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Review

Untamed

Untamed by Glennon Doyle

Ten is when the world sat me down, told me to be quiet, 
and pointed toward my cages: 
These are the feelings you are allowed to express.
This is how a woman should act.
This is the body you must strive for.
These are the things you will believe.
These are the people you can love.
Those are the people you should fear
This is the kind of life you are supposed to want.
Make yourself fit. You'll be uncomfortable at first, 
but don't worry--eventually, you'll forget you're caged. 
Soon this will just feel like: life.
~Glennon Doyle, Untamed

Publication Date: 3/10/2020 – Genre: Nonfiction, Memoir

Synopsis:

There is a voice of longing inside each woman. We strive so mightily to be good: good partners, daughters, mothers, employees, and friends. We hope all this striving will make us feel alive. Instead, it leaves us feeling weary, stuck, overwhelmed, and underwhelmed. We look at our lives and wonder: Wasn’t it all supposed to be more beautiful than this? We quickly silence that question, telling ourselves to be grateful, hiding our discontent—even from ourselves. 

For many years, Glennon Doyle denied her own discontent. Then, while speaking at a conference, she looked at a woman across the room and fell instantly in love. Three words flooded her mind: There She Is. At first, Glennon assumed these words came to her from on high. But she soon realized they had come to her from within. This was her own voice—the one she had buried beneath decades of numbing addictions, cultural conditioning, and institutional allegiances. This was the voice of the girl she had been before the world told her who to be. Glennon decided to quit abandoning herself and to instead abandon the world’s expectations of her. She quit being good so she could be free. She quit pleasing and started living.

Soulful and uproarious, forceful and tender, Untamed is both an intimate memoir and a galvanizing wake-up call. It is the story of how one woman learned that a responsible mother is not one who slowly dies for her children, but one who shows them how to fully live. It is the story of navigating divorce, forming a new blended family, and discovering that the brokenness or wholeness of a family depends not on its structure but on each member’s ability to bring her full self to the table. And it is the story of how each of us can begin to trust ourselves enough to set boundaries, make peace with our bodies, honor our anger and heartbreak, and unleash our truest, wildest instincts so that we become women who can finally look at ourselves and say: There She Is.

Untamed shows us how to be brave. As Glennon insists: The braver we are, the luckier we get.

Thoughts:

Beautifully inspiring and effortlessly relatable; I want everyone I know to read this book.  Such a breath of fresh air!

In childhood, I remember watching my grandmother serve my grandfather every meal. I watched my mother cook, clean, and work a full time job outside the home. It was expected and one wasn’t to question, though I did and loudly.

Why do women find it honorable to dismiss ourselves?
Why do we decide that denying our longing is the responsible thing to do?
Why do we believe that what will thrill and fulfill us will hurt our people?
Why do we mistrust ourselves so completely?
~Glennon Doyle, Untamed

The subjugation of women is not new. We have been fighting since the first woman decided to stand up and shake her chains, tired of living in quiet servitude, believing there’s another way. Glennon shows readers how she recognized the memos of society and how she rejected them; how she ultimately found herself, without them. And it’s amazingly empowering!

I find it impossible to read this book and not examine my own life and choices. What familiar roles have I accepted as a wife and a mother to make my family’s lives easier? What gender roles have I perpetuated from the examples passed down to me? In what ways am I disappearing and how can I become a model for my children? Each person will have their own questions arise from reading this book and they will not be easy to answer but they will be important. Glennon prompts readers to answer these questions honestly and humbly, from within.

I appreciated the author’s view of the limitations placed upon our boys and men. Emotional restraints silencing the tears of men and telling them to man up rather than experience emotion organically, in the here and now. No, men are to suppress emotion and see it actualize in those pesky defense mechanisms of Freud’s. Women are not the only one’s indoctrinated and we must teach our sons another way.

Everyday I work with women who have been disregarded by people and society. Those who should love her the most have thrown her away, over and over again. These women are living on the fringes of society, managing in the only way they know how; surviving. My work involves listening and providing unconditional acceptance as well as illuminating choices, another path, and empowering. Most of my patients started numbing at such an early age and for so long they do not know who they are. This book will be a tool I utilize with my patients to help them see the ways they have been tamed and the ways they can break free. 

Overall, this book is wild, beautiful, and frightening, and I enjoyed every minute of it!

Rating: 5 out of 5.