Friday, April 18, 2014

I got a lot of problems with you people!

This is my second post in this series, and I must say, it's something I look forward to. But also feel a little guilty about. I mean, people don't like when other people complain, right? Well guess what? That's what this post is about!!!

I used to work with someone who never let anyone else complain. She was a true one-upper. If you were sick, she was dying. If you were tired, she never slept a day in her life. If you sprained your ankle, she lost her foot in an accident. Everything in her life was either way worse or way better than yours. (But usually way worse.)

In reality, she had a decent life. She just couldn't let you get away with stating an opinion or complaint without one-upping or one-downing you.

I try not to complain too much on this blog. Not because I don't complain in real life, but because there are some people who read this blog who won't allow me to complain. If I say it's hard being single, I'll get responses from married people telling me I should be grateful for my freedom. If I say I wish I had kids, I'll get responses from people with kids telling me how lucky I am that I can sleep when I want to.

Once, I got an email from someone telling me how lucky I am and how I shouldn't complain but how she, on the other hand, has a right to complain because her life is garbage (and went on in detail about this [and her life was only kind of garbage-y]).

That really ticks me off (pardon my French). Don't we all have a right to express our feelings sometimes? And by expressing our frustrations, we're not implying our lives are worse than others. There's always going to be people with problems bigger than yours. But that doesn't mean you're not having a hard time. Some people try to catch you in that trap when you complain:

Me:  My stomach hurts and I'm exhausted.
Other person: Well if it makes you feel any better, my car is making a funny sound and the check engine light is on.
Me: Surprisingly, that doesn't make me feel better. 


Person A: I forgot my lunch today - all I have is this granola bar. 
Person B: There are starving people in other parts of the world who would love a granola bar if it makes you feel better.
Person A: Now I'm hungry and sad.

My life is mostly fine, but I have problems. And sometimes I want to express them!

Now, there are some complaints no one wants to hear. For example:

"I don't know how I'm going to spend all this money."
"Ryan Gosling won't stop texting me."
"I keep losing weight and I'm not even trying."
"I'm only going to be in the Hamptons for two months this summer."
"I have so much vacation time I'll never be able to use it all."
"So many people asked me to prom and I can't decide who to go with."

Of course, many people do cross the line of acceptable complaining. I used to read some blogs that were full of just too much complaining. And it was the kind of complaining that was begging for attention. Obviously that is not appealing to anyone. And of course, too much complaining isn't good either. Nobody likes a Debby Downer.

But a little sincere complaining now and then? Go for it! It's your right! I won't take it away from you.  Just remember, there's a delicate balance with complaining - not too much, and it has to be sincere. But I believe in you. You got this.

I feel better now.


Katherine said...

I've gotta say, I'm really enjoying these posts so far!! Sometimes it's good to just get something off your chest. :) And I love the gif of Jimmy Fallon laughing - that guy can't keep a straight face!! Also, I really think I need to take up saying, "That really grinds my gears" more often. Seems fun.

violet50 said...

I really agree with you. and the people who try to one-up you show that they are poor listeners.
I agree with you. The people who one-up show that they are poor listeners with little or no empathy. I steer clear of them. Funny post btw!

heather said...

People should be able to complain just as much as you are able to talk about happy things! You can't be happy and pleased with everything all of the time.