The Week in Women: Bridesmaids for hire, Nicaragua’s shrewd first lady, and Adele’s postpartum battle

(REUTERS/Danny Moloshok)

There are few things in life more precious than a good friend (also high on the list: family, food covered in melted cheese). So for this week’s news roundup, we’ve curated a selection of stories about besties, buddies, and duos. Let’s take a look back, shall we?

In a candid interview with Vanity Fair, Adele revealed that she found solace in the company of other mothers while dealing with severe postpartum depression. The 10-time Grammy winner gave birth to her son, Angelo, in 2012. When asked if she planned to have more children someday, she said, “I’m too scared. I had really bad postpartum depression after I had my son, and it frightened me.” During this challenging time, Adele found herself gravitating towards other mothers and pregnant women, though she initially resisted their company. Or as she put it: “I said, ‘F**k that, I ain’t hanging around with a f***in’ bunch of mothers.’” Keep doing you, Adele. Keep doing you.

Being a bridesmaid in China is so unpleasant that brides are increasingly hiring paid professionals to stand by them on their big day. Chinese bridesmaids are routinely subjected to verbal, physical, and sexual harassment; their obligations involve drinking rice wine on behalf of the bride—a practice that has led to dangerous overconsumption and death—and performing sexually suggestive stunts, which, in extreme cases, have devolved into sexual assault. Rather than put their friends at risk, brides are hiring professional bridesmaids, who will take on additional duties, like acting as a makeup artist and warding off rude guests. Paying women to endure abuse? Definitely getting to the root of the problem here.

Singer/activist/wearer-of-sunglasses Bono was the first man to appear on Glamour Magazine’s “Women of the Year” list (Emily Doe, a pseudonym for the woman assaulted by Brock Turner, topped the list as Woman of the Year). CNN anchor Christiane Amanpour, who wrote the magazine’s profile of Bono, hailed him as a friend to women across the globe. She specifically called attention to Bono’s Poverty is Sexist campaign, which seeks to elevate the world’s poorest women and highlight the connections between gender inequality and poverty. “I’m sure I don’t deserve it,” Bono said of his “Man of the Year” title. “But I’m grateful for this award as a chance to say the battle for gender equality can’t be won unless men lead it along with women. We’re largely responsible for the problem, so we have to be involved in the solutions.”

Rosario Murillo, wife of Nicaraguan president Daniel Ortega, is poised to become the country’s next vice president. She is currently on the ticket with her husband, who is likely to be re-elected on November 6. The couple met while Ortega was a guerrilla fighter for the Sandinista; he and Murillo lived in hiding for several years. Murillo’s political ascent can be attributed to her work on behalf of the poor and her ability to charm the electorate. But she is also known for her shrewd political maneuvering and her tendency to elbow many of her husband’s closest advisers out of his inner circle. House of Cards: Nicaragua, anyone?

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