Defined as spurning of someone’s affections; rejection is fast causing many people to lose their lives. The worst part of it is that these are your people still in the prime of their lives and with so much more to offer. The nation is still reeling from the story of Vena Swanya, a Kisii University second year student who was strangled to death by her boyfriend Samson Obwocha after an argument over a love triangle. Samson then proceeded to hang himself using a bed sheet after penning a heartbreaking suicide note to his parent that read,
“Mum, dad, brothers and sisters, I killed her and myself because I loved her with the whole of my heart, but she made me do it. Am sorry BYE BYE. MUM, I LOVE YOU.” Vena was, however, not given the chance to bid her parents goodbye.
Just last year, we woke up to the news that a Kenyatta University student suspected to be behind the cold blooded murder of his girlfriend in Kahawa Wendani, had been arrested in Malindi with her car and ATM card. Mohammed Wairimu killed Kananu Maitethia who was a human resource manager at an organization along Thika Road and hid her body in a fridge. There are so many other stories and you will be surprised that 13 year- olds have also not been spared and are killing each other because of rejection.
According to Psychologist Guy Winch, rejections are the most common emotional wound that people sustain in their daily lives. He adds that unlike in the past where the risk of rejections was limited to our immediate circle or the people we date, today the risk has increased thanks to the many platforms availed by technology. Such platforms include social media, dating profiles, chats, texts and so on.
“In addition to these kinds of minor rejections, we are still vulnerable to serious and more devastating rejections as well. When our spouse leaves us, when we get fired from our jobs, snubbed by our friends, or ostracized by our families and communities for our lifestyle choices, the pain we feel can be absolutely paralyzing. ”
“Whether the rejection we experience is large or small, one thing remains constant — it always hurts, and it usually hurts more than we expect it to,” he said.
Winch adds that our brains are wired to respond in that manner because scientists discovered that the same areas of our brain become activated when we experience rejection as when we experience physical pain.
Rejection will always be there and while it is apparent that people are not taking rejection very well, there is still hope because there are healthier ways to deal with it.
It is ok to be Emotional After Rejection
At this point, sheets are not for strangling anyone or carrying anyone to a miserable grave anywhere, they are for crawling inside and where you get to cry your heart out. They can double up as handkerchiefs for the tears and mucus that will accompany your crying. Talk about it with someone you trust as well and live through the pain. It will soon get better.
Look at the bigger Picture
When I faced rejection I cried until I could cry no more because I wondered what I was going to do with my newborn baby whose dad had left us. I did not want to accept that I was a single mother, just another statistic. My mother did not indulge my pity party she came and gave me a lecture akin to one that is normally given at a feminist meeting.
She told me that if she had such a beautiful baby as mine, she would never shed a tear because of a man who left. She would focus on raising her baby and having fun with it because as long as you are alive there are chances of loving again. I promptly wiped my tears and devoured the matumbo (tripes) meal she laid before me, washing it own with cold coke. I faced the task ahead and four years ahead we are good.
Work on your Self Esteem
After rejection,your self esteem will take a nose dive and at this point you should remind yourself of your self-worth. Start by affirming valuable aspects of your character an you can do this by listing your meaningful qualities and why they matter to other people.This will not only boost your self-worth,but it will also reduce your emotional pain as well as make you more confident.
After rejection you feel unwanted and socially untethered which means that there is need to remind ourselves that we are loved and appreciated. If people in your circles do not want anything to do with you then join another circle. After giving yourself time to heal, you can start dating without necessarily committing. You can join a church, mosque or temple group for some spiritual nourishment as well.
If you feel that things are so bad there is no harm in getting professional help from a counselor, just do not kill anyone. If you are dead or in prison you cannot get a new person to love but with forgiveness and ability to let go you will soon be smiling with the one meant for you. Just don’t kill anyone!