The Vent

I Don’t Need You to See Me

5 years ago by

I Don’t Need You to See Me

It’s not really my style to write social commentary – I usually prefer to talk about myself. Haha.

But that doesn’t mean I don’t read and enjoy the French Marie Claire. And recently, I was super shocked by a useless scandal that came up in France when the January issue came out.

To summarize everything for those of you who aren’t French, Yann Moix is a writer I’ve never read and who never particularly interested me. He’s done TV shows where I’ve seen him create empty and frankly obnoxious debates, and it didn’t take me long to realize he just likes to shock people. And for me, people who enjoy shocking people with empty, disturbing topics – that doesn’t do anything for me – nothing at all.

So I really didn’t care at all when he decided to say in Marie Claire that he would never sleep with women over 50 because their bodies are “not extraordinary at all” and that women that age are basically “invisible.”

I just thought – OK here’s another out-of-touch person who’s getting too much attention.

The problem, and the thing that made me sad, was when I read Marianne Mairesse’s editorial where she explained that the things Mr. Moix had said sent her into a depressing thought process (which she would probably say was realistic) about the state of her body and the things she thinks “are left” for her to enjoy in life (flowers, the sky, literature, and her children).

That’s what shocked me and made me sad.

Power and desire – those things come from within. Seduction belongs to us, whether you are 20 years old or 80. Being desirable or seductive is a choice at 20 and it’s a choice at 80.

Beauty, or having that “spark”, is all about self-confidence.


I’m forty-three and I am far from being invisible, believe me.

Except when I want to be invisible, and in that case, sure, no one sees me.

Subjecting ourselves to the gaze of others is what steals our beauty.

When we do that, we choose to give our power to idiots who can destroy it in three words under the pretext of “honesty”.

We can choose to share some random man’s sexual preferences in a women’s magazine.

So, Mr. Moix happens to have a preference for young women and Asian women, which is honestly an insult to young women, older women, Asian women, and just about anyone else – and he probably needs some serious therapy.

But I don’t think Marie Claire, which is historically a feminist magazine, is the right place to publish statements like that unless it includes a proper analysis and a big dose of mockery.

We can choose to give a voice to all kinds of old out-of-touch idiots like Donald Trump, who validate all the other old out-of-touch idiots who are frightened by the beauty of women, and need pre-packaged easy content, and continue to promote the idea that “youth is amazing” (which couldn’t be further from the truth – every age is both difficult and incredible at the same time).

But giving even an ounce of importance to statements like that, and worse – thinking about “what is left” for us as we get older – come on, please!

That gives a bad name to all the wonderful, open-minded men I meet and see every day who have none of these ridiculous prejudices other than loving others.

Dear Marianne – you are beautiful, you are young, you are talented, and people will love you to the end of your days.

But only if that’s what YOU want.

Translated by Andrea Perdue


Add yours
  • I hadn’t heard of this incident but it sounds disgusting.
    I’m 45 and I don’t want to be excluded of anything because of my age.
    But I do see that women become invisible after a certain age. I think it’s unacceptable.

    One of the things we can do is to speak up.

  • The thing is, I’m just so SEXY in my 40s. Because I’m full of joy and spark and life. Why would I waste any of that fabulousness on a fatuous idiot like this one? (Trust me, I got tired of those guys in my 20s.)

  • Magnifique. Essentiel. Et si bien écrit.

    Merci, Garance!

  • I thought he sounded full of himself. Tiresome, just looking to shock. Far too many of those types out there.
    He’s no prize physically, either. At what–50? 51? years old, he might prefer to sleep with young Asian women but I doubt they want to sleep with him.
    Yes, it’s amazing to become invisible. But, since I’m in my 50s, I’m used to it–when I was in my 20s and 30s, sexism was rampant and young women were ignored. We were finally hired but it was like we weren’t actually there. I could say something in a meeting and it was like my voice was in a frequency that men weren’t able to hear. Except they inevitably did, and repeated good ideas as their own.
    At least I don’t have to put up with getting hit on by Yann Moix and his ilk.

  • l’un des textes les plus pertinents que j’ai lu sur cette affaire!

  • “tous les hommes merveilleux, ouverts, sans goût particulier que celui d’aimer, que je croise et que je vois tous les jours.”
    j’aimerais tellement en rencontrer, ne serait-ce qu’un!

  • Alors vous me le presenteriez, n’est-ce pas?

