united colors of bullies

It’s been awhile since I last put up an entry and before I start sobbing and saying sorry for leaving you guys hanging, let me just say that I had a tough month writing 15 chapters of a book I’m hoping to publish. So please please put down the pitch forks, I’m not one to make excuses but my brain was fried (figuratively of course).

Today I thought it would be fun to write about a topic that inspired one of my book concepts and that is bullies– in all their colors and varieties. We already know about the obvious ones, which mind you are a scary lot but there are more subtle versions. They hide under the covers labeling themselves something more beautiful and attractive. The magpie in us grovel for the promise that it oh so boldly declares then we realize later on that the shine it has is all that it is, shine.

The inspiration came from a nostalgic evening of coffee with 2 of my best friends- after they convinced me to keep writing on this blog because THEY ACTUALLY READ IT AND LIKE IT. Imagine my surprise when they started talking about entries I wrote, I mean these are my overly critical, highly intellectual and difficult to please best friends we’re talking about. My self loathing subconscious found that difficult to believe and quite frankly, I was speechless for a few moments.

On the same night, we realized a lot about the path we took together in college. We gave up so much to be that image of an over achieving student whose main goal is to get the best grades, manage as many  extra curriculars and maintain as few creative, non logical pursuits as we can. Labels and expectations- the box they made for us- those were our bullies. 

photo from caity-bullying.blogspot.com

I’ve finally learned that bullies don’t just come in different kinds of people, they come in every shape, size or form. I may not have been shoved around or locked in a janitor’s closet by some teen fiction stereotype queen bee but I’ve been confined in a society where there’s a predetermined standard of beauty- one which some may claim I don’t fit. That norm, that belief, that is my own brand of bully. It follows me around, taunting me to cinch around my curves and smoothen my edges to fit this overused mold already made for me.

When I  found enough courage and fought back, told society to shove its size zero, fair-skinned, blonde perfection up their bums, another bully manifested from the shadows- one far stronger and more paralyzing than its predecessor. The firm grip of its manacle, over sized hands smother me with ridicule of how success has and will continue to elude me because the career I chose to love and devote my life to will not earn me millions, buy me a mansion or a jet-setting lifestyle

Your bullies may be far more frightening or life threatening than mine. I can’t be the judge of that and I won’t try to. If there’s one thing I took away from dealing with bully after bully, people and circumstances alike, they’re never as easy to deal with as they they seem on the outside. It’s a bully for a reason. They know your weakness and capitalize on it as much as they can so you’re hurt in the worst possible way. They planned the perfect, most gruesome way to twist and turn the knife they stuck to your heart so you’re left clutching at it, trying to rip it off and stop the bleeding.

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But if you don’t know already, let me be the first to tell you, you’re far stronger than any of your bullies. You have the ability heal and those battle scars will remind you every day of how you fought and how you deserve to be happy- HOW YOU’RE WORTH A LIFE YOU CHOSE TO LIVE and not one chosen by some thug or an unfortunate circumstance for you. 

You get one shot at life my friend, don’t let some bully take that away from you. 

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fu**ing filter

F*ck!

F*ck!

F*ck this!

F*ck that!

F*ck everything!

and NO I don’t mean that literally

photo from christiancastroart.blogspot.com

Sometimes I just wanna rid myself of all the filter and just CURSE TO MY HEART’S CONTENT. It’s not so much the cursing but what the cursing implies. To most people cursing is a taboo especially if you come from a conservative Christian family like mine. Every word means more that it does and social standards (in other words popular opinion) govern your every thought, word and action.

Cursing, to me at least, means having the right to be improper and different and out of control every once in awhile. It’s not ideal but for someone who has relied on structure a lot (like me), it’s very enticing. Have you ever felt that way too?

It’s the simplest and easiest way of rebellion. You get to say ‘Suck it social standards’ or ‘In your face Mr. Perfect’. I can say whatever the hell I feel like just because I can. Somehow, even if it doesn’t really solve what you’re so pissed about, you feel a little bit better and you can go about your day conforming to rules again. Much like an outlet, losing your filter allows you to express yourself completely even if or sometimes because it’s not acceptable to most people.

Word of warning though, cursing as a force of habit isn’t exactly the best thing either. Using it so often and in almost all conversations neutralizes it’s effect on you but not necessarily on the people you’re talking to.

i’m just not into him (the guy best friend stereotype)

Dedicated to every girl and guy who were ever told they’re more than friends

Okay so most people in my family (and some from my peer group too) think I was in a relationship with this guy- an old friend. I used to be okay with the taunting and the teasing- when we were friends at least- but lately it seems it’s all they ever string my life with. It just comes across as juvenile to me. Don’t get me wrong. I’m okay with a good love story. In fact, I look forward to it during family sit downs because that’s probably the only part of my life I don’t consider a damn priority. Hearing it from other people makes me feel normal.

What is it that truly gets to me?

Clearly it’s not just the matter of getting paired up with a guy I was once friends with. That’s just the symptom. The disease is the overwhelming feeling that my own family (some of them) might know very little about me if they do at all. Don’t they get it yet?

I HATE BEING PAIRED UP WITH GUYS ESPECIALLY MY FRIENDS.  I cringe a little each time they do  (not because my friends aren’t attractive- they are). If I am casually seeing someone, dating or in a relationship, I’d downright say it. They don’t have to wring it out of me. To me it seems that they’re saying I’m incapable of keeping strictly platonic relationships with guys which is sad because I don’t have many female friends.

There are things only a your guy friend can do and everyday I’m thankful I have a few. 🙂 (photo from http://www.pinterest.com)

I love my guys. I DO

BUT…

that doesn’t mean I picture a romantic future with them if I even want that at all (another issue all together). Except for my few good moments, I’m mostly a cynic for relationships and marriage and fairy tale endings. Shouldn’t that be red flag enough?

I’m not sure if it’s projection or tradition but the way they see all male friends I talk about or hang out with, it’s as if they’re all relationship material. My best friend for instance is one attractive man and I’ve known him forever which means we’re super comfy around each other. Their thought process is he’s a guy. She’s a girl. They’re always together. They must be a couple. Let’s tease her and find out. When did that stereotype start and who suggested it? I’m gonna go and hunt him down because I wanna be able to spend one day, share one experience I had with him and not have it be turned into some dramatic romcom.

photo from diaryofthebrokenhearted1220.wordpress.com

photo from diaryofthebrokenhearted1220.wordpress.com

Maybe most their guy friends (or girl friends for the men) courted them or if they didn’t it’s because they’re shy or whatever lame excuse they have for not dating someone they like. I’M NOT IN THAT SITUATION AT ALL. If I like a guy and want to be relationship with him (which is not very often), I’d tell him. I won’t stay on the friendzone. Anybody who truly understands me knows that.

I know society is partly responsible for it too. At some point we’re painted a picture where guys and girls cannot be friends without developing deep-seated romantic feelings for one another (total bullshit if you ask me) so most adults and even some youngsters too expect that to be the norm.You have to understand though that new norms are created everyday especially in areas of human life as subjective as friendship.

Don’t expect every person to fit the stereotype because there are always deviances like me. I have a bunch of male friends and if society never labeled it weird, I wouldn’t even be writing this article.

It feels normal to me.

The bottom line is I love my friends- guys, girls and all in between- regardless of how people perceive our relationship to be. It just gets exhausting explaining myself sometimes. Any suggestions on what I should do?