there’s a thing you should know about me if we’re friends. i don’t lack confidence in many of my abilities. i can write my ass off. i give (mostly) levelheaded advice. i give a mean gift. there are a host of other things at which i excel, but that’s not why we’re here. we’re here because though they are few, there are things at which i am not fully bolstered with confidence when it comes to my ability to rock them. i am nervous. i am anxious. i am impatient. i am scared. i am completely and utterly devoid of any sense of confidence when it comes to interacting in these spaces.
having said that.
another thing you should know about me is that i don’t do real vulnerability easily. even with those who are closest to me. the way my defense mechanisms are set up, it’s rare that the kid pulls back the veil completely, but when i do there’s a thing that happens that really burns my fucking grits. and realizing the genesis of why it burns my grits has lead me to actively practicing to not do it to others in my life even though they may not be as affected by it.
if i am being open and vulnerable and basically laying my heart on the line about a thing that is bringing me major anxiety, please…for the love of all things holy–do not say the following phrase to me, “you’ll be fine.” or it’s sistercousin “it’ll be okay”.
i was with a friend a few days ago who was telling me about something major that’s going on in their life and the shock felt as a result of this recent change. and my friend said she got incensed as well when expressing her worries about the situation to someone and they said “it’ll be okay. you’ll be fine.” and i felt that shit in my soul. her anger, that is.
those phrases are such a trigger for me. SUCH A TRIGGER. and i figured out why during this conversation with my friend. because i see these phrases as minimizing or downplaying a moment in which i feel like i’m doing a lot and really letting my guard down and you’re hitting me with a salve ass, pat ass, trite ass phrase that is meaningless in the grand scheme of things.
now i’m not seeking to be coddled. i don’t need that. that does not enrich my life in any way. and i get that you’re trying to soothe my anxiety about whatever thing it is that has me all up in knots. but maybe instead of saying that, can you say “hey, i know this shit has you all out of sorts right now and that sucks. i am hoping that peace greets your situation soon.” i mean not in those exact words, but something of that sentiment.
i don’t need to be okay. i need reassurance that although my feelings at the moment are probably heightened due to my propensity for dramatics, the feelings are still valid. that it’s okay to give into, but not become overwhelmed by said feelings. that if there is anything the person i am talking to can do to help alleviate the feeling that i can count on them to be there. that they too have been in xyz situation that may or may not have been similar, but these were some of their coping mechanisms.
despite my love affair with locution, i like actionable comfort. that’s what this all boils down to really. fuck a “woo woo woo”, i’m more about a “ok bitch, you’ve cried about it–so now what is you (or we) gon do?”