  • A la fois très très vrai mais… c’est quand même bcp plus répandu chez les hommes que chez les femmes d’etre attiré par la jeunesse chez son partenaire sexuel.
    Ce n’est pas que Moix et c’est le cas d’hommes bcp plus intéressants que lui. Mais ça va changer ! L’indifference féminine pour l’age sera la nouvelle norme.

  • Garance, GOOD MOVE, good move on speaking out about this! I am ‘young’ in age years but I too view growing older as “glowing older” as we go! These downsized opinions that age is unattractive is fear based thinking and projection onto others. Thank you thank you, I just got so energized from reading this. Sharing with all my friends r now too! Love you G ??

  • You make a good enough point but then contradict yourself by using the phrase “old out of touch idiots” to describe a man! We can’t have it both ways. We either leave ageism out of the equation or we don’t and if you get to do it, then I guess Yann Moix can too!

  • I, like you, Garance, do not want to give this person any more time or attention than he has already gotten. I have better things to do. All I can say, as a woman of “invisible” age, is this: perhaps he has done us all a favor by not sleeping with us. He sounds like he would a terrible f*ck. Bisous!

  • Boglarka January, 18 2019, 2:59 / Reply

    Dear Garance, I am really glad and thankful that you are not afraid to stand up and raise your voice against such issues. Use your voice and lead a way – we need people like you who bring the light of consciousness and shape the world into a better place. Love, Bo

  • je suis assez d’accord avec tout ce que tu écris: on réduit trop le machisme (et ses sources) à la SEULE faute des hommes. Or si les femmes ne changent pas elles-mêmes, si elles ne s’arrachent pas toutes seuls aux injonctions débiles le la presse, de l’éducation et de tout le reste et de restent éduquées que comme des “filles” bien dans les cases, de toute façon, RIEN ne changera jamais et surtout pas le regard d’abrutis comme Yann Moix!!!

  • I don’t feel invisible. Nor do I care that the writer expresses a personal preference for young Asian women. It certainly doesn’t constitute an insult to anyone else. Nor do we need “proper analysis” (vs “improper” analysis??) to tell readers what to think and to project counter opinions in mockery. That is a swift act of silencing voices that don’t agree with your own. If as a democracy we value free speech, we accept the fact that we don’t all think as one. If the magazine editor’s power and self-concept are so shaky that she can be left depressed by such a piece of writing, she has a very serious problem of her own. How ironic that the very thing you are finding deplorable, you resort to yourself: insulting President Trump by calling him “old”. He’s 72, is that too old? Dragging your political tirade into this piece does nothing but show

  • To A Woman Of A Certain Age- I couldn’t agree more! Very well articulated!

  • Tout à fait d’accord avec toi et merci pour ton franc-parler. Ce mec est sale, le problème n’est pas dans ce qu’il dit, sinon de qui le relaye comme ça objectivement. On imagine qu’un mec dise “ouai, j’aime bien qu’elles aient moins de 18 ans”. On serait choqués non? (et c’est surtout interdit…)

  • Tellement parfaitement écrit
    Bravo Garance, tout est dit

  • Hélène January, 18 2019, 6:31 / Reply

    Je n’avais pas lu l’édito. Il est complètement déprimant ! “Mon corps devient moche parce que je vieillis”. Un homme me dit que je suis invisible, “que faire de cette VERITE ?” . “Mon homme regarde les filles de 20 ans dans la rue”…
    Au secours !
    C’est vrai Garance, j’aurais aimé un édito en forme de bras d’honneur bienveillant et apaisé, et pas ce renoncement amer qui ne se l’avoue pas…
    De la part d’un magazine féminin qui se veut féministe, c’est édito est une belle occasion manquée de faire passer un message d’affirmation et de confiance en soi.

  • You go, girl! Own your beauty.

  • Well said Garance! I read about this when it happened and all I could think was, what a complete fuckwit! Why is anyone paying any attention to this idiot? I’m disappointed as well that Marie Claire gave any power to M. Moix and his misogyny.

