I had a fight with someone recently. It doesn’t matter what ignited that fight. In essence, that person disagreed with my “radical views”and thought I should shut up about what I think is right.

He told me to shut up. Me. A proud 21st Century strong-headed woman wanting to change the world. Not a 19th Century maiden whose sole life mission is to be an incubator.

Anyone with the right mind should know it wouldn’t end well. Basically it entitles a click to unfriend and a block on the phone.

As much as I like speaking my own mind on different platforms, I’m not a troll who leaves nasty comments on people’s fb/blog/tumblr/twitter. While I’m respecting others’ freedom to speak their minds, regardless of how absurd they may sound to me, I expect them to do the same.

Perhaps sometimes I expect too much.

There are always assholes who think they are doing you a favor by giving you a free lecture on how to improve your life. Somehow they just think they know your life and what’s right for you better than yourself! Even though they never walked those miles in your shoes or even witnessed how you did all those amazing things singlehandedly. I lost count on how often it happens to me.

This time I have no hesitation in telling the person to get lost if he doesn’t like what I have to say. I’m done worrying about pleasing everyone, seriously. The only people I need to worry about are those who pay me or those who grant me my PhD. Even so, I don’t take shit, personal attacks or emotional terrorism. If my attitude makes me look self absorbed, so be it. At the all of the day, I know what I’m doing, and I set high moral standards for myself. As long as I can answer to my own conscience, I’m pleased.

There is a line between not caring what people think of you and having no respects for others. That’s the difference between a cool bitch and a mean bitch as the B word nowadays carries multiple connotations. Every once in a while, I get upset for being mistreated or wronged, like how I feel now, but despite the hurt, I do not let those ill-meaning words/people change who I am or shake my beliefs.

I am a believe of Undo to others what you want others to undo to you. What I never do, is to walk around criticizing people and giving them unsolicited advise on their life choices unless they ask for it.

I usually don’t sink to the low level and get into lengthy quarrels with people who cross my boundaries because I don’t believe two individuals with polarized views could ever come to a compromise in a heated debate. I’ve learned that early on in my political theory class when I was still a political science major in college. What I’d rather do, is to give myself the peace of mind.

So, here is what self-respect sounds to me: If you violate my deal breakers, if you ever dare to belittle me, you are good as dead.


About Nicky

Nicky English is a journalist, an educator, a podcaster, a couch potato, a dreamer, and a child at heart. Learning is her passion, so is the English language, which she believes is the tool to unlock the door of knowledge. Born in Hong Kong, she received intensive writing training at The University of Iowa, where she double-majored in journalism and political science. Apart from the Hawkeye State, she’s lived in Chicago and Philadelphia. When she was a guest student at Georgetown University, she fell in love with Washington, D.C. She also has a Master of Arts in Communication. A little side note—she cannot imagine a world without her Mac and iDevices. Like many crazy ones, she hopes to change the world one day at a time.
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