This will be tough to write, it’s probably the most honest thing I’ll ever write and to those that know me in real life – accept it for what it is and next time you see me just give me a hug and say yeah we kind of figured anyway.
So, yesterday was weird for a lot of reasons. I’ve been trying to date this guy who is basically permanently unavailable through work. I didn’t realise at the beginning just how unavailable and I also didn’t realise how much that would bother me but it does. So, cut a long story short we’re supposed to meet up but he bails again – and I’m upset. However, the cruncher is I’m disproportionately upset compared to the act and yes I did go off on one. I admit I was a little childish and hung up when he called but I was really angry and didn’t really want to talk right then. I’m also angry that he didn’t seem to get where I was coming from. However, a day out with a friend and we’re chatting and I have to do some self reflection on what part do I play in all of this, and how do I resolve things.
Knowing, acknowledging then acting are three separate things and it takes guts to do one let alone all three but in the space of a two-hour train journey I was sort of forced to do that – wasn’t pretty, wasn’t easy but it happened. In truth I’ll probably look back on yesterday as the game changer day, the day I finally admitted what was going on. You may suspect what demons others are living with but there’s nothing you can do till they say it themselves. You can only support from the sidelines until the other person owns the game they are in. All you can do is watch and hope that one day the penny drops and then say ‘ok, what do I do that will be helpful?’ M, love you xx
So, we have my childhood that left me with a fear of abandonment. A chronic aching fear of being left emotionally, not just sadness, but an emptiness that you can’t rationalise. Another friend I was talking to had a similar experience with their parents and it was almost cathartic to be able to talk about this with her, we understood each other in a way that others can’t. That sense of ‘good girls don’t get angry, if you do I’ll leave’ invades every action, every word and is ingrained into your psyche in a way that you can’t explain. I hope in a way you can’t empathise as that means you’ve not been there, but to those that get it – hang in there.
So, my teenage years and I discover the pub and for a few hours after a few pints I can escape this mental prison. It doesn’t make it stop but it does numb the brainwashing for a while so you keep doing it. However ……. you don’t realise you’re creating more harm and not actually developing healthy coping strategies to address the real issue. In truth I didn’t understand what the real issue was back then, I just knew that relationships weren’t always the healthiest but didn’t quite get why. I knew that home wasn’t a happy place but thought that’s what everyone had to deal with so you just accept it. You don’t really talk about stuff in context when you’re younger unless it’s really bad and from the outside looking in we seemed perfectly normal.
I’m older now, but alcohol has stayed with me as has my seeming inability to form healthy relationships because I often struggle with the language of sharing my feelings properly. I worry that if I say something you don’t like you’ll leave like my Mother told me from little. I suspect I try to morph into what I think someone wants due to the brainwashing from young, truthfully I’m not entirely sure who I am. There are days when Alice seems quite normal in her tospy turvy world. So back to being let down the other night and my disproportionate response. Perhaps I’d allowed him to think I wouldn’t be that bothered if he let me down again, maybe I allow things to slide without going ‘actually I’m not overly impressed with this’. So when the final straw (for me) hit I blew up and all he probably thought was ‘bloody hell, this isn’t a normal reaction’. You see nice girls don’t get angry or share their feelings but the reality is if you don’t it bottles up and then that emotion has to go somewhere. The reaction is then totally disproportionate to the tiny act that caused it, however, the recipient doesn’t know you’ve sat on probably six months worth of repressed anger and that’s why it blows. Again, not their fault, totally mine. I’ve also realised looking back over the messages that I have a hidden language and key phrases that tell you I’m not happy at something you’ve said or done, but I don’t give you the cipher so you remain oblivious to my hurt and I’m thinking ‘really, you didn’t see that as a hint??’ Of course you didn’t because I don’t explain!!
I tried to explain, tried to apologise but get this in message:
At first, I thought it was a playful idea but then zoomed in and then had to accept it may have meant something else, am still hopeful it’s playful. However, in my mind I’ve again engineered a situation that someone else didn’t want to be in. I’m also aware that due to some of my negative programming it’s not always easy to see things clearly, again something I need to address.
However, the moral of the tale – I will accept the professional help I’ve been offered, I understand now that I don’t always make the best choices and certainly not when alcohol is involved. And also, I need to accept that anger is normal and I’m allowed to react to the small stuff and then move on rather than allowing it to build to a point that others think ‘woah, that’s a bit OTT’. Because the reality is my actions were massively to blame for receiving some of the comments I did, but equally a little understanding that I was hurt by his actions wouldn’t have gone amiss.
And the other thing, to my friends – I am SOOOOO grateful for the love and support you offer and have continued to offer despite me being a mess on times. I don’t particularly want to be a mess or even choose to be but like the counsellor said to me ‘you’re a work in progress but at least you’re willing to work at it, and that’s the first step’.
To all the works in progress out there, talk more, it really does help. The tears are real right now, not out of sadness but out of relief that one day I may finally get out of this darkness. I am also not unaware of how lucky I am to have such an amazing support network. To the guy that stood me up, I’m sad but equally, I recognise my part in it all and who knows maybe in a few months we might get another coffee as friends, I’d kind of like that if it’s an option,