Are We In Neverland? | GIRL TALK

by - 12/16/2017

At the mere age of twenty-two, some of you may be reading this thinking "how can someone so young be talking about maturity?" The truth is, a turbulent childhood and and a less-than-perfect early 20's has forced me to think about life in different ways and has also forced me to grow the fuck up.

Unfortunately, a fraction of people that you'll come across in life don't have the same level of maturity as most of us. I hear stories of workplace and university bullying, harassment and bitching all too often. I, frankly, think it's blummin' ridiculous that people of an adult age think that it's acceptable behaviour to be so immature.

When people are spectators of your life, they only see what you're presenting to them and vice versa. It's one of the best and worst things about mutually knowing someone. It's great because you're not bogged down with being overly-emotionally invested in these people; you can say hello, make small talk, and get on with your own life.

These people, for me personally, are colleagues that I have never socially interacted with outside of work, university peers who are in my modules/projects but I never really interact with either. Whilst these people are, for the most part, lovely, there are a select few who will try to make your life difficult for no apparent reason. These are the bitches.

I thought that nasty bitches were a thing of secondary schools, adulthood has proven me wrong. Waaaaay wrong. Now, I'm not claiming to be perfect - I've blurted out a few words which I lived to regret over the years, and I know fo' sho' that everyone loves a good gossip a.k.a "catch up" with their besties. However, there is a very thick line between what is casual gossip discussed among close friends and outright nastiness.

I feel very passionately about being nice, or at least civil to the people who surround us. Not just friends, but people you pass in the street, colleagues, university peers. You never know what somebody is going through in their personal life and how it can be affecting their mental and/or physical health. A kind gesture or even a smile can really lift up someone's mood for an entire day; a short conversation can positively distract them from whatever they're going through. I know this because I've been there.

"No act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted."

I know first hand that when people make judgments about your actions and when they talk about certain things you do, it can really knock you sideways. Over the past few years (in which I was in and out of hospital constantly), people continuously questioned my absence behind my back.

I was "the girl who cared more about her Instagram than her degree" because I could manage to post a pic of a lipstick from my hospital bed I was unable to move enough to get my arse to every lecture, every week. I was "the girl who gets the easy shifts" at work because when I was well, I couldn't work long, shifts stood up and I also had to make sure I was free for therapy and appointments. I was broken and they were breaking me even more by the small talk and the unkind gestures and the bitching.

When I finally explained myself, I thought things would change and that people would be more understanding. Instead, they found different things to pick at: my appearance, my weight, my style. It's never ending and honestly, it was fucking exhausting. I have thick skin, I really do. Brushing things off is a regular thing to me, but when you're constantly hearing and seeing things that are unjustified and mean, it becomes personal.

The most amusing part of this is that people will love to bitch about you, but also check up on you. One person in particular that I know of has said things too repulsive to repeat, yet, she's always one of the first people to view my Instagram story.

Angry Nicki Minaj GIF

What I didnt't understand for a long time was why people who disliked me didn't simply unfollow me? Block me? It's not like I'm forcing them to read my posts and view my content. The beauty of social media is that if something or someone makes you feel uncomfortable, then there are certain measures you can take to ensure that you never have to interact with them online, ever.

Which brings me back to my main question: will these people ever grow up?

Then it occurred to me: these people are completely obsessed with hating me. I could do a world of good and they'd still find something to pick at. I mean, isn't it kind of flattering that someone dislikes me so much that they have my notifications turned on? That they're stalking my social medias. I shouldn't really complain though; every time they view my blog or a advertorial, it puts monayyy in ma pocket.

Skirt (similar) / Bag (similar) / Shoes

If you're going through something similar and you feel like there's no escape or pleasing these people, just take a moment to let the following wash over you:

1. They're in denial - they ironically don't realise that they're immature and think that they're successfully "adulting".

2. They're not mature or capable enough to deal with things that don't sit well with them. Empathy is probably a foreign concept and they misunderstand situations and deal with them aggressively instead of properly. There's absolutely nothing that you can do about that. Their issue, not yours.

3. They're jealous! Since their self-worth is based on a false sense of self, the depend on others to validate them. This can make them a dominant, loud figure. When someone or something that they can't do or can't have threatens their ego, they feel insecure and lash out.

4. They're cowards. This comes back to the bitching - instead of discussing things with you or asking you questions about things that are concerning to them, they'll bitch. They're too scared to address anything directly.

If you're a victim of workplace bullying, harassment or the occasional bitchiness, please don't be afraid to speak up. The chance are that others around you will also find the courage to speak up.

Life's too short to put up with the bullshit.

- Shan xxx

More advice on workplace bullying and more here
GIFs from giphy
Photography by Lily Faulkner

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