Thursday, March 02, 2006

To suck, or not to suck?

Ok, you, you, you, and you sniggering behind your coffee...ALL of you get your heads out of the gutters. This is sadly not one of those kinds of posts.

Here's the thing. I am a sucker. (For the two of you still chortling....still NOT what I'm talking about.) If someone asks me to do something, I will almost always say "yes". Even if it is a gigund-o pain in the arse, I will still usually say yes. If it's possible, I'll probably do it. This sometimes has a fun affect on me...you may have seen me at some point, running around like some pyschotic errand machine? I probably cursed and um....gestured....at you on the road, remember now?

This has always been a little difficult for me. I wonder if I'm too wishy-washy. I wonder if I'm giving too much. I wonder if I am doing no woman a favor by doing exactly as woman should in the eyes of Santa Claus. And sometimes, then I try to be a little more selective in my yessing. But it never feels right. It feels like I'm no-ing, just to be petty, just for the sake of being mean. And I start to think things like, "Well, if everyone did whatever they could for everyone else, then this would be one gawd damn happy schmappy world. And I'd like to be one of those everyones." Then I start yessing again until I'm cursing you on the road because I've got 514 errands to run in the 20 minutes before I need to get to the school and pick up Little A.

L's a sucker too and so we've talked about this on many, many occasions. We talk in circles, worrying about being taken advantage of, feeling somewhat resentful that there aren't hoards of people in our lives yessing us to death, feeling like bad feminists, feeling like we're nice, good people, and so on and so on. And in the end we always say the same thing, "I'd rather be good, and know that I was good, and be taken advantage of than know that I'm an ass hole, even if that keeps me safe from using losers." But somehow, it doesn't always feel balanced.

Where do you all stand on this one?

11 Comments:

Blogger The Gradual Gardener said...

Cough, cough, cough...I didn't know coffee could go down that pipe!

I used to be much more of a yes-girl than I am now. I still do it sometimes, though.

BUT, since I now know you say yes to EVERY request, want to come over and clean my house? How about if I mail you a few of my bills...would you pay them for me?

10:00 AM  
Blogger V said...

Lol....welllll....I said if it's POSSIBLE! Sorry, no dinero! And cleaning....yeah. No cleaning either! Unless you get horribly sick or something, then I'd probably pop over.....

10:05 AM  
Anonymous TB said...

I'm a yes person too. But the way I see it, my saying yes and doing nice things for someone should be independent of what they do for me. If that makes me a sucker, which I'm sure it has on many an occasion, then so be it.
On the other hand, if you burn me even once, I will never let you take advantage of me a second time. I try to always give people th benefit of the doubt as to any ulterior motives until they prove me wrong.

1:30 PM  
Blogger JayneSays said...

Funny, people rarely ask me to do things for them, hmm. I really think unconditional giving is the BEST feeling in the world. Paying it forward, etc. This kind of giving brings me joy. If I am giving then feeling resentful, I stop. I either change my perspective and be happy in the giving act itself or stop the giving. Giving + resentment cancel each other out in my book.

I do like things to be fair and equal and will let up if I am feeling taken advantage of, and overcompensate when I feel I have been the one taking advantage of someone else. I like balance and always try to seek it. That rarely sucks ; )

1:39 PM  
Blogger mama_tulip said...

I try to stay true to myself as much as possible. If I know that something will upset me/make me uncomfortable/be too much for me to do, then I say no. If I think I can swing it, I say yes. I try to do what I can and I'm more willing to say "yes" to someone who I know will return the favour or do the same to me later on down the road, ya know? (translation: when I need a babysitter.)

1:52 PM  
Anonymous Nancy said...

I suck too. I mean, I'm also a sucker. If I say no to a direct request I feel guilty, and sometimes I volunteer for things just because I'm afraid no one else will (like teacher appreciation day at day care... what if no one else volunteers and the poor teachers don't get recognized?)

You've found my fatal Kryptonite-like flaw, V.

2:25 PM  
Blogger Tink said...

I'm going to ride on Mama T's coat tails for this one.

So... About that sucking. Or should I say sizzling? *Eye roll*

2:54 PM  
Blogger Iamadesigner said...

This is something I have definitely struggled with. For a long time I said yes to just about everyone but in the past couple years I have learned to say no once in awhile. The way I see it you have to say yes to yourself every now and then which can mean having to say no to someone else. In the long run it has made me feel better about myself.

9:47 PM  
Anonymous kat said...

I know Oprah's done a show about how women are more likely than men to say yes because that's just our personality.

I'm a sucker too. In fact, I have many of the same thoughts. It really all depends on my mood at the time - but I've learned to be more outspoken and to say NO from time to time...which has lead to better YES opportunities.

9:55 PM  
Blogger V said...

Yeah, I try to stop when I get resentful too. But it doesn't usually seem to end there....it's usually more cyclical. I'll do, and do, and do....get a litle resentful, get over it (either by something someone has done for me, or just because I want to be nice), lather, rinse, repeat.

N watches those stupid court shows a lot...you know the ones. The girl gives the guy some money when they are dating. They break up. He says it was a gift, she says it was a loan. This scenario makes me want to smash the giant God-box. I mean its not only natural to want to help someone you love, but its also expected that you will (yeah...especially if you're the woman....endless supporters), and yet most times, these women end up getting punished for trying to be supportive. I'm sure most of them would be considered to be suckers on some level. But if they stuck to saying "no", I'm guessing they would be considered bitches....shrews....etc. Being a woman is such a catch-22.

8:31 AM  
Blogger JayneSays said...

Agreed. I also believe that what other people "consider" me has nothing to do with who I am at all. I've had people tell me I'm a selfish bitch and I've had other people tell me how amazingly altruistic and generous I am. Both of those statements are just the speaker's perception and do not define me either way.

Just the fact that you are thinking about and discussing this matter makes me think you are a step ahead of most of us, who often just do, react, etc. without much self-reflection. I believe you will honor yourself and be a good role model for your girl. But I would still practice saying no every now and again, just so people don't take advantage of you! : )

2:02 PM  

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