Come on Come Clean…We ALL Need Affirmation


sally field you like me

After my last post on my blog it started a conversation about numbers which I thought was interesting. A lot of us say we don’t care about the numbers and yet we know how many followers we have and though I have noticed that some blogs don’t have the LIKE icon on their blogs, most do. Even in our private lives we seem to keep score to a certain extent. While my daughter and I say” I love you” freely. My son seems to feel the need to ration out his “I love you s”  thinking that they will mean more to the receiver if he doesn’t say them at the end of each visit or phone call which is just a natural place for my daughter and I to say it. Well, I can say that they don’t mean more or carry any more weight than my daughter’s ten “I love you s” to his one. But I must admit that I do notice when he says “I love you” because he doesn’t say it as often. Is that what he is aiming for? I think it must annoy my daughter if I am impacted by my son’s rationed out “I love you s” though in the scheme of things… we are the ones that actually are experiencing joy more of the time but I guess it is all perspective.

bulletin board

I think that from the time we are little and our parents put up our refrigerator art or our teachers put our first papers up on the bulletin boards or later,  read a story we handed in out loud to the class that they especially found well written….  we feel that affirmation and like it and want more. It can be an A on a paper. A membership in a club. A spot on a team. Even when someone in your family says I love you. We need it all. Can we live without it? Sure. But not without it affecting us.

I remember when my first husband and I were just married. He’d never had a birthday party before. Which I found rather odd because my mother in law was a wonderful woman. But for whatever reason she’d never given birthday parties. It affected him. And I kind of am just realizing it now. Because he sucked at birthdays.

birthday

Anyway, I decided to give him a surprise 25th. His sister came over to help. I had been raised to always say I love you as I walked out the door and so I said it when I walked out, and he said it back to me. I think his sister saw the opportunity and said it too. He didn’t say it back. It really hurt her. We talked about it later as we were getting things ready. I just told her that they hadn’t been raised that way and to not let it bother her and that she knew that he loved her. I know he did. (He really loved his niece (her little girl) I’ve always felt that if you love someone’s kid, it is a reflection of your love for them whether you ever say it or not!) Years later before he died, he said he “I love you” all the time. I think it is just a maturity thing.

I think it all starts in the beginning… how ever we start out…. even if our mom says I love you all the time to us… and puts our papers up on the refrigerators, whether we get birthday parties or never have ever had one… we may end up saying I love you everyday or ration them out… we may also end up rationing out our LIKES to only the very special posts…. which are the ones I covet. But I must say that I do care how many followers I generate and what kind of interest my posts attract and I will take a thousand I love YOUS and just the few at a time. I admit it. I want them all. I am a writer. I think that makes me a little different. I think we all need it… bit I am willing to admit it!!!   I NEED AFFIRMATION!!!! to me…. It’s really not just a numbers thing. I need need to know that you like me. You really, really like me! And if you are my kids… I will take as many I love YOUs as I can get!😉

numbers

39 thoughts on “Come on Come Clean…We ALL Need Affirmation

  1. Liked this post a lot, D. I can identify with the party, and “I love you” thing as this was commonplace in my family. Just so you know, contrary to my upbringing, I love you. Hugs !
    Paul

    1. Paul,
      So funny, I thought I replied to you here via my phone but came back to make sure and glad I did cuz I especially wanted to make sure and couldn’t find it!
      but said…..RIGHT BACK AT YA MY FRIEND!!!! I love you back!!!!😉

  2. Nice post. As you have read my book Di, I didn’t come from a family of I love you’s but learned the words from dear friends and my friends and I have no problems telling each other but it still doesn’t feel natural with family. By the way, you know I love you! xo

    1. Debbie,
      You make me cry. I wish we had been friends when you were a little girl. I would have taken you home and shared my mom and she would have loved you too! But now we can grow old and have this friendship that can only grow more important over time and you know. I love you too my friend!
      xoxo

  3. It’s interesting you write about this, Diane. I agree with you that we look for validation and love for who we are and the things we do. Some of us more than others depending on how we started out, like your ex-husband.

    Like him, I don’t remember having birthday parties growing up or my dad saying “I love you” until his elder years and, you’re right, it affects our outlook and interaction with others. For me, I think I overcompensated and hugged a lot and gave our daughters birthday parties with piñatas — the whole nine yards. But, what I may have lacked as a child gave me the gift to love more and understand why others can’t do that.

