I started reading “Cat Person” and I’m not even finished and I’m a little disturbed.
I admit that when it first started getting circulated around, I skipped over it because the close up of the two mouths kissing totally grossed me out. Ew, why do I need to be that close to someone else’s wet intimate moment? Yuck. Next.
But then everyone started reading it and what the hell, I’m suseptable to peer pressure so I figured I should read it so I could say that I read it and that I probably agree with whatever feminist #metoo consent is king soap boxing everyone else had already said and probably said it better than me.
I’m a little social media fatigued, is that obvious?
Fact is I was Margot for most of my life as a woman. I was a foolish, naive, obsessed with needing a boyfriend, easily flattered, and went along because what else was I doing? Because that’s what I thought being a woman was supposed to be and since I wasn’t naturally able to be a woman, this is what I came up with. I chased men. I wanted men to love me. I had sex with men to make them love me.
It was horrible. If god forbid I should ever lose M Fox, I will just be alone forever because I fucking hate dating. I hate the players, I hate the game, I hate it all.
Tom was a grad student when I was 19. I forget how I met him. Maybe it was during laundry ping pong. It was my second and final time getting out of an abusive relationship — a relationship with a man who said that he didn’t want to treat me nice because he didn’t want to spoil me. He didn’t want me to get “used to it.” He ignored me in public. He kicked the back of my knees and flat tired me from behind when we walked home. He pinched my nipples when he was angry in private. He had sex with me while I cried over my beloved childhood dog dying. I remember watching it dawn on his face while he humped me that maybe I wasn’t enjoying it. That maybe when I asked him to come over and comfort me that I didn’t mean with his dick. Oh well. Better finish up.
So I guess the only thing that I could offer these men was my body. My woman’s body with soft breasts and legs that opened pretty easily, if you could show me that you loved me. My bar was pretty fucking low.
Then came Tom. I told him about my last relationship, how I was treated, how I felt broken and violated. He was older than me, he was taller than me, he felt like a grown-up. He said he’d take care of me.
Just before Tom penetrated me, he said, “You know I’m with someone else, right?”
“Yeah,” I lied. But then we had sex.
After we were done: “I’m going to break your heart, aren’t I?”
And I loved him. I was in love with him. He healed me, he made me feel dainty and beautiful and wanted.
So when I read “Cat Person,” I see myself in Margot and it is so incredible painful to admit how real that is. Flaws and all. The sad truth? I would have been thrilled to have been chosen by the idiot Robert. I would have been THRILLED to receive a bunch of stupid emojis and a dolphin before I even got him. Even if I hated it.
Because to be alone would have been way way worse.
I wish I had some pithy analysis for this, but I don’t. This story is so realistic and so simple and really punched me in the gut. There are people who are upset because there’s some fat shaming in it, but, honestly, why do we require Margot to be perfect? She’s certainly not the product of a perfect society.