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Many women speak about their choices and lives in online groups that are safe spaces, mostly to seek validation, even though they know the answer. A case of strong conditioning?
A lot of women I’ve seen in the multiple and diverse women’s groups that I follow, have these women who constantly seek validation for feeling a certain way about some things that are clearly wrong.
They’re always asking if they are overreacting about a certain trait or quality in a person they intend to spend their lives with. Or they are picking up too much from a certain statement made to them.
They know it’s not overreaction. They know they are right. But the conditioning to make sure that “I am right about feeling like this” must be so exhausting to live with!
Am I wrong in this?
How do I be less bothered about this next time?
How do I deal with it to keep my relationship intact and have my word made too?
Is this how it’s going to be?
Is this really important?
Am I overreacting with such a small matter?
Should I have said something differently? How do I say this?
Am I expected to be more calm in this?
It’s not even a silly thing. They see major red flags about a person and they know it’s over for them somewhere in their head, but it’s so important to confirm that they’re not rushing into things with their feelings, or overreacting.
Or if they have some absolutely toxic relationship with a relative they’d rather not see, yet the the need to confirm that it’s not unethical or disrespectful to choose one’s peace over someone’s respect is such a constant fight.
You read. You see. You witness. And yet when it happens to you, you keep double checking from your best friends in real lives, best friends online, and friends from groups you follow who have the same fear and witness the same emotional turmoil every single day.
You’re asking if anyone else felt this or had this happen, and whether their reactions coincide with yours just to verify that you are right in what you are feeling. That picking self over others isn’t wrong. That picking self respect over very long futile relationships isn’t wrong.
It’s not the looking for confirmation that is concerning. It’s the conditioning that drives so many to make sure we’re not wrong to feel this way. That your feeling matters. No matter how small the matter is. No matter how silly it sounds. This need to make sure that it’s right to feel so disconnected in something that is otherwise suppose to be important for us.
It’s why they begin with “I’m probably overreacting” or “this might sound odd” and none of it does. That’s what’s disheartening. The fact that the odd has happened to other women is both scary upon realisation and comforting to have a company in misery.
So many women fighting for validation.
So many women validating.
Constant everyday struggles.
Image source: a still from the movie English Vinglish
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Tarannum is a feminist who is currently pursuing her CA. She loves to read, write,
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