    As far as attracting traffic to my blog and the # of Likes, I notice that, too, and bounce off the walls when people stop by. But, most of all, if one person was touched by a story I wrote and it made a difference, that means more to me than any amount of people stopping by just to click Like.

    I guess to have both would be the best of both worlds and would be ideal but, to me, genuine appreciation stays with you a long time.

    1. ((((Pat))))
      Here is a total cyber hug for ya!!!!:)
      YOU totally covered every aspect of my random post! I love how you totally get me! Or at least this post! YOU are one of my favorite readers! I am sure we would be friends! From my need for affirmation to my ex and birthdays and saying I love yous… LOL! Talk about affirmation!
      xoxo
      Thank you!!!!

      1. I feel it, Diane, and huggin’ you back, my friend. Thank you for your kind words. I have felt instantly connected with you right from the beginning and truly value our friendship.

        You’re “random” post struck home for me, Diane, as it’s something, I think, a lot of us feel and look for but seldom talk about.

        You nailed it. It helped me realize I’m not the only one out there looking for validation and enjoying it when I’m told I’m loved and what I do is good. It feels good and it’s okay to feel good. (Now, I’m rambling.)

        Good post — right on.:-)

        1. Pat,
          I never see you as rambling!!! I cherish every single word you take the time to write me! Even if I don’t get back to you right away! I always smile when I read your “ramblings”😉

              1. Exactly! Same here — must be a female thing. Hubby tells me, too, to get to the point not a story. Then, sometimes, when I do give him just the point, it’s not enough information and he asks a bunch of questions.

                Go figure — I guess it’s all in the interpretation of what the point is — LOL. Don’t you love it. This wonderful, beautiful, crazy life!:-)

  4. My family members weren’t generous with the I love yous when I was growing up. I always said it to my two kids when they were growing up and still do…and of course I mean it every time. My mom says it all the time now.

    As far as with blogs…if I am able to take the time to read and appreciate someone’s post then I will hit the like button or leave a comment. I’m not one of the serial button likers who just randomly pushes like without reading. Some weeks I have lots of time to read posts and other weeks I barely find any time.

    I admit I am disappointed when I think I’ve written a post worthy of a few likes and it doesn’t get much traffic.

    1. Becki….
      Me too! On all your points regarding LIKING blogs. I absolutely would rather not have someone LIKE my post if they did not read it… just to generate their own traffic or for a token pat on the head. And like you, I have limited time… but I will try to take time to read some of my favorite writer’s posts as I can. I find it enlightening and worth the read. There are a few that make my morning. There was one blog that I was stuck on for a while that was just sucking a lot of my time. I read another person’s blog about something totally unrelated that made me think about “time” and wasting it… and it dawned on me that I was “stuck” and so one blogger helped
      Un stuck me without even knowing and I love when that happens and think that we all have that opportunity to do that for each other and that is why we keep doing what we do!
      xoxo

  5. Hi.. I think that you can never say ‘I Love You’ too many times..and always do…but i do understand those who find it difficult… I have a brother who is very subdued and usually has said it to me…when he knew I really needed to hear it…. and you’re right we do all need validation even when blogging…

    I’m glad your first husband got a chance to see what a ‘birthday party’ was… a day to celebrate the day he was born…. Diane

    1. Hi Diane,
      Thanks for reading and always saying the right thing!
      Yeah, I am glad that my first husband finally got to celebrate his birthday… it was kind of a bittersweet thing… he ended up dying on it… The important thing was that he ended up being able to say he loved you to the people who needed to hear it. I think in the end… the ones saying it… need to realize that even if they don’t feel the need to say it… someone might need to hear it and of course then there is visa versa… my husband now… says it a lot more than I do… and even in just writing this blog… I have realized I probably need to say it back a lot more than I do!😉

    1. I think that’s great….for you….But I guess my point here is that for the ones that need it… it is nice to hear it… maybe more important for them than for the ones that feel it is important to not say it too much… Now that won’t make any sense to the ones that don’t need it said as much. LOL.

  6. When I was growing up, the man raping me in my home always said the words “I love you” to me so I learned young that in order for those words to have meaning, they must have loving actions behind them. I don’t mean each time they are said, I just mean that someone loving you is shown in the way that they treat you and vice versa. I felt very strongly about teaching my children this because I want them to always conduct themselves in a loving manner in life. I, still today, rarely say the words “I love you” but my love for others stands out.

    1. Yikes Kerri…
      I don’t even have words to make that okay. Though I know now, that you are strong and that that makes me happy that you did not let the beginning of your life steal your joy! YOU are a survivor and a teacher!

