You see some form of this phrase probably everywhere. No matter how many articles you read about it, no matter how many speeches you hear about, no matter how many times you tell yourself you’ll figure it out tomorrow, it always seems too easier said than done. So maybe my story will help you to write your own.
I can’t tell you the amount of times I’ve been called a whore. I can’t tell you the amount of times I’ve been called a bitch. I can’t tell you the amount of times that I heard a rumor about me that tells me more about myself than I knew. I can’t tell you the amount of times I’ve seen someone talking bad about me on social media. But I can tell you that at one point in my life, I felt like everyone else cared more about the things they heard about me and my life more than I did.
I was constantly friends with people who only cared about how they looked and who liked them. They would only be around me if they needed something and no matter how many times I was there for them, I never got the same support in return. These “friends” were so great that not only did they talk about me behind my back, but to my face, and sometimes it was only like they would be around me to hear my secrets or see what I was doing in order to go tell everyone else. I knew all these things all along and I stayed because I wanted to believe that people were better than that, because I knew that as a friend, I was better than that. I cut them out.
Boys only talked to me thinking they could get with me. You wouldn’t believe how angry guys get when you don’t turn out to be the “easy” girl that everyone claims you to be. Who could’ve known that saying “no” automatically labels you a bitch. These guys got so embarrassed that they blamed the miscommunications and their failed attempts on me. That I was at fault or that I was using them, when really I just thought that maybe this guy actually likes me for me. Needless to say I lost all trust in guys, I really didn’t even want a male in my presence.
I look back and I’d like to think that my life was put through this public ridicule because I was strong enough to deal with it. I would never wish this constant, I guess bullying(?) upon anyone. And at first I wasn’t strong. I was broken down. How else do you feel when everyone thinks you’re some bad person and no one even tries to figure out that you’re the exact opposite.
Some would say I disappeared. I was never seen at school and I never posted on social media. To me, the people I’ve gone to school with for years, didn’t deserve to know how I was. They didn’t care when I let them know what I was doing, why did they deserve to know now when they probably really only cared about where I’ve been.
I promised myself that my happiness was more important. That no matter what people thought or said about me, I know who I am and as long as I know that, then whatever people say doesn’t really matter. I was driven in my school work. I knew that if I worked hard now, it would pay off in the future. I picked up extra hours at work and picking up side jobs, I loved working with people, making connections and gaining experience. I picked up hobbies like baking, knitting, and puzzles. I spend all my other time with my family. Because although at first I let my feelings consume me, they knew who I really was and they were there always, no matter how many times I shut them out. I met a guy, who I didn’t even want to talk to for weeks. I didn’t let him take me out for two months. I didn’t kiss him for half a year. But I realized that he loved me for me. He didn’t know dates, he didn’t need kisses or anything more from me, he just needed me to love him the way he loved me. I am happy and I decided how I got there.
If you decide to take anything out of my life, then let it be this:
You are the only person who can make yourself happy and don’t feel ashamed to do whatever it takes for you to get there. No matter what happens, stay humble, stay kind, and look at your life and how beautiful it is. There will always be people and situations that get in the way but no one can diminish how you love yourself.