So, here’s a bit of a “Heart on my Sleeve” kind of moment.
It’s been said to me recently that there are people out there who are “scared” of me. Personally, that makes me giggle … I’m the least scary person in the whole world! Even THOR is scarier than me! And he’s like a puppy dog … Anyway, on further digging, what I’ve discovered is that people think I’m scary because they’ve seen confrontations I’ve had with people and how I’ve kinda ripped them to pieces.
There’s an important distinction here – but before I delve into that, I want to note:
I’m not defending or justifying myself here. Merely explaining the why. I’m a human being – I’ve never pretended to be perfect – and like everyone, I’ve got my own learnings and journey that I’m on. I work hard to get better every day – to sculpt myself and my life into what I want me and it to be. And I’m nowhere near being done with that – doubt I will ever be.
So, here’s the thing. If you look back at times I’ve cracked, here’s what you’ll see – I’m VERY nice to EVERYONE …
Even on the first and sometimes the second attack I tend to comport myself well.
It’s when they degenerate into either attacking me personally – or worse – attacking the people I love – that I react.
You see, I grew up in a rough part of town and my family were always well known for being the “poor kids”. From the ages of 4 until the age of 8, I was beaten up – by boys and girls – practically every day. But the physical beatings were never as bad as the psychological torture – the being left out, called names, told constantly how fat and ugly I was, the turning of the one or two friends I had against me, ostracism. I look at it now and shrug – but that’s the reaction of a 31 year old woman who has hardened the fuck up – the 5 year old girl couldn’t understand why she was treated this way.
So she blamed herself.
Turned to throwing up her food, self-harm, retreated inside herself – became an almost total hermit. Never went to parties, never had play-dates. When she wasn’t forced to be in a public setting she hid – because she had no other way of coping … no methods of understanding and dissecting what was going on.
When we moved from Sydney to Brisbane when I was 9, I was thrilled. I saw it as the opportunity for a new start – a place I could start over. In reality, it made the place I was coming from look like Disneyland.
I was pretty screwed up by four years of psychological torture in my most formative years – and so my idea of starting over was – no one is going to walk on me. No one is going to get the better of me. If I SMELLED the slightest HINT of an attack, I would go first. I learned, very quickly, that if you wanted to survive in this world you need to be the biggest, scariest person who is willing to go the furthest.
Be nice – until it’s time not to be.
And when it’s time not to be – don’t hesitate. Hesitation = death.
This was my reality until I was around 23 – when one day I realised that who I was, was still a little girl allowing 8 year old boys to bully her. A lot changed post that realisation … but I still do have the tendency to go when attacked.
And in total honesty – my problem with this is not about appearances, or even about how the other people feel – because at the end of the day, there are a lot of people out there who need to learn that just because they’re on a computer, just because they can’t look in the eye of the person they’re going – it doesn’t mean that person isn’t real and doesn’t have emotions.
This mainly seems to be a problem with people who are new to the internet – the rule is pretty simple. Never behave online in a way you wouldn’t behave offline.
The problem I DO have with this – and the reason it’s something I’m working on in my own life right now – is how it makes me feel. The anger and the hurt that is generated does me no favours – just makes me feel like shit.
And I realise that what I’m STILL doing is allowing 8 year old boys to control my emotions – and that simply won’t do. I’m better than that – stronger than that … I just need to train myself out of the habit of 25 years.
Either way, the point here is – if you were to analyse every argument I’ve had online in the last 10 years (and there’s been a LOT of them) – you would notice that I ONLY attack when provoked (and provocation = personally attacking me or Thor) – so the ONLY reason to be afraid of me is if you’re planning on calling me names …
Otherwise – don’t be afraid.
The only time I’ll bite is if you bite me first (but be warned if you DO bite first, there’s a good chance you’ll draw back a stump … ).