There’s a trend I have noticed going around in Riyadh. I am not sure if it is just the times we are in now because everyone is stressed or if it’s just the way people are.
What I have noticed is that basically a person has no right to have a feeling or emotion about something because someone else is having it: worse than you, before you, or they tell you that you are not actually having it, you’re just a little insane.
I have had, over the past few months, conversations that went like this:
Me: I feel really stressed lately.
Them: No you don’t!
Me: I do, I feel like there is so much happening lately and I have no time to sit down and …
Them: Oh don’t be ridiculous. There’s nothing wrong with you! you have a great family and beautiful kids, you have nothing to complain about. You’re not stressed.
A few points. Just because I feel stressed it doesn’t mean I am saying my life sucks. Just because I am stressed it doesn’t mean you can’t be stressed too. Just because I have a great family and beautiful kids they are not made of prozac. Why oh why can’t I have the right to say I am stressed?
I don’t expect anything more than maybe: “really? You should relax! Stress sucks. “
And then there are the conversations where you’re level of stress or fatigue becomes a competition.
Me: I’m sleepy.
Them: Why? When did you sleep?
Me: I woke up early
Them: Lots of people woke up early. I didn’t sleep last night. At least you got some sleep! I hardly had 2 hours!
Again, Just because I’m tired doesn’t mean you can’t be tired. Just because you’re also tired it doesn’t make me less tired.
Sickness has even become a competition. You can never be sick and not have someone tell you they are feeling worse, or they had the same thing but 10 times stronger or telling you that you are not actually sick. You’re just being silly.
Fantastic! Thank you for telling me! I’ll just tell my fever and headache cause I think they didn’t get the memo.
So people of Riyadh lets all take a chill pill (preferably of the chocolate kind) and make a deal. I will try to complain less as long as when I do complain you listen and when you do complain I listen. Whatcha say?
People need the right to be upset, to be stressed and to have someone try (Even with a little hug or smile) to make you feel better. All together now: MORE SYMPATHY! LESS APATHY!