I went on Facebook today. Nothing unusual there. I decided to search for a female acquaintance of mine. I do this sometimes when I’m being nosy or looking for inspiration. On this occasion, the latter was my motivation.
This woman has recently started her own business and as I’m exploring the concept myself, I hit the search button. She’s a bit younger than me and successful by societal standards; career, marriage and a small personal business. Despite this, by societal standards this woman is considered, ‘unattractive’. She is overweight and often tries too hard. Her Facebook posts often reflect an insecure soul desperately pretending she’s OK with who she is. You may know someone similar that immediately comes to mind. Anyway, I don’t have a problem with this, the world is full of insecure people. What annoys me with her is the flavour of arrogance she uses to try and compensate for her insecurities. This personally hits a nerve as I can’t stand falseness, niceties or ‘showy-ness’, hence why she always remained just an acquaintance. I kept her as a Facebook friend because despite her insecurities, how she looks and her arrogant style – this woman inspired me.
So imagine my horror when I found out that she had unfriended me. OK, I wasn’t that horrified but still. I was like, oh, another one bites the dust.
And why? By societal standards I guess you could say I’m considered attractive, successful in my career and I’m recently married. My Facebook posts are full of satirical humour to make sure people stay friends with me. As a successful and attractive woman, I’m a threat to other women. I’ve often known that I’ve inspired other ladies, which for the most part, I’ve embraced and enjoyed. I have also enjoyed reaping inspiration from other women.
5 years ago I got divorced. It was very much my rock bottom as I went through a breakdown. I had a lot of friends then. People also seemed to like me better. I think some people genuinely loved the fact that someone, ‘like me’, wasn’t perfect. I know this, because I’ve also relished that fact when I’ve discovered someone I look up to isn’t perfect. How sad is it that?
So today, when I discovered that my female acquaintance had unfriended me, it stung a bit. Because being successful and happy, can be a really lonely business for women. For men, it’s celebrated. For women, it’s tolerated. For this very reason I’ve often had more male friends than female. Within the context of friendship, men aren’t threatened by a successful and happy woman. I’m also aware that any men reading this will think I’ve got guy friends because I’m hot and they just want to try and get with me. Which is partly true, I’m not an idiot. But not all guys are that shallow and the ones who tried – we’ve often become great friends regardless.
It makes me sad that my finding happiness and getting married, provoked this kind of reaction. I kind of understand that it probably triggered something in her that makes her uncomfortable with herself. Is this what the world is becoming? A place where being uncomfortable is too much of a challenge?
It’s so much easier to exclude than to deal with ourselves. But if anything, by writing this I’d like to encourage to not always succumb to what is easy. Say ‘hey’ to the woman who looks like she’s got it all together, don’t feel intimidated by her. She’s probably lonelier than you think.