#socialsaturday: Superficial Society

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#socialsaturday: Superficial Society

Hey my dears,

actually the first idea for a title was “why do we desire that people desire what we desire?”, but then I thought it might be too long. And maybe too confusing.
But seriously, why do we do that?
Okay, okay, I see, I need to put some structure in here, otherwise we will get lost in a hundred topics.
So, give me a sec. And a sip of coffee.

Okay, back to the topic.
What distinguishes us as humans from animals?
I mean despite regular hair cuts, clothes and make-up and hot baths instead of licking ourselves clean like a cat.
Well, philosophers would say reason and language. Homo logos, you know. Which also implies a correlation between language and divine logic or sense.
Can we just wait here a second.
Reason. Well, I don’t know about you, but recently I’ve seen people doing more things that – at least for me – don’t fall under the category of reasonable than I could put in one blog post without boring you.
I mean, take simple things like throwing trash onto the street while walking when the bin is just 2 freaking meters away from you. Does that sound reasonable?
Or pushing your pram into the bus in such a way that no one can get from the front to the end while the bus driver is yelling that everybody should move further to the back and then you shout at the people who kindly ask you if there was a chance they might pass by. Does that sound reasonable?
Other way round, going to the gym to train your biceps so that every girl would fall for your trained body straight away and wants to touch it, but then being at the train station and watching a mother with a toddler and a pram and not helping her get that pretty heavy thing up the stairs, does that sound reasonable?
I think you get what I’m aiming at, but believe me, there are hundreds of millions of examples where I think doubting reason within people is kind of a daily sport.
(Btw: this doesn’t exclude myself, countless times that I kind of watch myself and then wonder “Well, Gina, was that reasonable? Is there any logical thinking left in your head or is it just on top of your neck to look good on a portrait, sheesh, girl, get your shit together!”)

Language. First, let us ask one simple, but very important question: What’s it good for?
Is it just for me to name things and so that I can define things that pop up in my head and explain them to myself?
The keyword is communication. And this means (at least according to various sources I looked up for this post) the sending, receiving and exchanging of information (or things).
But it’s about sending and receiving. Normally this includes two or more people, doesn’t it?
(Don’t judge people, who use this human tool also to communicate with themselves, it’s just you explaining your own thoughts to yourself, which I consider pretty fine, don’t worry.)
So, why and when did communication turn into one interlocutor using the other one as a stage to put their own life narration into the spotlight?
I mean.. where is the exchange?
Believe me, my dears, I commute too often with public transport and even one time forgetting your earphones makes you notice too many things around you. But on the other hand, it’s an impulse for blog posts, huh?
So, please, play this game the next time you’re sitting somewhere and listen to people talking. And I mean, for a while.
Can you find exchange? Like real exchange? Or is it rather everybody just talking about themselves and then it’s the other one’s turn?
Just observe.

Now for the desire part.
Reason and language flow into it, if you are wondering now why I talked about that before.
So, let’s take some pretty common conversation, okay?

Situation 1: Two people graduated from high school.
A: And what are you going to study?
B: I’m not going to study.
A: What?!
B: I want to do an apprenticeship.
A: Ah.

Situation 2: A student (B) living from a part-time job and a credit and someone being at the end of their apprenticeship (A) and already earning “real” money are talking.
A: And when are you going to move out from your parents’ house?
B: Well, actually I’m aiming for higher education and want to do another degree once I finished the first one.
A: So, you don’t want to move out until you’re what? 28?

Situation 3: An engaged or married woman in the process of family planning (A) and a woman focussed on her career (B) are talking.
A: And when are you going to marry?
B: Hm?
A: When are you going to marry and have children?
B: Um, dunno?!
A: Well, darling, we all don’t get younger, do we?

Why is it that we seem to desire that other people desire what we desire?
And this assumption wouldn’t even be the worst thing. The worst thing is the next step that oh so frequently follows:
Judgement.
As if our life narration was the only valid one.

