Let’s have a conversation about something we don’t often talk about.
As a kid growing up in a South Asian immigrant household, I was met with stern voices from the men around me practically my entire life.
I grew up quite often keeping my head low, low enough to avoid making a mistake amongst my uncles. I always had to think twice about my actions to make sure it was acceptable for the men around me. I remember when I was 6 years old my uncle scolded my mother for putting a “short” dress on me. My mother immediately changed me. I was six and for a child to feel conditioned to cover up and feel sexualized is absolutely disgusting.
Since that incident and throughout my adolescence, my father felt over protective over his little girl, and what he called love and protection often translated into violence: stern tones, anger, and the like.
Growing up conditioned in that environment caused me to mix such cues with love, regardless of who they were. I knew father grew up in a time vastly different from mine, and though his heart was heavy from his own sufferings and pain which he never meant to inflict on me, he did. And it hurt. Deeply. And that’s a baggage I have always, and will continue to, carry. That is the weight I come with.
When men came into my life (in relationships and potential relationships), I found myself allowing toxic, possessive, and inherently hostile energies to exist — I often confused their violence for love. To this day, each man that walks into my life has to experience me in my rawest form— one that consists of getting triggered when someone raises their voice at me and one that consists of serious trust issues that takes time to dismantle. I am heavy and there’s still pain embedded in my bones, in my very existence. But this weight is the lightest burden you’ll ever have to carry because though I bleed heavy, my love is that much fuller because of it.
If you’re struggling with something similar, please know that you are worthy of so much light and happiness. You do not need to settle. Ever.