Paul "Pablo" Croubalian en Directors and Executives, Marketing, English Independent Authorized Agent of Pivotal Payments • Independent Authorized Agent of Pivotal Payments and others (beBee Ambassador) 16/11/2017 · 4 min de lectura · 2,7K

Nobody Cares about Your Feelings. Deal with it

Nobody Cares about Your Feelings. Deal with itRANT MODE ON

Maybe it's my inner Grouchy-Old-Man talking. 

Maybe my points are silly. 

Maybe they're profound. 

Whatever, this is how I feel. 

Yes, I see the irony in writing a post titled, "Nobody cares about your feelings," that is really my feelings on a subject. 

That's the point.

Three things happened lately that pissed me off. 

You may think me insensitive. 

You may think me unsympathetic. 

You may think me unaccommodating.

No, what I am is realistic.

Besides, I don't care. 


Thing #1: An assault on a culture

Lately, my wife has been binge-watching "Switched at Birth." For those of you who don't know the show, it follows two girls who were. . . wait for it . . . switched at birth. Lord knows how a Latina couple could think that their so-white-she's-transparent, red-haired daughter (Daphne) could actually be their biological daughter. 

The Kennishes are similarly clueless. Their daughter (Bay or Bey, who knows, who cares?) doesn't fit their family mold either.

None of that is my point.

One of the episodes my wife watched had a bizarre plot. There was a themed costume party in a college dorm. The theme was to dress like your favorite recording artist. Seems tame enough, right?

A white guy dressed like Lil' Wayne. A black girl dressed like Madonna.

"So what?" you may say. I would agree.

In the show, the guy was flamed for making fun of black culture. Really? Lil' Wayne is "black culture?"

The silliness doesn't stop there. A review board was called to determine if the guy should be chucked out of the dorm. It's when that board said, "No," that I got hot under the collar. It wasn't because they determined that the guy should not be thrown out. It was because another character "no longer felt safe" living in that dorm. 

She moved out.

Where she chooses to live is her right, her choice. Blaming that choice on how someone else made her feel is asinine. Expecting the world to adapt to her is more asinine still.

Scoop: The world doesn't work that way.

FYI: No one flamed the black girl dressed as Madonna.

You own your feelings. You decide what you feel. We are not responsible for them, nor are we obligated to cater to them. They're yours and yours alone.

Thing #2: Harass? My A$$

I overheard this conversation in a waiting room. It wasn't so much that I was eavesdropping. The women talking were seated right across from me. I changed the names and translated from the original French.

Woman 1: Last week, John asked me out.

Woman 2: John? That guy you work with?

Woman 1: Yes. We were talking about "Thor: Ragnarok" in the break room. He asked me if I'd like to go to dinner then to the movie.

Woman 2: What did you say?

Woman 1: I said, "No." I mean, we work together. I thought maybe I would feel awkward if we went on a date.

Woman 2: You should report him to HR! That's sexual harassment!

Woman 1: Maybe you're right. Now, I feel awkward in the break room. I'm having lunch at my desk.

Woman 2: OMG! That's horrible. Report him!

At this point, I exercised my Old-Fart Privileges and butted in.

Me: Sorry, but would you like a man's viewpoint on this?

Woman 1: Okay

Me: Is John in a position of power over you at work?

Woman 1: No. We're at the same level and he works in another department.

Me: Was John insistent, persistent, angry, or aggressive? 

Woman: No, he accepted my refusal calmly. He looked disappointed but not angry. 

Woman 2: That doesn't matter! She feels awkward.

Me: (To Woman 1, Ignoring Woman 2) Does this lady work with you?

Woman 1: No, we're friends.

Me: Yet she knows about John. I assume then that you've mentioned him before? To me, that implies some sort of attraction. Are you and John both single?

Woman 2: That doesn't matter! She FEELS awkward.

Woman 1: Yes, yes, and yes, there does seem to be an attraction. It's mutual.

Me: So what's the problem?

Woman 2: ARE YOU DENSE? SHE FEELS AWKWARD!

Me: (To Woman 2) That has nothing to do with John. That's all on her (Woman 1). John did absolutely nothing wrong. A proposition is only harassment if there's an "or else" component to it. That "or else" can be physical, professional, persistent, or just implied. There's no "or else" here. He asked. She answered. He accepted and respected her answer. What's the problem?

When I first started out, things were simpler. It was enough to know that "harass" was one word, not two. Things are quite a bit more complicated now. 

Still, the basic idea remains unchanged. 

Asking a woman out is not harassment. For that matter, asking her for a roll in the hay isn't harassment either. Crude, yes. Inappropriate, yes. Harassment? No.

Harassment comes from an "or else." That "or else" may be implicit, implied or just possible/potential. A manager asking a subordinate on a date creates an "or else" even if his/her intentions are completely honorable.

