Can I be sad and angry please? is written on the fly. If it offends anyone, it wasn’t meant to. But if it speaks to you, please act on it.
Can I Be Sad And Angry Please?
Get over it!
(Why? Because it makes you feel better?)
Think of all the other people who are suffering more than you!
(I do and I will. But let me feel my own pain too, if you don’t mind.)
She’s lived a full life.
(Which is why it makes it harder to come to terms with, buddy!)
Thank God his suffering is over.
(Yes, I realize it made you feel like God was not answering your prayers!)
You’ll find someone else. There’s always someone special out there.
(Oh, I didn’t know you had the ‘gift’. Presently I’m mourning the loss of a relationship and will think of another one only when I’m ready.)
Suck it up, buttercup.
(Seriously? ‘Shut up’ also rhymes with buttercup!)
Words and phrases thrown at us – and things we’ve said to other people too, perhaps. Things we say because we have a hard time dealing with pain – our pain and the pain of other people.
So why are we always told to hush up when we cry? Why can’t people give us the time and space to grieve, to mourn, to rage for a bit?
Why do we always have to sugarcoat things for other people when we think they’re sad or worried? Why do we feel the burden to step in and resolve other people’s conflict? If someone stops communicating (and we’re certain they’re safe), why can’t we honor their need for space?
“Your wife died? Don’t cry, she’s in heaven!”
(Really, you know that? How did you get so wise and all-knowing?)
“You and your brother are not talking to each other? You’ve got to make up, you’re family after all!
(Really, so does being family mean your sibling can treat you like crap and you have to suck it up?)
“Why are you mad with him for getting drunk on your birthday. He’s feeling bad he forgot your birthday.”
(Seriously? He forgot my birthday, I must be the one getting drunk, don’t you think?)
The truth is – pain, sadness and conflict exist. They have a place in our life. With pain and sadness, we could never experience joy and happiness and the feeling of community.
Everyone needs space and time to get over sorrow, loss, anger, conflict.
When we are forced to ‘get over it’ or try to fight these feelings without really acknowledging them, we are only temporarily suspending them. What we resist, persists. They don’t go away. The feelings are there under the surface. Attempting to ‘be positive’ or ‘be friends again’ or ‘take it on the chin’ are all superficial ways of dealing with pain, anger and conflict.
If we embrace and acknowledge our sorrow or anger – emotions that make us feel uncomfortable or vulnerable, we are honoring ourselves. We are reminding ourselves of our humanness. We’re acknowledging that our life’s journey has both light and dark sides to it. We are simply just ‘being’. We are being authentic.
Can I be sad and angry, please? Let me ‘be’ even when it makes you uncomfortable. And may I allow others to ‘be’ even when it makes me uncomfortable.
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the bespectacled mother
I have heard it. In my dark days, I was told “Khush rehna seekho” repeatedly as it was as easy as saying this. Pain and hurt does not evaporate in thin air just like that. They need time and first of all acceptance of their existence. I know positive sweet talks do not work in times of sadness and pain due to which, on the other hand, I feel paralyzed about what to tell people in their grief because I can’t say anything if I don’t mean them. I keep quiet, hence, and then wonder I am not doing my bit. The ever-lasting dilemma.
In person, I just hug and listen, Anamika. Otherwise, I just send a message to let someone know that they’re in my thoughts and prayers – I try not to offer any platitudes. Like you said, people need time and space to heal.
You don’t know how lucky you are, is what I get to hear if and when i dare to share my pain.
Think positive is another oft repeated bit of advice.
I don’t believe in suppressing emotions either, not that i flaunt them. Just allow me feel them is all i ask, and it is often denied.
So, yes, i get angry and sad at the same time.
Reading this straight from the heart post made me glad i am not the only one. Thank you for sharing, Corinne.
Yes, I don’t really like to talk about my pain or anger too, Mayuri, but I would appreciate the space to feel them. So glad this resonated with you.
Three cheers Corinne ! You have the right to be sad and angry and tell everyone else who tells you otherwise to stuff it .
I always wonder if people say those words because they mean it or just because they don’t have anything else to say. I feel it’s important to express ourselves. If not in front of everyone, but atleast in front of some one close.
