I have no idea who reads this blog. I have no way of knowing. I only know who subscribes. That doesn’t count for all of the visitor statistics though. Overall, I think it’s probably good that I don’t know who’s reading. It makes it a little easier for me to be honest.
Honestly, I’m in my head waaay too much. But I think I’m getting better. My therapist says I am. As much therapy as I’ve had, I feel like I should be cured by now, but I know that will never happen. I will never fully recover from my past, or become the perfect person, or behave like a decent friend. I’m still the saboteur I’ve always been.
Either consciously or subconsciously, I’ve wrecked nearly every relationship I’ve had. And I’ve been told by others that I’ve even sabotaged my own successes. I pretty much walked away from music. Even before I came to be physically disabled, I turned down big opportunities others would never. But at the time, I felt it was a conscious choice. I was protecting my mental health then.
Relationships. Those are different. There’s a lot of bodies and bad blood left behind. Those were choices too, I suppose. Many of them were anyway. Many were out of pure laziness and my own anxiety about how to maintain them.
When people reach too hard, I run away. I don’t really want to be too close to anyone. I guess I don’t want to be hurt, ultimately. I don’t want to hurt anyone, disappoint anyone, or scare them away. And I suppose they don’t want to scare me away either, but they have so I’m a hypocrite.
I’m a cranky person, but I’m a loving person too. I have a hard time navigating those two. I like being alone most of the time and I don’t like “going out” for social get-togethers. I am happier with one-on-one visits or very small groupings. This has cut me off from a number of friends. My depression and social anxiety have kept me from participating in the art world. I could name at least a dozen people I’d love to have had a better relationship with if I wasn’t so spastic about going out. I am no good at keeping up with any of them for one-on-one time. I don’t have that kind of time.
I’d rather email than talk on the phone. I hate the phone. Now it’s something I have to put more effort into now that I am not in Los Angeles often. I have to make a conscious choice, and I also see that I have to start taking responsibility for the choices I’ve made.
If I’ve vandalized the shit out of some of my relationships, I have to take a good hard look at why I made those choices. Who were those people? Did I evaluate what they meant to me vs. how their absence would affect me? Did I go too far with some? Well yeah, maybe some. I’m not too proud to apologize. I can make big efforts to reconcile with people whom I’ve done wrong, but I have to move on from the people I miss where I made the correct choice in burning the bridge.
I’m not the only one who has had this issue. I’ve been cut off by others too, with absolutely no real answers. No communication as to why. I know how it feels to be ghosted. It never quite leaves your head. What the fuck did I do? You can drive yourself insane trying to figure it out, but maybe you didn’t do anything wrong at all. Or maybe if you did, but if the other person doesn’t even give you the chance to reconcile, you should take the hint and move on. Fuck ’em. It’s their problem, not yours. It’s their choice. I’ve had to learn to respect other people’s choices and leave it alone.
Then there are people who maybe think I don’t like them, but I’m just bad at maintenance. I go MIA/silent for long periods of time and that’s a shitty thing to do, I know, but I still want to hear their voice, exchange email, see them for coffee sometime. I’m not trying to ghost them at all. But some choose to get angry at me. I’ve hurt them. I understand and I’m sorry. It’s not my intention to cause any pain to anyone.
I think it’s about getting my boundaries in order. I’ve always had an issue with boundaries–my own, and perhaps other peoples’ as well. I’ve beat myself up more than once for not opening up as much as I felt someone else wanted me to. Or I’ve regretting opening up more than I wanted to for the sake of appeasing someone. Meanwhile, I wish I was closer to a small handful of other people whom I’ve dropped the ball on. How fucked up is that?
Overall, mentally, I think I’m doing better than usual. My therapist has been giving me homework that I’m surprisingly accomplishing. Hallelujah. The past couple of weeks I’ve been identifying my crisis behaviors and weighing the pros and cons of using the tools I know will make me feel better when I’m in those predicaments. It’s more involved than that. It’s taking each behavior that I know isn’t good for me and evaluating the pros and cons to either acting on them or resisting them. And then, whether or not to use the skills I have to lessen the negative impact, if that makes sense.
So I have to ask myself, what are the pros and cons of acting on that behavior? You’d think those lists would be pretty straightforward, but there is something strangely comforting about keeping familiar patterns in place and avoiding change. At least making these pros and cons lists are jolting me into being more mindful of resisting bad behaviors and using the skills I have to lift myself out of the muck.
Change is not easy. I’ve said this before.