Living in Wonju South Korea, These Many Long Years

Living in Wonju South Korea, These Many Long Years: Version 2.0!

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Self Hate!

Today over coffee I had a conversation with a coworker I think is rather cool and interesting, but that I've had an off and on relationship with over the last few years. Sadly, for the last while she seems pretty down and full of self doubt and self loathing.

She's set to have plastic surgery done on her eyes soon. I've told her I think she's wasting her time and money, as she looks fine just the way she is. She talked about how she is planning on moving to California within the year, a chance to start again and maybe get things right.

This kind of made me mad. Look, I don't know why you think going off far away is going to make things suddenly better; just get right with yourself and all will be right.

She scoffed: you're not an Asian woman. You don't know what it's like.

A dead silence enveloped us, all sound muted within our immediate vicinity. I sat still for a moment, then said:

You're right. You have the luxury to hate yourself if you want. Go with it if it serves. I'm ascribed the duty to hate myself for being a white male. That I've 'taken advantage' of my colonial right by marrying a woman of color and 'take' a salary based solely on my 'birthright' is the narrative that I'm supposed to listen to. That I'm supposed to behave a billion times better than any of the assholes in this room just to prove that I'm 'sensitive' and attuned to the neocolonial dialogue is the cross that I have to bear. But you know what? I've met more than a few self hating peeps in my time. Ethnicity, religion, background, ultimately these didn't matter, since even though they were all different, they shared the same symptoms of the same disease: lack of confidence, lack of will, lack of self. Fuck that noise. Get right with yourself and live your life.

Easy for you to say. I have to go back to work. With that she left.

I picked up my trash and went back to my office. On the way, I wondered what it would take for her to see what I was trying to get at. As I was feeling rather boorish, I thought a pile of good sex and some LSD might sort her out. That or living on the streets and learning to appreciate life for what it can be. How can you help someone will?

I let it go and went back to work.

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