Social Media Envy: How to Take Responsibility For Your Own Happiness

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Hello guys!  Welcome back to Marsha’s Journey. So today I am putting my social commentary cap back on, addressing an issue that has been heavily talked about online recently: Social Media Envy & Fake Happiness.

It’s 2017 and we are in the middle of the social media takeover. Every single day more and more persons join the social media sphere which is becoming more and more a place to share carefully curated lives of bliss and perfection.




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Why Poverty Shaming Is Wrong

Almost everyday that I browse the internet I am sure to see at least one story, post or headline talking about body shaming. From celebrities to regular folk there is no shortage of complaints and rants telling people to be proud of who they are and of their unique bodies. The opposite is true for poverty shaming. Hell, I might be one of the few person to write about this topic if this is even a “topic”.

I define poverty shaming as the act of degrading or making a person feel inferior because of their lack of financial resources. You might be thinking  “I don,t do that”, but think again. How many times have you sang the song “I don’t want no scrub”, or shared or like a status or meme talking about” broke men don’t deserve love/sex”, or made fun of another persons cheap weave, clothes, car, etc. I admit I am guilty of it.

The difference between body shaming and poverty shaming is that body shaming is usually done more directly. For example telling someone they are too fat, or they shouldn’t dress a certain way etc. Poverty shaming is an issue that is ingrained in society. Not being able to afford a nice car, a beautiful house, latest clothes etc. is something we are taught  to be ashamed of. I can recall the countless times especially in my teen-aged years that I have refused to go out because I did not have nice clothes or my shoes didn’t look nice enough, and why all because of what people might think of me. They might not say it out loud but that attitude of I’m better because I have the latest stuff was always present.

In adulthood men bear the brunt of this practice because society expects them to be providers. It is however not limited to men, because the women who date these so-called “scrubs” are deemed unambitious. Funnily enough there is a domestic violence epidemic in Jamaica  that is being fueled in part by women getting into relationships for the sole purpose of using men for their money – possibly caused by ridicule aimed at them if they decide to date someone  who is not financially well off. (That’s another topic for another post).  Why should someone be denied the basic right of love just because they are not rich? I know lots of persons who are hard-working and ambitious and are living in poverty just because of our poor economy. Not every man who is not working or is not able to afford a car or shower a woman with gifts is a scrub.

Quite recently there was a video circulating on social media showing a man proposing to a woman who quite disgustingly turned down the proposal because among other things they were still walking and taking the bus. I was taken aback by her utterances toward the man who was kneeling there looking dumbfounded. It is one thing to turn down a proposal because you genuinely don’t love a person but because he doesn’t drive  car?! That is shameful and is the heights of poverty shaming.

“Poor” people deserve a chance at happiness too. Instead of telling persons who are struggling that they don’t deserve this and that, why not try to empower them? Putting them down only serves to weaken their self-esteem which will more than likely keep them in poverty than lift them out of it. A relationship should not be based on how much money the man can give the woman . Everybody is free to choose who they want to date and if a broke guy is not your speed so be it. But don’t go bashing broke guys and painting everyone who is broke with a broad brush of lazy and worthless.

Let me know what your thoughts on this topic are in the comments below.

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My Profession Made me Into A Feminist

Feminism has been a hot topic of late and especially since Donald Trump has taken office as the new president of the United States; for obvious reasons. Feminism and standing up for equality across the sexes was never an issue I paid much attention to until after I started my professional life. It might sound self centered, but sometimes it takes personal impact for us to pay attention to issues of importance that affect other persons everyday.

I studied Surveying and Geographic Information Science (GIS) at University. Going in I was (and still am) interested in pursuing a career in Geographic Information Science. The program did not unfold as I expected it to and it turned out to be mostly focused on Surveying. GIS is a relatively small industry in Jamaica and upon completion of my studies I found myself being ushered into the Land Surveying profession out of a share need for a job rather than a desire to pursue it.

Being my usual self I have been working hard and holding my own. Yet, I find that quite often I have been underestimated by both colleagues and clients alike. I can recall the countless times I have been asked “Are you really a surveyor”?, followed by “You look too dainty for that”, “Do you go into bushes?” “Can you manage the hills?”

Those questions are truly annoying and goes to show how incompetent society has made women out to be,  but still worse than those questions is the assumption that my male colleague is always the surveyor and I am…I don’t know just a side piece?…an assistant?…anything…just not the person who can use the equipment and go into bushes and be in charge.  Not to mention the double checking of my advice against that of a male counterpart.

To these questions my answer is YES, YES, YES! I can do it. In addition to being technical surveying is also labour intensive profession and I might be small but it doesn’t take a big belly and arms like Popeye to lift a tripod. It might not be the career that I ultimately want to pursue but I can do it and have been doing it for years successfully.

I don’t blame these people, I blame a society that has taught them that women are dependent and helpless and cannot fill certain rolls. I am not bitter, I am in fact happy for these experiences because through them I have emerged a feminist who is willing to stand up for women.

We do not only need equal pay, access to education etc. we need to be seen and treated as intellectual equals to men.

 

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