If I hear “well, someone has it worse” as a way to minimize a situation, One. More. Time. I am going to lose my shit! Now this isn’t about comparing as in “not good enough” I will save that for another rant… this is about not validating your own suffering. Everything you experience is personal to you, every circumstance different. When you take in all of those factors it is impossible to compare, or should be.
Yes people in this world have experienced things that are really, really bad, and some have it really good, but that does not mean that what is happening to you is comparable. We need to stop taking away from our own experiences assuming they don’t stack up to someone else’s. Or that we don’t get a say or a voice because it is not the worst possible case scenario that ever happened to anyone in the world. I will admit that I used to do this all the time… GUILTY! I would say things like:
“It’s not always all bad” like living in chaos more that 70% of the year is acceptable. Like distrust, cheating, lying, manipulating and abusing are just par for the course. I now refuse to believe there is any reason to settle. I am in love with my life, and I refuse to ever again, have someone bring me down, slow me down, or bring negativity in to mine and my sons life. Fact.
“Some kids had worse childhoods” as if the shortcomings of my upbringing were swept away because I had a roof over my head and food on the table. Yes that is a luxury in many parts of the world, but it cannot replace feeling loved, valued, and safe, while experiencing being a child rather than growing up way to soon. As a parent I strive to let him stay “little” just a little longer. I teach him about life, but while I tune in his coping skills. We discuss things so he knows he has a voice that matters.
“It’s not like he has hit me in the face” suggesting the injuries and assaults to the rest of my body meant nothing, and the mental anguish was normal. This one still feels like a flesh wound at times. “No” means no, even if you’re in a relationship. No one should be allowed to make you feel less than the amazing soul you are. No one should dictate where you go, or how you get there, or who you can and cannot see/speak to, or what you are allowed to eat, or drink. You should not feel fear, or terror, inferiority or controlled in your own home, or anywhere else for that matter. You are the boss of your life. ¹
“At least he has me” completely dismissing my sons father for his absence in his life. Yes he does have me, and dammit I do the best I can, but sometimes that is just good-enough. No child should have to know that someone who is supposed to be there, to love him, and support him, to teach him things, and help him become a man, chooses not to. Waking up everyday thinking “my dad made the choice again, not to be here for me” causes my blood to boil and makes my heat ache for my baby.
Just to name a few.
NO! All of the above are wrong, wrong, wrong. We have to stop dismissing things that are not okay, accepting less than good, and what we deserve.
Life is a constant evolution, and on this journey you have the right to decide for yourself, for your life, what is good for you and what is not. Not because someone else had it better or worse, but because it is what is best, or not, for you. Stretch beyond the status quo. Do not accept less than you feel is right, because ultimately you have to live with it. It is also not okay to accept less than you know is right, just because there are other people suffering. I mean should we all just be homeless because some are? Should we just give up and stay being abused because someone else died at the hands of their partner? Should we all get sick, because some are not well? That is absurd. Wouldn’t it be better to live well, and give back in order to help with the problems of this world? Just a thought…
It is not about dismissing sadness or hardships, like you don’t have a right to dislike suffering. If it sucks you are allowed to say it sucks! And you also can find a way to do something different (in most cases) or better. Minimizing it will only cause more problems. It’s about how well you live your life, being proud of your decisions, giving back, lifting people up, challenging yourself to be better everyday, making a mark on the world for the good.
¹See also #bosslife