This is a short essay by Sarah Paulson that touches on the following:
- We are societally and culturally conditioned to think that women don't get along and that "the only way to get a seat at the table is by elbowing other women out of the way."
- The entertainment business further solidifies that narrative because actors do have to compete for jobs. Even agents sometimes undermine the women they're meant to support, as Paulson experienced.
- It's easy to become self-conscious and make decisions based on how others perceive you (in comparison to other women) instead of your truth.
- Paulson's sense of self came late in life, in large part because of working in the nurturing and collaborative environment Ryan Murphy created on American Horror Story (and working with several 40+ actresses on that show); this challenged her subconscious notions of how women work together.
- "Trying to mold yourself into something you're not by diluting your uniqueness is the surest way to ensure you won't work the way you hope to. I don't just mean that you won't get hired. You will lose that opportunity to discover for yourself what kind of work you want to do."