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Tuesday, 29 May 2018

Falling Down

When I was younger I watched a movie called 'Falling Down' that I liked a lot but don't really remember. It was about a guy who goes through a series of frustrating events over the course of one day that drive him to violent insanity. I liked this film because it represented how I felt and (used to) often feel; frustrated and filled with anger and tension that boils up and explodes.

I mention this because its easy to feel powerless and unstable when things don't go the way you want them to. It can feel like the whole world is against you and nothing will be right again. But what I've realized is that - especially coming from someone who has depression and is in AA - when you're in a shitty situation, it will always pass. It feels like you'll be trapped that way forever and never be happy again, but nothing ever remains the same. That's life.

I was going out with this guy for a couple months and thought our relationship was amazing and we were having a great time. Then a few days ago he broke up with me. I won't go into details as this isn't that kind of blog, but I was shattered. I've felt numb and empty since, like I'll never feel happiness again. It's put me off relationships big time and made me further lose faith in people.

In isolation, it might not seem that big of a deal; you'll get over it, you weren't together long, happens to everyone. But it hit me hard because this is a repeated pattern in my life; I meet a person - male or female - and form a strong romantic or friendly bond towards them, and then they pull away and I feel cheated and miserable.

Why do I do this? Why do I meet people and expect so much joy from them only to be met with disappointment? Obviously I don't mean to be disappointed. Most of the time I don't do anything wrong; the other person says I'm a nice person, and that it's them not me. I met a girl on my course in my first year at ACM and I loved her very quickly and thought we'd become close friends, then she pulled away and I was devastated. Months later she told me she does like me and I did nothing wrong, she just wasn't used to the level of intensity and extroversion that I brought to the friendship.
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Admitting this does make me feel slightly embarrassed, like I'm a needy loser who runs after people only to get shot down. But why am I writing this? Catharsis, but also because co-dependent behaviour and people-pleasing is extremely common and I guess something we all do from time to time without realising. There was a woman on this blog who I was engaging in frequent conversation with for a while, and we even began emailing, but our relationship quickly became toxic. I found her patronising and manipulative and didn't like the way I was obsessing over her and becoming stressed and saw how my behaviour changed. Whether or not she intended to be like that is irrelevant; the point is, people aren't always what they initially appear.

A guy can smile at you and look at you with his big brown eyes and say you're the loveliest girlfriend ever. A woman can take your hand and say she loves you and will always be there for you. But people's words are not always honest, and often people don't know what they want. I didn't intend to hurt you, but I did. I genuinely know when I'm being intentionally awful; when I'm upset or angry I tend to lash out so it's obvious I'm being an arsehole. But some people are more subtle and don't always show their cruelty or tactlessness; it comes out sideways. Intent and action are very different.

I have to remember that there are people in this world who love me and know that I am a good person. People fade in and out of our lives, and everyone is complicated. The only person you can 100% rely on is yourself. And maybe I need to become less naive; maybe this recent experience with my now-ex can show me that I need to be more cautious when I meet people. I may harden and become more guarded as a result, and perhaps become warier of others. But maybe that is something that needs to happen?

Do you relate to any of this? Do you become too strongly attached towards people? Has this post perhaps helped you with your own feelings of disparity? Let me know and good luck to all reading this. Whatever you feel today can be utterly different tomorrow.

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