If your greatest desire is to study and you have the privilege of getting a chance to do it, then value it!
There are people who would love to, but that don’t have access to education, let alone higher education.
And if your friend decides that studying isn’t their cup of tea, then congratulate them on their choice and wish them all the best.

If what you define as a desirable life includes moving out as early as possible and having a space of your own and you get the chance to get it, value it!
Maybe your studying friend would love to have a place of their own, too, but they had to decide about their priorities: flat or next degree.
Who are you to tell them they made the wrong choice just because your choice would have been different?

If your vision of a desirable life necessarily includes getting married and having children, and you found the right partner and you were physically able to give birth to healthy children, then guess what, value it!
And if you found fulfilment in that and you think “wow, now I truly know what I’m here for!” than that’s great. But who are you to tell another woman that unless she has children she doesn’t know her purpose here on earth? Isn’t that a bit harsh?
And even if she doesn’t want to, or didn’t find the person with whom she’d love to, who are you to judge someone else’s priority list?

Let me tell you something:
We will all be judged one day. But that’s not our job, believe me.
Who are we to tell other people which desire and life narration is valid and which is not?
And when did we get so presumptuous and arrogant to assume that our choices are the only right ones?
When did we forget to stay open and listen and see the world from different angles?
When did we forget to communicate?

And now for reasonable communication:
Why don’t we listen? Why do we act our lives out on a virtual and now even analogue stage as if it was the best play ever written and any other narration was invalid and less worthy?
Can we maybe change the narration?

How about

Situation 1
A: Are you going to study or do you want to do an apprenticeship?

Situation 2:
A: What are your plans and desires for the future?

Situation 3:
A: Do you want to marry and have children one day?

On a grammatical level, most yes-or-no-questions or questions without suggesting an answer, offer more space for real communication.
Be open, be interested, listen. And for the sake of an open and less superficial society: Don’t judge!
Please.

Can we maybe start asking really cool and interesting questions again?
Like
How are you?
What makes you happy?
What’s your favourite dish?

I could go on writing about this subject, but I’ll leave it at that. For now.
As always, feel free to comment here, share your opinion with me via email or Facebook or Instagram.

So long, my dears.

xxx
Gina.

Dear Brother

#tbt: I once submitted this one to a flash fiction competition with the given topic of “a lie”. Unfortunately, I didn’t win, but I hope you like it. 🙂

Dear Brother,

Probably you’re going to call me a liar, as everyone else does in our neat and
narrow-minded neighbourhood.
But you’re old enough now. Happy 21st birthday, little one!
I’m not going to put all the cards on the table. I’m going to make the whole house of cards collapse! The house you call home. The house you call your life.
Where do I start? I didn’t run away like Mum and Dad told you. They threw me out. Because I didn’t live up to their expectations. And failure is forbidden in this family.
How funny and paradox, when I think about it, as our beloved parents did fail on so many levels.
Mum isn’t as perfect and loyal as everybody claims her to be. That’s why Dad isn’t your dad.
Are the thin paper walls already shaking, brother?
You wonder why I didn’t celebrate your 18th birthday with you? They told you I left everything and everyone behind me when I ran away, right? Even you. But I didn’t.
They wouldn’t let me enter the house anymore. So I climbed the neighbour’s tree to watch you celebrate in the garden. Eating colourful cake and sipping soda. By the way, Mum didn’t bake the cake herself as she told you, she bought it at Cosmo Cupcakes down the road. I sat in that tree and saw you eating cake while Dad was filling up his tea with booze and Mum was locking herself in the shrubbery to call one of her lovers. Oh, and while you were enjoying your perfect party, I saw your oh so perfect girlfriend making out with your best buddy behind the hedge.
What a lovely party it was!
Remember when Mum and Dad told you they wouldn’t like you to participate in those BMX competitions because they were afraid you would get injured badly? Well, actually they thought you weren’t good enough.
And failure is forbidden in this family.
Dear Brother, you’ve been living a lie.
And that’s the truth.

