Growing up with this question in mind wasn’t too easy for me. I was so absorbed in inferiority complex then, that I used to assess myself in every other situation. The most promising problem for me, that still stands, is comparison. I absolutely hate being compared by others and comparing my ownself to others. Even though, at times, I do the later. If I had to cope with the comparison, then it would have been a little easy. But, with comparison came pressure. Pressure of living up to the expectations of your family, relatives, society as well as friends. I would love to elaborate a little and would make my deepest feelings known to all.
Comparison of health: in this judgemental, small world, I grew up to be a fat girl. I was constantly bullied by peers and elders of our society because of my health and looks. I was constantly reminded that I was never born to eat my favorite food to my hearts content, drink my favorite drinks, as they would make me more fat, dance as it would break the floor, run as it might start an earthquake, wear jeans as all fats would be visible to the world. I was told to hide my body under big loose clothes, eat less food, drink lukewarm water, never to dance or play. Elders of the society (middle aged) named me baby elephant, hippo, big fat hen and some would cutely call me panda. At times, I felt my parents were secretly ashamed of me. Even for them, it was heart wrenching to hear such things. Moreover, comparison of my health to the thinnest one in the family, made me more uncomfortable. it also affected our relationship. Stress and pressure of being presentable and acceptable to the society took my happiness and it still manages to scare me.
Comparing grades: I am a proud member of an intelligent family, but somehow the genes have spared me. They were too busy making me fat that they forgot to code some intelligence. My 10th and 12th grades were horrifying as I was asked to follow my cousins who were more brainy than I. Even in my dreams I would see myself being ridiculed for not getting good grades. My cousins weren’t the ones comparing but the elders were. They did not understand the burden of it. They didn’t understand that I have particular set of qualities which might not match the skill set of my cousins. Anxiety, fear of exams, fear of being pointed out as stupid, fear of failing engulfed me and I drowned in its waves.
Comparing friendship: Are you a good friend? If you have ever been with a group of friends with strong personalities you will understand this. Everyday is a struggle to prove your friendship is true to all of them. At times you might do something that might please one, but not others or vice versa. in such situations, I lost many friends. There were times they would ask me, “I wouldn’t have done that, why did you?”. Many times I was held responsible for things I never did. But one thing that I learnt is that, no matter what, a true friend who knows you in and out will always be with you. They might not agree or support you, but they will remain in your life always. Maybe other are better friends than me, but I still try to be a good one.
Comparing the looks: I am not beautiful, neither am I ugly. It is how God has created me and it is what will be. Looks are so over-rated, well I feel so. Just because, people always favor the beautiful. No matter how good you are at your work, or how precise and perfect you were when you finished the work, or you were the only one who worked for the entire thing, but the name that comes first would be theirs. Its a natural tendency to bend towards the more beautiful ones. I have seen people ignore the ones who love them with all they have, for a good looking person, not so beautiful at heart. Not every good looking person ha a bad heart. Not every average person, is a good human. Still looks take the upper hand. People do not trust people who look average or below. For me, because of my looks, people said, “my!! who will marry you?” For them, my marriage was a shocker.
Comparison of being a type of human: As you have read in one of the article, we have our own way of thinking how the other person should be and how he should love his life. Any deviation makes that person, a matter of discussion in our household. I have been that person, who was discussed for showing some of her reactions and feelings. As it is said, life is not a bed of roses…. it might be the tinniest of thing, but one wrong makes you a bad person for your entire life. For me, not being diplomatic and not thinking before I speak, landed me into a lot of trouble. But, God has helped me through all that situation and now I am a happy person.
Surviving comparisons, its pressure and demands was never an easy game play. But God did help me through. I guess, in this present scenario, many go through this kind of situations and emotional points in life. Assurance is that, if we really believe in our-self and make our own way through this, we will definitely reach our haven, may be tired but free. There will not be despair, but only hope, for a much brighter future, we can behold.