As the loud and proud writer of the Crazy Cat Lady column on She Knows, I want to stand up for my fellow cat lovers. I feel like we get a bad wrap, because the label “Cat Lady” is often linked to unflattering traits.
While I certainly love my cats, and enjoy pretty much every cat I meet or see on YouTube, that does not mean I eat, sleep, and breath felines 24/7. Sure, I may want to some days, but just like anyone with a passion (or obsession), I know that cat love moderation is important for my wellbeing.
And that’s just one cat lady stereotype that we feline aficionados deal with on a daily basis. To that end, I would like to debunk some of these preconceptions for the sake of my kind, as well as anyone who’s ever felt guilty for spending two hours looking at cute kitten videos online.
1. Cat ladies are perpetually single
Somewhere back in the early age of romantic comedies, cats became the symbol of the staunchly single woman who’s more concerned with her career than her personal life. However, most cat ladies I’ve met are in committed relationships with someone who has, in turn, become a cat person. I believe cat love is more of an attractive trait than a repulsive one, because it shows you’re caring, and potentially great parent material. So no, getting cats doesn’t mean you’re committing to a solitary life — it simply means you will be preventing cat haters from penetrating your inner circle, and believe me, that’s a good thing.
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2. Cat ladies put the “c” in crazy
The term “Crazy Cat Lady” was coined by the media in reaction to the speculation that parasites in cat poop cause psychological disorders if ingested. While this theory isn’t totally unfounded, there has yet to be any solid proof that T. gondii does anything to healthy adults. Sure, we may be crazy about cats, but that’s the extent of it. That being said, the parasites have been linked to infant illnesses, so keep your little ones away from those litter boxes.
3. Cat ladies are only ladies
There are plenty of male cat lovers or “cat gentlemen” as they shall now be known. And the funny thing about them is their inexhaustible love for furry felines is regarded as cute, where in women it’s often considered obsessive or annoying.
4. Cat ladies are dirty hoarders
Sure, we have lots of toys strewn around the house for our fur-balls, but that’s as far as it goes. Of course there are hoarders who collect cats just like they do anything else, but I don’t believe one title is necessarily indicative of the other. In fact, most cat ladies (and gents) tend to over-clean their houses because otherwise they’d suffocate under cat hair, and litter box smells.
5. Cat ladies hide from the world
I think this one goes along with the idea that cat ladies are single women who will live their lives in solitude. People assume we’re all introverts who hunker down with our cats, and watch Netflix until the end of time. My response to this is, if we never left the house to hang out with friends, to whom would we show all our awesome cat videos and pictures? However, if you happen to be more introverted and prefer the company of your cat to humans, the more power to you. Cats are funny, cuddly, and don’t interrupt you when you’re ranting about the GOP debates.