It’s Now Mainstream to be Sexist: “We have only begun to feel
the damage of the punch-and-pummel pundits who couldn’t wrap their
limited minds around the first woman to win a presidential primary,
again and again,” writes columnist Connie Schultz, who calls the video,
Hillary Clinton: Mad
as Hell
,” “required
viewing for anyone who claims that gender has not played a role in
the attacks against Clinton.”

Schultz continues:

I mentioned the YouTube video at the Women’s Center event
mostly to acknowledge that they did, indeed, have good reasons to feel
under siege but also to inspire them. The last half of the video
celebrates the courage — and the compassion — that Clinton has
exhibited throughout her life.

We talked about how “bitch” is really just coward’s code for a woman
with an opinion and that any guy who called them that should lose the
privilege of their company.

“Standing up to guys who are supposed to be your friends is easier said
than done,” one of the young women said softly. Others nodded.

I told them what I always tell my children: Act brave, and the courage will come.

Check out the video here:

Plus: “Along with the usual post-mortems about strategy, message and money, Mrs. Clinton’€™s all-but-certain defeat brings with it a reckoning about what her run represents for women: a historic if incomplete triumph or a depressing reminder of why few pursue high office in the first place,” writes Jodi Kantor in today’s New York Times.

And The Week in Review section ponders who might be the first woman president.

Women Don’t Need Change-of-Life Theme Park: The other day we
mentioned Menopauseland
, a marketing ploy for Estroven, a drug to ease
menopause symptoms. Renee A. James is having none of it. In her column
at The Morning Call, James writes:

Their national television commercial depicts a menopausal
— well, I assume she’s supposed to be in menopause — woman, enjoying
the delights of a gorgeous, sunny, private spa-like retreat, complete
with an anonymous cabana-boy kind of guy handing over a towel and
massaging her shoulders after she emerges from the pool. Her voiceover
narrates a postcard she’s dropping in the mail to a friend: something
about the fact that despite the many travels she has taken throughout
her life, she has never been anywhere as liberating as “here.” I guess
we’re supposed to assume the cabana boy has something to do with that
liberation but it’s unclear. The narration goes on to inform women
about how Estroven helps them manage their “journey” into another life
stage beyond menopause.

Fine. Lovely. I hope Estroven helps many women manage some symptoms
that could be annoying or even debilitating. But that’s not really my
point. I’m back to the same thing I asked about having a “happy
period.” What are we, 6 years old? It feels like companies marketing
women’s products to women feel the need to convince us that we can, and
should be, having fun while we deal with somewhat intrusive (but
healthy) life stages. In other words, there is no need to be down in
the dumps about cramps, mood swings, hot flashes and night sweats.
Pre-menopausal women who don’t feel complete joy every 28 days or so
simply need to adjust their attitudes. Older women who somehow don’t
understand the bliss connected to menopause needs to hop onboard an
express train to Menopauseland to get her head on straight and savor
the journey.

I’m absolutely positive that no other generation of women — women by
the millions who passed through menopause without so much as a hint of
something called Menopauseland — would have sat quietly by and been
party to such nonsense.

Anchor Away: “[It] turns out that no one knows exactly why anchors are or aren’t popular or why they do or don’t last,” writes The New Yorker’s Nancy Franklin, in this piece on Katie Couric’s voyage with CBS. “Why, for example, was Dan Rather in the anchor chair for so long, when, for years, his broadcast was consistently in last place in the ratings? And how puzzling must it have been for CBS when Bob Schieffer, a bona-fide old guy, with white hair and a gravelly voice, got ratings that were better than both Rather’s and Couric’s?”

New Mothers Over 40: The Santa Fe New Mexican looks at the rate of births to women over 40:

In 1995 and 2006, for example, the number of babies born to women 40 to 44 grew from 67,250 to 105,476. And the number of babies born to women older than that increased from 2,727 to 6,958, according to the federal Centers for Disease Control’s National Vital Statistics System.

The birth rate of the women 40 to 44 grew by 45 percent in that time, and the birth rate for the oldest group doubled.

More babies are born to women having their first child over age 40 as well. The number of these births increased from 20,096 in 2000 to 24,284 in 2006.

Plus: Marilyn Linton of the Toronto Sun writes about a support group for new mothers over 40, started by Nancy London:

In her work, London found that older moms have many issues that are different from younger mothers.

Older moms struggle with how to continue with established and demanding careers: “They say, ‘Should I take the year off or put my child in daycare after six weeks — in which case, why did I just go through what I just went through?’ “

They’re also particularly challenged as members of the sandwich generation: “Here you are at 50, with a 5-year-old and your parent is now 80-something, falling apart and living elsewhere.” […]

In her book “Hot Flashes, Warm Bottles” (see mothersoverforty.com), London also addresses the physical challenges faced by older first-time mothers: “They may enter perimenopause soon after giving birth,” she writes, adding their needs at that time are often at odds with the needs of a young child.

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