The First Time I…Realized Why Girls Act Like Bitches

It’s a strange thing exploring the logic of your own subconscious in order to figure out why you’ve been acting the way you have for most of your life. When I was in high school, my younger brother got into drugs. Though he couldn’t grow older, he soon grew taller than me, stronger and colder. He became violent and ruthless, oblivious to the power he now had over the whole household. A power struggle my father lost, as respect sometimes is no match for fear. I would hide in my bathroom when he would come home, punching holes in walls and screaming and cursing at anyone who crossed his path. When my father couldn’t take my brothers blatant disregard anymore, there was no stopping him, and soon I would be dry heaving my own anxiety and saliva into the toilet, knowing there was nothing I could do to protect them from each other.

However, the morning after an episode in the dark where all that could be heard was screaming and the fierce connection of fist to flesh, I became the complete opposite. I became a bitch. When my brother came home from wherever he did and sold drugs, I made sly comments to piss him off. I would talk badly of his girlfriend who I didn’t like. I would tell him he was dumb and careless which he didn’t care to hear in the first place. One time, I snapped and I screamed the worst things I had ever said to someone that I loved. I told him he was the reason that I couldn’t wait to move out, so that I would never have to see his fucking face again. I told him I hated him. That was the last time I spoke to him, a couple weeks before he left for rehab.

When I told him I hated him, I hated myself. I had never been so filled with rage and I instantly regretted everything I had said, even though I was still too angry to apologize or try to take them back. It was like sudden repulsion syndrome, only I was suddenly repulsed by myself more than I had previously been with him, and I couldn’t understand what made me reach my boiling point so fast. All I wanted was to not be the person that I was, even though it felt like that was the only way to survive. In a place that I felt powerless up against a person who made me feel weak, “bitch” was my power.

I thought I lost my power again when the guy I loved started seeing someone new. Rather, I felt I lost it when I was forced to accept it. He had a girlfriend, a real official relationship, something that I felt I was never worth, given ours had consisted of love yet something short of “official.” I felt his love wasn’t proud enough, and he felt that mine had too many limits to it so he had moved on.

He moved on while we stood still. I knew with him still standing there I wouldn’t be able to move, and if I held my ground, he wouldn’t either. I knew that. I also knew that I could be a bitch. I could be mean, and I could be really mean. I could make him feel insecure when I saw him. I could maybe even make him think I didn’t give a fuck. I could hurt him back, in hopes it would burn just as much as he’d burned me.

I felt myself reverting back to that person who wanted to be mean, I was actually lusting for it. I felt powerless and I yearned for control. I felt trapped, like I would always belong to him consequently while he could belong to whoever he pleased. I felt like I was suffocating. My face felt like a dried tear. My throat felt like it had a vacuum inside it.

I finally came to terms with the way I feel and how that interferes with the way that I act. Men, and women, are so quick to throw around the term “bitch” so casually. “Dumb bitch,” “crazy bitch,” “she’s a bitch,” “you’re a bitch.” One fish, two fish, red fish, blue fish. You can’t turn yourself into a crazy bitch because you can’t control a situation or the way someone makes you feel. Being a bitch is a momentary satisfaction that proves just as temporary as letting the person who broke you in to repair the damage. A moment of ecstasy in their safe arms only in exchange for the disappointment when they can’t finish the job. I don’t want to be a bitch, I honestly don’t. Except for when I really really do.

There’s a first time for everything, and I don’t just mean your “first time.” Of course, there’s vital, “right of passage” first times that everyone must encounter at some point, for example, moving to a new place, getting your heart broken, and making your first humiliating, drunk decision. Yet first times are imperative to the better (or often, identical) mistakes we’ll make later, and teach us the lessons that we’ll continue to not learn from. Every week, we’re going to be telling real first time stories from real girls, and that includes everything from celebrity house parties to Instagram marriage proposals.


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