WORDS WON’T HARM ME: OR WILL THEY?


There’s a popular saying that goes like this: “sticks and stones may break my bones, but words won’t or will never harm me”. This saying was supposed to illustrate how words or taunts are not supposed to have any effect on us, because apparently they are “just words”.

However, over time people have come to realise that this statement isn’t completely true. Now I use the word completely here, because we could say that words can’t or won’t harm us in a way, but there’s a process we have to undergo before we realise how to circumvent the issue of negativity. Let’s talk about these words that seem harmless.

Words are powerful. What we say can affect us and those around us, positively or negatively. Our utterances play a huge role in our interaction and in some cases are used to seal faith or blessings spiritually (Religiously). So, we can’t deny how much effect words have.
I realised this when I was still in primary school. Someone had said something hurtful to me (I don’t remember what exactly) but I remember how devastated I was. A relative of mine quoted the sticks and stones… and I was left asking myself why I was unhappy if those words weren’t supposed to hurt me. I spent days thinking about it, and when it looked like I’d somehow forgotten it, it came back in full force.
Most of these words are centred mostly on things we, as human beings cannot change. For example, problems like acne, speech problems, even body deformations. Yet, we find people who use these things as jokes, make side comments, and in some cases, say it to your face.
Puberty, for me, came with acne and most times I got comments like:

Don’t you wash your face?
Aren’t you going to do something about this?
Thank God my face isn’t like this
Ah! This your face sef.

It’s crushing; it’s heart breaking. These comments didn’t come once in a day or sparingly; they were back to back, so each day I had something to think about.
Words, labels, and tags have so much effect on you, that it becomes obvious you are not okay. It tells on you physically!

In summary,
Can words hurt you?
Yes, they can.

Now, that’s all said, let’s talk about people who use these words negatively.

One time in secondary school, I was in the library with a friend when this girl came in. She sat beside us and began talking to my friend. I was reading quietly. When she was done, she got up, walked a few steps away from us, then came back like she had forgotten something of hers. She called my name and then said to me:

How is it that you have pimples when your mom and sister don’t?
I’m asking because I have never seen a daughter looking ugly when her mom is really beautiful. Anyway shaa, you’re very intelligent.’

Now let’s go over this shall we?
This girl left wherever it was she was going to, to:
1. Compare me to my mother and sister
2. Call me ugly

And then as some kind of consolation, told me I was intelligent.

You know,
You have a deformed leg and I’m telling you it’s all your fault, but hey! At least you have great hair.

Almost immediately, my friend started yelling at her. I observed her all through. She had this look on her face, it seemed to say “did I lie?”
She did not care.

Now, some people would say: “it’s not like she lied” or “she’s only stating the obvious”
Yes, but what was the intention behind “stating the obvious”?
Bullies wouldn’t say these things if they don’t know the effect it has on you. There are a number of ways to tell people these things and one of them does not include jeering or pointing it out in the presence of others for laughs.
I think the saddest thing about this issue is that, these people don’t care. They are jerks and they want to see you uncomfortable. It gives them satisfaction knowing you are feeling bad.

So, do these people care?
No they do not.

Now let’s look at how we could minimize the effect of these words have on us.
A lot of people like to think ignoring these horrible comments makes you immune to the effect it has on you. Most times people would advise that you either “suck it up” or “just deal with it” and there’s so much you can take before that false wall of immunity comes crumbling down.
A huge step toward developing a thick skin is confrontation. As I said earlier, most people would advise you don’t. However, confronting these people gives you an idea as to what they are thinking.
Imagine this:
Mr/miss bully walks up to you. They say:
‘Why are you so—–‘
You stare at them and ask:
‘What exactly is your problem?’ or ‘Why do you always come here? Don’t you have something better to do?’
Observe them closely. You’re going to see a brief look of panic or cluelessness on their face. They don’t have anything else to do!


