People go through different experiences in different phases of life. These experiences can either be good or bad. However, all these experiences make up our personality and shape our behavior. The people we meet, experiences we have with them, all contribute to form and shape our thoughts, perceptions, and behaviors. A small but important experience I would like to share changed my thoughts, ideas and perceptions of life and the people around. Once I had a group of friends for whom I cared and had always been ready to support and help them in need. I thought them to be funny and people who loved fun. I always considered myself boring and unable to entertain anyone. But my friends were jolly and had a great sense of humor. I liked hanging out with them since they made me laugh and I loved that.
They often made fun of me but I never got sad about that. Instead, I laughed at the joke too though the jokes were all being pointed at me. It wasn’t in my nature to respond in a way that they stop doing that. In other words, I had never been harsh to anyone especially with my family and friends whom I loved the most. Even in the family, I have always been the target of jokes and fun for my cousins. The reason I never made fun of them as a response or treated them badly is because I believed that they are those people who know me really well and understand me.
With the passage of time, this habit of making fun of me grew and to the extent that my friends didn’t even realize that the joke must be confined in the group only and not let any stranger become aware of it. They started doing this in front of other fellows giving them the permission to make fun of me, though I could never give this right to the strangers. During all this was happening, my behavior and conduct with my family members totally changed. I used to get irritated and angry on even little things. I used to get rude to my mom and siblings.
Though they knew what I was going through, they did not understand that I was sad and disturbed inside. They thought I was having a good time with my friends, chatting and laughing. And honestly, at first, even I was unable to comprehend the reason behind my aggressive behavior at home, and opposite with friends. One day, my cousin asked me something and through my response, she understood that since I’m unable to express my true feelings in front of my friends, I take the aggression out on my family. I don’t why I was so reluctant to make my friends understand that now I’m being hurt and they need to stop doing that to me. Apart from telling them this, I didn’t even feel like saying ‘no’ to them or expressing my opinion in front of them. This is because I always felt I’ll be made fun of and everything I said will go wasted.
One day, when they made fun of me at a public place, I lost my temper and left. Then, one of my friends stopped me and apologized. I clearly told him everything I had been feeling during all these days and said that I have had enough of the insult now. I made him realize that even I like having fun and all, but this isn’t fun and games now since the limits have been crossed. At that moment, I got proud of myself to have been able to speak all that what was in my heart all the time. I showed them that I too have a self-respect as they have, and I won’t bear any such comments now.
With the passing time, they all got to know my worth and they still appreciate me for being true to them even when they weren’t good with me. From that day on, I learned my worth as well. I don’t keep myself surrounded with negative people now and stay with those who respect, love and understand me. I have stopped being a conformist to my surroundings. Rather, I stand up for myself where it’s needed. I have learned that silence isn’t the solution for all the problems. Sometimes, we do need to speak up. Otherwise, people take advantage of your sentiments and exploit them.
Hence, experiences like these and many others lead us to a new version of ourselves. There’s no end to learning new things and about the people, we live with or spend time with. All good and bad experiences with different people in different situations help us realize the true face of the people and make us care about the future. Though at that time, I was in absolute frustration and disappointment, now I am glad that happened. Otherwise, I wouldn’t have been able to speak up for myself in the future. No causes of psychological harm must be compromised. Though this experience seems normal, it had far-reaching impacts on me and my future life in a positive way.