For the second edition of Wife Material, I’m going a bit more controversial. Bringing up Rihanna can easily divide a room between those who think she didn’t adequately step up as a role model for victims of domestic violence and those who think it was never her responsibility to do so. We’ll get there. First, I want to say that I’m choosing Rihanna for this column because recent Rihanna? Back on her feet, sassy Rihanna? Is killing it for me. “Where Have You Been?”, her new video that just came out, features some pretty great dance moves. But duh, Rihanna’s always been hot. What she hasn’t always been is super confident and unapologetic. She’s slowly becoming one of my favorite celebrities in the genre of “famous people who have legitimately stopped caring about what people think.” When MTV tried to stir up sh-t tweeting pictures of her rolling a joint on a man’s head at Coachella, Rihanna didn’t take the bait; she tweeted “@rihanna ran out of f-cks to give.” LOL FOREVER. MTV took down the tweet in shame. Also great? Her frankness about her sex life, which she refuses to apologize for. Do you think Rihanna likes S&M? Yeah? What was your first clue, Dr. Watson? Get it, girl.
Oof. Not everyone is gonna be on board with this one. I’m already prepared. But hear me out. I think she’s growing up into a really cool woman.
Occupation: Singer, actress, Twitter comedian, mistress of Top 40 pop’s S&M dungeon.
Description: Born in Barbados and with the sexy accent to prove it, Rihanna has been recording music since she was just 16 years old. Her hit songs include “Umbrella,” “Pon de Replay,” “Take A Bow,” “Disturbia,” “Please Don’t Stop The Music” and literally everything else that has ever graced your ears. I imagine when aliens land on Planet Earth, the first thing that will happen is they’ll hear “We Found Love” blaring from someone’s car speakers. GREAT introduction to our world. (Side note: Though not as explicit as “S&M,” “Rude Boy” is SUCH a gem.) She’s also starring in the movie version of the game Battleship. Yep. That’s a thing.
Benefits to Marriage: Like Jennifer Lawrence, Rihanna is one cool cat. She seems really self-assured, fun and witty. I like the person she’s grown into since the Chris Brown horror. As a survivor of domestic abuse myself, I can relate a lot to her desire to seem like a person who makes her own decisions — whether the world likes them or not. It’s a little damaged, but it’s working towards healing. Speaking from my own experience, when you go through something like that it’s important to take as much of your life back for yourself as you can, and to really assert yourself as an individual — and that’s what I see Rihanna doing lately. I can’t even imagine going through all that sh-t under the media scrutiny she faced. I think it’s important to remember that there is no template or “right” way to behave as an abuse victim. She really reminded me of that. Because of this, Rihanna would be an interesting person to marry and to grow with. Also, I feel this goes without saying but if you marry Rihanna, be prepared for some freaky sex. Whips, chains, leather. If you’re a dude, you better be cool with being dominated by a woman, at least sometimes. It’ll make you a better man. I promise.
Drawbacks: Okay, would we all like to see her never collaborate with Chris Brown again? Of course. Would we all like to see her publicly decry him and lead the charge to dismember his ballsack? Of course. Did she 100 percent perfectly handle the aftermath of her abuse? No. If that’s what you wanted from her, then that’s a HUGE drawback for marriage. She also has some real nonsensical tattoos but like, ride the L train sometime. Who doesn’t, right?
You Must Be: Understanding, flexible, fun, compassionate, strong, a weed smoker, a good dancer, open-minded, witty — oh, and into getting your nipples clamped with Chip Clips during sex.
The Dowry Rihanna Brings: Six Grammys, a wife who is pretty much a shape-shifter with how often she changes her look, an umbrella, a bajillion dollars, beautiful skin thanks to Nivea endorsements, infinite sexy costume changes, oh and also like, everyone in the world’s opinions on domestic violence. Oof.