Yours faithfully

Lying Lucy, the shame of the family

#sundaystory: Hautfarbe

IMG_9202

Die vorgegebenen Informationen waren:
a) Deutsch
b) Hautfarbe
c) Unbewusster Rassismus, Vorurteil, Unterschied
d) traurig

für Christian

Ich wandle durch die Straßen der Stadt. Einer Stadt der zivilisierten, aufgeschlossenen, westlichen Welt.
Ich schaue mich um. Und ich spüre die Blicke der Leute, wie sie an mir haften, sich nur schwer lösen, oder wie ich zufällig in ihr Blickfeld gerate und sie schnell den Kopf wenden um mich wieder auszublenden.
Ich wandle durch die Straßen eines Landes, das so viel zu bieten hat, das ich mag, in das ich gekommen bin, weil ich kommen wollte.
Ich wandle durch die Straßen eines Landes, deren Menschen mit dem Spiel “Wer hat Angst vorm schwarzen Mann” aufgewachsen sind. Und genauso starren mich manche an. Als seien sie ertappt worden. Nun müssen sie auf der Hut sein.
In ihren Blicken kann ich die Vorurteile förmlich sehen. Da steht es geschrieben: “Achtung, der ist gefährlich!”, “Mädchen, pass auf, der ist aggressiv!”, “Stell den bloß nicht ein, der ist bestimmt faul und vielleicht stiehlt er sogar. Seine Familie hat bestimmt nichts.”
Naja, also zum Einen kann ich keiner Fliege etwas zu Leide tun, zum Anderen bin ich so schüchtern, dass ich mich kaum traue Mädchen anzusprechen und wenn doch, dann käme ich im Leben nicht auf die Idee, ihnen etwas anzutun, und meiner Familie geht es gut, aber weil ich hier das Metier gefunden habe, in dem ich arbeiten möchte, das mich reizt und in dem ich gut bin, habe ich mich dazu entschlossen hierher zu kommen. Um mich selbst zu verwirklichen und das zu tun, was ich wirklich gerne tu, worin ich gut bin.
Aber das interessiert nicht.
Ich will nicht sagen, dass ich durch die Straßen eines rassistischen Landes wandle, um Himmels Willen, nein. Ich habe hier sehr nette Menschen getroffen, aufgeschlossene Menschen, die mich herzlich empfangen haben. Ich habe an der Uni mit Mädchen Kaffee getrunken, die keine Angst vor mir hatten, ja, die mich vielleicht sogar mochten. Ich habe Kinder getroffen, die mich angelacht haben und mir stolz ihr Kuscheltier entgegen hielten und mir sogar verrieten, wie es hieß. (Allgemeinhin sollte man anmerken, dass viele Kinder bei “Wer hat Angst vorm schwarzen Mann” überhaupt nicht an die Hautfarbe schwarz denken, sondern an einen großen unheimlichen Mann mit weißer Haut, der aber dunkle Kleidung trägt)
Aber ich kann mich des Eindrucks trotzdem nicht erwehren, dass ich hin und wieder, dann und wann und auch mal öfter mit unbewusstem Rassismus konfrontiert werde. Die Leute merken es vielleicht noch nicht mal. Aber wenn ich Zug fahre und neben mir ein Sitz frei ist, dann merke ich das kurze Innehalten der Einsteigenden, die einen freien Platz suchen, den neben mir betrachten, mich anschauen und dann doch weiterziehen. Interessant sind dann auch die, die sich doch widerwillig neben mich in den Sitz fallen lassen, weil sie denken, sie müssten es tun, damit ich sie nicht als Rassist abstempel.
Das ist doch verrückt.
Überall heißt es “Embrace Diversity”, Unterschiede machen das Land und das Leben bunter. Nur meins anscheinend eben nicht.