  7. I think from those I don’t hear it from often, the I Love You, makes me question whether they really do or just feel pressured into it because I said it. My hubby seems to go in cycles, but I know he loves me… but he forgets that there are times I NEED to hear it. LOL After my father passed away suddenly when I was 25, I have probably over used the phrase, because now I feel that Life isn’t guaranteed, nor days, or moments, so in case something happens…. I want to know in my heart that I told them I loved them. My brother was not that way, and after my father passed, he struggled with the fact that he hadn’t told dad often, or even lately. It still bothers him today, all the things left unsaid…
    Be that as it may, I never had birthday parties either, because my birthday is 4 days before Christmas, and we all know people hate to have to get another gift for someone right before Christmas when they’ve already had to spend so much, or so they seemed to think. I did get a bakery cake one year though cuz my dad went grocery shopping and they had one that had not been picked up by whomever bought it… They scraped the name off, put on more icing and red roses and voila, my only bakery cake for my birthday. I was stunned.😀 It never bothered me though about never having a party, as much as it did at school when they would sing Happy Birthday to the other kids, but we were always out of school when mine rolled around.
    Now, I’m just thankful to have a birthday…LOL… It still isn’t a big deal to me, other than the fact that I’m still alive to have one.😀
    Loved your post!

    1. Keli,
      How funny, I wasn’t even thinking but I wanted to automatically just say Keli, I love you… you always answer like I know you really read… and then I realized that the way we write to each other actually shows will end up showing the other that we did read through the other’s post! You always cover everything and I love that about you…lol and then again this whole thing was talking about saying I love you or not…lol… oh brother. would we totally be crazy friends together!~

  8. Interesting that you write this now. I never had a birthday party either and don’t remember ever going to one for any of my school buds of that time. Cultural thing? Lack of a cultural thing? Maybe the birthday celebrations, that seemed to begin occurring about the time my kids were……….kids, derived from marketing research when some toy manufacturers realized that there was a market there. Anyway I’ve only started wondering about it recently. My generation began at the end of the great depression when most families were focused on food for survival and not cakes and toys. Curious.

    1. Okay so I know that we connected cuz of our interest in gliders but a cultural thing? I just read your about and realized that you love the Lord too! I love that!!! Where were you raised? I think we may be a little tiny bit apart in years… my dad was a vice president of Mattel Toys when it was just a start up company so I was a spoiled tester kid but funny I really didn’t know it and both my parents had been poor growing up so my mom was quite frugal and my dad was kind of over compensating.. so I was kind of in the middle… but my mom made homemade cakes and party favors and I was kind of apalled that my first husband had NEVER had a party! Now my daughter is an actress in Hollywood (struggling doing other odd jobs trying to make it) and one of them is a fairy on the weekends and has done some star’s parties and she says it is ridiculous!!! how much these parents spend on one year olds parties!!!! So I know what you mean… even thinking from my perspective of the pin the tail on the donkey parties as being decadent!😦 😉

      1. Yep, we do connect on the aviation and flying thing. I could ramble on and on about the phenomenon of the physics involved in sustained flight but you already know what it takes to keep that hunk of iron up and out of the water and weeds. It’s Physics 101 and I truly did love it as most of my posts will testify. I look back and wonder how I’m still alive and it’s plain that it was only by the grace of God that I’m still here. I was raised in Ft. Worth and lost my mother at the age of twelve and that set me on an uneasy life path then and now. By reading your posts I figure we are at least a generation apart maybe more. One of the interesting things I’ve noticed as my time runs out, is how much I question why I’m here in the first place and why did I do some of the things I did. I have the feeling I’ve left something unfinished and pray to God to direct me to it. I spend a lot of time on your blog and it’s obvious that your posts come straight from the heart. We’ll never meet but I hope we continue communicating and I truly wish you a healthy happy life.
        I’ve taken a lot of space on your blog here and if you prefer to communicate by email mine is: signpilot@sbcglobal.net
        Bob Cloud

  9. Enjoyed your post this morning.. your little snippet on FB brought he over! Still love your writing and I can always see you doing the things you write about.. Miss you.. You always bring a smile to my ole face! have an awesome day girl!

        1. Tracey,
          Pleeeease don’t be a stranger!!! I mean I love that I can still have ya on FB but I love your posts here too! AND you were always one of my faithful readers that I could always count on!!!😀

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