I knew something was going on with Jon and Kate these days. My blog's statistics tell me that over the past couple of days my post containing their picture has been drawing literally hundreds of people from all over the world to my blog. So I talked to my mother who is profoundly emotionally invested in their story. Turns out that Jon and Kate are getting divorced.
Lots of online and tabloid commentary about the divorce can be summarized as harping on the idea that Kate is "too strong" amd "domineering" while Jon is "too passive." I have no interest whatsoever in why these people decided to get divorced. I could never understand why aanybody would be interested in the personal lives of people they don't know. What bothers me, however, is this rhetoric of "no-wonder-he-dumped-her-since-she-is-so-powerful."
Some people are more forceful by nature than others. Sometimes, these people are women. And that's perfectly fine. Believe it ir not, there are many men who love this kind of women. Also, people sometimes (or even often) get divorced. Thee reasons for a divorce are always complex and can't be summarized in a couple of cliched statements about who's more in charge. I somehow doubt, however, that it would occur to many people to suggest that somebody's marriage ended because the man had a strong personality.
As I have said before, I come from a long line of very powerful, strong women with great careers. My great-grandmother, my grand-mother, my mother, my aunts, my sister, and I are all extremely opinionated and sometimes very loud women. This has not prevented us from having full and rewarding personal lives. So this view that you have to be a silent and modest wall-flower in order to be popular with men is completely misguided. (Not that any one of us became outspoken and strong in order to attract people. It just happened.)
So my suggestion is: let's lay off Kate and concentrate on our inherent chauvinism that forces us to criticize a mother of 8 (as well as any woman or man) for having a personality.