Tracee Ellis Ross on the Pressure Placed on Women to Get Married and Have Children
Tracee Ellis Ross’s life is amazing. At 48 years old, the multi-talented actress, singer, and curly-haired icon is unwed, childfree, and unbothered. Well, not totally unbothered, because society always wants to bother.
During a new interview with publication Marie Clare, Ross was asked by the outlet if she ever once dreamed of a life with a large family.
“Well, how could you not?” Ross responded. “Our society spoon-feeds it to you. I used to put myself to sleep dreaming of my wedding.”
She then added: “And I would still love all of that, but what am I going to do, just sit around waiting? Shut up. I’ve got so many things to do.”
And it doesn’t help that at stages in her career, she has played both women obsessed with getting married and a married woman with a starting lineup collection of children.
In her career, Ross has many roles under her belt, but she is known for playing Dr. Rainbow Johnson in the ABC comedy series Black-ish and Joan Clayton in the UPN/CW comedy series Girlfriends.
Joan Clayton was a lawyer and later businesswoman who is obsessed with getting married and spends the majority of the series trying to find a “soul mate.” She makes up strange rules to try to nurture a connection, is hyper-concerned with having children and getting married as she turns 30, and while she is a very successful woman, none of that seems to matter as much as those indicators of traditional success.
As Dr. Rainbow Johnson, she is the married mother of five children and partnered with a man who is absolutely not on her level, but they make it work, so good for them.
We do not have a lot of roles for women that are child-free that show them being happy and thriving. There is almost always a “lacking” in their lives that needs to be filled by something.
Ross talked about this before in Porter and highlighted the fact that we don’t talk about different kinds of happiness.
“There are so many ways to curate happiness, find love and create a family, and we don’t talk about them,” she explained. “It creates so much shame and judgment.”
People misinterpret being happily single as not wanting to be in a relationship. Of course I want to be in a relationship, but what am I going to do? Spend all the time that I’m not [in one] moping around? No. I’m going to live my life to the fullest and I’m going to be happy right here, where I am.
Absolutely, and if she wants to adopt a 29-year-old niece, I am always in the market for another cool auntie.
(via PEOPLE, image: Aaron J. Thornton/Getty Images for BET)
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