If there is one book this past summer that has been attracting massive amounts of attention it’s Fifty Shades of Grey.
And no it does not meet the atypical plot of girl falling in love with a vampire or wizard, but this takes a more realistic approach—girl falling in love with a jerk.
That’s right, it’s a romantic love story about a girl falling in love with a man (not without first entering a contract) who ultimately uses her for sex, has control over her life including giving her a list of rules she must adhere to. When she neglects to meet his code of conduct she is punished.
At times when I was reading the novel I thought that the punishments came close to crossing the line of abuse. The novel’s main man, Christian Grey, expresses several times to the naive Ana that in their relationship he thrives from having complete control. After I completed the book I was left disappointed with the main theme of an arrogant man capturing and taking advantage of the heart of Ana. I was able to draw some interesting parallels between the novel and reality.
Maybe there is something attractive about dating an insolent man. Is it that women don’t like to be the power holders in a relationship? Or maybe it’s the idea of a challenge we want the satisfaction of knowing we broke the steel armor of the big bad tough guy to reveal that he infact does have a heart. Nonetheless, almost all women can identify with falling in love with someone that didn’t all together treat them as they deserved like the character of Ana; there was something that drew us in (possibly we experienced a moment of weakness,) and in the end we were left picking up the pieces of our shattered hearts.
An important lesson can be taken away from reading the first book in the Fifty Shades of Grey series that being no woman should enter a relationship with the belief that she can change her partner. Entering a relationship on these grounds will only lead to disappointment. Ana believed that she could change Christian’s aggressive and controlling ways, but was met with nothing but discontent. What’s worse is that Ana began changing herself and her values to meet the demands of her counterpart.
In a healthy relationship you should love each other and appreciate each other as you are, not change yourself to meet the standards of your significant other. It is apparent that 50 Shades of Grey glorifies an unhealthy and dysfunctional relationship and strays from the original presumption that there is a “prince charming” out there for every girl. Call me crazy but I believe in prince charming– you know that man that will make you feel real undying love in the depths of your soul and will not settle for 50 shades of insolent.