Tuesday, June 22, 2010


There are few words I dislike more than the word ‘Sacrifice’.

Mothers who ‘sacrifice’ their lives for the kids, and demand the earth in return. The kids did not ask for the sacrifice- it was a choice willingly made.

Corporate professionals who ‘sacrifice’ a fat salary to work in a non-profit, and never let anyone forget it. Was it a sacrifice or a choice to do more meaningful work?

When will people realise that they are demeaning themselves by making sacrifices? Rational human beings have the power of choice. A person who cannot exercise that choice is only short-changing himself.

A drabble is a story told in exactly 100 words.


L. Diane Wolfe said...

Now that's thought provoking!

Margot Kinberg said...

Rayna - I'm a linguist, so I enjoy thinking about what words really mean and imply. You've got a very compelling point about the word sacrifice. There may be some limited circumstances where the word's appropriate, but I agree with you that those circumstances are few and far between. Thanks for giving me something to think about : ).

Anonymous said...

Great post. I agree! Sacrifice somehow leads to guilt in others.

Mary said...

You are very deep today, Rayna.
Something to ponder during my lunch break.

Giggles and Guns

RA said...

Great post! I fully agree with you. :)

Watery Tart said...

You're probably unsurprised that I completely agree with you. The would be martyrs in particular make me NUTS. But yes, SACRIFICING money to do something that makes you feel better about yourself is frankly just choosing one perk over another.

Clarissa Draper said...

Interesting... so I shouldn't say I'm sacrificing the time it would take me to microwave a cup of coffee to comment on you blog post? Okay.



Debra She Who Seeks said...

Right on! The world has enough martyrs without the self-proclaimed ones!

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Martyr and sacrifice should not be synonymous.

Beth Zimmerman said...

I don't think I quite agree with you though I appreciate your examples of what you are saying. I think true sacrifice will never ask for someone else to pay for what was given. It simply gives without expectation of return. And it is a rare and beautiful gift!

Deb and Barbara said...

I do agree that most of those who "sacrifice" get something satisfying out of it and thus make sacrifice a moot point.


Tina said...

Thought provoking. However, I don't think that sacrifice itself is to blame. It's the people who like to brag or guilt trip who are sullying it's meaning. They're not really sacrificing. They chose to do what they did willingly, and SO THAT they could use it to manipulate others. When I think of sacrifice, I think of our servicemen and women, overseas, truly sacrificing for us. Great Drabble, Rayna. Really great.

Linda said...

thank you for posting this--I share the feeling but could never have written it so succinctly ;-)

and thank you for defining "drabble"--I simply must try writing one!

Jemi Fraser said...

Great post - very intriguing. Pompous folks who discuss their humanitarianism (or whatever) drive me batty!! :)

Raquel Byrnes said...

You're right. Its not really a sacrifice if you require recognition or gratitude or sympathy in return.

Anonymous said...

It's over-used certainly, especially in our country. Have always hated the concept.

Marjorie said...

So True!

Rayna M. Iyer said...

@ Diane- being in the social sector and a mother, I see a lot of both, and it irks me no end.

@ Margot- my pleasure. Yes, there are those limited circumstances, but someone, the ones who make the genuine sacrifices don't talk about it.

@ Fiona - and guilt is something I can do without, in me and others.

@ Mary- thank you.

@ RA - :-)

@ Tami - I am not at all surprised you agree. Martyrs are something I can live without, specially if they are false ones.

@ Clarissa- definitely not. If you don't choose to do it, don't ;-)

@ Debra- more than enough, I agree.

@ Alex- and yet, they somehow do get made synonymous by the self appointed martyrs

@ Beth- I do agree with you. Someone who genuinely sacrifices something rarely asks for much in return. And if you do ask for something, it was perhaps never a sacrifice in the first place.

@ Barbara- that is most sad, isn't it?

@ Tina- precisely. I was not thinking of the people who make real sacrifices, only of the ones who make choices and then demand in return.
And thank you.

@ Linda- you really should try your hand at drabbling. It is very good writing exercise.

@ Jemi- they do, don't they?

@ Raquel- totally.

@ batulm- I am always happier with people choosing to do what they did. So much more noble.

@ Marjorie- thanks


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