The word vulnerable often associates itself with relationships and an emotion of fear and content. The person being vulnerable often fears while the person on the receiving end usually evokes joy that the vulnerable person trusts them enough to share with them. The receiver of a persons vulnerable thoughts and emotions gets to be the hero, savior, and the closest person to the giver. The giver shares their most intimate and delicate parts of themselves. However, I want to talk about being vulnerable outside of a relationship context. I want to discuss what it means to be vulnerable with yourself and when those witnessing your vulnerability become uncomfortable by it; how do you stay true to self.
In a time where there are increased rates of suicide, overdoses, school shootings, child abuse, domestic abuse, etc. there is a lack of vulnerability. Vulnerable is defined as capable of being wounded, or hurt. Open to moral attack, criticism, temptation, etc. How do you open yourself to be possibly wounded, hurt, morally attacked, and criticized when you reside in a dark place where those components already reside. You need help, and the end result of a stronger bond with the receiver of your openness is less than likely because you are being vulnerable about something that makes people uncomfortable. There’s a feeling a self inflicted mental torture of damned if I do and damned if I don’t. I understand because I’ve been there.
I remember like it was yesterday when I hit my rock bottom of depression. Feeling like no one would understand my pain and taking self induced numbness to a dangerous level. Now i really couldn’t be vulnerable. Not only was I depressed but I was hurting myself to feel something besides sadness. Ironically though I thought I was hiding it quite well apparently I was not. It was obvious to my loved ones and went months without being addressed because it was uncomfortable. My truth made those around me uncomfortable and remained unspoken until I couldn’t stay quiet any longer. All I had left was death or truth. I needed to be vulnerable to heal. My healing, my life was more important than peoples comfort zone. Even in writing this I find healing in being vulnerable by sharing my story.
There are rewards to being vulnerable and truths no one can discredit.
• Your healing is more important than peoples comfort
• Just because it is your truth does not mean it is who you are
• We are our biggest critics
• Being vulnerable with yourself first is the first step to letting light in a dark place
• It’s ok to say “I need help”, “I can’t handle it”, “I have a problem”, “I made a mistake”
• Someone is listening
If you or anyone you know is suffering with being vulnerable please contact one of the hotlines listed below:
National Suicide Prevention Line:
Addiction and Alcohol Hotline:
National Domestic Violence Hotline:
Child Abuse Hotline:
by Jewell Copeland