I’ve Come A Long Way

I was looking back over some of my journal entries and came across this one written on 9-26-2015. I’ve come so far from where my mindset was during that time and well, God is good! Take from it what you will (which I hope is a lesson) and most of all, happy reading!

9-26-2015
In the last few months I’ve been forced to acknowledge something that has apparently always been a factor in my relationships: I have a lot of relationships in my life that are not give and take, but seem to be more one sided. In addition to acknowledging this, it also led me to look deeper as to WHY this is and then it came to me: it can be traced back to my own issues and dysfunctions.

Let me tell you what kicked this whole thing off. A few months ago I made plans with my besty ┬áto go over his house and just geek out like we used to do but hadn’t in a long time. Before I go on, let me say that he’s in a very dysfunctional relationship where his girlfriend is so insecure that she accuses him of being involved with everything from the bathroom mirror to other men behind her back and he’s never even given her a reason to think such outrageous things, hence her own issues and dysfunctions come into play here, and at the same time, so does my besty’s for putting up with it and not drawing boundaries. Anyway, having not seen him for a while, having dragged a ton of my devices with me and looking forward to us hanging out, I got about 60 seconds from his gate, text to let him know this and what was his response? That his girlfriend was there! Apparently she had just dropped by only a few minutes prior to me texting him my ETA (which in my opinion, was ample time to send a short text informing me of this)and at the end of the day, what this meant was that it was a no go on the geeking out, let alone me even stopping by for a hot minute to say hi! Remember she has unfounded “suspicions” and “jealousy” issues.

I can say that I was pretty much sent into an internal rage! I personalized it as I do most things that involve other people and their behavior towards me. The first thing that came to my mind was that he didn’t value our friendship enough to at least defend it to her if I came over for just 90 seconds. Then I thought about how he didn’t value ME as a person to initiate a text or call to let me know not to come – even if I had one foot in the gate, so to speak. After I calmed down, or is it more accurate to say that WHAT calmed me down came next and that was realizing that my feelings about how the situation was handled and how I personalized it was a direct result of my OWN issues. Issues that I’m in the process of addressing and trying to heal from that originate in childhood. Issues of feeling disregarded. Never being chosen because I never felt good enough. Issues of not feeling not important to anyone when it comes down to it because EVERY ONE else was better or more valued than me.

Once I saw the situation from this perspective, I realized a few things that can be applied to a lot more interactions that I have in my life: 1. I usually place way more value on my relationships than the other person does and as a result I’ve had to reevaluate if each relationship is worth continuing to be that unbalanced or is it time to withdraw a little bit 2. Although I have a ways to go, the fact that I made that connection so quickly and was able to pretty much take my anger level down twenty notches proves that I have made progress on my journey to heal and 3. I won’t take ownership for my besty’s unhealthy choices. He chooses to be in a relationship like this where he has to sacrifice others in order to appease her and keep the drama down. Although I strongly disagree with that method, sometimes we just have to go through things before wet get to certain points.

At the end of the day, even though I was able to take ownership of MY emotions and MY reaction to the situation, process it in a healthy way so that I didn’t get stuck in that old familiar ‘what’s wrong with ME’ mental broken record and not take on the choices he made personally, he still needed to know that the WAY he went about it was NOT ok! So, instinctively I didn’t communicate with him for weeks, even though I really wasn’t mad at him. I guess that was my way of coming to the conclusion that after weighing out our 14 year friendship, it was clear that I either valued the friendship just a little more than he did or probably what is closer to the truth is that I just have a better sense of self awareness and ability to confront things head on than he does. Either way, I considered that situation one of the many revelations I’ve had about myself over the last few years that have been part of my healing journey.

And yes, me and my besty are still friends, although I don’t place as much emphasis on trying to hang out with him anymore and it’s still all good.

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The Gift of A Platonic Relationship

I so believe in these between members of the opposite sex! I believe in them because I’ve been blessed enough to meet someone of the opposite sex that I not only consider my best friend, but also like a brother. I don’t know the statistics or numbers, but I would assume that the number of people in relationships with a best or close friend of the opposite sex is not all that high. Even though I’m currently not in a relationship and to be exact, I’m divorced, when I was, I still had my besty right there beside me (so to speak).

Now if you recall in the ‘About Me’ section, I said that my blogs were more of an online diary, which means that this blog right here is no exception. I usually write on random stuff and so during the randomness that frequently goes thru my mind, I started thinking about my best friend, how blessed I was to even have one and then for some reason started to think about people who really take friendship for granted. Of course, one person, who shall remain nameless in the event he ever reads this, instantly came to mind. Here, we have a person who can basically be considered a womanizer. He lives off other people (mostly women) and to my knowledge, in all the 20+ years (that was a major name hint right there!) that we’ve been knowing each other, I don’t ever recall him having a friend of the opposite sex that he could truly call just a ‘friend’. It’s sad to realize that every relationship he had with the opposite sex either started off as a game, an ego booster or a manipulation tactic. On those rare occasions that I did see this person, I used to get really frustrated at the comments that come out his mouth when someone of the opposite sex was simply being polite or conversing with me. To him, it was always that other person is trying to “get with me” or some stupid ulterior motive other than simple conversation. I realized a long time ago that just like the ole’ saying goes, “you can’t give what you don’t have”, well you also can’t UNDERSTAND what you’ve never experienced.

One of the characteristics of a friendship, no matter if it’s with the same sex or opposite, is being able to just be YOU. Being honest, up front, and relaxed around each other are vital to ANY relationship. When you have a friend of the opposite you should be able to go hang out, do normal things, not be distracted by any one-sided or mutual attraction lingering in the air but rather, if their IS any attraction, one or both parties should be able to put those feelings aside for the sake of the friendship and not let them be a driving or motivating force. Also, you should want to hang out because they’re your friend – not because of what they can do for you or what you can get from them but because they are truly your platonic friend.

I dont know. This is a subject that I feel really strongly about and I know that it’s a lot more complex than what I’ve expressed, but I really get disheartened when I think of how their are those who don’t have the capability at this point in their life to make genuine connections with the opposite sex or even have the insight on how to cultivate them without seeing every person as an opportunity to survive, get over or get ahead in life. You truly don’t know that you’re missing out on one of the simple pleasures of life: a true friendship with someone.

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