One of the many reasons we love Dame Helen Mirren so much is the absolute no-nonsense attitude she has towards… well, just about everything. If she wants to do something, she’ll do it (like the polarizing pink hair look she debuted on the BAFTA red carpet this year); if she wants to eat something, she’ll eat it (hello, backstage-at-the-Oscars cheeseburger!); and if she wants to say something, she’ll say it.
Helen recent chatted with Mail on Sunday’s Event Magazine, during which she candidly spoke about sexism in the entertainment industry. Talk at one point turned to how she would have raised her kids if she had any (she’s unapologetically childless by choice, which we also adore, but that’s a whole ‘nother story)—or specifically, what she would have done if she’d had any daughters. Here’s what she had to say on the matter (Warning: Somewhat strong language ahead, so if you’ve got delicate ears, consider yourself advised):
“If I’d had children and had a girl, the first words I would have taught her would have been ‘f*** off’ because we weren’t brought up ever to say that to anyone, were we?…. It’s quite valuable to have the courage and the confidence to say, ‘No, f*** off, leave me alone, thank you very much.”
Whether or not you condone the cursing—while I don’t have a problem with it myself, I understand if others do—she’s kind of got a point. Politeness is all well and good, but being a doormat isn’t. Having the ability to say “no, leave me alone” firmly and without feeling bad about it is a skill everyone should have, regardless of age, gender, or situation. After all, it’s that skill that allows Dame Helen to do things like berate a troupe of over-enthusiastic drummers for interrupting a play in the middle of a performance while dressed as Queen Elizabeth!
Lucia Peters is BettyConfidential’s senior editor.
Photo Credit: StarTraks Photo