Week Forty-six: Amanda Kasper

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Write about an insecurity you have or once had

Don’t ever let someone tell you
 that you can’t do something.
Not even me. you got a dream,
you gotta protect it.
People can’t do something themselves,
they wanna tell you that you can’t do it.
you want something?

 Go get it. Period.

..Will Smith, The Pursuit of Happyness..

What I’ve never really been able to understand about the internet is the ways in which people take the time and energy to leave anonymous commentary in the most random and inappropriate places, taking personal vendetta against the author or the topic or the tone of voice or the date it was published or the color of the ink in which the post was written. I only wish I was joking, but I’m not. I’ve seen it. I’ve felt it. Here, and in other places. Affecting me, and other bloggers too.

Each person has their own way to process and deal, each person has the option to share or keep quiet the experiences in which they’ve had with cyber bullying and other factors that one shouldn’t have to worry about when trying to do good out in the world. That’s the awful part – is that no matter where you are, who you are, or what you’re trying to do, there will always be people trying to bring you down.

We most likely will never understand their motives, but if we acknowledge that their actions have far more to do with them than with us, I think we can try to keep moving forward, as unscathed as possible.

But learning the difference, learning who you can trust and what trust means, well, it’s a lifelong battle. Especially if you’re a girl. As I’ve learned, age means nothing; if you’re stuck in the 7th grade mentally, that’s the only way you understand how to act. And for that, I am truly and deeply sorry for some, for their lives will never amount to what they could have, and at the end of the day, they will only have themselves to blame for that.

& Here’s a word to the wise…

If you have an axe to grind, do so behind closed doors. I can ultimately promise you that doing it in a public way, or involving people who do not need to be involved will leave you licking your wounds, without having accomplished what you went in for, and feeling all the feelings all at once. Be an adult. Maturity is an art, not a science. Even if you haven’t grown into it yet – let me save you some of the pain. Communication is best left between two people, not in a vague facebook status or in an email with six other people copied. It just isn’t. I guarantee you also, that by approaching this with your head held high and your voice confident, you might actually find yourself resolving the problem, or realizing it wasn’t actually a problem at all, before you’ve involved half the proverbial neighborhood.

Let’s be straight here. There are PLENTY of things on the internet I have no interest in, I disagree with, I feel offended by, I feel like I should be offering advice on, etc. But typically, I don’t. Because really – what’s the point? Does it make me someone cool to bully others? Or what about making them feel bad about their life or their circumstances or the way that they write or the ways that they are choosing to deal with a situation, any situation. What does that accomplish?

A lot of hurt feelings, and a lot of bad guys.

I opened my journey, because I believed that the world was good, and that people innately wanted to help others. That belief, sadly, is incredibly naive and over the last 12 months, I have seen that in so many more ways than I can count. It’s unfortunate. But it’s the truth. Where I set out simply to share my experiences, not looking for or asking for or trying to give advice, there was a significant amount of backlash from individuals whom I will honestly never be able to understand. Their motives simply escape me. Shouldn’t we want to reach out our hands and pull others up, rather than trying to prove that we are sicker or weaker or more vulnerable than they are? 

____________________

Amanda Kasper is a writer, reader, quote lover, CASA advocate, and non-profit believer, seeking space as a lifelong learner, passionate lover, and irreplaceable friend. Amanda tweets at @AKasper513 and blogs over at “& this I believe”

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