So I have to be brutal for a moment.
We live in an abusive society.
I’m sure a boatload of folks will stop reading right after that but bear with me. Most of the relationships we’ve been encouraged to develop are ‘power over’, which means one person has a serious ability to compromise another’s wealth, health or security.
A majority of the time, this leads to abuse.
A lot of it is ‘legal’.
I’m sensitive to this thanks to the help of a -lot- of my friends, and because my cousin pushed to prosecute a case of ‘legal rape’ (her spouse). She was murdered for her efforts.
Some of you have encountered abuse in a relationship or in a family dynamic. Most of you will have encountered it at work. After all, this is a situation where someone is -literally- giving you things you need to live.
Most folks have been in a position where they’ve had to compromise themselves. Sometimes very seriously. Often for years or decades at a time.
They react by normalizing it, by saying it’s not abuse. It is.
The government, too. Let’s say you give up the rat race, you have enough for an RV (run by solar energy, let’s say) and you know how to hunt and fish and get plants.
I guarantee you, you will find that most of the ‘land of the free’ isn’t.
Why am I talking about this? Because I want you to understand that you have been -abused- and, most importantly, you have learned to compromise with it.
You’ve decided ‘here is my line’ and you’ve learned to live with it and not consider yourself a victim, even though you are.
Talk to people who know about the cycle of abuse and can help you recognize and break it. Understand that there are mental health resources that can help you.
You need to know this because the current administration will take advantage of it. Because you don’t know you’ve been a victim, they will try and move that line, push it back, force you to compromise more.
Don’t let them.