Whenever I’d complain as a child, my mom would tell me to “suck it but because life isn’t fair.” But what about as an adult? Do we still have to suck it up, even when life is horrible to us?
Life can be unfair in an infinite number of ways, and as human beings we are susceptible to feeling pretty down when it is. Maybe you’ve been diagnosed with an incurable disease, or you just have a bad case of the flu, you got called into work on your one day off, or you’ve been denied your dream job. In these cases when life has truly wronged us, should we just suck it up? I don’t think so.
Every person has the inalienable right to be upset and complain about his or her problems. Feelings come with our human nature and there should be no shame about having them. I’m not suggesting that we dedicate our lives to focusing on the things that bring us down, but I do think we have every right to feel bad about our lives’ misfortunes every now and then. It will help us heal from them.
At this point in my life, only shyly into my 20s and suffering from a chronic illness that keeps me from doing many of the things I’ve previously enjoyed, I feel I’ve been dealt an outrageously unfair hand. My life has become a cyclic event of medications, doctor’s appointments, and painful treatments. What should be the best, most carefree years of my life are instead depressing and unrelatable to my peers.
I’ve made a lot of progress moving on and focusing on the more exciting parts of my life, but I couldn’t have done it without taking time to be emotional about my predicament before moving on. This is how I know that we shouldn’t just suck it up when life gives us lemons.
If life has recently given you lemons and you’re not sure how to deal with them, don’t make lemonade just yet. Squeeze some of the sour juice into your mouth first. It will help take the sting out of the drink later.
Don’t feel guilty about complaining to friends and family about something that’s happened to make you feel down in the dumps. If you feel like you have more to say than you want to be heard, journaling is a great option; it lets you get out everything you feel without feeling self-conscious about what others may think of you. It’s healthy for our bodies to release stress and emotional tension; holding onto that stuff will only let it build up until it towers so high that it crashes down on us.
Depending on the situation, consider looking for a support group in your area or online that welcomes people like you. Sharing your story and hearing others’ can help the healing process evolve. Similarly, taking to a therapist or other type of counselor might help you release your demons and say the things you can’t even tell your friends. Don’t rule it out just because you think people with your problems aren’t the type who seek counseling; it’s for everyone.
Finally, don’t underestimate your own abilities to handle the issue at hand. Although your problem may seem like a ticking time bomb at the time it hits, time really does heal many wounds. Even if, like me, time can’t heal you, it does have a way of making things seem less scary as it passes. And let’s not rule out completely acceptable remedies to life’s unfairness such as ice cream and Doritos. Paired with a good friend and rom-coms, they just may do the trick.