Whenever I’m walking along “a little too happily”, says Camilla Long in The Sunday Times, I wonder: is it ok that I feel contented as a woman, or should I be “more self-hating, cringing and sorry”? Because all around me, I see hundreds of “successful, lucky women” moaning about how awful their lives are. Take Emily Maitlis: not the “soaring, fulfilled” journalist you previously imagined. In a lecture last week, she described spending 20 years at the BBC “more or less as a political prisoner”, forced to interview people with slightly different political beliefs to her own. “Can you imagine?” Serena Williams was just as pathetic on Meghan Markle’s new podcast: not the “confident, awesome goddess” we all admire, but a “quivering victim”, afraid even of the word “retirement”.
The problem with these women is that they are “truly bored”. With everything else in their lives taken care of – money, fame, their children – what else is there to moan about other than made-up hardships? So they relentlessly bang on about all the setbacks they’ve faced as “tragically blighted fanny-havers”. Give us a break. Some people have real problems: bills that need paying, families to feed. Yet Serena and Meghan call each other “fearless” and “brave”, when the biggest burden they face is finding the brand deal offering the most money. No wonder everyone is so fed up with their “ridiculous cult of self-pity”.