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Is this called "pretending" or something else?
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27 / F / New Jersey, USA
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Posted 7/6/17 , edited 7/6/17


Like how can Regina tell a person that she doesn't care that they're having a baby without sounding like some bitch?
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The Wired
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Posted 7/6/17 , edited 7/6/17
the person having the baby is happy. can Regina, as a friend, just be happy for that person? because there is something happening in that friends life that is making her happy/fulfilled. does Regina just lack compassion?
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27 / F / New Jersey, USA
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Posted 7/6/17 , edited 7/6/17

cavempt wrote:

the person having the baby is happy. can Regina, as a friend, just be happy for that person? because there is something happening in that friends life that is making her happy/fulfilled. does Regina just lack compassion?


Regina sees parenting as one of those things that just happens and is a part of life. She feels there isn't any need to be so happy about it because it either happens or it doesn't. It's not that she lacks compassion per say. It's just babies are just so common that they just don't make her happy as other people.
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32 / M
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Posted 7/6/17 , edited 7/6/17
I agree with sundin in the sense that "Regina" should at least be happy that someone she ostensibly cares about is happy, regardless of why.

Most people wouldn't expect Regina to be as excited as if she was pregnant herself (especially not if they're aware she doesn't want children), but they would expect her to express at least moderate happiness and interest for her friend's sake.

The "dishonesty" she's feeling may be due to the false enthusiasm of responses like, "Oh my gosh! That's so wonderful!" A more genuine response might simply be, "I'm happy for you," and expressing interest in Woman A's plans now that she's pregnant.

Displaying interest isn't fully altruistic either: Regina might harbor concerns over how Woman A's pregnancy will impact their friendship, so by giving Woman A an opportunity to gush happily, she's also fishing for information on how this may actually concern her.
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29 / M / Louisville, KY
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Posted 7/6/17 , edited 7/6/17
The way I don't pretend is by just not talking to people (not the best solution I am sure, but it works for me). Someone at the office asks about my weekend, they don't really care though.
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48 / M / Auburn, Washington
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Posted 7/6/17 , edited 7/6/17

qualeshia3 wrote:

Like how can Regina tell a person that she doesn't care that they're having a baby without sounding like some bitch?


She kind of can't. That's not a thing you tell people. "I am happy about something" is not something that you can ever answer with "I don't care" unless you actually WANT someone to hate you.

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27 / F / New Jersey, USA
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Posted 7/6/17 , edited 7/6/17

cdarklock wrote:


qualeshia3 wrote:

Like how can Regina tell a person that she doesn't care that they're having a baby without sounding like some bitch?


She kind of can't. That's not a thing you tell people. "I am happy about something" is not something that you can ever answer with "I don't care" unless you actually WANT someone to hate you.




You're right.
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36 / M
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Posted 7/6/17 , edited 7/6/17
I sympathize with Regina, but to be honest, it's pragmatic to pretend. If Regina was honest, it would piss people off. And if it simply ended with Regina not having any friends, that's fine, but in reality, people will eventually get pissed off enough at Regina that they might hate her and act in a way that although might not harm Regina, would be to her general detriment and annoyance.

Plus, having people get along with you is kind of a double edges sword. On the one hand, it's a pain in the ass to maintain a socially positive demeanor, but having people think positively of you is a nice bit of social lubricant that makes other aspects of life move a bit smoother...

Aaaaaaannnnd now I sound like a sociopath.




Sogno- wrote:

im only pretending to be a far orange male cat


I seriously doubt that..
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21 / F / FL
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Posted 7/6/17 , edited 7/6/17
its not a fake conversation, I think they are just not really friends, probably just acquaintances.

In that case its just generic small talk.
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27 / M / Simi Valley, CA
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Posted 7/6/17 , edited 7/7/17

qualeshia3 wrote:

I'll use a made up example: Regina doesn't want to be a parent at all. She sees parenting as something boring and strongly dislike children. Whenever Regina is surrounded by other people who are parents or becoming parents, she feels she has to pretend and lie. Regina can't reveal her true self because she is worried about causing some sort of tension. But she is always stressed out and mentally exhausted afterward. If someone she knows were to have a child, she rather not care or wastes her time with it. But since she knows the person, she feels she has to at least somewhat care when she rather not.

Like in this conversation:

Woman A: Hey, I have some good news!

Regina: Really? What is that?

Woman A: I'm pregnant.

Regina: Oh my gosh! That is wonderful news!

Woman A: I know right! I can't wait to be a mother!

Versus what she really wants to say:

Woman A: Hey, I have some good news!

Regina: Really? What is that?

Woman A: I'm pregnant.

Regina: Meh, you're just like everyone else on this planet. That doesn't really make it good news.

Woman A:


Pretty much Regina wants to stop pretending and lying to herself but she doesn't want to start any conflict. She also doesn't want to change herself either. It's really frustrating to her because she doesn't know what to do. Sure she can get away from the problem, but it will always find itself to her somehow.

What do you call someone like Regina? Is there a word for what she is going through?
What do you think?



I think I can help. Fortunately, there are many words to describe what you wrote. There is, "Fake, Lie, Cruel, BullSh%t, and Insincere. Regina seems like she has the case of not speaking her mind and it bothers her, which is understandable, but she has a cruel way of thinking. The wonderful news is indeed good news for the friend and not for Regina so her negative comment seems selfish and dumb. She could have said," That is wonderful news for you." and still stay true to herself.





jr0b 
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Posted 7/6/17 , edited 7/6/17

BlueBerry_SwirlyPop wrote:


qualeshia3 wrote:

I'll use a made up example: Regina doesn't want to be a parent at all. She sees parenting as something boring and strongly dislike children. Whenever Regina is surrounded by other people who are parents or becoming parents, she feels she has to pretend and lie. Regina can't reveal her true self because she is worried about causing some sort of tension. But she is always stressed out and mentally exhausted afterward. If someone she knows were to have a child, she rather not care or wastes her time with it. But since she knows the person, she feels she has to at least somewhat care when she rather not.

