September 9, 2012

Go Ahead, Call Me a Bitch.

It’s time we all get over the pathological need to be liked.

I had a fellow writer leave me a (positive) comment yesterday, saying “Yeah, bitch!” and then disclaimed that she meant it in the best girl-power way possible, which was how I took it anyway, considering the source.

I started thinking about two things:

1. We get awfully hung up on this word sometimes. Like many other “bad” words, the offense has much more to do with the intention behind it than the word itself.

You could call me “fluffy bunnykins” with anger and hatred behind it, and it would be more offensive than bitch. A women’s studies professor I had in college used to refer to it as “Being In Total Control of Herself.” I like it.

2. We (especially women, but I’ll make this a genderless “we”), are too concerned with being perceived as “nice.”

Forget nice.

Politeness is wonderful; I make a point of it. Be kind. Kindness is free and has endless benefits. Be compassionate. Compassion takes courage and self-love. But nice?

How about instead of trying so hard to be nice, to be constantly concerned with other’s opinions of us, we strive to be genuine?

How about instead of worrying that we’ll be misunderstood and disliked, we seek to understand and have compassion for others?

I would rather spend time with people who are genuine than spend time surrounded by people who are stuck in the box of being nice, nervously trying not to break out of it for fear being disliked.

Every bit of energy wasted on “nice” could have been spent laughing too loud, or dancing in public, or kissing for too long, or speaking the truth  or helping make someone’s day better—instead of just making sure she thinks you are “nice.”

Every time that you let go of you in order to be nice, you miss out on a chance to let people know you and love you for who you are.

How about we let go of “nice” and remember how to be real.

To all the people I love, I love you because you are real.

I love you because you are weird and random, compassionate and kind—even if it means you aren’t always nice. And really, whether I’m being a bitch and you’re calling me on it—or it’s affectionate girl-power silliness, I’d rather be called a bitch for being myself, than be called “nice” because I was acting like someone else.



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Image: Alexandre Pereira/Flickr


Fear & Fearlessness.

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John H Feb 8, 2014 4:03pm

I once worked with a Canadian therapist that had a theory about the "devil" and the "witch". He believed that surrounding our spiritual core is a 'shadow power" the devil or witch (bitch) who protected the "pure" core from violation from the temporal world. It is naive to believe we can always be "nice" and walk unprotected among toxic people and organizations. The shadow self is part of our loving self. When we honor our shadow then we can have access to that which is being held sacred beyond the defense. Integrity is the ability to integrate both our shadow and light selves so we can fully engage with the world and others.

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Kate Bartolotta

Kate Bartolotta is a wellness cheerleader, yogini storyteller, and self-care maven.
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