You see bullying comes from a deep place of insecurity (you can’t tell me otherwise). Most people would argue, saying ‘how can someone be jealous of everyone he/ she is mean to?’, but notice I said “insecurity “NOT “jealousy”
Let’s be honest, someone who is aware, confident, and comfortable in their own skin WILL NOT feel the need to belittle someone else just to make themselves feel high and mighty. Bullies feed off peoples’ approval and so do these things, so as to distract people from their own flaws and imperfections. Unfortunately for them, it’s a cycle. They talk about someone; someone talks about them (most times in the same social group or circle)
Speaking of group. Watch how the pack of wolves reacts to their “Alpha wolf’s” state of reticence. They withdraw, and then you realise, it’s not even worth it.
A huge reason why I think confrontations are ideal is because, you get to see for yourself the power you have over the level of negativity these people bring. It won’t stop the remarks, but then they’ll think twice before coming to your face again.

So here are a few notes
– Words, when used negatively are harmful. We shouldn’t feign immunity but instead understand these feelings and master healthy means of circumventing all the negativity. One step towards that is admitting how we feel when these words are said to us.
– – If you are being taunted about some things like, being overweight, having acne, stuttering, having scanty hair, and so on. It’s very normal to want to change that. When I had my acne problem, I tried to find ways to improve the condition of my skin, but what I didn’t do was let the negativity dictate the rate at which I did that. Everything is a process and you are allowed to grow at your own pace and on your own terms.

Atlas,
This is all part of our growth and experience, and every now and then these words can and will affect us, but with some guidance and positive affirmations we can filter most of the negativity and get to a place where all the hurt and pain becomes just a twinge, and then are able to walk above all the hate and so live peacefully.

So that’s it for today’s post. It’s quite lengthy but I hope you like it. If you did, kindly like, leave a comment and subscribe; please don’t forget to confirm your subscription (for email subscribers) via email. Please please use the share button and tell your friends all about my blog.
Until then,
xoxo

New New!

What’s a great way to begin a blog post ( first one ever)? I’m not sure , but here goes.

      I’ve always wanted a blog. When I decided to start one up I wasn’t sure how it worked; I’m still not completely sure now. It’s easy being the reader because I get to just go to the blog, read and leave a comment ( sometimes not ) but now I’m faced with being the blogger. I’ve got to admit, I’m stumped.

   It took a lot of time getting this started, most of which was spent worrying and trying to gather courage . I can’t exactly remember when I went on WordPress and created the blog.

  As I said earlier, I’ve always wanted a blog. I never really thought of what I would write or how I would get the pretty fonts or unique themes. After creating the site, I took some time to decide what my niche was going to be. That became difficult as well because I’ve always been a ” write in the moment” kind of person and honestly, making this blog centered on a particular issue or topic seemed very limiting- for me!

Don’t get me wrong, there’s nothing wrong with blogging niches. I do appreciate blogs centered on their individual niches but as I stated earlier, it’s easy being the reader and I can’t really say there’s something I could give expert advice on. So most of these reasons played a huge role in my decision to not have a specific niche. A huge reason I wanted this blog was to write about anything and everything. So a few days later I decided I would do just that – write!

  The major issue I encountered was deciding how my first blog post would be. I read a few blog posts and articles. They all seemed to say one thing- introduce yourself.

  I’ve never really liked formal or generic introductions and it didn’t help that I was experiencing major writer’s block at that point in time. The statement ” tell me more about yourself” leaves me completely blank.
It’s weird but I always prefer my introductions in a more subtle or creative way. I feel there’s so much to say or write and so we can’t fully tell our story or describe ourselves on a spot.

  Over the time I spent thinking and trying to get through my block, I realized everything takes time to build and I’ve decided to take this one step at a time, have fun and hopefully whoever is reading this can see who I am through this. There’s so much I want to say and I’m nervous but mostly excited to share my views and experiences on here and with you.

So before I go, here’s a few basic things about me

1. My name is Chiamaka ( it’s Igbo for ” God is beautiful)
2. I’m from Abia state, Nigeria.
3. I live in the University of Nigeria, Nsukka with my parents and siblings
4. By September (hopefully), I’m going to be a medical student at the same university.
5. I love reading and writing
6. I love thinking
7. I am quite perceptive and things of the mind and human behavior interest me
8. I love giving advice and helping people through times of difficulty or uncertainty
9. I have a sweet tooth!
10. I love dogs

So that’s it for today. This is my blog and first post ever.

Please do leave a comment and be sure to follow.

Untill next time

XOXO