Recently I had an intense conversation with a woman who is very important to me. She was feeling guilty about her perceived absence in my life. She shared, very honestly, about some struggles she’s been facing, of which I was totally unaware.
It occurred to me that I have been holding this woman to an unattainable standard of perfection based on the role she plays in my life.
This got me thinking.
How many other women have I been holding to this ridiculous standard?
One of my biggest pet peeves is being held to standards by people that are not living up to them. It was shocking to realize I have been doing it for years with the women in my life. It didn’t feel nice, at all.
I started to wonder if my “kind-hearted approach” to women has been a lie. Have I been pretending to be a caring champion of their spirits, while setting us all up for failure? I know my intentions have never been to do that, but the unfair expectations I never took the time to look at honestly, are very real.
As I processed what my fatalistic thinking was calling, “an abysmal failure in tolerance,” I realized I have been holding myself to a standard of perfection.
Now that I’m aware, I need to do the work to erase these unattainable standards I have set for myself and other women. I don’t even know where to begin, except to internalize the love and acceptance I have felt from all of the women who support me, and to reflect it back to them without judgment.
The woman in the mirror will be the first one on my list.
This post originally appeared on Sober Mommies in April, 2014.