An Open Letter from Alexa Day to the Well-Meaning Folks Worrying about Jennifer Aniston

 

Don't you worry. I bet Jennifer and Justin manage this whole Brangelina thing just fine.

Don’t you worry. I bet Jennifer and Justin manage this whole Brangelina thing just fine.

Dear Well-Meaning Persons:

I know that you’ve noticed that Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie have gotten married. I personally don’t have any particular feelings about the two of them. I suppose I hope they’ll be happy, the way I’d wish that for any pair of newlyweds, but that’s about all I can manage.

I’m not writing to talk about them, though. I’m writing to ask you for something.

I need you to leave Jennifer Aniston alone.

I was a little surprised by how many well-meaning persons came out of the woodwork as soon as the blessed news broke. Right after “they finally did it” came all that hushed concern. “How is Jennifer? Is she okay?”

Why would she not be okay? She and Brad have been done for ages, long enough for her to move right along to Justin Theroux. But was there quite so much hand-wringing when the wound was fresh?

And why is it so important for you to check on Jennifer now that Brad’s gotten married, as opposed to when he and Angelina started showing up in public with their large family? Where were you for all these breakup-recovery milestones?

I don’t mean to bash you. I think you really are well-meaning people. I just don’t think smothering Jennifer with your … well … your pity is especially helpful to Jennifer because Jennifer doesn’t need your help. She seems perfectly contented with her personal and professional lives.

She’s even said as much. This is from Vogue in December 2008:

“But there is more to me than just a tabloid girl. This whole ‘poor lonely Jen’ thing, this idea that I’m so unlucky in love? I actually feel I’ve been unbelievably lucky in love. Just because at this stage my life doesn’t have the traditional framework to it — the husband and the two kids and the house in Connecticut — it’s mine. It’s my experience. And if you don’t like the way it looks, then stop looking at it! Because I feel good. I don’t feel like I’m supposed to be any further along or somewhere that I’m not. I’m right where I’m supposed to be.”

I’m going to break that down into four words: “Um, I’ve moved on.”

You need to do the same.

To do otherwise is to define Jennifer by that one relationship — the one that didn’t work out. First, she was with Brad. Then, she used to be with Brad. Now, you’re all worried about her because, well, she used to be with Brad and now (gasp) Brad’s gotten married. Again. To someone else. You know, Angelina.

Well, Jennifer is like most women. Our relationships with significant others are just a part of our lives. They’re an important part, but they’re not everything. We have work that sustains us, spiritual lives that inspire us, and friends who embrace us, whether we’re single or not. We have a host of little things, from pets to exercise to favorite books, that keep us lively. There is more to all of us than our failed relationships, or our successful ones, for that matter.

So stop worrying about Jennifer. This is a beginning for Brad and Angelina, but it doesn’t mark the end of anything for her.

She’s just fine. She’s been fine for a while. And if you give it time, you’ll be fine, too.

Get over this.

All the best,

Alexa

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6 thoughts on “An Open Letter from Alexa Day to the Well-Meaning Folks Worrying about Jennifer Aniston

  1. I agree Lexi, people who seem to harbor the illusion that their concern about famous people somehow transfers some of that fame onto them appears to me as the height (or low) of stupidity.

    • Yeah, I don’t get it either. I take comfort in the knowledge that Jennifer is probably shaking her head over all this. But now that the wedding is over, I imagine the well-meaning folks will have nothing to say for a while.

  2. Love it! Once more you strike right to the core of it. Why oh why do the rags feel like they have to drag up everything even twice removed from seven degrees to any celebrity event? The prolonged recurring check-ins on Jennifer vis-a-vis Brad/Angelina has griped my “you know where” for some time. Let the woman alone. She’s proven she’s moved on, now the rags need to do the same! Thanks, Alexa!

    • I think it’s part of the culture of single-shaming! “Oh, poor booboo. I bet you wish it was you getting married. I bet you wish you had a whole houseful of kids to draw all over your wedding gown. Poor booboo!” The single-shamers don’t notice her career or the fact that she isn’t actually single (hello, Justin Theroux). Even when she said the other day that she didn’t have a little checklist, people made that into a grand manifesto about motherhood — not the heartfelt conviction that she really is just fine with her spectacular life just the way it is.

      And the press has been running this into the ground for a really long time. I wish I had Jennifer’s patience. I’d have raised my voice by now and gotten labeled a bitter old maid.

  3. Well, as usual, I’m so out of it (“it” being pop culture), I wasn’t aware anyone was still pitying the woman! It came as a bit of a shock! And you’re right–just let it go for crying out loud. There are plenty of people all over the world who are watching former husbands and wives move on with their lives, and they’re managing to move on as well. I think Jennifer is doing just fine. Good grief!

  4. I, too, hate when the “poor Jen” covers emerge, especially because they don’t mention her fiance Justin Theroux or the woman he left for her. Not his wife, but living with someone for 14 years is a significant relationship and longer than Jen & Brad were together. Not a fan of this drama although your wit and POV are always enjoyable, Lexi. 🙂

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