Wednesday, March 22, 2017

What happens when you're broken?

What growing up with people who constantly tell you that you cannot do it does to you?

Maybe, just maybe, you were lucky enough to grow up with amazing, loving parents, I say parents because sometimes, a parent can be loving, encouraging and do everything that they can to ensure that you lead a fulfilling life and in turn you will grow up to be a successful person. Although terminology wise, success can mean a lot of things, we will leave this out of the equation for a second and allow everyone to have their own assumptions of what success is because in reality that is what it is, it’s different for each individual. But nevertheless, one parent can be supportive and the other parent could be at the other end of the spectrum of being completely detrimental to your mental health, sometimes even your physical health, not offering support and if any case would rejoice in seeing you fail.

So, I’m speaking from personal experience when I say this but it is obviously different for everyone and it also depends on your cultural background, geographical background and honestly you name it. Many, many factors come into consideration when I say this. But how is it that someone copes when speaking out about domestic abuse is a taboo? How does someone continue to live in a society where perfection is portrayed and speaking about being abused, is like, saying that you should be ashamed of being treated that way, not that the perpetrator be called out or prosecuted. You get told by others that there must a be a reason why they hit you, not “How dare they hit you”. You see in many cases, this is the hard reality, but ever heard someone say, “don’t tell others what happened”? Have you had that told to you? Maybe not. But when you get a metal mug strike your face, when your face is black and blue from the physical abuse that you suffer from and when the person tells you, “You can’t tell anyone that I hit you, because I will kill you and no one can say anything about it”. Well, for me, that’s my life. No. That WAS my life.

Why do you not want to go back? Do you not miss your family? No is the answer. I have been dying inside every day of my life not knowing when is it that I will be hurt again. When I would be verbally abused, be called abusive names, “dog”, “bitch”, “asshole”, all of this in public. Don’t share what your family is like. Don’t tarnish your family name. Don’t let them know. Why? Why? Why? Why do I have to go through this? I realised the sadness that engulfed me when I was 13, didn’t know it was called mental illness, didn’t know it was called trauma. Didn’t know that it was a condition and didn’t know that I could get out of it. What I did know was that I turned my emotions into words, turned my worries onto paper. Placed my heart in a box, suffered in silence. Never told a soul. Kept it silenced. Told my friends that my younger brother kicked the football to my face. Lies after lies, after lies. And she still stayed.

All I wanted was to get out. I am out now. I am free. I don’t want to go back, I can’t go back. I never want to go back. I want to be free. I want to be me. I want my own life. I believe that a woman can have her own life. How do you stay strong when someone says things like, “Good grades aren’t going to do the cleaning, you have to learn how to clean the house before you can even think of having good grades”. I’m sorry, what? When I got an award for being top student, he embarrassed, called me names and asked me to wash the toilet. He said I will amount to nothing. He has no respect for me. I never will forget these words and I will never let someone else go through the same things that I have experienced be experienced by other people as well.

But you’re so happy, how is it that you’re so happy. You don’t know me. That’s why you don’t know my story. But my story isn’t even about me. It’s about how people accept the condition that they’re in but some retaliate and that’s me. You see, in this world there are people who go through so much pain, so much so that they learn to accept it. But some people turn against it and run from it and I know that’s why my relationships with friends have been so challenging because it’s hard for me to maintain friendships with people. It’s hard for me to put myself out there. It’s hard for me because all I want to do is run. All I want to do is be safe. All I want to do is be human. All I want to do is be happy and that’s what I aspire to be. To be happy and to make other people feel good about themselves because I know what it’s like to have people diss you at every opportunity that they have. The people that were meant to make you feel safe and who were meant to make you feel human, who decided that you are worth dehumanizing. The person who tried to do more things than just hurt you. The person whom I hate and the person that I wish was dead. But I’m not a malicious person, so I chose to run away and I will never go back and I will never see them again. I developed a semi-photographic memory from the trauma that I faced as a child, and I personally never knew that I could.

But I’ve been so interested in psychological experiments because my brain just processes things in a very different way. But this is the truth, this is me and there’s no point of hiding it anymore. I have been embarrassed to let people know about my past, but this is not a reflection of me and I have only now learnt to embrace this and that I am more than how people treat me and that’s why I never let anyone make me feel like I’m less than a priority because I never stay otherwise.

This may be something unexpected but it’s time that I shared that in this world, people may feel like everyone who is sunshine and happiness are just that. Recognise that there is more to someone than just how they seem outside and recognise that the person that you think I am, is not a true reflection of me. I don’t care about what people think of me mainly because I know they don’t know me well enough. I’ve never let anyone close enough to know me. But here’s a side to me that no one knew anyway.

Till’ my next post. xx

Monday, March 13, 2017

Why are we so afraid?

Why are we so afraid?
I’ve always thought, how brave people were back then to stand up for what they think is right. I’m much comfortable sitting behind a screen, sharing, standing on a podium and making people listen. But I would never result to violence. It simply just isn’t me. I however think about the suffragettes for example and the amazing women behind the movement, how they stood up for the inequality that they were experiencing, sexual abuse, unfair treatment and the responsibilities imposed on them by society, simply because they were female.

