The millennial fear of vulnerability

Should I text first?

How long should I wait before I text back?

I don’t want to be the first “like”.

I don’t want to be the first to watch their snap story

Heart eyes or no heart eyes?

Should I express how I feel or leave it alone?

Should I say “I love you”?

What if they don’t feel the same way?

Am I doing too much?


If you’re a millennial, you have most likely either heard these questions asked by a friend or have even asked these questions yourself.

Question: When did we become so afraid of people thinking we actually care about them?

Dr. Brené Brown, an expert on vulnerability says, “When we shut ourselves off from vulnerability, we distance ourselves from the experiences that bring purpose and meaning to our lives.” Meaning when we pretend we have don’t care, or have little to no feelings, (when it comes to our relationships) we are simply living a lie.

Most who truly know me understand that I am an emotional person, and typically express my feelings regardless of the situation. I understand that most of my peers; or most people in the world, probably don’t express their feelings as much as I, and that’s fine. But I just want to know what happened to vulnerability. Why is it unacceptable to even HAVE feelings?

We have built up these invisible walls that have fooled us into believing our pride can always overshadow our feelings, when in reality, the only ones we are hurting, is ourselves.

At one point SWV was weak in the knees, Boys II Men was down on bended knee, Toni loved her some him, Lauryn & D’Angelo made it clear that nothing even mattered, but you, and sometimes Eric Benet even cried! Luther would have rather been in a storm with you than safe and warm by himself and Anita was giving you the best that she got. I could go on and on.

I think music has the major influence on how we view relationships, and although that type of r&b is not completely extinct,  it has definitely faded.

Yes, I am personally a hopeless romantic, and do realize that some of you are not. However, there use to actually be a reason to believe in that fairytale type of love. We used to express our FEELINGS.

One of my favorite songs right now is Drunk Texting by Chris Brown and Jhene Aiko. Why? Because there could not be a more accurate song. Some of the lyrics are below.

Said I’m all up in my feelings
Doubled up on this shot
Got me feeling some type of way told you I hate you I don’t mean it
And the only thing that I got
Is the pain that you’ve been feeding
Faded, faded, faded, all because of you
Now my current situation
Trying not to think of you, not to break the rules
Why’s it always happen, when I get this way?
Just can’t stop myself, so baby tonight
I’m blowing up your line
I got you on my mind
And the truth is hard to find, so I’ll be
I’ll be drunk texting, drunk texting, drunk texting you
Drunk texting, drunk texting you
Yeah baby I’ll be drunk texting, drunk texting, drunk texting you
Drunk texting, drunk texting you

My friend and I were discussing the mind-blowing truth to these words, and why so many people can relate. The issue with this song is it implies that 1. we may be involved in too many “situationships” (which is a whole other post for another day), and 2. we can’t express how we truly feel about someone, sober. And that’s a problem. What are you texting him at 2 am post-tequila, that you couldn’t text at 2 pm brunch?

Drake, undoubtedly one of the most liked and successful rappers right now, usually has a  tendency to incorporate his feelings (towards women and in his relationships) into his music, which is sometimes frowned upon.  Mainly because it’s just not normally done anymore.

Having feelings is certainly not a crime; it’s human. Somewhere down the line within the past decade, we’ve  somewhat lost authenticity. I believe so many people are unhappy simply because they don’t face the reality of what they feel. We just hold our feelings hostage for fearing we might be played if the feelings aren’t mutual. Baby girl, baby boy, you are only playing yourself.

If you love her, tell her. If you miss him, tell him. If you need them (because everybody needs somebody), tell them that, too.

All I’m saying is, don’t hold back. Express how you feel.

And If you ignore how you feel, then you’re simply ignoring what’s real.

Author: Maya J. Boddie

Daughter. Sister. Friend. Lover. Giver. Writer. Dreamer. Doer.

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