The Emotional Barrier

by jdeena

Over the years, I have heard people tell me that I have no heart. Whether it is because I show no emotion in regards to other people’s situations, or in regards to my own situation, I have always been very reserved with my emotions. I guess it’s because growing up I always saw how men reacted to women crying, and it was always deemed a weakness. I never wanted to portray that; I wanted to be the strong one that never let words or situations hurt or affect me.

Years of this conditioned me into the heartless person people think I am today. People would say it jokingly, but with an undertone of brutal honesty. And you know what? That’s fine. I’d rather be seen as a cold, unyielding witch than a weeping, weakened stereotype. Not to say that women who cry are all weak, but some take it to a whole new level of extreme. I know that crying is therapeutic, and that everyone is encouraged to express their emotions. It’s healthy. Unfortunately, you are also judged by how you react emotionally to certain situations, but especially in relationships.

I’ve reached the point where I have recovered from my last heartbreak. That one shattered my wall into a million teeny, tiny pieces. But I’ve restructured. This wall is made from reinforced steel, not glass. So no amount of shaking will disturb it’s foundation. You might be thinking how extreme this sounds, but let’s be honest. If we don’t have this wall to protect us, we are susceptible to many years of unnecessary hurt launched at us by men who just don’t care about us. I cannot afford any more time wasted on rebuilding myself after a heartbreak, or analyzing situations gone bad. You stop calling me? Ok, I’ve moved on the next week. You decide you don’t want to marry me? Ok, that doesn’t even phase me. Just like you see me as a convenience, I see you as less of one. 

You can come into my life and leave just as quickly, and it won’t phase me. If you want to call me cold, that’s fine too. Yet when a guy acts this way, it’s completely justified because men are less emotional. Turns out, so are women. It’s not as acceptable though, and so we are targeted and judged. If it wasn’t for certain types of men, women would continue to be nurturing and sensitive.

When guys meet me and hear my view on this, they tell me that it’s sad I feel this way. I ask them why, when all I ever experience is this exact scenario. They try and persuade me that not all men are this way, but within a week- you guessed it!- off they go, once again proving me right. You might say that my outlook may have scared them off, but let’s be real. If a guy wants to stay he will stay. No wall is high enough or thick enough to keep someone who is determined away.

This post was inspired by something a friend of mine posted today. She said “They can’t hurt you unless you let them.” Now, whether or not she was talking about guys specifically is yet to be discovered. However, it got me thinking about all the conversations I’ve had with people over the past few months with both genders where it was pointed out that I block people out emotionally. If that’s true, It’s only because I cannot afford to be hurt again. And if that means that I haven’t fully healed, I beg to differ.

It means I have become strong enough to rebuild that fortress that protects my heart.