Updated: Apr 22
This month of hearts, The Filipina Feminists featured Filipinas who prove that love is not always "hetero-mantic". These strong women showcase self-love, parental love, platonic love, and a love that transcends.
Filipina Actress and Singer
Why we love her: Janella Salvador is one of the most talented actresses of her generation. But that's not why we chose to feature her. We love her because she's brave enough to choose herself.
⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ After suffering from physical abuse in the hands of her former boyfriend, Janella decided to break up with him despite their success as a love team. If you don't know, love teams are a huge thing here in the Philippines. Most actors get their big breaks after being paired together, and they work on multiple projects with each other. Therefore, her decision to choose and love herself might have put her career at risk. But she did it anyway. She also bravely talked about her traumatic experience and how she's getting help from a therapist, encouraging others to prioritize their mental health in the process. Janella recently wrapped her show "The Killer Bride" and released her new song "Blanko", proving to everyone that you don't need a man to thrive in life. To us, Janella is a testament of how choosing yourself will always be worth it.
Watch her interview on Tonight With Boy Abunda as she shares what she learned from her previous relationship and on choosing to love oneself.
Vocalist for Cheats, Podcast Host for Waking Up with Jim and Saab, Mom of Pancho and Vito
Why we love her: She's an awesome millennial mom! Saab is a living testament that motherhood does not require your passions to take a backseat; it only adds more meaning to life. Even as a mom of 2, she makes time for music and blogging. She even started a podcast with her husband, Wake Up with Jim and Saab (now with over 100 episodes!). Her social media posts also include her adorable kids, Pancho and Vito, mostly narrating her wonderful motherhood stories.
Even with the passing of her daughter (Pancho's twin sister) last February 2018, Saab shows her strength as a mom. In her blog post entitled Heartbroken but Hopeful, she narrates how complications while giving birth led to her daughter's death. Despite this, she chooses to draw courage and compassion from this experience and make it through with the help of her husband, friends, and family. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ We are both in awe of her, not only because of her radiant beauty, but most especially because she inspires us as our #momgoals should we ever be one.⠀⠀⠀
Filipina Actress, Singer, 2nd Big Winner of Pinoy Big Brother All In
Why we love her: Maris Racal redefines love by showing us that girls and boys can be friends without any ulterior motives. One of her best friends in show business is actor Diego Loyzaga. During an interview, Diego said, "She's my best friend. I look out for her all the time... Kaya talagang maging best friend ng isang babae at isang lalake na walang malisya, walang balak, walang masamang intensyon."
In a world where girls are quickly judged and accused of being sluts when we have close relationships with boys—even when the relationship is strictly platonic—Maris defies social expectations. Of course, we also love Maris because she's a wonderful actress and a talented musician. Watch Diego's interview below or listen to Maris and Diego sing "I Won't Give Up" by Jason Mraz:
Entrepreneur and Celebrity Couple
Why we love them: The Kings are an unconventional couple and we love them for it. They are living testaments that #loveislove.
In 2011, Angie and Joey got married. Back then, though Angie was honest to her wife about her gender identity, the rest of the world known her as Ian. But in 2016, Angie's social media friends were notified of her alternate account where she freely posted about her true self. At this point, Angie found support in her wife and family as they encouraged her to come out. It's just beautiful and heart-warming to witness this kind of love - something that accepts, forgives, and understands. A love that shreds away labels and perseveres. A love that is willing to embrace each other's truths.
Watch this video from TLC Asia on their love story:
Growing up, we are taught how to say "I love you" and what love meant; we all have learned to derive the meaning of love from different sources. From heartbreaks. From broken families. From a loving parent. From real friends. Just like our featured women, you have the freedom choose your own path to love.
Follow us on Instagram to learn about more women who inspire us with their advocacies! Turn your notifications on so you won't miss any posts.