Posted by: Marie | May 20, 2010

(317) The pain of dealing with people

Post #317
[Private journal entry written on Wednesday, January 13, 2010]

The lady who works for the print shop – who left the thank-you note and the book for me last week – stuck her head into my studio area today. She asked me if I’d had a chance to read the book.

Shit. I can tell she is going to be a pain in my butt.

I answered, “Yes”. She asked what I thought about it. I said, “It was nice. Thank you for giving it to me.”

Then, I changed the subject.

I hope she takes the hint. I really need my studio to be a place of peace. I don’t want to have to get in her face and tell her to keep her religion to herself – but I will, if I have to.


I have lived my entire life trying to prove to people how “happy” and “without pain” I am. I always try to find the humor in every situation. I keep everything lighthearted – at least until I start feeling like I’m going to suffocate from the lack of being able to give language to my pain.

On the Hike by Martin Chen

I have spent my entire life trying to show I’m not broken.

You see, I have always believed that a man wouldn’t want to anything to do with me if I was anything but happy and whole all the time. Who wants to hangout with a crybaby?

My dad always told me to “quit my bellyaching”, that it wasn’t as bad as I was making it out to be, that I was just crying and complaining to get attention or to get out of my responsibilities. He told me that no one would want to be around me if I acted that way – not men, not employers, not friends, not family . . . no one.

He would even spank me if I cried for too long after he whipped me with the belt – “Now you’re just being silly,” he’d say.

Of course, that would be after he kept whipping me until I cried – if I didn’t cry, he felt it was an indication that he hadn’t broken down my rebellion yet.

I always promised myself I wouldn’t cry – crying meant he had won. I’d grit my teeth and then slide out of my body – the belt would hit my legs, my butt, my back . . . finally, after a while, I’d give him what he wanted just so the hitting would stop.

When he would come back around to spank me for crying too long or too hard – to give me a “real reason” to cry, the fight in me was already gone. I wouldn’t even bother gritting my teeth.

I have never told anyone the whole story . . . and when I have shared a small part of it and let my emotions show, people (especially men) have ran away as quickly as they could. Sometimes they would come back – but only after I quit crying.

I guess they can’t get what they want from me when I’m crying.


  1. Hi Marie, I don’t think it’s only that (at least for some men). The reason some men can’t deal with others emotions, especially crying, is that they haven’t dealt with this part of themselves. Sometimes for being treated in the same way that you were.

    So, I’m being a bit contrarian, or offering an alternative view. Hope that’s OK

    • Hey, Evan –

      That is a really good point . . . that we can’t be comfortable watching others deal with their pain unless we have dealt with our own.

      I really appreciate your thoughtful input!

      – Marie

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