  • Great commentary on our times, Garance.
    I have also become invisible since I turned 50.
    Invisible to men who are idiots and judge beauty by age.
    Invisible to men who realize that with age you are no longer a target for the nonsense and harassment that a younger woman might put up with.
    Invisible to women who feel threatened by blooming strength and beauty and the selfknowledge that makes you irresistible to men (and women) who have open hearts and eyes.
    If becoming invisible to morons is what happens, I’m all for it.
    Loving life at 51 as much as at 21,

  • Brava, G! ??? It’s really sad for Marie Claire Fr, which I used to enjoy :(

  • Française et bien suivi cet épisode peu glorieux du début d’année…
    Un Yann Moix frustré, aigri, de 50 piges, pas très engageant physiquement ni moralement, qui ne s’accepte pas et ne veut pas vieillir…et qui par peur du miroir scotch sur les jeunes asiatiques (vieux poncifs, comme lui, d’une autre époque, démodé…), j’ai 39 ans mais je peux vous dire que j’en connais des caucasiennes, des noires, des latines de 50 ans sacrément sexy !
    Mr Moix est formaté comme un vieux libidineux des années 70…à la rue !
    Bisettes !

  • Very interesting that you invite commentary. I did comment on this article–nothing mean but simply an intellectual observation, which is very different than something written in malice, but simply part of an intellectual dialogue, which is what I thought Garance was engaging in here, but my comment was not posted. Apparently, the only truth you are interested is your own–unless, of course, what is written is in total agreement with you. That is a very false sort of openness, isn’t it? Women are censured in far too many ways and somehow I thought this was a site that engaged in equal voices to all women but I find that not to be the case at all! Shame!

  • Veronica January, 20 2019, 7:55

    Hi Lynne, Your original comment has been posted. Sometimes we get back logged, or the comments go into a spam folder. Thank you for engaging in our community. Let me know if there is anything else I can do for you. x Veronica

  • Exactement….Et pour citer Stendhal, ” la grâce serait plus belle encore que la beauté car elle aurait les charmes de l’imprévu…” C’est ce que l’on est à l’intérieur qui révèle notre beauté, notre charme à tous les âges !

  • Merci pour cette critique intelligente de cet incident. J’ai lu toute l’interview, et tous les propos sont insultant: pour les jeunes asiatiques, pour les femmes, pour les bébés, et surtout envers lui-même. De manière générale, beaucoup de magazines féminins “féministes” ne servent pas vraiment la cause des femmes…

  • Chère Garance,
    Votre article sonne tellement tellement juste. En plus…
    En plus … des femmes de 50 ans ont voulu faire un pied de nez à YM, comme Colombe Schnek: montrer un corps ne ressemblant pas à celui d’une femme de 50 ans ! Elles sont rentrées dans le cliché exigeant des femmes un corps impeccable. Les filles, non, non, non et non! A 50, nous avons des corps qui ont 50 ans de plein de façons. Pas un corps paraissant 25 alors qu’il en a 50.
    En plus … je suis une femme de 45 ans, et nbre d’hommes de mon âge sont de nv en couple avec des femmes de minimum 18 ans de moins! Discussion ce we: “N’importe quoi, je ne me soucie ni de son âge, ni si son corps est jeune. “Redis-moi l’âge de celle que tu épouses dans 6 semaines?” “24 ans, pourquoi? N’éxagère pas Mel, regarde celle d’Olivier, elle en a 21 !!!”
    Pendant ce temps, je me fais (trop) souvent draguer par des hommes charmants … de 60 ans !?
    En plus et surtout… tellement de femmes de 50 ans sont totalement imprégnées par l’idée qu’elles deviennent inutiles et invisibles. 50 ans = ne plus enfanter alors qu’elles ne le veulent pas. Il faut sortir sortir plusieurs cricks pour qu’elles parviennent à se libérer de ce raisonnement.
    Alors oui, j’espère que cette tempête dans un verre d’eau nous permettra à toutes de sortir la tête du sable, et nous réapproprier notre vie. Toute notre vie.
    Merci Garance de mettre vos mots sur cette apologie de la jeunesse.

  • Anne-Louise January, 21 2019, 10:56 / Reply

    Love you! a-men :)

  • Patricia Resl-Rojas January, 21 2019, 1:02 / Reply

    Very well said Garance!
    Merci! Patricia

  • Dear Garance
    Love this post. I’m turning 45 soon. I will lie if I say that haven’t been thinking about aging and how i have changed not only inside but also outside. I am taking it much harder than I would have ever thought I would. I am coming to loving it and stop being so obsessed in finding more grey hair each day. The life is far from over, it’s just not easy to accept the changes for some of us. I am lucky to have a man in my life who loves me as I am… I am grateful for that. But I know the power to let someone to love us comes from our love to ourselves. And it is the hardest thing for some of us. Thank you for this post!