Es heißt, wir integrieren uns nicht, wir blieben eh nur in unseren Gemeinschaften. Und ja, ja ich treffe Freunde, deren Familien aus fast der gleichen Gegend stammen wie ich und wir kochen Gerichte von Zuhause und tauschen uns über Gemeinsamkeiten aus. Denn in dieser bunten Welt des Unterschieds ist es manchmal ungemütlich. Und einsam. Und Zuhause ist es warm. Zuhause ist weit weg. Das war, was wir alle in Kauf genommen haben um hier unsere Chancen wahrzunehmen; dass nun zwischen uns und unseren Familien wahrhaftig Welten liegen. Aber bitte, wie gern hätte ich die Mädchen vom Kaffeetrinken oder die Kommilitonen zu so einem Abend mal eingeladen, damit sie die Gerichte kosten können, die ich von meiner Mutter gelernt habe? Aber so groß ist die Freude am Unterschied dann wohl doch nicht, als dass sie das mal gern probieren würden. Leider, denn es schmeckt wirklich gut und ich würde gern meine Welt mit den Menschen teilen, in deren Welt ich mich bewege. Aber keins der Mädchen vom Kaffeetrinken und kein Kommilitone, dem ich bei seinen Aufgaben geholfen habe, hatte mal Lust mitzukommen. Weil sie dann ja doch recht einsam im Raum auffallen würden, mit ihrer anderen Hautfarbe. Haha, ja, das würden sie wohl. Einen Abend lang.
Und das, was sie dann einen Abend lang erleben würden, von dem herzlichen Empfang bis hin zu den komischen Blicken, eben weil sie anders wären, das ist das, was ich jeden Tag erlebe. Bienvenue dans ma vie. Willkommen in meinem Leben.
Aber so groß ist der Spaß am Unterschied und an der bunten Welt wohl nicht. Den hat man nämlich nur dann, wenn man selbst die Farben aussuchen und mischen darf.
Ich wandle durch die Straßen der Stadt. Einer Stadt der zivilisierten, aufgeschlossenen, westlichen Welt.
Einer Welt, die mich anscheinend nicht will. Oder wenn, dann nur bedingt.
Und wenn ich dann mal mit einem Menschen warm laufe, ihn beim Reden an die Schulter fasse oder wenn ich diese Person mit Wangenküsschen links und rechts verabschiede, dann schauen sie mich an, als hätte ich soeben den kompletten Teppich des guten Benehmens besudelt. Weil sie sie vielleicht befremdlich finden, diese Wärme, die ich von Zuhause kenne und die mich in manchen Momenten überkommt, in denen ich dann vergesse, dass man das hier meistens eher nicht so macht. Zaghaft setze ich wieder Fuß vor Fuß und bemühe mich, ordentlich auf dem vorgezeichneten Plan zu laufen. Ich sage artig “Guten Tag” und erkundige mich nach dem Befinden der Frau Mama, weil ich das als gutes Benehmen von klein auf beigebracht bekommen habe. Ich sage “Grüß deine Mutter”, weil sich das bei uns so gehört, als Antwort bekomme ich ein schallendes Lachen und ein “Aber du kennst sie doch gar nicht”. Wie oft habe ich mich gefragt, ob sie die Grüße wohl jemals ausrichten.
Es ist auch nicht so, als würden die Leute mich nicht mögen, manche sind sehr nett zu mir und laden mich sogar zu ihrem Geburtstag ein. Es ist auch nicht so, als wüsste mein Chef meine Arbeit nicht zu schätzen, ganz im Gegenteil, er ist sehr erfreut über meine Erkenntnisse und meinen Beitrag zum Firmenwachstum. Ein Kommilitone aus dem ersten Semester, den ich nach einiger Zeit wiedertreffe, freut sich mich zu sehen und komplimentiert meine sprachlichen sowie beruflichen Fortschritte. Ich arbeite viel, ich lerne viel, ich lese viel, ich übe die Sprache und setze mich mit der hiesigen Kultur auseinander. Möchte ein Teil davon sein und einen Teil von meiner Kultur, von mir, zurückgeben.
Embrace Diversity, Unterschied macht bunt. Aber anscheinend malen wir leider nicht gemeinsam.
Denn wenn das Verhältnis der Farben sich ändert, dann würdet ihr wohl im Raum auffallen, mit eurer anderen Hautfarbe. Einen Abend lang.
Und das, was ihr dann einen Abend lang erleben würdet, das ist das, was ich jeden Tag erlebe. Bienvenue dans ma vie. Willkommen in meinem Leben.

