#PositiveControversy: The Other “B” Word (Episode 4)

It seems like ever since Destiny’s Child split up sisterhood has been an on again, off again catch phrase in pop culture. With the wild success of reality shows driven by the meaningless women to woman rage, I cannot help but cringe, specifically at the mainstreaming of the b-word. What does vilifying other women say about a woman? What does it say about our ability to love ourselves? Unfortunately, even the attempts to promote assertiveness and security in women have seemingly taken a blow.

As much as it is nice that Sheryl Sandberg and Pantene have created their own campaigns to squash the word bossy as a proper adjective for powerful women, some are calling for the “Ban Bossy” movement to be banned itself, saying the campaign is based on illogical, unproven social science. As exciting as it is to have the first African-American executive editor at the New York Times, there is this bitter after taste that it comes at the expense of his female predecessor, Jill Abramson, demanding pay equity. I can’t help but think of the b-word that haunts a lot of cooler talk and cultural norms that really don’t work for creating new opportunities for women. At what point will it be okay for women of all ages and from all walks of life to be assertive and not considered the “B” word, or even bossy?

The cliché that sticks and stones may break our bones, but words can never hurt us, is a misconstrued declaration of self-empowerment. The fact of the matter is that our words have power and if we are truly going to empower one another, we must speak with careful consideration of the power held in our words.

We hope that you all join the conversation in Episode 4 of “The Positive Controversy,” as I sit down with, Life Coach, Author and Speaker Dee Marshall and TV Personality Lyndsay Christian, two women that truly empower me be bold, beautiful and brave and would never refer to me as a demeaning “B” word.

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