Mallory James Glenn
The Independent Woman
Happy International Women's Day!!
I grew up calling myself independent. Having been raised by the strongest independent woman I personally know (my mother) I was proud to say I had learned from her how to take care of myself. What I didn’t realize until much later in life, was that on top of all the wonderful empowering traits I learned from my mom about being an independent woman, I tacked on a few new ones of my own. Masked in independence was a girl who didn’t know HOW to need people. I grew up hearing so many people talk about the importance of being an independent woman, not just within my own family but within society as well. Independence was the desired and in contrast it created a belief that anything less was undesirable. Independent women were seen as strong, independent women were seen as unbreakable. So in moments when we feel weak or we feel broken I think it only makes sense that we learned to become silent. No wonder we have a generation of woman who are hide how they really feel, are afraid and can’t find a voice to say, No and dance around asking for what they what. It’s funny how it works, we were taught to be independent and started wearing the armour to match. Afraid to be the girl or woman who needed anything (afraid to be needy) we adapted a fear to speak up because if we need anything from anyone, especially a man we aren’t independent, we aren’t strong, we aren’t desirable. I prided myself on doing it all on my own. Sorting through my own thoughts, emotions and ultimately taking on the world all by myself. It left me exhausted, alone and isolated during times in my life when I absolutely without a doubt needed to say, NO. I needed help. I needed, I needed, I needed and I did not ask.
People NEED people. We need community, we need a friend or two, we need a therapist, we need friendly neighbours and to let the whole world in like they are our family. Independence is important but I think in some ways we’ve gotten carried away. Let’s let each other in, let’s care for each other because who are we kidding we aren’t getting anywhere, we aren’t saving ourselves or this planet if we are each individually doing all by ourselves.