Gina Laventura © 2015

Head Holiday

Dieser Beitrag ist auch auf Deutsch verfügbar


Photo & Editing: freshandjuicy

An endless to do list.
One task completed, two others added.
The thought about all the things you would like to do (again) if you just had some time again. But first the washing has to be done, the house has to be cleaned, the bills have to be paid, the project has to be worked on, the emails and papers have to be sorted, the duties have to be fulfilled.
But then, yes then, when everything is done, then you can read the book you got for your birthday four months ago, then you can go to the theatre again or cosily relax on the balcony, or catch up with the thirty-five episodes of your favourite TV show or play a computer game again to complete the mission.
When did long to-do-lists become a sign for ambition? When did we decide that workaholic was the new career goal, no matter what branch we’re working in? When did stress become a synonym for eagerness and success? When did “you look exhausted, you should eat and sleep properly again” become a compliment that appreciates your body shape and is a hint towards your eagerness?
In this list like success plan even the things that are enjoyable and lovable become another to-do-nuisance, like “call Sarah”, “reply to Mark’s email” or “going to the cinema with Susi and Jo”. Are we still enjoying? Are we enjoying the time we’re now spending there or are we already structuring the next day in order to get the things done, for which there is no time left now because of the visit to the cinema?
Time…Factor time…always a topic. Especially in a society that is determined by phrases like “Time is money”. Maybe time is money. But moreover, time is precious. We just have it once. Once the minute is gone, you’ll never get it back. Sitting down from time to time and reflecting upon how you would like to (not should or have to) invest this precious good can be quite helpful.
We are stressed out, frantic, we run from appointment to appointment, from goal to goal, and we always believe to one day reach the point where we finally have the time to do all the things we’d like to do. But what if we never reach that point? What if there is always another point added to the list? What if we can’t help ourselves but to put another point on the list, because we are not used to and moreover, can’t handle a blank piece of paper anymore? What if we didn’t know what to do with it?
And what if, yes, what if we just took the time we think we didn’t have? What if we just followed the urge to walk through fields and forests after the first coffee in the morning? What if that was exactly what gives us enough energy to get eight instead of three things done from our to-do-list?
What if you took the little timeframe between the things that are to be done to start reading the first chapter of the book you got for your birthday four month ago? What if we replaced complaining about an urgently needed holiday by taking time for ourselves? Holiday in the head. Head holiday.
Be it during a stroll through fields and forests or while reading a book on the balcony or while sitting in the next café observing strangers, it doesn’t matter that much. What if we took the time and enjoyed it? And what if, yes, what if that would be exactly the method that makes it easier for us to get all the things done that are to be done?
Everybody’s talking about the great work-life-balance and everything has to be optimised and perfected, be it the working moral, the working method, one’s own look, the wardrobe, the time management or one’s partner. But with all this craze for optimisation we forgot to pause now and then and to enjoy what we already have (achieved), to say thank you. With all this perfectionism we forgot to be good, to be good to ourselves.
We’re not talking about lazing around or taking things not seriously, but we’re talking about stopping the monkey business in our minds in order to breath again. To stop optimising and start reflecting and realising. To sit down instead of running around.
To hold the eyes closed for a moment and taking a holiday.
A holiday in the head. Head holiday.

