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Monday 30 September 2013

"Why Generation Y Yuppies are Unhappy" - HUFFINGTON POST ARTICLE

Recently in therapy, I have been tackling my feelings of anger towards the idea of "entitlement".  At one session, I was discussing my feelings of anxiety regarding an upcoming wedding I had to attend.  I have always had mixed emotions when it comes to weddings.  I love celebrating my friends and having a great time, but on many occasion, I end up crying (and not tears of joy).  The anxiety stems from a deep-rooted sense of jealousy.  Jealousy that these people have found someone who is willing to say to them "I love you so much, I want to spend the rest of my life with you even through the worst times because there is no one I could ever love more."  Just typing that, I felt my gag reflex pulsing.  Apparently, the shield that protects the world from my anger and bitterness is weakest at the point that weddings come into conversation.

I've never had someone who loves me so much they want to spend the rest of their life with me.  Even the love of my parents was conditional.  My father was never a presence in my life and my mother, due to her illness, could flip from loving to hating in a matter of seconds without reason or warning.  It is hard to live without anyone putting you first in their lives and it leaves a burning hole inside - the desire to be loved unconditionally becomes a desperate obsession.  So, weddings are a trigger for me, as is the word "entitlement".  Having spent my entire life working for every last thing I have, it frustrates me when others think they deserve... well, just about anything - or are "entitled" to love and happiness.  I know this stems from a belief that I am not deserving of anything; hence the ugly jealousy monster rears its head.

I've been working on improving my idea of entitlement and what it actually means in my life.  My goal over the past couple weeks has been to make peace with that word and start taking ownership of the things to which I am entitled.  It's a hard road.  My therapist (much to my chagrin) has made me write the word on the blackboard in my apartment, so I see it every time I turn around.  Pretty hard to repress and ignore the emotions that it brings up when it is haunting your every move.  The only option is to deal with them.

Overall, it is going well and I am starting develop my own sense of entitlement; in the way that I am entitled to be hurt and express that hurt, I am entitled to be treated fairly in my job and not work myself to death for other people's benefit, I am entitled to speak and be heard, to stand and be seen.  These may sound like simple things, but after spending my life trying to make peace and putting the feelings of others before my own, it is quite remarkable to assert that I am deserving of equal consideration.  It is really very freeing.

The day after I started on this journey to entitlement, I came across this article from the Huffington Post that pretty much describes my frustrations with a lot of the people in my generation.  My upbringing more closely resembles that of the people in my parents' generation, so I often feel distant or out of place with those Gen Y kids who have been raised with a heightened sense of entitlement.  (And why it makes my blood boil when someone thinks that they are special without any of the hard work to prove it!) Check out the article and let me know what you think!  What are your experiences with entitlement?


1 comment:

  1. AJ i love you and I PLAN on spending the rest of my life in a very close, loving and meanigful relationship with you!