What is a woman’s worth these days? The images of women on television are very disturbing. Every channel you turn to you’ll find some chick getting drunk, fighting, or “hooking” up with random guys. Oh wait, did I just give a description for the first five minutes of every reality show? Whatever the case may be, our children are looking at these shows. I truly believe the old saying Life imitates Art and what we see on television is what’s going on in real life.
Take sexting for example. It’s when someone’s private parts are photographed and then sent via a text message. For those parents hiding under a rock, it’s something you have to talk to your kids about (after you’ve Google & Bing yourself to death to learn how common it is) especially if they have a cell phone.
Recently, I was sitting among a group of teenage girls and when I asked about sexting their eyes grew larger than their face. They were shocked that I even knew about it. It just shows how naive WE all were at their age. What hurt me was that they didn’t see anything wrong with it and among other issues that affect them. Their views on domestic violence was shocking as well. They blamed Rihanna for the whole Chris Brown domestic violence situation. They believed that she deserved the beat down because she caused it on herself. When I suggested that Chris should have walked away from the situation, they claimed that she may have provoked him too much. My mouth dropped when another adult in the conversation agreed with the teenagers. I couldn’t believe that these are our future leaders.
After speaking with the girls, I wanted to lock my daughter up in a room and throw away the key. I’m scared for her as probably my mother was for my sisters and I. I’m constantly reminded that I had my self-worth issues and still do. I remember thinking the only way to a man’s heart was food and sex. I was vulnerable and they sensed that from a mile away.
I can’t help thinking that I could be raising my daughter to be vulnerable and naive. I try my best to be upfront and honest so that I don’t shelter her from a lot of things like my mom did. It wasn’t until I turned 21 that I decided to move out to be on my own. In fact, I moved over 800 miles away to Atlanta, Georgia. I wanted to gain my independence but before I did I had to call one of my older sisters to help me separate my clothes to wash. You can imagine after having a conversation with my sister over the phone getting a Laundry 101 lesson how much more I thought I knew but found out very quickly that I didn’t know CRAP.
Aside from not knowing how to separate my laundry, I’ve always been an independent woman. My mom raised me to always do everything on my own and never rely on anyone for help especially from a man. My mom felt this way was better because that person (or man) who helped you wouldn’t have any reason to throw it back in your face later on. She always thought people’s intentions were not to help you but hurt you. I understood the lesson she was trying to teach me but today is a different day and I have a new perspective.
I’m in a transitional period in my life and I’m taking bolder steps to change my life. I’ve always wanted to do this but never knew how I was going to do it. The reason was because I was trying to figure out how to do it alone. I’ve been burned so many times by people who I just don’t trust people like I use to. I accept full responsibility for the numerous times I allowed men and friends to take advantage of me. I count it towards lack of experience, being naive, and wanting to be accepted by them. I did anything and everything to keep them in my life but they weren’t doing the same for me. I didn’t realize this until it was too late. I invested so much time and money into these relationships that now I find myself alone. I don’t have that friend who can lend me an ear when I just need someone to share my frustrations and fears with. No one I can forward those stupid emails that I get on a daily basis. Don’t feel sorry for me Dear Reader but I rather be alone than to be surrounded by people who take advantage of me. If it wasn’t for those people, I wouldn’t be the person I am today. I will always be Thankful to those back-stabbing-love-to-hate-on-a-chick-they-know-will-be-successful-one-day bitches!! No matter how much crap I may talk about them, they were in my life for a Reason and a Season and they all serve their purpose in my life…even my baby daddy.
Along the way I’ve met some great people who are replacing those vacant spots left by my ex and former friends. I know it’s because I removed those negative people in my life and I am able to see people for who they really are. I no longer expect for people to automatically be my friend. Instead, I’m learning to nurture healthier relationships rather than with people who are Soul Takers. Soul Takers are people who claim that they are your friend or someone who says they love you when in reality (only if you can accept that reality is the truth) that they relish in your failures. They encourage you to be discouraged by feeding more into your fears and they contribute nothing for your Soul which is the core of who you are and how you feel.
For instance, I remember I wanted to audition to become a host for a national television show. I was prepared to wake up 3 in the morning to line up with thousands of other hopefuls for my chance to show the producers that I was the one they wanted for the show. My daughter’s father encouraged me because he was actually helping me get prepared for the next day. He agreed to go into work a little late so that he could drop our daughter off at school the next morning. It wasn’t until we were getting ready for bed that he asked me what will happen to our daughter if I made it. He explained that I would be traveling so much that I wouldn’t have time for her especially since she was taking ballet lessons and several recitals that followed. He reminded me that our daughter “needed a mother who was going to be there all the time.”
You already know what happened next. He knew that my daughter meant the world to me so he used her against me so that I wouldn’t pursue my dreams. This story will hopefully show you how naive and gullible young girls can be. In reality, he was afraid that once I became successful that I will eventually leave him. What I didn’t think of was that I could have been a mom and television host. If I really wanted to attend my daughter’s recital then I would have found a way like I do anyhow. Now, I know if you really want something you’ve got to go for it…but when you have a child don’t allow your limitations hold you back and be careful of going to the extreme to where it will affect him or her.
So watch out for those Soul Takers and be true to yourself. If anything good is happening for you then you should know that you deserve and are worth it. Don’t let other people make you feel guilty for things going well for you. Even if things aren’t going well for you be happy for someone else when it does go well for them. Be encouraged rather than discouraged that things will turn around for you sooner or later. Be strong. Be smart. Be You!
How much is Your worth?
Written by: Max-Laine