Can we ever make it right? Against constant blaming and shaming

Dieser Beitrag ist auch auf Deutsch verfügbar


Photo & Editing: No bilis

It is noon. Coffee break. I’m scrolling through Facebook. In the newsfeed: a friend liked this photo.
The picture shows a German TV hostess. She wears an outfit consisting of a jeans blouse and jeans trousers in the 70’s style, you know, a pair of flares, brown belt, sunglasses and a charming smile, standing against a wall.
The caption says something like “My favourite outfit these days, cool and comfortable, perfect for mommies.”.
So, first of all, I’m not entirely sure what this lady wanted to express with her saying “perfect for mommies”. Maybe she meant that it is a loose fitting outfit that conceals the traces of the exhausting procedure of giving birth, like stretch marks and the maybe not-yet-completely-trained-and-toned-belly. Maybe she meant that the outfit is so comfortable that it allows you to do all the things you want to do with your child, like playing, sitting down with them in the grass, crawling through the mountains of toys, whatever. Maybe she meant that it is easy to wash, so when your baby decides to puke over your shoulder or your toddler thinks it a good idea to build a mud cake on your lap, that jeans is a robust material that is easy to be cleaned afterwards. Maybe she was just proud, not only of having given birth to a beautiful child, but also for finding an outfit that made her feel comfortable and attractive, because, yes, even after having given birth you are still a woman and everybody likes to feel comfortable within themselves and maybe this outfit contributed to her feeling absolutely gorgeous.
But maybe may be.
Now, let’s roll up the sleeves and rub our palms for the really interesting part (which I guess already dawned upon you): the comments.
Despite the fact that there were comments stating that she even looks more beautiful after having given birth than beforehand, that her shape was now better than before, there were many critical comments, to put it in a nice way. There were comments stating exactly the opposite of the before mentioned, namely that she looked better before she had had her baby, that she was now too thin. That the trousers were an ugly no-go, which was actually one of the mild ones, because, well, okay 70’s style flares might not be to everybody’s taste and this is a free country and you can state your opinion about style.
The really striking ones were of a different nature. There was one comment that basically said in German “Im Röckchen siehst du besser aus”, which is likely to be translated as “You look better in a skirt”, but it’s not just “skirt” because “skirt” would be “Rock”, but the suffix “-chen” always intends to make something small and cute, so basically it says “You look better in a neat, small skirt” and at least to my mind a “small skirt” would mean a short skirt, because when using the term “Röckchen” nobody actually thinks about a long hippie like gypsy skirt that goes over your knees or covers your ankles..
Another one, which was really, well, I can’t even find an adjective went like this:
“You should rather buy a push-up bra”.
Phew, yes, let us digest that for a moment and take a deep breath.
So, sticking with the comments saying that she looked more beautiful now.. Well, I’m not talking from first hand experience, but I guess a pregnancy can do something to your appearance, for better or worse, and if you look absolutely happy and radiant because you are proud and happy, that’s fine. The bugging thing is that these comments drew on the fact that she now seems to be slimmer than beforehand. And I’d say that says a lot about nowadays’ society, where everybody is talking about the “after baby body” and women compete in “who gets back into shape within the least amount of time”. This puts pressure on them and frustration on those who didn’t land in the top 100 of this competition, leading to frustrated comments like “Yeah, well, good for you that you are back in shape, but not everybody is a celebrity who’s capital often consists in their appearance, and guess what, I don’t have a personal trainer…” etc., etc., etc.. Don’t get me wrong, I do not dub the last fictive comment as invalid, because, c’mon, that’s the argument that is always played across the table when it comes to topics like that, and it is just a fact that many celebs are working with a personal trainer and try to get back into shape asap.
But this is not the point right now.
No matter whether the comments are envious, frustrated or admiring, they all draw on the same craze. Please, could we keep one thing in mind: This woman just gave birth some months ago! So, actually, her body performed a frigging natural miracle.
And maybe, just maybe, she is not so slim now because she did a lot for it and because that was her intention, but maybe, just maybe the procedure of labour was exhausting, maybe there were complications and she was stressed out and worried about her baby’s health, maybe she wasn’t well during pregnancy, maybe her baby is not one of the sweet “he already sleeps through all night” ones but doesn’t allow her to sleep more than two hours each night. All this can also contribute to a different shape. Just saying.
By the way, the last argument also serves as an answer to the comments stating that she looked better beforehand and is now too slim.
Now, let’s turn to the “Röckchen” thing. And the push-up bra thing. Both comments from male writers by the way. Well…seriously?!
Okay Mister X, I understand, your personal opinion is that short neat skirts suit her better because..she has beautiful legs and can show them or because they support her proportions better, right? Just your personal opinion, right? And Mister Y, I guess, your personal taste just prefers big boobs, huh? Alright, free country, everybody can say what they want. And they do, especially when feeling safe in the vast anonymous sphere of the internet.
But what I mean is, is that what the image of a woman looks like? What it has to be? Is that what defines women as women: big boobs and short skirts?
Can we just take a second and remind ourselves that no matter whether this lady is a celeb and being watched by the public eye and using all those social network channels to share her experiences and events of the day with her fans and ‘putting herself out there’ or not, that she accomplished more than just looking good? (although that most probably is part of her career by the nature of itself) If she decided to wear her “perfect for mommies” jeans outfit during work (which she actually did) that doesn’t make her a less competent TV hostess, that does nothing to her skills or all the competences she earned during a career that started in the late 1990’s.

