Chronic Guilt

Of the many difficulties women tend to face, one that I particularly wrestle with daily is guilt. To quote a woman I once knew, “I came out of the womb apologizing.” Different women may struggle with this to different degrees, and some may not encounter it at all, but it is a very real thing, regardless if it all seems to be just in your head.

Regardless of how many times we tell ourselves that we don’t have anything to feel guilty about, that nagging feeling that we’re doing something wrong never fails to wheedle its way into our subconscious, contaminating even the most innocent of intentions. If I say such and such, it might come across wrong. But if I don’t say it, I’ll be wishing I did. Just recently, I was talking with a friend of mine about this, and we were surprised to discover that we both feel guilty spending money. Buying food is perfectly logical and necessary, but saving money is essential. Buying clothes that fit well is important, but we can survive without – no use wasting money. The problem with this mindset is that money in and of itself isn’t really worth anything, but is rather a tool that we can use to help us obtain what we need to survive, and perhaps even splurge on an occasional treat if circumstances allow.

No matter how many times I hear the saying, “Taking care of yourself isn’t selfish, it’s an investment,” I still think that I am inconveniencing someone just by existing. So to all the women (and men), who battle with this, I want to tell you that you’re not alone. Let’s be friends, and then we’ll feel guilty together.

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