Reports from Cuba: In Cuba, we are experts in self-deception

Nike writes in Havana Times:

In Cuba, We Are Experts in Self-Deception

There have been shortages, restrictions and bans in every aspect of Cuban society, for as long as I can remember. We’ve had crises in the ‘70s and the ‘90s, and now there’s the disaster we’re experiencing today in 2022.

However, we’ve learned to live with this, unfortunately. After every crisis, something changes, there’s a slight improvement, as if they loosen the noose around our necks a little, a noose that they have been tightening so you can barely breathe, and that’s where self-deception comes into play.

People forget about everything that’s happened, the shortages, restrictions and bans and you continue to get by, used to not having so many things, and you wouldn’t even be able to know the difference, because you’ve not been able to know a better life than the one they’ve forced you to live.

So, we carry on with our monotonous chores around the house, looking for food, using all our energy to do this, deceiving ourselves. Satisfied with just a meal on our table every day.

Is there nothing more for the vast majority of Cubans other than staying alive?

When these superfluous improvements come after every crisis, we all deceive ourselves and continue living on this frustrated island and we do nothing to improve, we settle and stay in the country, hoping that it will continue to improve if it’s improved an inch.

Things have never been this bad, so I agree with everyone fleeing in flocks and those who did so beforehand, saving the only life we have, and getting to know just how wonderful our lives can be. I applaud their bravery to start a new life outside their country at any age, young or old.

A piece of advice though, don’t deceive yourself anymore, do whatever you want with your life, but please don’t pass on this self-deception to your children.

I’ve been a victim of that.

2 thoughts on “Reports from Cuba: In Cuba, we are experts in self-deception”

  1. I’m told the town my family came from in Cuba is now practically just older people. All the young have left.

  2. Cubans are forced to lie in so many ways to stay alive that after a while it becomes second nature. Then you begin to believe your lies. You cannot tell the difference between a lie and the truth. You forget what it means to have truth. Then there is nothing left of your soul. Just a hollow husk.

    I went to a Cuban diner in Tampa years ago. The young lady server was from Cuba. I assumed a fairly recent immigrant. She had the modern Cuban street accent as opposed to my parents’ 1950’s accent. She welcomed me and then when she learned I was Cuban said, “I will not con you”. I was kind of shocked but then realized she was trying to be polite.

    I thought the next time I am introduced to someone new I will say, “I am not going to kill you”. You know, just to be friendly and put them at ease. What kind of society is that?

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