Karen has become a controversial internet meme that is fueling conflict. While originally intended as an insult against entitled women, its use has since spread and become destructive of relationships.
What should you do if your husband refers to you as Karen?
1. Do not take it personally
If your husband has ever called you “Karen,” don’t take it personally; such insults have long been used as playful banter or may indicate deeper issues within a relationship. Remember not to take these attacks personally!
“Karens” refers to white women who believe they have the right to do whatever they please without regard for how offensive or disruptive it might be. Karens may harass nonwhite people or exert police authority over others; some might even refuse to wear face masks during coronavirus pandemics because this restricts their personal freedoms.
Social media has amplified these perceptions of Karens, but they are also linked to a larger phenomenon wherein white women use their privilege and power to exert an unfair advantage over nonwhite people. Incidents such as the dog park Karen video seen online only one day prior to George Floyd’s death at the hands of Minneapolis police were potentially hazardous and should be addressed immediately.
As a baby name in the US, Karen first reached its highest popularity around 1965, though since at least the 1990s it has come to be associated with white women. Additionally, it can often be heard used slangily as an insult for people whom one finds annoying or difficult.
Karen is one of the easiest names to pronounce and spell; it is derived from Danish as an abbreviation for Katherine which comes from Greek “Aikaterine.”
But it’s important to remember that using Karen as an insult has no direct relationship to its original meaning; according to Dr. I.M. Nick, a name scholar, this could simply be part of people abbreviating or shortening names without necessarily reflecting any cultural or historical context.
2. Ask for help
Karen has been around since the days of Confederacy, yet only recently made its way into popular culture. It is currently used for various activities ranging from golf teeing off and grocery store checkout lines to being awarded with “smartest customer” titles.
At its core, sexism should never be taken personally. You might not be able to stop your husband from calling you “Karen”, but there may be ways you can work towards improving the situation. Additionally, seeking assistance may also help; from friends and family to professional counseling.
Internet resources and information should help you to quickly locate what you’re searching for, with Twitter offering an abundance of articles related to women’s issues and related hashtags (here’s a list). Plus, filter by topic so you’ll have an individualized feed!
3. Make a plan for the future
Establishing a clear-cut plan for the future is an excellent first step toward managing life’s inevitable changes. Setting realistic goals, creating a budget and sticking to them are all integral parts of long-term wellbeing – using tools and conducting research will get you there faster! Finding time and people who can assist will take you that much further – you may be lucky enough to meet just the one in person or may need to take matters into your own hands.
4. Talk to your friends
Karen has become a common term used by those who are angry, often to describe different types of individuals. While often used in an aggressive, sexist way, it can also be used jokingly or mockingly against certain types of people.
“Karen” has long been used as a slur against women who appear entitled or have problems in their lives. While it might seem amusing when discussing others, calling someone else Karen can be harmful in more ways than one.
“Karen” has come to be associated with negative connotations for various reasons. One reason may be its use as a slur against women who lack self-esteem or who appear unattractive; furthermore, it often refers to individuals in their 30s or 40s wearing bob haircuts.
People might refer to someone as “Karen” for a variety of reasons, one being their race or hatred towards someone, which was particularly prevalent during past administrations and still common today despite several laws prohibiting labeling people with this label as such.
If someone has called you “Karen,” in an unflattering way, it’s important that you take it seriously and discuss it with friends. Let them know how it affects you and discuss any changes or developments with your relationship.
Some individuals find it hard to take their situation seriously, but doing so is necessary in order to access assistance. You may need a therapist or support group as a place to turn. Even consulting a lawyer may help in your case.
If your husband has been using “Karen” in an offensive or demeaning way, it is important to express your displeasure with his behavior and let him know you do not wish to live with him anymore. Furthermore, ask him to alter certain elements of his schedule, like stopping working.