One of the stupidest thing a person can think ukuthi “abantu bazothini” when they want to go for what they want. This syndrome has killed many dreams and destroyed many lives. We ask ourselves ukuthi abantu bazothini and at the end of the day we don’t have an answer and we don’t know ukuthi batheni.

We tend to forget that people will always talk, good or bad, and they’re here to talk, to make us doubt ourselves. It is up to us whether we want to believe what they say about us or what we say about ourselves.

There’s this phrase I once read, “Siphila nabo, asiphili ngabo,” which means we live with them (people) and not by them. Live your life to the fullest no matter what people are saying. They are not you, you are not them, whatever is going on your life, they will not and they do not care.

They’re just here to give you doubts and make you forget ukuthi ufunani. We ask ourselves ukuthi abantu bazothini, forgetting that the same people that we’re worrying about, they also suffer from this syndrome. It is just something that’s here to drive us nuts. It’s the devil’s way to destroy us. There’s also this tendency for parents driven by the “abantu bazothini” syndrome to force their children to stay in abusive relationships or kick them out of the house because basaba ukhuthi abantu bazothini.

I remember in the last few weeks I met a friend in Joburg who was my primary-school friend. She was wearing dirty old clothes and carrying her child. I asked her where she is living now because I last saw her a few years ago. I felt my heart sinking when I saw tears on her face, and she said, “My parents disowned me when I told them I was pregnant. They said I’m a disappointment and I’ll ruin their reputation as ‘pastors’. They kicked me out of the house and said I should go far away from where I’m known, so here I am.”

What really broke my heart is that she’s living on the streets, suffering with a child, while her parents are living happily with everything. They disowned her just because they’re afraid of “what people will say” and now their child and grandchild are homeless.

I know maybe they were disappointed that their daughter got pregnant at an early age, but they shouldn’t have disowned her. My point is: stop considering what people will say ngawe, and start living your life. Abantu baphila impilo zabo so nawe phila eyakho. Akekho umuntu obheke ukuthi wena uphila njani, so stop worrying ukhuthi bazothini. Phila impilo yakho mtasekhaya and stop worrying about people.

Tell us: Why do we care about what others say about us?