Funny this comes today. I myself have been sad for fw days, and deep inside I feel that ‘ this too shall pass’ but its due the obnoxious ways of people telling ‘we get you’ that I stopped sharing with people.
As, you said I’m trying to embrace it and deal with it.
On a totally different note,few days back, I visited a funeral and even though most ladies were hugging the wife of the departed one, I just couldn’t do it. I don’t even know what to say 🙁
Sometimes peoples’ hapless responses are well-intentioned, but it can be so distressing to be told that your feelings are not valid. Even the comfort of Scripture is cold when it’s used as punctuation to end the conversation. I’m slowly learning that most of the time, my best offering to a conversation about someone’s loss is silence and a listening ear.
I am an emotionally constipated person and that causes me depression. It is better to express than suppress. Earlier I used to bottle up my emotions but now I vent it out. I can understand you are going through a bad phase especially after your mother passed away. But trust me time is the best healer. Hugs
How true, the sadness or anger needs to be let out. There’s absolutely nothing we can say to console someone sometimes. But then again sometimes it saddens you greatly to not be able to cheer up your loved ones. I often wish I could help them, but am unable to. As for me, writing does the healing. But it isn’t the same for everyone. We can only let it be and wait for the phase to pass, and yes, just be there for them.
Yes Yes!! The upbeat nonsensical things people say because they don’t know what to say are infuriating and full of cliches!
Yes, pain, sadness, happiness and anger and conflict most definitely co-exist. There are times when I have felt turbulent waves of all kinds of emotions. You cannot bottle them up. you have to give them an outlet otherwise, if you are anything like me, they will eat you up. Pen x #mg
I think most people say those things as a way of offering comfort because they know no better. Most of us aren’t taught to handle pain, not just ours but also that of other’s. So we come up with platitudes like these which really don’t mean much or offer comfort either.
I couldn’t agree more. We, as a society, are always in a rush to have these moments over and done with. But, it takes feeling them, processing them, and living through them to get there. It doesn’t make sense to just whip on past it all with platitudes.
What a great post that SO many people really should read. You are very right in saying it is ‘there problem’ if they can not deal with our plan or grief. If someone can not deal with our emotions they are better off saying nothing. You can not just ‘get over’ loss, or a breakup or an argument without going through your own personal process. Thank you for linking this with #mg
Oh you are so right, why are we all always in such a rush to ‘fix’ peoples problems instead of just letting them be with their emotions for a while? My 4 year old son seems to get upset a lot, he’s very sensitive and I’m trying to not be all ‘stop crying’ and instead just being there for him and letting him work through his feelings at his own pace xx #mg
This post is so very good! I love it and Iam so glad I cam across it today. Because damn it, I can be sad and angry too! About so much! #mg xoxo
popping back to say again that this piece was so powerful! I hope you are doing ok my lovely friend xx You are my featured blogger this week on #mg
This is so important to remember – that sadness and anger are simply emotions and that we need to just be with them when we need to be with them. Sometimes, though, I think a few of these – especially the ones dealing with loss – are statements we make because we don’t know what else to say.
When my mum passed away people kept telling me how time was a great healer. It may be true but at the time I didn’t want to heal, my pain was all I had left and I wanted to hold on to it as it made me feel closer to my mum. Yes, time has passed and the grief has healed a lot, but I have now also accepted that she’s gone and I wasn’t ready for that. So I’d add that phrase to your already fabulous list. Pain is not always bad, sometimes it’s necessary x
Lisa Frideborg Eddy
Very well said. Authenticity is in my top three with truth and love. No more spiritual bypass!
Hi Corinne! Thank you for this post! I wanted you to know that you are my #BlogCrush this week! You are spot on! xoxo
The Queen of Collage
This is one thought provoking post. #mg
Lucy At Home
Yes it’s so important to allow room for grief and pain. Pretending it isn’t there is not helpful. And setting yourself expectations about how you “should” be feeling” is not good either – we need time to process difficult situations.
And congratulations because someone loved this post so much, they added it to the BlogCrush linky! Feel free to collect your “I’ve been featured” blog badge 🙂 #blogcrush