A Tale Of False Necessities


I was whatsapping a friend and a

  ‘I have to go to a wedding’ 

message popped up next to her RBF profile photo. My response:

 “Ok but you want to go to the wedding so I’m curious about you saying ‘I have to go’ rather than ‘I’m going’.”

I have to means I need to and we have few true needs, all of which are covered by Maslow’s hierarchy (of needs). Yep, can’t see going to weddings anywhere in here:

It turns out she wanted to go to the wedding more than she didn’t want to go. No one forced her to go, and she didn’t shit (should) on herself to go — although sometimes we do shit on ourselves to go to weddings that we don’t want to go to and mislabel the shit (should) as a need, to disguise the shit at the core of what we are saying.

Why did she say I need to go to a wedding? Why not, I’m going to a wedding? Why make it shitty?

Perhaps she didn’t want to get vulnerable and tell the truth that she wanted to go. Perhaps she had a thought along the lines of I’m not worthy of saying what I want to do so she created a lie to mask how she felt. She disconnected. 

For me, needs are even more simple than Maslow’s. The only thing I need to do is go to the toilet (where I also want to flush my shoulds — but I don’t need to), eat, drink, breathe, sleep, receive and give affection and love, have physical contact with other human beings — more hugs please — and have a place to sleep each night that’s warm and dry enough. True needs are few, wants are common, don’t wants are often even more common, but I want shits outside the toilet to be non-existent.

Today’s word-trash post is brought to you by the words have to (made from recycled plastic bags), need to, and must.

Taken from my book ‘Word Wise’, coming 2020.


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