  • Duh…what is left!? Come on! What is still to come, to do, to experience, to love, to everything else. It’s never to late for anything and old doesn’t exist! Be kind to others and to yourself and do whatever makes you happy! People with limited and conditioned (frustrated) opinions should simply be avoided. (@fabiduister)

  • Common, normal people don`t take such losers. Here all are telling, ok, so we hope for mister he`ll find kind of enough blank bimbo to manage his old wrinkled over fifty disgusting ass. You know? Someone having problem with his own age, nothing else.

  • Garance, you literally put down in words what I’m thinking in these days. I’m 28 and precisely as you said every age is both beautiful and difficult at the same time. I can’t wait to see what’s next and am not scared at all about ageing. That’s what makes us more profound, more true and more beautiful every day. As you said, beauty and sexiness comes from within.
    Once again, thank you for being truthful and honest and beautiful!

  • Michelle January, 22 2019, 7:57 / Reply


  • Les choses que les femmes continuent de subir !…….
    Tellement ancree cette peur de vieillir, d’etre seule, de n’etre rien sans homme, etc….!
    Quelle honte ce Moix ! Mais je suis surtout choquee par la reaction de la directrice de Marie Claire : elle aurait du “lui clouer le bec”, elle en avait toutes les possibilites.
    Que de chemin a parcourir……..

  • I find it surprising that Marie-Claire would publish that…Not impressed!

  • Elizabeth Duran January, 23 2019, 7:10 / Reply

    Heureuse de te lire Garance car moi aussi j’ai réagi comme toi à cette nouvelle, sans connaître l’écrivain en question. J’ai pensé que c’était dommage de donner une tribune à ce genre d’opinion , qui me paraît très dans l’air du temps, “trumpienne” en ce sens que c’est de la bêtise raciste, sexiste , qui s’affiche fièrement . Ayant passé avec bonheur la cinquantaine, ayant vécu la maladie, le décès de personnes proches, mon regard sur la beauté , ou plutôt les canons et diktats a bien changé. Je dirais que maintenant il y a une immense tendresse pour le genre humain sous toutes ses formes, à tous ses âges , seule la bêtise enlaidit et alourdit. J’oubliais, la méchanceté aussi.
    Il fait pitié ce Yann Moix, on sent sa peur de la vieillesse, de la maladie et de la mort. A chacun sa stratégie , la sienne me paraît vouée à l’echec, le regard des jeunes femmes asiatiques lui renverra un jour ou l’autre une image moche de sa condition d’homme suffisant, limité, peureux et fuyant.
    PS. Je suis asiatique et j’ai fui toute ma vie les attentions des hommes qui ne recherchaient que mon groupe ethnique. Racisme à l’envers, fantasme colonialiste , qui sait, mais en tout cas c’est bien repoussant .

  • You are so right Garance and it’s about time we stop giving a voice, no a megaphone more like it, to these dinosaurs whose thoughts do not interest us in the least, but who sadly still have an impact on women’s self confidence and self approval. Wait, just wait, feel the wind shifting, big time and women 20 to 80 standing up one by one, rallying, holding hands, this rhetoric is being dissolved more rapidly than expected and it’s a good thing. So, as someone said, let the clown be, just stop going to the circus, his red nose is about to fall off.

  • And I quote Clueless’s Cher Horowitz, “As if!” He is so not worth it.

  • Dear Garance, Thank you for putting things into an important perspective. You are so right. However, it still remains a fact that only a tiny portion of pioneering fashion brands reflect the average age of their customer. My latest resecarch in instagram branding shows that there is still a lot for the business and media to learn, before they master this. As you point out, its a moving target, but right now the laggards are numerous.

  • Catherine March, 3 2019, 4:34 / Reply

    Croyez moi il y a une grande différence entre 43 ans et 50 ans passés… La ménopause n’est pas forcément un cadeau pour beaucoup de femmes… Personnellement je ressens cette invisibilité.

  • Hélène April, 15 2019, 7:21 / Reply

    Je trouve Garance que vous êtes un peu en dehors de tout ça. 43 ans ce n’est pas du tout 50 ans !! Comme le dit le message précédent. J’ai de la chance de ne pas être invisible car je suis en couple, mais 43 ans c’est plutôt le bel âge. 50 on doit faire face à d’autres choses.

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