An interesting aspect of girlhood that not only branches out into, but completely consumes womanhood, is fake friends. Only, recently, I am noticing that this doesn’t only pertain to womanhood—there is an undercurrent of fakeness in modern society that is hurting the kind of people we are evolving into.
This undercurrent is generally based in what many people label as a hatred of conflict, or a desire to not be the one who ruffles feathers, but it is ultimately a willing and continuous release of living in one’s honest truth for fear of being disliked.
This entire concept was incredibly difficult for me to grasp in high school, all the way until my junior year of college. I was the kind of person who mostly caved in conflict; I wanted to be well-liked, so I shrunk my personality to be the opposite of my appearance, which I’d been conditioned to believe was too big. I allowed others to walk all over me. I cosigned their bad decisions. I actively gave people the tools to mistreat me by not standing in my truth and seeing things as they really were. I often found myself in scenarios during my schooling where I kowtowed to white women displaying white fragility so I wouldn’t be “the scary black girl.”
Only very recently have I gotten better at this. Through meditation, unpacking, and attempts at resolving these internal conflicts, I am trying to become the person who holds people accountable for how they treat me, and I try to hold myself accountable for what I will and will not accept. I no longer try to “keep face” with people for the sake of avoiding conflict, I dive into that conflict and resolve it, whether that is by completely removing myself from a situation or a relationship, or the dreaded confrontation. I am also realizing that confrontation isn’t always necessary, because people are not entitled to have me in their lives, and, therefore, are not entitled to closure.
It is perfectly fine for you to remove yourself from a situation if it doesn’t suit you. Someone benefitting you superficially is not a legitimate benefit, but, rather, your desire to hold on. Far too often do we slip into this fakeness and wear a mask so long that it melts into our own face, making it impossible to remove, and impossible to separate ourselves from who we are now, and who we were before we put on the mask.
The feeling I got from refusing to play nice or fake my happiness while suffering massively because of how I was being treated, then beating myself up for not being strong enough to hold myself accountable, was one of the best feelings in the world. I crave feeling it now.
A good way to practice this concept is by analyzing your most anxiety-causing relationship at this very moment and vowing to change whatever conflicts you have. I’ll be doing it, and I hope you’ll join me.
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