If you happened to spend any time on social media Tuesday, you may have noticed that Twitter was straight-up dragging Ayesha Curry — Covergirl, cookbook author and wife of Golden State Warriors’ point guard Stephen Curry. And when you find out why the Twittersphere went scorched earth on Ayesha, you might feel perplexed and annoyed in equal measure. Well, that’s how we feel about the situation anyway.
The trouble apparently started when Ayesha sat down with her mother-in-law Sonya, sister-in-law Sydell and sister Callie Rivers for an episode of Jada Pinkett Smith’s popular Facebook Watch series, Red Table Talk. One of the first topics the ladies tackled? Stephen’s female fans. “Stephen is very nice by nature, and he’s very talkative. Everything is always very friendly, sometimes to the point that I insert myself, like, ‘Hello, how are you doing?’ The ladies will always be lurking, hoping for their moment. You need to be aware of that,” Ayesha said, adding that her husband of ten years is often na?ve to the advances. “There have been a couple of times where I’ve wanted to punch somebody in the face. It’s never him. He can’t see it coming. I see it from a mile away.”
Some detractors took issue with the fact that Ayesha feels the need to curve women who hit on her husband (although, c’mon, she seems to be doing so in a civil way). However, far more took issue with the specific way Stephen’s groupies make Ayesha feel insecure. “What really bothers me and has honestly given me a little bit of a sense of insecurity is the fact that, yeah, there are all these women throwing themselves. But me, like the past 10 years, I don’t have any of that,” she confessed. “It sounds weird, but I have zero male attention. So, then I begin to internalize it, like, ‘Is something wrong with me?’”
Cue the vitriol of Twitter, y’all.
So, wait. Ayesha is a “pick me,” anti-feminist shame for expressing emotions that are both understandable and human? Fortunately, for every person shaming Ayesha for telling her truth, there was another fan defending her.
There isn’t enough time in the day to fully address this mess. But let’s start with the painfully apparent and salient fact that (contrary to many, many tweets) Ayesha wasn’t asking for men to slide into her DMs or catcall her or solicit an extramarital relationship. As she points out, she doesn’t want another man; it would just be “nice to know that somebody’s looking.” Haters will point out that she’s married to an incredibly successful man who clearly loves her, but the two have surprisingly little to do with one another.
In fact, psychologists have dubbed the way Ayesha feels as “invisible woman syndrome.” Typically, academics center discussions about this syndrome on women in their 40s and 50s. But when you’re a mother or have been in a relationship for as long as Ayesha and Stephen have, we tender that it can happen at any age — this “overwhelming feeling of being invisible and irrelevant” or unworthy of the “male gaze.”
Many of us cross this threshold at some point, where we begin to feel as though we simply aren’t being seen. And, to be honest, it sucks. So dragging Ayesha for vocalizing what emotions most of us experience at some point feels pretty petty. She may be famous but she’s still human, and her feelings are definitely relatable.