This should really be a trueoffmychest post but I’m not looking for hate, so I’ve come here to my sisters and brothers because I’m looking for validation and support.
So to backtrack, I know what’s going on in the world and I know that my little bit of antisemitism is nothing new- but it hurts- since October 7th when my chag was ruined by the news that slowly filtered in.
I’ve felt the fear, the pain, anguish, anxiety, guilt for continuing on with my life; pride for being Jewish and touched upon seeing/hearing beautiful and moving stories. I donated, prayed, cried, lit candles and held others pain for them.
I’ve been holding back from pretty much all social media (excepting reddit) and on whatsapp I muted statuses. Some news, very little, filters in through word of mouth, through my husband and a couple of videos/messages on my neighborhood chat.
Today just finally felt like too much. Are we just supposed to live this way?! The smallest of things was what escalated my pain and anxiety.
So today, I was in Costco with my husband, we knew going in it would be a madhouse but what ended up bothering me was not the fact that it was a madhouse but the very not subtle looks and acts that told me “we hate you”.
At first, I thought I was imagining it and just overthinking it but we kept getting those looks, more like death glares, and also, people just pretending not to see we were coming or pretending not to see we were trying to get past them etc.
I know this sounds imagined, like I said I gaslit myself too. Once I noticed it, I watched all our interactions, I asked my husband if I was crazy but he had noticed it too. It wasn’t everyone, maybe like 15 of these “incidents” in the 2.5(!!) hours in the store. But it was enough to make me feel like shit. I wanted to cry. I felt so victimized and vulnerable, with a target on my back.
I don’t look overtly Jewish but my husband wore a kippah today and I kept thinking to tell him to take it off. There’s always a battle, we both have this, should he wear it to say- “I’m Jewish and I’m proud, I wont cower in fear” or take it off and most people wont be able to know because- why deal with the hate if we don’t absolutely have to?!
We are also always careful to be respectful of other shoppers, and even helpful- someone dropped something and is struggling with their other items- I grabbed the dropped item for them.
I wanted to stop and ask one of the women who was very obviously acting nasty and hateful- “why are you doing this? Why are you hating on us so much?” Of course, I knew what her answer would be. I’m just emotionally shaken.
And last week, in another store, my husband got the same treatment from the woman running the self checkout.
Today, Neighborhood chat posted a screen recording of some idiot teenagers climbing atop their car to cut down an Israeli flag that was flying in our neighborhood, laughing, loving it and going on about “f**kin n-word jews” etc. It was so disgusting.
Doesn’t help that in a not too far away, large, Jewish community, a grenade was found tied to a pole of some sort near a Shul.
I understand that a large majority of people (in the U.S. at least) support Israel and don’t hate us, but it is a pretty large number that do hate us and are spewing literal shit on social media.
I understand that we are seeing the ones that hate because they are the extreme, but no one can deny that it is spreading everywhere. The occasional attacks before were already too much. Now, its so widespread- no one blinks twice. I know I barely do, its a sigh and a omigod- stab in the chest.
Thanks for reading through the weight of this hurt I’m carrying for myself and for all of us.