15 Things I’m Not Thankful For This Thanksgiving

This time of year Facebook and other social media websites are overrun with “Thankful” and “Blessing” posts. Everyone takes the time to reflect on what they’ve been given in life, and many hope to inspire others in their quest for inner peace and satisfaction in life. It’s a beautiful tradition. It’s a boastful tradition. And this year I’m not going to participate.

Yes, I am thankful for any number of wonderful blessings in my life. (I’m ALIVE! Let’s sing the Hallelujah chorus to that!) But sometimes I don’t feel so thankful. Sometimes I feel quite jealous reading everyone’s posts about their joy and blessings. Their engagements. Their miracle healings. Their new car. Their career success. It makes me a downright Scrooge with a side of Grinch.

So I’m going to shake things up a bit. I’m going to tell you what I’m not thankful for because, boy, are there a cartload of those waiting to be unleashed! And I don’t write these as a ploy to bring you down from your Holiday High. I just want to be honest this Thanksgiving. Because this world isn’t all rainbows and pumpkin pie.Thanksgiving 2

  1. I’m Not Thankful that I don’t feel safe walking to my car alone after work just because I’m a woman and sexual assault against women (and men) is still a regular occurrence.

  2. I’m Not Thankful that we even have to have a discussion as to whether black lives matter in this country.

  3. I’m Not Thankful that victim blaming is the go-to method of explaining away rape (“She was asking for it with that skirt.”)

  4. I’m Not Thankful that people so blatantly disrespect the President of the United States no matter their party affiliation.

  5. I’m Not Thankful that people use God as a means to manipulate people to help them feel righteous, powerful, or loved.

  6. I’m Not Thankful that despite the fact that we have fun and successful campaigns like the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge, so little money actually goes to good in the myriad of charities asking for our aid.

  7. I’m Not Thankful that cancer exists. Nor am I thankful that there still isn’t a cure.

  8. I’m Not Thankful that people idolize the Kardashians and other rich and privileged celebrities whose lives are so formulated and refined before being broadcasted to the Internet, and yet they are what many people compare themselves to and feel worthless when they fall short of their exorbitant standard.

  9. I’m Not Thankful that social media rules our lives to the point that it causes depression and anxiety in those who use it because they feel like their lives aren’t as “perfect” as all the “Fakebook” posts filtering through their feeds.

  10. I’m Not Thankful that my dad is sick (and has been my whole life), and no one can figure out what’s wrong with him.

  11. I’m Not Thankful that friends betray you, lovers abuse you, and parents ignore you.

  12. I’m Not Thankful that everyone doesn’t have a bed to sleep in at night and the promise of a meal the next day.

  13. I’m Not Thankful that many children are denied the simple pleasure of being children because their existence demands an adult’s mentality when only a child is present.

  14. I’m Not Thankful that people kill, defile, maim, and torture others.

  15. I’m Not Thankful that the world we live in isn’t perfect.

I know this world can’t be perfect. But many things on the list we can change, but we don’t. Why? I don’t know. Selfishness? Obliviousness? Outright nefarious intent?

I wish it were easier. I wish we could just snap our fingers and make these bad things go away. But it isn’t easy. It will never be easy. We have to work to overcome these things unfortunately. One small step at a time.

So when everyone is being thankful on Thanksgiving, remember this list. Remember all the things that we can’t be thankful for because they are still oh so very wrong. And think how you can turn our “Thanks” into change for all these negative things.

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