The XX Factor

Or Maybe Sandra Tsing Loh Is a Drag

I found myself gagging at the first line of Sandra Tsing Loh’s article where she says, “Sadly, and to my horror, I am divorcing.” Something about that horror part got under my skin-that she was trying to convince us, her readers, that divorce was something that “just happened” to her, outside of her control. And that was only the beginning of the pity-party. Having an affair, she confesses, “was a surprise.” Her decision not to rebuild her marriage: “heart-shattering.” Words to induce our pity, to absolve her responsibility to her committment, her husband, her friends, and her children. The whole article, to me, read as Sandra Tsing Loh’s attempt to absolve her guilty conscience. Call in the anthropologists! My friends are doing it too! Husband travels too much! The kids are fine! But you do have to give the woman props. She somehow convinced the Atlantic to let her write a couple thousand words justifying her bad behavior and blaming it on everyone else but herself-and got a paycheck for it.

I’m with you, Jess, that it’s not realistic to try to work full-time, nanny, clean, cook, chauffeur, and maintain a marriage . But I somehow doubt that Ms. Tsing Loh’s marital problems would have been solved by a nanny. If she did have one, I have the feeling that poor employee would be just another person to blame.