I am seeing the ‘be kind’ words everywhere, but I can’t bring myself to put them up.
Because it means so many different things to so many people.
One group I am in has many posts about how the media and social media users use bully tactics, and how it shouldn’t be allowed #bekind. Quickly followed by a post of a photo of a gentleman’s note in a window looking for that someone special, with degrading comments and his number on show. What harm was that gentleman doing? Was there a need to go out of their way to post it for a laugh? Or is that courtesy just for celebrities?
It does make my blood boil to see the disparity between what people think is bullying versus ‘banter’ and ‘it was only a laugh’. It is really a very, very fine line. Is it only bullying if the person takes their own life? Is it not bullying to post something that could cause deep embarrassment, shame, anxiety for that person, celeb or not? Suicide is happening in all walks of life, through the ages and everywhere – as is bullying.
You will never know what is going on behind the smile, the laughing, the joking. You will never know the sadness, the anger, the loneliness. The deep need for someone to see without making a fuss and fix it for you. The depression and anxiety, the torrent of thoughts and overwhelming emotions behind the irrational behaviours and words of someone struggling.
We say we want to be tolerant and want for friends to reach out. But look at actions – they are the real tell. They are often what stops people from reaching out and plays a huge part in stigma.
We are not a tolerant world.
But we can be… it starts with each and every one of us.
Be Kind? Every day. To everyone – including yourself.