Thursday, February 24, 2005

on vulnerability and being a woman

I was thinking of a dear friend of mine who is well known for carrying around a bag of change and giving it to the homeless. He even opens his home to a street person who has become a part of his extended family. I admire him for this, among other reasons, because he can be openly vulnerable in a way that I can't. He is a gentle soul, we are kindred spirits, but there is no way I could do what he does. It would be careless for me to take such a risk.

Why? I feel that we still live in a time where vulnerability is too often misunderstood. It becomes a power exchange where vulnerability is taken as a sign of weakness to be preyed upon. A friendly smile is taken as a sexual invitation.

Of course, I know I can't control how other people see me. What does bother me is that I feel I must hold myself back from being fully vulnerable -- being fully me. I am sharp and cautious. I choose my actions by watching and listening to how others perceive me. But, I would like to move beyond my past experiences. I just don't know how to do it. Yet.


funkyjunkie said...

i think it comes down to fear. it's like when you first love, i mean really love (i know, HUGE example). you have to give something of yourself, but ... what if ... ??? ... now, that's the scary part.

Creatrix (aka Jennifer) said...

oh yeah! you'd think i wouldn't be afraid of being hurt anymore. i'm older, been through some rough spots, but still i am fragile. i guess i'll just accept my paradox for now and then move past it when i can. hmmm...i analyze way too much. lol