There was no harassment here. If anything, reporting John would be harassing him.

You own your feelings. You decide what you feel. We are not responsible for them, nor are we obligated to cater to them.  They're yours and yours alone.

Thing #3: Beware the bearded man

In the spirit of Movember, I'm growing a beard. Okay, for me it's more like Snow-vember. My beard has more white in it than the black it had yesteryear. I don't know if I'll keep it. (Probably not, my wife is not a fan of beards)

That's not the point.

Yesterday, I was in the checkout line at the supermarket. There was a fifty-ish woman ahead of me.

She kept throwing me furtive glances.

I thought my fly was down. It wasn't. My checking it probably did nothing to ease her apprehension. She grew more furtive, more apprehensive by the second.

After several minutes of sideways glances, I couldn't take it anymore, "Excuse me, Madame. Have I done something to bother you?"

"No," she answered, "I feel uncomfortable around bearded men. Why do you need to hide behind a beard?"

Whiskey Tango Foxtrot? Who was hiding? I may be an introvert, but I'm not shy. I don't hide from nuthin' or nobody! 

I still believe in Old School chivalry. The fact that a woman was afraid of me boggled my mind. I felt insulted but know enough that that is my problem, not hers.

If you feel Old School chivalry is sexist, kindly refer to this post's title.

"It's the Movember thing. I don't like mustaches so I let my beard grow instead. It's to raise awareness of Men's Health issues."

She visibly relaxed. 

I guess my temporary beard made me only temporarily dangerous/evil/sinister.

You own your feelings. You decide what you feel. We are not responsible for them, nor are we obligated to cater to them.  They're yours and yours alone.

Are they feelings or just whims?

Really, I'm asking. 

An acquaintance refuses to ride in a white car because he doesn't feel safe in them. Seriously? Since when is a color dangerous? Are white cars inherently more prone to being in accidents? I would think the driver is more of a factor than the car's color.

No one can make you feel anything. That's on you. You decide how you react to any given stimulus. 

If I come at you with a knife, I might make you feel afraid. I might also trigger extreme reflexive anger with accompanying violence aimed at me, the aggressor. You decide. I don't.

It's a fight-or-flight thing. These "feelings" are flight.

Here's the rock-bottom, cold-hard, truth. 

No one cares about your feelings, with the possible exception of your therapist. They're your feelings. You created them. You nurture them. You let them torture you. They will exist only so long as you decide they will exist. They will cease to exist when you decide they no longer exist.

That's on you. You need to deal with them, not us. 

You feel unsafe when there is nothing to feel unsafe about? Deal with it.

You feel awkward in the break room? Deal with it.

You feel afraid because I have a beard? Deal with it.

You feel unsafe in a white car? Deal with it.

Don't expect us to cater to your self-imposed fears and limits. We just don't care. 

We have our own self-imposed fears and limits to deal with.

RANT MODE OFF

Let the flaming begin.

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Claire L Cardwell 26/6/2018 · #57

@Paul "Pablo" Croubalian - you made me smile, you made me titter! I don't have time for this 'PC', 'Gender Neutral' shit! I've also reached the age where I don't really give a damn what people think, I just follow my heart and say what I feel. I hope that silly little cow didn't report John to HR!

0
Paul "Pablo" Croubalian 26/11/2017 · #55

#52 @Lisa 🐝 Gallagher My neighbors better not peer into my windows. I don't own a robe. Sometimes I even walk around a la Winnie the Pooh, but not often... drafty

+1 +1
Paul "Pablo" Croubalian 26/11/2017 · #54

#50 LOL, That's like the right butt cheek telling the left, "Is it me or does something stink between us?"

+2 +2
Paul "Pablo" Croubalian 26/11/2017 · #53

#49 It's only harassment with the other side minds LOL

+2 +2
Lisa Gallagher 26/11/2017 · #52

#40 omg, thats hysterical Paul! I swear I had a neighbor like that. She would report to my other neighbors that she worried about me because I was up so late at night walking around in my pink robe. At least she didn't say naked. Nevermind that she was up late peering in my windows ha ha

+2 +2
FancyJ London 24/11/2017 · #51

#40 Dying on the floor laughing!!!

+1 +1
FancyJ London 24/11/2017 · #50

Great Post! Vent Paul, VENT!!!
Some people just have that gift of self affliction wedging things between their butt cheeks enough to cause great irritation for everyone they come in contact with, as they point blame at someone else for putting it there in the first place. (rolling my eyes around)

+2 +2
Nicole Chardenet 22/11/2017 · #49

#47 Hey Paul, if you feel sexually harassed by @Pamela 🐝 Williams it's not too late to join the #MeToo campaign :) She looks like she's probably a major butt-grabber too :)

+2 +2