This week I’ve felt that sting a lot. (Not that water infection kinda sting, thank goodness!) I’ve felt that sting of hurt when someone has said something that I find offensive.
A colleague told me that the only way I could have kids would be adoption (not true) and a friend undermined a situation which, for me, was very real and very serious but for her was little more than a passing phase.
And so I feel stung.
How does one deal with feeling stung?
A year ago I would have been bitter and angry but, as anger is a secondary emotion, I want to allow myself to feel hurt.
And boy do I hurt.
I’m not very good at being hurt. I hate being vulnerable and I associated being hurt with being vulnerable. I struggle to, rationally, admit that something has upset me.
Right now, I’d take a wasp sting over this emotional sting that is happening inside me.
I will cry on the train, at work or on a park bench. I will cry over a film, a text or a memory.
But I never used to.
Up until a couple of years ago I saw crying as a sign of weakness. I don’t think that was something that I was taught as my family are open about their emotions. I think maybe it was a coping strategy. If I didn’t cry I wasn’t sad – or so I thought.
It was also a social stigma for me I think. I remember one girl seeing me cry at school and saying “You can’t cry! You always make everyone else happy! You’re the one who’s always joking around and making everyone smile!”
Well how do you think that makes me feel? Being funny is a full time job and it’s not one I applied for. When am I allowed some down time? When am I allowed to let it all out? I’m not a robot, I have feelings.
It was horrible.
I let it all out on two occasions at school and it scared people. They didn’t know how to react and they didn’t like to see it or think about me being upset. Tough. It happens.
Gradually I introduced more crying until I’ve now reached the stage where it’s not normal if I don’t cry.
I think it’s helped me to become closer to people. People like to see that you struggle too and like to see that you need people. Because I do need people, we all do.
I thought that letting people in would make me vulnerable but it hasn’t. I’ve earnt a lot of respect from people and it’s made me feel more confident.
So put on a sad song and have a good cry. I promise you that getting it out helps.