I don’t think one gets far as a confrontational person. This type of defense is aggressive, argumentative, and can be quite hostile. I am appalled by the behavior of caustic and sarcastic women and men. However, I admit I have been caught in those types of situations where I have made statements I regret but I am 99% never the aggressor. I am a firm believer in never shying away from defending my principles. And I always defend my friends, unless they give me cause to agree with those on the attack!
I do think defending yourself and others is protective and quite positive. For example, protecting your position rather than trying to score one up against another person is healthy. I find that living in Elsewhere is a two-edged sword. Elsewhere has lessened my fear to almost zero when it comes to speaking out and defending myself and others’ values and principles.
On the other hand, I have lost my trust in the human race as a whole because people’s actions have made me leery. I feel betrayed. I am sad. Beyond that, I am disappointed. So, I speak out. Do you?
When to Speak Out
As I sit in my office with the windows facing to the south, the sun is already glaring into the room. It is 8:48 am and I have already worked out with my trainer, Rebecca. Oh, did I tell you I am back into my workout schedule with abundance? Two days a week I take Pilates with my Ultimate Concierge, three days a week I work out with my trainer, at home. And I am taking boxing again with Adam 30 minutes a week. For two years I have been a slug and enough is enough. Are you back into your routine(s)?
I recall that I always spoke out when I felt secure and empowered. When justice for one was not justice for my friend, family, an acquaintance or a cause.
It is going to happen at least once in your lifetime. One of your close friends is unfairly treated. Her actions are misunderstood. On one hand, you want to speak out against ‘the maddening crowd’ to protect her. On the other hand, you have to ask yourself, “Do you want to get entangled in a web of problems? Do you want to step up to the plate? Or do you want to keep your silence?
The First Time I Defended My Principles
The first time I stepped up to the plate, I was 18 years old and a freshman in college. How old were you?
Six months before I had pledged a sorority. It was now ‘hash’ at the sorority house when new a pledge class of girls was hashed over by the sorority. Who will be chosen? Who will be tossed aside?
I was still a pledge but invited along with my pledge sisters to sit in. We had no vote. We were gaining experience; listening to the older girls discuss the qualities of the potential new pledges.
I remember the cold winter day, vividly. I was seated in a chair knitting. Even at the young age of eighteen, I was my mother’s daughter, meaning I was always up to learning new skills. At eighteen it was knitting.
Anyway, I heard a friend of mine’s name come up. She was being hashed over. I did not lift my head from my knitting as I said to myself, “knit one, pearl two.” I listened intently to the words of my sisters.
Their bantering back and forth was not positive. And to be honest, I don’t recall what they said but I do recall that I began to knit and pearl faster and faster, thinking to myself, should I speak up?
My friend’s name was Gail. She was a beautiful tall blonde with a warm personality. Her first semester grades were admirable. She was well-liked and would be an asset to our house.
Gathering My Strength
I finally looked up from my knitting and took a good look at my older sisters sitting on couches, chairs, and on the floor. At eighteen, I determined they were jealous of this gorgeous girl. My sorority was known for its intellect. I made up my mind … I am going to defend my girlfriend. After all, I was my mother’s daughter and knew she would applaud me as long as I was a lady.
I was a small-town girl from Kankakee by the Sea and I had learned early on, because I was a minority, to use my empowerment in a positive way. As a woman, I luxuriate in it.
Looking back on the event I know it was also my values that caused me to raise my hand to speak.
And, then dear reader, I said what I honestly felt.
“I think this girl intimidates some of you.”
You could have heard a pin drop as they stared at me in silence. After I had my short say, I remember I was proud of myself for speaking out for my friend who could not defend herself.
I never told Gail about the episode and she did not get enough votes to get into the sorority.
Now that I am a woman far over 50+ I have learned that some women pre-judge and confuse others’ motives. They misinterpret intentions, overreact, and say mean things. They point fingers accusing women of many things that are untrue. I am of the opinion to take your time before you jump to conclusions.
Tips on How to Take a Stand in Defense of a Close Girlfriend
- Be true to your feelings. What is your desired outcome?
- Be deliberate. Think before you speak
- Talk softly and slowly
- Don’t let emotion trick you into acting foolish
- Bad things happen to good people — so feel empowered, enlightened, and awesome when you speak out. Luxuriate in your lack of fear of taking the right stand based on your principles.
Finally, at times, dear reader of mine, as much as a stand should be taken, the dye has been cast and silence is golden.
When you do take action, feel your awesomeness, dear reader, and luxuriate in a warm bath, light candles, and smile.
Do you feel comfortable speaking up for your principles? Let’s start a discussion in the comments. I love hearing from you!
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