Every girl remembers her first time…being called crazy. Once someone hits you with the c-word (way more offensive than the actual c-word), you shut it down. Whatever you were talking about, you’re done, because you don’t want your feelings (or the liquid courage coursing through your veins) to be misconstrued as “crazy.”
Huffington Post released an article by dating coach Harris O’Malley, in which he explains that he used to call women crazy constantly. He describes it as a blanket insult he threw at girls when he wasn’t getting his way. While it’s cutting, the person calling you crazy is most likely not a clinical psychologist. If it is a psychologist, you should probably seek medical attention, but if it’s just a douchey dude, I’m pretty sure you’re in the clear.
Harris explains that calling a woman crazy never actually means she is, but it made me wonder how the c-word affects us. After all, if someone tells you something often enough you’re bound to believe it, even if you know how wrong it is. Harris summarizes the old movie Gaslight. Long story short, this guy convinces his wife she’s crazy by constantly flickering the lights in the creepy old house her aunt died in while he stomps around upstairs, and then he tells her she’s imagining things. For anyone who’s lived in an old house and watched a few too many episodes of American Horror Story before bed, I’m sure you can imagine. In our world, this is the equivalent of a suitor pumping us full of vodka sodas, hitting on our sorority sisters in plain view, and then explaining we’re imagining things.
While girls imagine a lot of things, at the end of the day, we know when something’s up. You can call it intuition, or paranoia, or you can call it “crazy,” which makes us question ourselves in a serious way. When someone says we’re imagining things, we suddenly think we are, even when the reality is our intuition is usually right. I don’t mean the paranoid feeling when he takes an hour to text you back and you ask your friends maniacally if it’s over, I mean the intuitive feeling when you actually believe something is wrong. It’s hard if you’re used to over-analyzing everything, especially when it comes to the opposite sex. After all, if there were times you’ve been wrong in the past, you’ll assume you are again, even if your gut is telling you otherwise. Instead of intuition, you’ll chalk it up to being drunk, or suspicious, or worst of all, crazy. The reality is that you were right all along.
At the end of Gaslight, the husband is revealed to be a murderer, which truly is a worst-case scenario. He was convincing his wife she was crazy so she would be institutionalized while he searched for hidden treasure. The wife exacts revenge by psychologically torturing her loving husband, which sounds like the perfect act of vengeance to me. When someone calls you crazy, you get a little crazy, and psychological torture is the best revenge there is (hooking up with his best friend works, too).
While the whole hidden treasure/murder scenario probably isn’t playing out in your life, the gaslighting is. How many girls do you know who are actually 100% batshit insane? Not a ton. Alternately, how many girls do you know who have too many feelings, consistently hook up with the wrong guys, get too attached, and then confront said not-boyfriend (most likely while highly intoxicated) with the feelings they’ve developed over months or years? I bet the number is infinitely higher.
Being “crazy” isn’t a condition, it’s just fighting back. It’s acting on feelings, instead of bottling them up and going along with whatever the guy says. Girls who are never called crazy are the same ones who leave passive aggressive post-it notes for their roommates to avoid confrontation. It’s not being passive, or passive aggressive, it’s being assertive and standing up for yourself, and if that’s crazy, so be it…but it’s not. “Crazy” means you’re not fitting into the box he built for you, you’re acting out, and you’re exhibiting messy emotions he wasn’t ready for. You’re crazy.
Unfortunately, pesky feelings mean that lots of girls over-analyze everything when it comes to the boys they bone. The antidote? It’s not alcohol, like you thought. “Crazy” is the easiest way to get a girl to question herself, which means she’ll drop whatever subject the boy doesn’t want to get involved with. While some girls might be crazier than others, until the entirety of the male gender obtains a psychology degree, they need to stop diagnosing us as “crazy,” because I feel sure we’re not all afflicted, and I’m certain that slinging insults while drunk isn’t the cure.
So, when the crazy label is bestowed upon you (you don’t graduate without holding the title at least once), don’t apologize, even though that’s your go-to when you’re drunk and feeling sorry. Hint: you won’t be feeling quite as sorry when you find out in a month that whatever you were acting “crazy” about is ultimately true. Plus, it’s the girls who hide their crazy that are the craziest of all. If you’re not a little bit crazy, you’re a little bit boring, and that’s no way to go through life.
Image via WaltSense.com