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  • Writer's pictureDrew Dotson

RIP People-Pleasing Drew

As part of a writing program I’m taking, we were asked to write an obituary to a place or to a former version of ourselves. I opted for the latter.

Here’s what I wrote:

It is with the utmost liberation that we announce the long-awaited passing of People-Pleasing Drew. Often sacrificing her own joy to do what would most appease others, People-Pleasing Drew spent far too long living an unfulfilling life.

For many years, People-Pleasing Drew wore dress pants and nice tops to jobs she despised, simply because it was what the people in her life expected from her. She second guessed her desire for purple hair and visible tattoos, fearful of what others would think.

People-Pleasing Drew routinely censored herself to best fit the situation, seeking to win the approval of every person she encountered. She wouldn’t broach topics that made others uncomfortable despite a gnawing urge to offload difficult, sometimes heartbreaking, thoughts and feelings.

People-Pleasing Drew has already been laid to rest at the time and place she damn-well pleased, unconcerned with your desire for closure. In lieu of flowers, please ditch others' opinions and start to live a life that makes your soul sing.

It felt so therapeutic to write this! Have I put it into perfect practice yet? No, but it’s a reminder of what I aspire to do.

I could see myself writing additional obituaries for things like:

  • My tendency to be self-deprecating

  • Measuring a day’s worth by its “productivity” (i.e., how much work I did)

  • Clothing that isn’t comfortable

  • Guilt-induced decision making (People-Pleasing Drew’s cousin)

  • Overconsuming media that contributes to feelings of inadequacy

What in your life are you sick and tired of? What habits do you have that no longer serve you in a positive way? Pick one, set a timer for 10 minutes, and write an obituary announcing its departure.

If you write one, I’d love to see it!

A brunette woman posing and smiling inside a grey coffin
Chillin' in a coffin, 2015


Nov 20, 2023

Love this! I hope to write something sometime. I’m some people pleasing as well.

Taylor Stauffer
Taylor Stauffer
Nov 20, 2023
Replying to

It’s me Taylor

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