9 Things A Boss Bitch Demands In A Relationship — No Excuses

I wasn't entirely sure about the whole "boss bitch" phenomenon when I first heard about it — I thought it seemed overly aggressive and boastful, and potentially isolating for shy or introverted women. But I've since realized it isn't about being loud or in anyone's face — it just means you're a woman who's in charge of her own life and decisions. High-profile boss bitches like Hillary Clinton, Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Sonia Sotomayor stand beside quieter ones like Winnie Byanyima and Muna AbuSulayman. But while their approaches may differ, they all know their rights and opinions, and are unafraid to ask for them at whatever volume they find comfortable. The word bitch isn't a stigma; it's a label of strength.

Historically, making demands as a woman in a relationship doesn't have a great rap in our culture; insults like "harpy," "shrew" and "ball-buster" are often used against a woman who asks for what she wants from a partner. This sort of patriarchal nonsense is both irresponsible and disrespectful, and as a boss bitch, I am not f*cking standing for it, in my relationship or out of it. And neither should you. Boss bitches demand what they want and need in relationships, and don't apologize for it because they know it is their right.

In a fantastic 2013 article for Everyday Feminism, Erin McKelle pointed out that women's social roles often don't allow them to be active in making decisions, setting boundaries, and asserting power in relationships. So being a boss bitch in a relationship is definitely a feminist issue — even if your choice involves being dominated, taken care of, or financially "kept". The key word there is choice. Something a boss bitch always has.

1. Constant Respect

Women are consistently, absurdly disrespected in this world. There is no time for that in an intimate relationship. And respect isn't just an abstract concept: it's a continual series of acts by a partner, and it encompasses your rights, wishes, boundaries and intellect. Respecting a partner means both admiring them and giving weight to their feelings and decisions.

2. Autonomy

The line between independence and dependence — particularly emotionally — must be negotiated afresh with every new relationship. But boss bitches need to know (and need their partners to know) that their time is theirs — i.e. "That night's booked for me; no, you can't come to that; sure, I'm free at 11 the next night."

3. Mutual Trust

Boss bitches don't check their partners' phones, and their partners don't check theirs. They trust each other, both regarding their fidelity and their capability — so if somebody says something will be done about the leaky bathroom faucet, boss bitches trust them to do the damn thing instead of nagging them about it.

4. The Right To An Opinion

Boss bitches may not express themselves in the same way universally, but they all know they have the right to have opinions on matters that clash with their partners', as well as the right to discuss those differences with their partner in an intelligent and kind manner.

5. Financial Control

Financial control — even if it's the act of relinquishing control of a particular set of bills or tax filings to your partner — is a boss bitch move. Boss bitches know where the money is, where it's going, and who's in charge of what.

6. Reproductive Freedom

Telling a boss bitch what to do with her body is rarely a good idea. Compromise and discussion, on the other hand? Absolutely fine. Boss bitches are in ultimately charge of their bodies and their own reproductive rights, but they also acknowledge the thoughts of their partner, even if they have the final say.

7. Emotional Support

As Tina Fey once so memorably proclaimed, bitches get stuff done — but that doesn't mean they don't require help or emotional support while doing it. Boss bitches know they can rely on their partner for serious and considered emotional support in tough times.

8. Privacy

Everybody has the right to privacy in certain areas of their life. Trust and privacy go hand in hand in a serious relationship, and a boss bitch knows this. She's relaxed about asking for the privacy she needs; she knows it is perfectly acceptable to ask a partner not to watch you pee, or to keep your emails to your mother private.

9. Serious Input In All Decisions That Affect Her

When Carrie threw a hamburger at a fridge because Big decided to move to Paris without consulting her, she was being a boss bitch. Relationships with boss bitches involve input from both sides on decisions that have a two-person impact. Boss bitches will not tolerate people who do that sh*t without consultation. Nope nope nope.


Images: Comedy Central; Giphy (9)