For most people the definition of caring has an ever-evolving definition. It changes depending on the situation of a person’s life. It’s easy to say that you care because all that entails is the little bit of energy to work your vocal chords. Like the saying goes, talk is cheap, actions are everything.
The sad truth is that people generally care about you as much as they need to. People have a primordial instinct to prioritize their caring to the ones they need most to sustain their wants and needs for life. They may have appeared to care about you more in the past but that was the past and in the present, it might be a different scenario.
Every society has its ways of judging who is an undesirable person. It’s not really about what you do that is so bad but the fact that you deviate from the cultural expectations. If you don’t care about following what most people deem as acceptable then you are labeled a bad person. Humans are designed to operate in tribes and a person who does not care what the rest of the tribe cares about, cannot be trusted.
The ways in which we show that we care are often through cultural obligatory gestures such as mass invites to social gatherings, birthday greetings or making an appearance at a funeral. Hey, I showed up for your death, that means I care.
Proving to one’s self that they care, satisfies a guilty conscience which is an integral part of life. As long as you can rationalize to yourself that you are a decent person then you can live another day without the stress that you might be a shitty human being.
Believing that you are a person who cares is as important as believing that you are a person who is cared about. We want to be loved so badly that our whole rationalization will revolve around a confirmation bias towards people caring about us. There are so many doubts and obvious actions that prove your insecurity and vulnerability but your desired to be cared for, trumps any rational observations.
If people care about you then it means that you are a priority in their lives. They think of you and want to improve your life even if they have no regular contact with you…you’re not a case of out of sight, out of mind.
Getting a phone call on your birthday, a congratulatory greeting through Facebook, invitation to a wedding, an appearance to your wedding. an appearance to your funeral, a gift through monetary means, a physical appearance with no meaningful significance, or kind words that are disguised as trickery that will later mince feelings of torment to your soul, by themselves, are all insincere gestures of caring.
Don’t fool yourself. If you have doubts that someone genuinely cares about you then chances are they don’t.