The phrase f*ck your feelings is one of those that would make a really good t-shirt or bumper sticker. It’s also pretty mean.
Created, or at least popularized, by those political arguments that are… special, it’s been thrown around as a response to those of us speaking out about policies that aren’t exactly fair.
“You want Medicare for All? Well f*ck your feelings!”
Yeah, no. Understandably so, there’s been a lot of push back. Feelings should be felt, acknowledged, and valued. There’s enough mental health stigma in this world, thankyouverymuch. We don’t exactly need a mean t-shirt worthy phrase to make it easier to shame people for expressing how they feel.
But, like so many other things, it’s not black and white. There’s usually an exception to every “rule” and this isn’t any different. So here is the one (yup, only one!) time f*ck your feelings is actually appropriate.
The exception is… (drum roll, please) when you’re causing harm to other people.
Ironically, f*ck your feelings really does apply to a lot of social justice issues. Unfortunately, it’s not used by the correct side.
It doesn’t matter how you feel about trans rights, racial inclusivity, or the ability for women to remain safe from harassment. All of those things should happen regardless of if you’re mad about it because otherwise people are being harmed. If you feel some type of way about marriage equality or the John Lewis Voting Rights Act, that’s your right, but it absolutely shouldn’t matter in terms of deciding policy.
You are not allowed to use your feelings to cause other people direct harm – ever.
In recent years, there’s been a wonderful push for people to be more open with their emotions. I’m all for it! Inauthenticity with emotions has no place in my world, and I hope it has no place in yours (or you’re at least working towards that!). But as humans are often known to do, saying that your feelings matter in situations in which you’re talking about keeping people safe is going too far. THAT’S when you get to say to someone “Hey, f*ck your feelings! My right to be safe matters more”.
That’s too long to put on a t-shirt, but it still works.