I may have, on occasion, in the past been a little negative about hen parties. It’s so subtle you’re likely to not have noticed it, as is my style, but if you look really carefully it’s there.
Hen parties seem to have evolved from a night out celebrating someone getting married to weekends (even weeks) away that involve a blend of phallic decor, tacky accessories and ritual humiliation all washed down with a generous helping of alcohol. But hey its all good fun right and no-one’s getting hurt? Aren’t they?
So what is my actual problem
Tack to trash – the first hen party I went to (which was a while ago) only the bride had a sash and a veil. Everyone else wore their normal clothes because it wasn’t about us it was about the person getting married. But now everyone is getting in the act and you have to have matching t-shirts, sashes, tutus, cowboy hats…. the list goes on. And most of this stuff will be churned out of factories in Asia, where the staff are paid peanuts and work in less than salubrious conditions. This obviously bothers me because I’m a human and my business is the opposite of fast, mass produced consumer goods. But my biggest bug bear is that cheap means disposable. What happens to the 20 sashes bought for £1 each and the tutus and the t-shirts and the hats? Are they treasured as mementos? Maybe for a little time after; but at some point you’re going to get tired of finding space in your wardrobe for that tutu and infuriated as that hat tumbles out of your closet again when your trying to find something else. They are going to end up in the bin and as most of them are made of non recyclable material – they are going to go into landfill. This makes me sad; no it makes me angry that we still haven’t got the message about sustainability. Most people seem to live by the idea that if it’s good for your wallet that’s good enough for the planet. ‘Climate change isn’t my problem’ yeah right buddy until it floods again. Some people comment that my stuff is expensive and compared to low end market stuff it is but you’re not going to throw away a £30 sash, you are going to keep it. It’s not cheap because its not disposable; its a keepsake to remind you of this amazing time. So what that you could buy 10 for what I charge for one, it’s only one person getting married. Wouldn’t it be better to make it about her and not about everyone else? And save a bit of space in landfill too.
Keep it in you pants – this the big one, this is what really grinds my goat about hen parties, its…………..willies. OK I have no problem with male genitalia, I’m not a prude but I am a feminist and things have their place, even those things. No,my issues is why has the universal symbol for a woman getting married is a penis? I for one had absolutely no reason for wanting any phallic shaped objects on my hen do, why would I? Unless that is of course that you think it’s OK to make assumptions about my sex life.Oh yes that’s right as a woman everyone should know what I’ve been up to between the sheets prior to my marriage, my sex life is public property after all. Shit I just woke up and apparently its 2017! Women are not objects and their sex life shouldn’t be something that is open to public scrutiny. That’s why I object to the penis thing, by sucking a penis straw, waving an inflatable penis around or wearing bouncy willies on your head then surely you are playing into the idea that your sex life is up for public consumption? How many times have you seen a group of lads make a bee-line for a hen party because they are seen as easy targets. I’m shaking my head as a write this as I’ve seen it so many times and it infuriates me. It’s like ‘she’s wearing a willy headband that’s consent right’? Err wrong dude.
Can we please ditch the willy thing? Over the last ten years I’ve seen weddings come so far in letting couples express their personalities and not having to conform to the norm. Let’s do the same for hen parties, let’s start stamping personalities all over them and ditch the old cliches. Be you, you are awesome.