Like in this conversation:

Woman A: Hey, I have some good news!

Regina: Really? What is that?

Woman A: I'm pregnant.

Regina: Oh my gosh! That is wonderful news!

Woman A: I know right! I can't wait to be a mother!

Versus what she really wants to say:

Woman A: Hey, I have some good news!

Regina: Really? What is that?

Woman A: I'm pregnant.

Regina: Meh, you're just like everyone else on this planet. That doesn't really make it good news.

Woman A:


Pretty much Regina wants to stop pretending and lying to herself but she doesn't want to start any conflict. She also doesn't want to change herself either. It's really frustrating to her because she doesn't know what to do. Sure she can get away from the problem, but it will always find itself to her somehow.

What do you call someone like Regina? Is there a word for what she is going through?
What do you think?



I think I can help. Fortunately, there are many words to describe what you wrote. There is, "Fake, Lie, Cruel, BullSh%t, and Insincere. Regina seems like she has the case of not speaking her mind and it bothers her, which is understandable, but she has a cruel way of thinking. The wonderful news is indeed good news for the friend and not for Regina so her negative comment seems selfish and dumb. She could have said," That is wonderful news for you." and still stay true to herself.







This. The problem is Regina thinks its black and white. When it's a range of reactions. You don't have to be a complete asshole to be real. A lot of people confuse the two. Assertion is not the same as aggression. " That is wonderful news for you; are you excited to be a mother?" Is a genuine response you could give an acquaintance, who should at least have enough of your attention and interest to be having a conversation with you.

You don't have to retain knowledge of her pregnancy or her desire to be a mother, but courtesy and respect are things we afford STRANGERS, all the time. If you're around someone long enough for them to be telling you their personal good news, then why are you treating them less than you would a random on the street, or a waiter/waitress?
Posted 7/6/17 , edited 7/6/17
Well if that's the case, its the same regarding marriage and relationships, and plenty of other things in life. Just keep it simple and give congratulations, or just be a total ass, if you prefer honesty over politeness. You don't have to say you're happy for them or anything, because that would be a blatant lie.
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Posted 7/6/17 , edited 7/7/17
Common courtesy dictates that you "lie" in order to maintain a positive relationship with X person. Realistically, this way you won't burn bridges, and the existence of the child will rarely if ever have any tangible impact on your life. Worst case scenario, they ask you to babysit. At which point you politely decline for whatever legitimate and/or made up excuse you care to use. Being "honest" in this scenario is akin to being unnecessarily cruel for no personal gain.

TL:DR - Lie. It's a win - win for everyone in the long run.
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Posted 7/6/17 , edited 7/7/17
Regina can try to change her perspective. Even though she doesn't like children, her friend is clearly pleased about the child and by Regina expressing positivity to match, her friend feels better, knows Regina is capable of feeling happy for her, Regina doesn't lose anything (she should stop before anything like babysitting), Regina avoids ruining the rest of the relationship by stubbornly pushing her own beliefs on her friend ...

Basically Regina's identity is too self conscious about being "true" to herself to the extent she avoids her friend. Even taking it out of this one friend, in the workplace and society at large, you have to be able to get along with people.

Lying would be saying "I'm so happy for you! I wish I also was having a baby because I love children! Can I help in any way?" And then never actually following through with helping.

Being truthful would be saying "Oh congratulations!"

Being antisocial and in fear of your own identity somehow being damaged would be saying "Sorry, I can't be your friend any more. It's just that important to my sense of self that I try to bring you down because I don't personally love babies."
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Posted 7/6/17 , edited 7/7/17
Regina is pretending, but I guess the real question is "why is she pretending?" right?

Regina is an introverted person who is too unsure of herself to say what she really thinks (maybe she is also a kind person who feels guilt when she displeases people, but maybe it is just a confidence thing). She doesn't have the confidence to speak her mind, because she is afraid of the rejection that may come along with being honest. Although it is exhausting to pretend, she is likely afraid that the consequences of being frank and honest may be more stressful than the hassle of pretending to be supportive of motherhood. If she has poor self-esteem, a highly negative response to her honest thoughts might be devastating. She is worried and/or exhausted afterwards because it takes more mental energy to put up a facade and worry what people think about you all the time than it does to just act naturally without analyzing everything (even more so if she is an introvert).
Regina's habit of putting on a nice face probably seems like it is the better option in the short run, but her frustration probably indicates that it really is a bad practice for her mental well-being in the long run. Regina only has a small handful of real friends at most, because pretending is probably something she does in most facets of her life (since wearing the happy mask can easily become a crutch for those with poor self confidence) and people can typically tell if you're holding them at arms length. She'd probably be better off finding a diplomatic way to translate her honest thoughts, instead giving responses that don't represent her feelings at all.

If I had to summarize all that in a nutshell, I would say that Regina has chronically low self-esteem and is afraid of failure and rejection.

On a side note: I'd be interested to know if there is a specific reason for Regina's aversion to parenthood and children, or if she get's annoyed about the topic simply because people assume she wants children and act like she is weird if they find out otherwise.

That's what I am inclined to say, but maybe I'm looking a little too deeply.
Sorry for the lengthy post. I like analyzing people.
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