URBAN CUPID - "Just Let it go"
July 30, 2012 @ 00:00 am
MTV's own multifaceted agony aunt! Love, Life and the misery that comes along with it, she has answers to it all. Send in your questions and get solutions that help; we just suggest that you ditch the rose tinted glasses.
They say what doesn’t kill you only makes you stronger; the role of this metaphysical phenomenon is still rough around the edges in my opinion. What about the “what don’t kill you s” that mould the way people think, hurl them into a pattern that is so overwhelming that when they are spiraling out of control down the same rabbit hole, it still passes unnoticed? Cases of self destructive behaviour have been well documented over the ages, except that this documentation is limited to glossy magazine pages with ‘under the influence’ starlets or celebrity figures. It is a point of discussion amongst pseudo intellectual circles that shake their magnificent heads ominously, tut tutting such behaviour, oblivious to the fact that one of their own is probably in the same dark alley.
A Self Destructive Relationship is quite similar to an addiction to nicotine, alcohol or other nefarious substances, it’s a pattern that people fall into to satisfy their inexplicable need of proving to themselves their ability to endure pain. Women who consciously maintain their physically abusive relationships, men who endure constant verbal whiplash, mind games and power struggles are what define this state of affairs. It is intriguing to notice that most of the people who are in such relationships are, outside of the couple, well rounded individuals who are educated and hold intelligent opinions, are well informed and quite successful. Why then do these people, who are capable of building fulfilling relationships with equally stable persons, run to those who will not only hurt them constantly but also scar them emotionally?
Looking for answers, I turned to a woman who currently heads a fairly well known company handling more than 100 employees on a daily basis, but has been a rather iffy relationship. She is a powerhouse at work but at home she is reduced to the state of a meek, insignificant individual who is battered, although not physically but more impressionably by verbal attacks. I enquired about why she doesn’t want out, she replied, “It is not that simple or black and white. I am attached to him; it is like a part of my routine now. Sometimes when I introspect I think it is because on another level I am guilty about my success, maybe I am meant to adopt a more nurturing role at home. I maybe wrong, but it keeps me happy and I am ok with that”.
Societal roles that have been defined over the ages pave the foundation for how we perceive relationships and consequently gender roles. The Global phenomenon of fast cash and cold blooded competition plays a role in how we perceive our self worth. While we do not pay any particular attention to cutting a colleague off, hampering another person’s success, but it registers on a subconscious level and this knowledge leads us to behave in a manner that tries to rectify the ruthlessness by inflicting similar behaviour upon ourselves.
Priya, an 18 year old student of Fergusson College, Pune used to be described by her teachers as an exemplary student who paid more attention to her education than other frivolous activities such as parties, drinking, smoking etc. Priya is now a chain smoker who nurses her drink like a well heeled socialite; she is dating an older man who indulges in all of the above ‘frivolous behaviour’. Upon asking Priya as to what brought about this change, she said “Initially I wasn’t popular because I did not go to any parties, I didn’t have a boyfriend. Now everybody knows who I am, I have more friends. I don’t enjoy drinking that much but I do it because ‘he’ likes it and it is a compromise I am willing to make for my friends”. Acceptance, is another reason, we turn to that makes it ok to batter ourselves.
Self Justification and constant inner struggles to validate the unacceptable behaviour is what these hapless people go through on a regular basis.
Nikhil Simoes, a 23 year old post graduate student who was in a relationship with a woman who cheated on him constantly, shares some insight about his experiences and recovery, “I was beating myself up for three years, I thought was failing at something constantly. I felt it was my duty to stick around because I have always been taught that men keep their commitments, I kept thinking that if I did something right the cheating would stop and she would return to me. One day, my friends called for an intervention and forced me to see things I had turned a blind eye to. It was then that I decided to end all that pain and hurt, I don’t feel the need to please people by hurting myself anymore. I couldn’t have done it without the support of my friends of that I am sure”. I am of the opinion that such vulnerable people need mirrors not in the literal sense, but mirrors in the form of their family and friends who would provide a much needed support system and a sense of stability to enable them to see the situation they are in clearly.
Hurt, pain, anger are emotions we feel due to reasons that are more often than not beyond our control, compensating by destroying our personalities and shattering our hopes by giving the power of our lives to another person is nothing short of a sin because essentially those emotions of hurt and anger are punishment enough.
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