married with being married. Tracy McMillan is making no such mistake! Just because you get married—and get the male validation to prove you count, plus presents—doesn’t mean you have to do something as silly as be married to the piece of crap you lured with the doormat act. Who wants to be married to such a man? Get your wedding, and get your divorce. Then you’re free for another round of male validation and presents! McMillian’s done it three times, as she noted, and frankly, there’s no reason to stop there.

  31. latinist
    latinist February 26, 2011 at 3:32 pm |

    This article is some of the cleverest Poe’s-law baiting I’ve ever seen. And the reaction Tony @18 links to is hilarious (don’t miss the comments, if you have a strong stomach).

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