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10 Reasons Why Olivia Benson Should Be Every Girl’s Role Model

If you’re not watching Law and Order: SVU you should make the point to do so!

The lead role of Sgt. Olivia Benson is played by Mariska Hargitay. SVU has been on the air for sixteen years and just announced a seventeenth season. I have watched Hargitay since season one, and though the content of this show may be harsh at times, it’s definitely real.

Olivia Benson is totally a strong female character that every girl should look up to. Let’s just say, there’s a reason Taylor Swift named her cat after her!

1. She is kind to everyone

One of the things I can say about Olivia is she’s kind. I’ve seen her even be kind the people she is meant to put away. It takes a special type of person to be kind to everyone despite his or her faults.

2. She helps the victims

A lot of our culture is centered on blaming someone. Olivia pushes the boundaries, and fights each episode for the rights of the women and men she meets. We are always looking for reasons why things happen, but Olivia does a great job of putting aside the unnecessary and focusing on what’s important – the victims.

Her victims are the most important people. She is a natural listener. And in a world of people with opinions, and some always having something to say. It’s a great quality to have.

3. She doesn’t take crap from anyone

One of Olivia’s most prominent characteristics is her attitude. She is a woman in a male-dominated field – she broke the gender bias! She doesn’t take the bullsh*t that the other characters throw at her. Instead, she shows them she is just as strong and establishes herself as a presence. Every girl should be confident in that way.

4. She is proud of who see is, naturally

Even when she’s covered in blood, she manages to be flawless! Yes, I realize how awful that sounds but the statement cannot help but be true. Around here, we’re used seeing cops in complete uniforms. That’s not the case, at least not in most Law and Order shows. She pulls off “Sergeant” extremely well. She doesn’t feel the need to conform to what society might think is pretty. She is just one cop trying to save the world.

5. She is loyal

Loyalty is a hard thing to come by these days. It’s a rare quality and those who posess it are special. She was a partner to Detective Stabler until he retired from the SVU squad. She stood by him, regardless of his sometimes erratic behaviour. Some fans even speculate she loved him. But, who wouldn’t? Have you seen Detective Stabler?

6. She’s amazing with children [Spoiler Alert!]

Olivia doesn’t just deal with adult victims, but children as well. Despite all the stress in her job, one thing you can tell about Olivia is that she loves kids. She puts aside her own childhood issues and aims to help those little kids. Recently, Olivia met a little orphan boy named Noah. Now, he’s her own son!

7. She’s dedicated

Olivia Benson is one dedicated person. She will do anything to help someone, even if that means putting herself in danger. And sometimes, that isn’t always a good thing (I’m not recommending you do that). But it does show how far she is willing to go to help her victims. There are several episodes where Olivia is ordered to go home and rest by her commanding officer. Why? Because she is freaking dedicated!

8. We aren’t invincible, and neither is she

Olivia has been through some tough stuff on SVU. She is a child of rape. Her mother was an alcoholic, and she has been victimized more then once on the show. Still, she manages to work through her troubles. She has showed that we are all affected. We can all feel sad and helpless at times. But, we must fight back. One of the most classic examples is her fear after being held captive for four days, of returning to her squad room and being treated differently. We all feel that way sometimes. Fear of being seen a certain way, right?

9. Mariska has been married to Peter Hermann for 11 years!

Though Olivia has been unable to capture this sort of lasting love, the actress herself has it down to perfection. These days having a lasting relationship in the celebrity spotlight is hard. Mariska makes the best of that by staying true to herself, her husband and her three children. She is a working woman who manages to keep her home life stable, and her fans impressed. What makes this even more awesome is that Peter Hermann and Mariska Hargitay met on the set of SVU!

10. Mariska’s Joyful Heart Foundation

Inspired by the work she does on SVU, Mariska has an foundation called The Joyful Heart Foundation. The mission of this foundation is to educate, heal and support sexual assault, domestic violence, and child abuse victims. What a woman!

So, to recap: kindness, strength, selflessness, and love. This is why Olivia Benson – and Mariska Hargitay – should be every girl’s role model!

Law & Order: SVU © NBCUniversal

Hi! I'm Nathalie Sturgeon. Raised in Miramichi, New Brunswick. I'm a psychology/journalism major at St. Thomas University. I'm excited to contributing to Her Campus STU.
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