*A Lengthy Read For You*
I am rather upset right now. I have been bothered by many things and others along the same lines since I can remember. I'm not much of an organized speaker so I hadn't addressed them myself but I really need to get this off my chest. I will try and keep my thoughts as organized as possible. I will also share some personal experiences as I know people can gain comfort from other stories and the more I write the calmer I'm becoming. So this is basically two posts in one, now where to begin. . . .
What Bothers Me
*The phrase "well they're/you're in America so they/you should act like it" is one of the most ignorant phrases I ever heard.
America is made up of multiple nationalities and ethnicities. So telling something they shouldn't be a certain way that is normal for them is ignorant and disrespectful. You should simply have the common sense to understand that you will come across a variety of people and all of them won't be like you.
*Just because you don't like/approve of something doesn't mean it's wrong!
Your idea of how something should be is not everyone else's. Nor is it the golden standard that one must abide to be consider worthy of anything.
*Appreciation by Appropriating does not count.
The great appropriation debate is a long one that I intend to keep short here. If you only like someone else's culture on you or for your own gain without respecting what it stands for or acknowledging where it came from you're wrong. Good intentions are not all that matters.
*There's a difference between being curious, rude and constructive.
It's good to ask question, that's apart of learning. Constructive criticism is also apart of learning. Being rude is belittling and unnecessary and in the long term can become detrimental to a persons psyche. You have to deal with people all your life and it's not always going to be peachy but you don't need to make it worse. Learning how to speak to people should be a priority in my opinion not to say you won't snap every once in awhile.
*Looks can be deceiving.
I'm pretty sure that's self explanatory but basically just because your mind tells you one
thing based of visuals doesn't mean it's accurate. Hence them being a stranger, You Don't Know Shit About Them. Which is not the same as having a perception based off of how you see them interact in the world.
*There isn't One standard of beauty.
"Beauty is in the eye of the beholder" it's really that simple, you are not obligated to like everything or only one thing. nor is your idea the only valid one.
*Watch what you say and how you act.
"Sticks and stones may break my bones but words will never harm me" is a lie! Words along with actions are some of the most hurtful things, they can also get you in a lot of trouble and you may not really know who you're with or talking to. I also feel as you grow up you should realize what's appropriate. As I tell people verbatim "I'm not obligated to be nice to anyone" I personally will never be spiteful or malicious towards someone whose wronged me just because they're around, that doesn't do anything. That being said if you come at me wrong I don't know who you think I am but I won't hold back my irritation. Which I think is expectable, don't start nothing, won't be nothing.
*Ain't nothing BadAss about a bully.
Don't think your shit don't stank just because you can intimidate or hurt people and have created a false sense of power over others. It's not cute and it's not okay nor does it do anything good or productive for you.
*Yes we're all human and make mistakes and those other clichés but that's not an excuse to be willfully ignorant and reckless.
And Now Story Time
To be quite honest I hate sharing personal stories like these because I've moved on from those moments and don't like to dwell on the past, however, they still happened and they weren't okay and so they make me a bit cranky to say the least. I do understand the importance of sharing and the help that it can provide to others so I will provide some insight. I will start with what sparked this post.
~So my hair is currently in a natural state, not blown out and for work I prefer to wrap it up in a scarf sometimes. Today it's tied up at the top of my head like a ball instead of farther down like a bun, my coworker simply asked "what's on your head". Though in my mind that's a dumb question, it's clearly a scarf covering my hair which you've seen many times before, though in a different spot but it's all good. The issue was when I was leaving my coworker's son says "what's wrong with your hair" and I said "nothing's wrong with my hair, you just don't like it" and continued walking. I could hear him saying it's just weird but that's cool, etc. but he's old enough to know that was rude. You can't even see half of my hair, it's wrapped up in a scarf, what about that is wrong? Everyone else either asked what it was, went on like normal or said they liked it. I don't feel like I should have to be style in a way that appeals to you in order to not be "wrong".