The ‘funny’ thing is this: Let’s just play a game, are you in?
Let’s imagine she would have uploaded a picture in a neat short skirt, push-up bra and either tight tank top or cool blouse with cleavage. Imagine that for a moment.
What would the comments be like? “Oh, you look radiant.”, “Beautiful”, “Wow, so sexy after having a baby”? Probably, yes.
But is it unlikely that the comments would also include “You are a mother now, you shouldn’t present yourself like that, where is your honour, do you think your child would like his mommy be running around like that?” and the like?
So, I really ask you: Can we ever make it right? No matter how you do it, you do it wrong.
And yes, we all know that we cannot please every single person on this earth, that is normal. But why is it that people always have to blame and shame each other?
One way or the other there always seems to be something to criticise, to rant about. But why?

And this is just an example taken from a photo on a social network platform, a small example. Let’s open the blind a little bit.
If you are a career oriented business woman you are judged for not wanting children. Here it comes: mostly by women, not by men! By your own ‘fellows’.
If you say that you definitely want to have children because you think they are a huge contribution to the fulfilment of your life, you’re judged for being old fashioned, not emancipated, etc.
But this is not exclusively reserved for women. Men are also confronted with those controversies.
When you decide to take over your family’s business although your original plan was to follow your passion and do something else, you’re judged for giving up your dream and conforming with the expectations of others instead of living your life according to your own wishes, even if stepping into the family tradition might have been your free choice and a deed you did with all your heart.
When you decide to follow your dream instead of taking over the family business, you’re judged for putting yourself first, being egoistic and letting down your family.
Oh, great! You see? Apparently there is no way of doing it right.

But why do people still so often try?
Why is the want to be everybody’s darling still so present?
As if the struggle of combining the wish to live up to your full potential and choosing the ‘right and reasonable path’ wasn’t enough.
Why do we blame and shame and judge so often?
Is it because we blame and shame and judge ourselves so hard that we need to project it onto someone else to let all this pressure and frustration out?
Is it because we are so hard on ourselves that we automatically are hard on others?
And if so, does that not mean that we need to work a little harder on being patient, loving, caring, forgiving and kind to ourselves?
What if the way we treat others was the way we treat ourselves? What if the way we treat ourselves was the way we treat others? What if this worked vice versa?
Maybe a wake-up call to rethink the way we’re behaving not only towards others, but also towards ourselves.

Be kind. Spread the love.