If you’re ever uncomfortable in any situation, it’s perfectly OK to leave
Every woman knows that we ‘re taught from birth to put other people’s comfort before our own. We’re taught by society to be meek and accommodating, even when we are uncomfortable. But that sucks. We should be able to leave uncomfortable situations whenever we damn well please. In fact, we can. Allow this genius Twitter thread to remind you of that, ladies (and gents, because people of all genders have this right).
Writer Erynn Brook took to Twitter to share a lesson her mother taught her from the time she was a little girl, in direct contrast to what society teaches little girls. Her mother told her she could always leave, no matter the situation, if she was uncomfortable.
I want to tell you a story about how my mum taught me that I’m allowed to leave an uncomfortable situation.
— Erynn Brook (@ErynnBrook) September 29, 2018
Brook explained the first time her mom saw fit to teach her this was right before her first sleepover at a friend’s house.
Brook took her mom at her word that night. And her mom followed through with her promise.
Of course, that was far from the only time Brook ever wanted to leave a situation where she was uncomfortable. But she always remembered her mom’s lesson and spoke out about her boundaries at other points too.
As Brook points out after this, this is not a popular or widespread idea. But it’s so necessary to learn.
And so, Brook’s most important lesson: Everyone reading this is allowed to leave. Full stop. Any time you are in a situation that makes you uncomfortable in any way, you have the right and the ability to leave. And hopefully, if you need, you have someone like Brook’s mom who will back you up and help you get out of that situation.
Brook tells Scary Mommy the national conversation around Brett Kavanaugh and Christine Blasey Ford is what dredged up the memory of this conversation with her mom.
“I wouldn’t say it was directly related but it’s definitely the main thing that’s been bubbling on the burners and this memory just surfaced from that,” she said.
She also said she’s gotten a wonderful response from those who have seen the now-viral thread, especially parents who want to teach similar lessons to their kids after seeing it.
“A lot of parents, especially dads having some lightbulb moments and saying this is absolutely something they want their kids to know, which is very heartwarming,” she said.
Of course, some people have argued otherwise.
“There’s been some pushback around the idea that telling your kid they’re allowed to leave makes them soft or a quitter,” Brook said. “Leaving is sometimes the toughest thing to do. Regardless of what someone chooses, the message is that they knowing they have options and they can choose can make all the difference.”
Amen to that. Hopefully, Brook’s thread inspires more people to take control and agency over their own situations. Because everyone deserves to feel safe and comfortable, and to get out of a situation if they don’t.