For the Love of Fifty…
With all of the negative media resurfacing in the face of the release of the Fifty Shades of Grey movie, J and I have been fighting to bite our tongues and not voice our opinions. Now, after a lot of discussion and thought, we are sharing our views on all of the outrageous claims of abuse and violence in Fifty Shades of Grey. J and I have both read and re-read the entire trilogy numerous times and found ourselves baffled by some people’s interpretation of these books.
Since the release of the first book by EL James in 2011, it has become a phenomenon surrounded by controversy and subject to scrutiny. Aside from the die-hard fans, the public has judged these books with a big portion of those people not even having read them. How can one honestly critique something you haven’t read? *Dumbfounded*
First of all, this is a fictional story with fictional characters. Not real. Made up. FAKE! One does not have to read the books or watch the movie, it is completely optional. No one is forcing anyone to read or watch. Those that like that sort of thing (a sexy, complicated, roller-coaster of a love story), can read/watch and those that do not, don’t have to. It’s really quite simple. It’s a prerogative that everyone has and can choose to do as they wish.
I, ‘J’, have heard the term BDSM to describe this book. While it does have some bondage aspects, the story never really gets too deep into the real heavy-duty stuff. Ana gets tied up, spanked, and she is whipped, but decides against ever doing that again. She had her safeword to use to stop him at any point. If she were to say it, he would stop immediately, no questions asked or judgments appointed. It ends. She only uses the safeword one time throughout all three of the books and he stops the ‘punishment’ without hesitation.
Anyone who has read this series knows how much power Anastasia really has in this relationship. After she ‘safes-out’ (the one time), Christian is the one who is afraid to go back into his playroom and Ana is the one who gets him to go back in.
Ana is not a doormat or weak, by any means, regardless of what the media and haters have reported. She stands up to—and challenges Christian at every turn. Granted, she is inexperienced in relationships and love, but learns her way around this crazy lifestyle that has presented itself in an extraordinary way. She is strong for a woman of her age and experience.
The negative tags assigned to the series/franchise have been appalling…and dead wrong. Words like sexual violence, coerced, battered, abused, degraded, manipulated, tortured, entrapped, and humiliated—words that should NOT, in any way, be used to describe this story.
I, ‘A’, have to admit, Fifty Shades of Grey was my first endeavor into an erotic romance (J’s too). I had never before read anything close to this before. Always having been a veracious reader, I have read many a romance novel in my 35 years, but never one this erotic or shocking. That being said, never have I ever been as engrossed or mesmerized by a love story either. My first read of the series took me 2 days. That’s right, 3 books in two days. I ate, breathed, and slept Ana and Christian. I was a woman possessed...and obsessed.
This story, as far as we are concerned, is being completely over analyzed. It is being twisted and misconstrued by groups and individuals with ulterior motives. Motives which include banning a book, banning a movie, and shaming those who have come to love these books, the author, and her characters. It is one thing to not enjoy something, everyone has their own opinions, but bashing the book/movie, the author, and the people who enjoy it is completely asinine and unfair. We are entitled to what we like as the bashers are entitled to what they like; however, we cannot accept people attacking others, especially when they have NOT read the books! To reiterate, how is it possible to formulate such negative opinions and arguments against something you have no knowledge of??? (So fascinating.)
Ana and Christian’s relationship is far from perfect, it is riddled with bumps and learning curves. Christian has never had a girlfriend and neither has Ana had a boyfriend; they are both learning from each other as the series progresses. But, in all honesty, what real relationship is without its blemishes. It’s how the world revolves…and evolves. If everyone’s relationships were the same everywhere in this world, it would a very boring place. And not to sound crass but if everyone, everywhere had sex the same way, it would make for some very bored individuals.
No matter how you view this series of books, there is some much deserved gratitude due to Mrs. Erica Leonard (EL James). She has accomplished something not many have been able to. She has single-handedly stoked a passion for reading erotic romances to a fevered pitch. Opening the door of imagination to both readers and aspiring authors alike. Never has the indie author universe been so flooded with new, creative, bold, and beautifully emotional stories as it has been these past 4 years, and it’s continuing to grow. She has created a virtual firestorm of hunger for more… Every author and reader who has had their world flipped upside-down with their fascination and addiction for these beautifully imperfect characters owes her a thank you. To every single reader out there, young and old, to every author who ever had the courage to publish their stories and share them with the world, thank you. And...
To all of the haters out there who continue to undermine, bash, and spread their hateful and hurtful words, please always remember, your words matter. They have the power of truly affecting people, both in a positive way and a negative way. Even people behind a keyboard and monitor have feelings and they hurt the same way you and I do. So, before you write your next nasty comment or create a catchy new #hashtag, remember for every word you publish, someone is affected by it.
**These OPINIONS/VIEWS are that of A & J. We are entitled to them.**