The Struggles of Others
A couple of days ago I wrote the following:
Maybe it’s arrogant or missing the point of me to say, but I think the majority of people I know here have had to struggle for very little in their lives.
It was pointed out to me today that yes, I am definitely missing the point. I had people from Guernsey, and even specific individuals in my head when I wrote that, but it’s not a fair thing to say. Everybody struggles, or has struggled in the past - it just might not be visible or obvious to me. Even my friends might choose not to share their difficulties with me, for any number of reasons. Trying to pretend otherwise is quite clearly coming from a place of bitterness; part of me feels that it’s “unfair” that I am the way I am, or that aspects of my life have been the way they’ve been. Part of me feels entitled to happiness, and while I know that entitlement is usually a bad thing, but in this instance its not so clear.
Either way, I obviously want (perhaps shamefully sometimes even expect) other people to empathise with me and my experiences, and by refusing to acknowledge other people’s as valid, I am being a hypocrite and being entitled in a way that I am much more confident is bad. There is clearly space to validate my own struggles without in the process invalidating anyone else’s, and so I’d like to apologise for the short-sightedness of the comment highlighted above.