*This wasn't the biggest deal but it's the most reoccurring disrespect I encounter
~I have always had long nails and I have always gotten flack for them. Growing up I was told my long nails were disgusting, however, the girls saying this would get fake nails. So basically having real nails that are long is bad but if they're fake it's cool(some of the guys shared this notion). So I tried the fake nails which I had to shorten my nails slightly to wear everyone loved them, go figure.
*To this day that makes absolutely no sense.
Just the other day I was told I need to cut my nails and that I look like lady long fingers, of course this was said by a child and I laughed at the name but I don't appreciate being told what to do with my person. Not that I don't get lovely compliments as well but those don't irritate me.
~Though I have had a large increase in compliments towards my hair since being out of school there's still a lot of "why does it look like that, what did you do to it, what are you going to do to it, it looks better when it's done." A lot of unnecessary comments and questions.
When I was younger I started wearing my hair natural because I'm tender headed and didn't want to mess with it, which apparently wasn't an acceptable look. One day I came to school after getting my hair braided. Everyone ran over "Kaia got her hair done" they close and then the teeth sucking, lip smacking and disappointed looks, "Why didn't you just straighten your hair? You would've been so pretty". As well as being told previously "I thought mixed people were supposed to have good hair"
*Really. . . I know different hairstyles can compliment your face better than others but my face didn't change and there are people who say the equivalent to this now. I find that people are often quite envious of my hair, not that they want it but they are amazed in a good way.
~Okay so when I was in elementary school some girls formed a invite only "cool girl" group type of thing that I was allowed to join. This group set in place some ridiculous rules that I wasn't going to follow, like I wouldn't be allowed to hang out with my friends that weren't in the group. So I was kicked out and they were let in, under the same rules. Later two other girls were kicked out for something and they started to hang out with me and because that was a problem they were allowed back into the group as long as they wouldn't hang out with me.
*Eventually the group got disbanded by teachers but the whole thing was bullshit obviously.
~I was a girl scout once upon a time and I went to school with some of the members. We went on a camping trip with several troops and we all had planned out different little acts or things to do at the campfire. One girl in my troop that was quite bratty and self entitled as I'd known her decided to pop up with my group at the campfire. I told her no, her group already went. She insisted and I told her no, she doesn't even know what we're doing. She stormed across to her guardian whining that I wouldn't let her perform with my group and her guardian yells across the fire "Kaia you are a very mean girl! That was not nice! You should be ashamed" Needless to say I was pissed, embarrassed and wanted to cry but we still had to perform.
*Sometime later at school I snipped a piece of her hair off (you couldn't see it, don't worry) I got moved to center to sit with the bad students and got two new friends.
~Something from my high school days, I found out that I'm part Jewish. A few people I hung around through mutual friends thought that was bad and so when I'd come around they would say Ew Jew and tell me to get away and once Fuck Off Jew was said by one person. They would say dreidel dreidel at me all the time, which I didn't understand the comedy of, they also cracked jokes that weren't funny. I once had a discussion with a friend about how Jews are Middle Eastern because they're originally from Samaria, he decided to "joke" and say "Oh, so you're a terrorist?" We were about to fight that day. Also predating this I was called "the white girl" for a little while. Though I am part white the context of the statement was obvious.
*I've been called various names over my life and I've always thought they were rather stupid so of course I was rather irritated.
I applaud you if you read all of this, I know I could've made this two separate posts but I'm happy with this and hope you got something out of it. I've had other experiences that I've chosen not to share or are similar to what I've just shared, there are also plenty of other things that bother me that can be addressed at another time. I'm glad I was able to share this and I hope it helped or inspired someone. Though I hate things I've been through they've made me a stronger person.
*Please respect my openness by not being hateful in the comments and feel free to share your experiences.
*Though I do appreciate knowing that others care instead of saying your sorry that happened or I'm hear for you could you please just put a heart, it's just a personal preference <3