Your 'Southern Hospitality' Is Just Sugarcoated Hostility And I'm Done With It

Your 'Southern Hospitality' Is Just Sugarcoated Hostility And I'm Done With It

Real Southern hospitality is about as rare as unsweetened tea in the South.
144
views

I've lived in the South my entire life. Nearly nineteen years of attempting to adjust to the backward, backwoods, backhanded ways and I still don't think I have. Southerners are a group I've always been fascinated by and I am one. But somehow, I've put them in the same category in my head as ancient Mesopotamians, Eskimos and cavemen. I want to understand how they work, but I haven't really tried to figure it out.

It has its own stigmas and set of clichés and customs, like any other civilization. The South is hot, humid and heritage heavy. There's always enough grits and cornbread to go around. Everything is deep fried and delicious. We've got dirt roads and dirtier trucks to drive on them. It really is like a mediocre country song.

But as for the "Southern hospitality"...

It'd be wrong of me to deny the fact that the people here are well-mannered. For the most part, they are. People are awfully polite and courteous. What I question is the sincerity behind it all. I'll be the first to admit some are the utmost sincere, but a few bad apples can ruin the whole bunch.

Too often, there's an underlying sense of various prejudices and bitterness behind the overdramatic pleasantness and fake smiles. It spoils everything even slightly enjoyable about the South.

Sure, there's a heavy amount of holding open doors and going the extra mile to lend a hand. It's all fun and games and "How are you, darlin'?" and "Yes, ma'am" until you do something the classic Southerners and church ladies deem inappropriate. Mind you, the standards are actually fairly low for what is inappropriate.

Being openminded or outspoken are grounds for being shunned where I come from. I've been treated like I had leprosy for both. Maybe it was having a witty mother from up north or just a deep desire to be defiant, but there was little stopping me from saying whatever I thought. No matter how liberal, feminist, untraditional or downright absurd it may be.

They have their thoughts and I have mine, mine being more left-sided and full of individuality. I have enough respect to know when to bite my tongue, but as the years drag on and I make my way further into adulthood, I become more outraged. I just have high hopes of enlightening and changing minds.

At more Southern family shindigs than I could count on my fingers and toes, I've experienced backlash for simple choices I've made. I'm always surprised by how offended people can be by who my friends are, putting on a little weight, having relations with guys of different colors and nationalities, criticizing the president or just being focused more on my education than boys.

In retaliation to that, however, it's rarely actual insults toward me, for that would be blatantly inhospitable. It's jokes about my choices, racial humor and questions they know the answer to but want to hear aloud to reference later. There may be a smile on their faces while they pass judgments along, but it's mixed with eyes that shoot daggers and a look of unpleasant constipation. It isn't fooling anyone. I've been granted quite a low dosage of that sweet Southern hospitality.

If I wasn't looking to be disappointed in the old-fashioned ways of my loved ones, I may not notice, but it's loud and clear to me. I'm beginning to realize the Southerners I've struggled to understand aren't worth understanding at all.

The majority are just snotty gossips who try to mask everything as a compliment. "Bless your heart" doesn't mean any hearts are being blessed and even catcalls are confused for commendations.

The South is just a twisted twilight zone where Southern hospitality is as rare as unsweetened tea.

Cover Image Credit: denisbin / Flickr

Popular Right Now

20 Rules Of A Southern Belle

It is more than just biscuits and grits.
17090
views

These unwritten rules separate the people that move to the South and were born and raised in the South. If you were born and raised in a small southern town, you either are a southern belle or hope you get to marry one. Their southern charm is hard to dislike and impossible to be taught.

1. Adults are to be answered with "Yes ma’am" and "Yes sir."

Whether it’s your parents, grandparents, or the person that checks you out at the grocery store, always say yes ma’am.

2. Always write a thank you note.

For any and everything. No gesture is too small.

3. Expect a gentleman to hold the door open and pull out your chair.

Chivalry is not dead; you just need to find the right guy.

4. All tea is sweet.

Below the Mason-Dixon Line, tea is made no other way.

5. Don’t be afraid to cook with butter.

I’ve never met a good cook that didn’t giggle a little.

6. “Coke” refers to all sodas.

Here in the south, this means all types of sodas.

7. Pearls go with anything — literally anything

And every southern belle is bound to have at least one good set.

8. "If it’s not moving, monogram it."

9. Pastels are always in fashion.

And they look good on almost everyone.

10. And so is Lilly Pulitzer.

11. Curls, curls and more curls.

The bigger the hair, the closer to Jesus.

12. If you are wearing sandals, your toenails should be done.

13. Never ever ever wear white shoes, pants, dresses, or purses after Labor Day or before Easter.

Brides are the only exception. Yes we actually do follow this rule.

14. Never leave the house without lipstick.

A little mascara and lipstick can work miracles.

15. Always wear white when you walk down the aisle.

Weddings are taken very seriously here in the South, and they should be nothing but traditional.

16. Southern weddings should always be big.

The more bridesmaids the better.

17. Saturdays in the fall are reserved for college football.

Whether you spend it tailgating in that college town or watching the big game from your living room. You can guarantee that all southerner’s eyes will be glued to the game.

18. Sunday is for Jesus and resting.

19. Learn how to take compliments curiously.

20. Have class, always.

Cover Image Credit: Daily Mail

Related Content

Connect with a generation
of new voices.

We are students, thinkers, influencers, and communities sharing our ideas with the world. Join our platform to create and discover content that actually matters to you.

Learn more Start Creating

It's 2019, And I Can Confirm One Size Does Not Fit All, At All

I'll take feeling good over meeting your standards. Thank you.

188
views

We live in a society where being yourself and expressing who you truly are is something that is becoming more and more accepted and is actually trendy. Left and right, people are coming forward and declaring who they are and want to be in life and there is a crowd of people there to cheer them on.

There is also always that small percent sitting in the corner, ready to throw derogatory comments and taint the self-love, respect, and acceptance that's flowing.

Every single time this happens, the internet breaks and feuds form in the comment sections. How many times does this fight have to be had before people just mind their own business? How someone looks is frankly none of your concern. Whether you think the person is too fat, too skinny, too girly, too rough, too whatever, it's none of your business.

I'm a firm believer that one should focus on their own life instead of living to tear others down. You should be more concerned with feeling good in your own body than wasting your energy trying to make people ashamed of theirs. It's not your place to comment on someone's appearance.

We should work on building up confidence and feeling good in our skin. Exercising, working on your mental health, and surrounding yourself with good energy will improve your life exponentially. DO NOT do this to achieve an aesthetic or try to look like an Instagram model. Only do it to feel good about yourself internally. What you look like on the outside should only matter to you.

I would be lying if I said I didn't fall victim to countless beautiful women who post their swimsuit photos looking like they stepped out of Vogue magazine. I would be lying if I said I didn't struggle with my own body image and have to remind myself daily that it's okay to not fit their mold. I won't lie to you. We live in a world that feels the need to comment on every inch of our skin rather than focus on more important issues. Shut off the noise and ignore the words that are given in hate. You have better things to do than focus on their negativity.

Make your own mold.

Related Content

Facebook Comments