We have come a long way from how matters are discussed, but until now, women still face the oppression from men who think they are better than them, or by their peers who are jealous of them. It’s difficult being beautiful as well, because you’re sexualised by the opposite sex, undermined by your colleagues and thwarted by your female equals. This is a common phenomenon that occurs everywhere. My question is why do we hate? 

Women are supposed to empower other women, we aren’t supposed to be starting cat fights over who is more beautiful than the other. On the contrary, we should be supporting them. I hate to say that I have met a lot of people who use their beauty to their favour, getting what they want mainly because they are genetically gifted, but that doesn’t mean that everyone is the same. I think in terms of success, people should support other people and not feel jealous of them, if anything, we should seek to assist. We are nobody without our support network, be it our friends, family or strangers. You never know when the next opportunity would arrive and you should be out there trying to make a difference.

You see, for me, I have no idea how to start a movement, how to make change, I don’t have a clue because I never thought I could change the world, although I always believed I could. The thing about success or even being remembered is doing things that other people won’t do. Doing things without thinking about the consequences per se, but rather focusing on your goals and the point you’re out to make. Sure, you may get into trouble. You may even get into jail. But, why are we so worried that we would be jailed or faced with difficulties if that is really what we stand for? If that is really what is correct. For example, in North Korea, you’re executed for even watching foreign media, but why is it so bad? It’s the dictatorship of course, but why are we so afraid? Why are we constantly worried about what others would say? Why don’t we stand up? Why do we accept?

There is this interesting thing about comfort, we don’t want to be challenged, we want things to be stable, we don’t want to get into trouble. But, what are we so afraid of? Why are we so afraid? Is it the human condition, to stay safe? To remain unharmed and also to remain a bystander? Why are we so opposed to refugees, why are we so opposed to poverty? Why are we so offended? Why do we treat people differently based on their status? Why do we hug someone who is a celebrity, but shun those that need us? Why do we care so much about perfection but cringe at the look of flaws? Why do we pretend to be perfect? 

Who are we?

Yes, say it. Maybe we just don’t care about what doesn’t affect us? But how are we able to live, knowing that someone else’s mother is crying? How can we live knowing that we would never let our own mother go through what other people are going through, but we don’t care about others, only because we don’t know them? Lives lost is not a human condition, especially not because of war or poverty. It’s something that we as human beings have conditioned ourselves to be okay with. Of course, sickness, and old age take lives, but even then, we are sad, if it is of our loved ones. So, why do we not care about those who really need to be cared for? Why do we impose on ourselves this “Human condition” where acceptance is of higher priority especially in countries where death takes place on a daily basis due to a regimental force that oppresses them on a daily belief? Why do we allow this? Why are we so afraid of free movement? Why are we so afraid that people are coming over and taking our jobs?

Why? Shouldn’t everyone have the right to improve their lives? You and I, we were born in a country, completely out of chance and this determines our nationality and explicitly how we’re treated in life. I didn’t choose to be brown, to have dark hair, or to have brown eyes, but I do. This is my genetics, there is nothing I can do to change it, neither do I want to change it. I don’t want people looking at me and thinking, “Why is she here?”. I want to be able to live freely, travel to anywhere in the world and have the equal opportunity that everyone has. So, for them, for people who don’t even have documentations to prove that they are from a certain country, imagine the heartache, the oppression, the feeling of outcast that they have on a daily basis. You don’t belong anywhere, you aren’t given the opportunity. You think you’re out of the hell hole, but the new hell you’re put in is of the looks of disgust and dissatisfaction like you’re some kind of leach, sucking the happiness out of them, when really all you want is to live.

You and I, we’re cowards. We truly are. We’ve never done anything in our lives to change what we think is wrong. Many of us have even stood as bystanders when watching injustice unfold. But, I don’t think I will stand for it anymore. I will not allow people to be treated unfairly around me and I will also fight for human rights if it means it would be the end of me. It’s better to stand for something than to not. It’s better to have an opinion than to go with the flow. Life is too short to think. Do what you love and if it hurts you, let the pain strengthen your belief. If every great men and women were to have given up, we would have never known their names. Maybe I’d end up to be a writer, but that’s my fight. The pen is mightier than the sword anyway. We have our way of showing solidarity and the best way I know of doing it is by writing. So, I will write what I think and not think of the consequences anymore.

Today especially is the first time I ever stood up for myself. I was walking towards the train station at the airport and someone said excuse me and I didn't know where it was coming from so, I was kind of hovering in the middle of the two lanes. Instead of saying thanks, he said, "What the fuck? You choose one side not walk in the middle" and if it was any other time I would have stayed quiet, but this time I said, "Yeah, well, you don't have to be so rude, for fuck's sake" and continued on. As small as it seems, I would never speak up for myself but this time, I just didn't care and I was prepared to defend myself if he were to be violent. But he wasn't, but I could see a shift in his behaviour in a way that he did feel scared. Sorry, but bullies need to be told off. Otherwise, they would think their behaviour is acceptable, which in any way, it isn't!!

Till my next post. xx