When Asking "are you okay" Does More Harm Than Good

When Asking "are you okay" Does More Harm Than Good
Photo by Lynn Kintziger on Unsplash

Last week I posted this on TikTok. I was shocked when, within two days, it became my highest viewed video to date.

The original story from the video is at least ten years old. It's safe to say I've grown since then. And in that time, I've also been the person on the receiving end of the constant questioning.

Here's a story for you:

This guy I was casually dating was at my place one night. I don't remember what we were talking about, but he said something, to which I responded by kissing my teeth.

A minute or two later, he asked me if I was mad. I told him no.

I wasn't mad, just very slightly annoyed. The extent of my annoyance started and ended with me kissing my teeth. There was nothing to talk about, and there was nothing that was genuinely bothering me.

Minutes later, we're lying in bed, and he asks me again if I'm mad. Again, I reply no. More time passes, and he asks me a third time if I'm mad.

By this point, I began to question myself.

"Am I mad?"

The answer was still no.

During the height of my low boundary, shitty dating ways, I was prone to being passive-aggressive. So I took a second to survey my behaviour.

"Am I being standoffish right now?"

The answer was no.

I say to him, "I'm not mad. If I were mad, I'd let you know."

I noticed that he'd get clingy any time he thought he thought he sensed friction. I've never had a problem with that, and even if I were mad, I'd never push him away.

But as we're lying in bed and he's clung to me, he asks me again if I'm mad.

By this time, I am a bit mad. I'm mad that he keeps asking me if I'm mad. I let him know that.

He didn't ask me anymore, but his clinginess for the rest of the night told me plainly that he still thought I was mad.

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