The “bad stuff”

Posted by Corinne Rodrigues

By Corinne Rodrigues


Every time I happen upon `Pretty Woman’ on television, I can’t help watching the movie to the end. There’s just something about the movie that captivates me. I feel the same way about ‘My Fair Lady’ – which is more or less along the same lines. I think the story of the underdog getting a break and making the most of it and winning the ‘hero’ over by just being herself, that gets me.


Anyway, it was only last week that I watched ‘Pretty Woman’ again (!!) and that’s the first time these lines struck me:


Vivian: People put you down enough, you start to believe it.

Edward: I think you… are a very bright, very special woman.

Vivian: The bad stuff is easier to believe. You ever notice that? 


The bad stuff is easier to believe…….and I thought to myself ‘Is it really?’  


A few years ago, I would have said an unequivocal ‘Yes, it is!”. 


But now I say the bad stuff is easier to believe when you suffer from low self-esteem. When you don’t think highly of yourself, you don’t believe anyone else can. So for example, if someone says to you “Oh you look so pretty/handsome”, you give the credit to your hairstylist or the place where you bought your clothes from. You find it difficult to say a sincere “Thank you.”  In other words, compliments and positive feedback don’t ‘stick’ with you. 


On the other hand, when someone says things that aren’t very pleasant, they’re easy to believe because it is a reinforcement of your beliefs about yourself. 


Most of the shadows of this life are caused by standing in one’s own sunshine. ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson 

Vivian had an Edward to ‘rescue’ her and help her to see herself as she really was. Are you waiting for an Edward to come along? Or are you going to rescue yourself? Fall in love with yourself and soon you’ll find that the bad stuff doesn’t ‘stick’ anymore !

(Corinne Rodrigues is based in Mumbai and blogs at




  1. November 21, 2011

    Raamesh Gowri Raghavan

    ‘Chacun a son gout’, as the English will say to sound very classical and educated. Or in plain English, ‘To each his  own taste’. With a smiley tacked on firmly at the end :)

  2. July 12, 2011

    Corinne Rodrigues

    Sudhir – I’m sorry I missed your comment. Thank you :)

  3. June 16, 2011

    T S Sudhir

    Like Kareena Kapoor’s character says in `Jab we met’, “Main apni sabse favourite hoon”, I totally agree that one should fall in love with oneself, except that it should also leave some space in the heart for others too !! Lovely piece as usual, corinne !

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