I think that many of us as that question frequently. For myself, I usually answer that question with a confident “no”. I believe it’s because I can look at all of the poor choices in my life and realize that I don’t deserve to have any happiness. From a purely human standpoint, I believe that happiness in some weird way must be earned. If I don’t do the right things or make the right choices, then I don’t think I should be happy. Also, I hear voices of the past saying that you don’t deserve anything in life, you have to earn it. Yet I can look at the lives of others and confidently say that they do deserve to be happy. So why the dichotomy?
I think as a survivor of sexual abuse, I too often think that I chose, encouraged, or allowed someone to have sex with me. Since I made that choice, I then have to live with the consequences of those choices. However, I know that this isn’t true. No child can make that adult decision and no adult should be making those kinds of decisions for children either! My mindset has changed because I realize that happiness isn’t something that a person earns. Happiness is a feeling, which can result because of accomplishments, having positive people in your life, or just enjoying the blessings that God has given us.
I encourage all of you that if you have asked that question, wonder also why you asked it. Is it because you are feeling happy about something? I think that is the case for me. I’m back at school, doing something I really enjoy and having learned a great deal on how to do it better. I’ve been consistent at the gym and feeling great about where my physical body is headed. I’ve got wonderful family and friends who surround me daily with support and encouragement. We can always choose to be happy no matter what circumstance we find ourselves. And at least for myself, I’m going to enjoy the happiness that I’m feeling right now.