Another Relationship Rant

Sometimes little things just annoy me.  This bothered me today.

“It’s good to see that you’re still alive,” says the woman who is likely my ex now.

So, I should probably start by pointing out that I’m a little bad at confrontation, and I’m still learning to say things like, ‘No,’ which is how every single one of my previous exes has pushed me around.  I mean, it’s really amazing how good I am at finding people who will, consciously or unconsciously, happily push me around and force me into doing the things they want me to do, and nothing else.

This last situation, she told everyone including her family that I was her new girlfriend before ever checking with me on the matter.  As stated in my last post on relationships, this is the second San Francisco area relationship where the new ‘love interest’ decided we were closer than we truly were – an assumption with which I am not okay.

Now, when she finally did ask if it was okay to call me her girlfriend, I felt a bit cornered into the new title.  After all, she ‘okayed’ it with me during a party at which all of her friends were in attendance, and I couldn’t very well pull her aside to discuss how unsure I was about being in a relationship, right then, particularly when she’d already told everyone there that we were.  So, coward that I am when it comes to confrontation, I nodded and added some related anecdote – an okay.

I sort of fell out of interest with her after that.  I tried really hard to be as attracted to her as I had been before that happened, even tried to blame myself.  “Oh, it must be my depression shutting me down, again.”  Now, yes, I have been rather depressed for about the past … 20 years or so.  However, it wasn’t until Thanksgiving, when she tried to push me to go to her family’s holiday dinner, that I started to figure out what exactly was going on.

I mean, a Thanksgiving invite can be a nice thing, and I would appreciate it if, upon telling her that I had been feeling depressed and being social at that point in time would be a bad idea for everyone involved, she had backed off.  Instead, she got defensive and moody with me because I didn’t want to go.  So, rather than endure a fight, I turned off my phone that weekend.  When I turned it back on the following week, I had a text message from her and several voicemails to which I still have not listened.  The text message asked if I had had a moment to talk, but had been sent the prior week.  I didn’t want to deal with the confrontation so I didn’t respond, which is – again – a cowardly thing to do, I admit, but it’s not as though she didn’t know what was going on.  I had outright told her during our ‘argument’ that I needed to be alone when I felt like this.  She deals with depression issues, as well, so she should have understood… or so I assumed.

People who deal with depression shouldn’t be judgmental about other people who deal with depression.  My dad understands when I’m ‘too busy’ to call him sometimes for months on end, because he has the same problem.  My best friend texts me every couple of months then disappears, and I understand no matter what I’m going through.  Sometimes, people who deal with depression really just need to disappear for a while and deal with it.  After all, it’s not as though I’ve never reemerged.  I always come back.

Today, two (or has it been three?) weeks later, I emerged.  I woke up and told myself that I was going to all of my classes no matter what.  I told myself that it was going to be a productive, social day.  I pushed myself out of bed, forced actual clothes onto my body, and shoved myself onto the bus; I was at school.

Now, I understand that I may not have been as communicative as I could have been.  I’m bad at talking about my own problems, or really anything that isn’t done via writing.  I also don’t like talking to people verbally who know anything about my communicative issues, because if it’s something they’re not going to like they always use my inability to communicate verbally on the spot against me.  So I write everything, I plan out difficult conversations with a list of points to address, or I simply write it down and give that to them.  I think I’ve developed a bit of a handicap by doing this, but it’s difficult to practice tough conversations beforehand so I don’t know how to improve this.

I had to go to the class we share together.  I almost talked myself out of it.  I went.

In this class, I have a close friend who almost made me cry when, upon seeing me, she gave me a huge hug, told me how much she missed me, and instructed me to sit next to her and tell me about the past couple of weeks.  So I did.  Fifteen minutes later, the probably-ex-girlfriend walked in, but I didnt’ see her at first.  All I know is that in the middle of the conversation she interrupted us to say, as sarcastically as she could manage, “It’s good to see that you’re still alive.”

Have I mentioned that I’m A.D.D., and that I’m bad at on-the-spot conversations and interactions?

My friend was still talking.  I managed an “Oh, hi!” to the probably-ex, turned my head as my friend kept talking (trying not to lose the thread of the conversation), and when I turned back, to let her know I hadn’t forgotten about/was not ignoring her, my probably-ex was already walking away – not my best moment.  I let her go; I was too distracted to think through it properly.

Then during a class that I really didn’t want to be sitting in, I started thinking.  I thought, wait a minute!  Granted, I never responded to her last text message, and it’s always possible that there’s a voice mail on my phone from her to which I have yet to listen.  She did not, however, send any messages to see what was going on with me.  She did not take into account the deep depression, which I did warn her about when it started.  She ignored the fact that I had mentioned I could not endure the company of others in that state, at-fucking-all.  She did not try to find out if I was better, or if I even received her messages.  She has also gone months without listening to her voice mails, missing several I have left her.  She’s ignored or forgotten about or simply not responded to texts I’ve sent her, as well as emails.  So, as an opening statement, I found her response today to be completely out of line, and really rather annoying.  That’s rich coming from you (we’re taking a Shakespeare class together… I’m allowed one cliche).

So I left class without saying anything to her, knowing that, annoyed as I was, anything that came out of my mouth was likely to be far too blunt and/or unkind.  I don’t think she deserves for me to be unkind to her, so I walked away.

I think she assumed my walking away was a kind of unkindness, in and of itself.  It could be perceived as such.  It could be.

The thing is: I’m so tired of people pushing me into doing something they want me to do without considering my feelings on the matter, and then getting all upset about something I finally do to stand up for myself.  It’s not my fault that I felt pushed into a corner, and trapped into a relationship with someone.  It’s not my fault that I need a bit more time, and perhaps some real moments to feel as though I’m close to someone new.  In fact, I feel as though that is how most people who live in reality feel about being in personal situations, with very few exceptions.

Why should I just automatically trust you when you went behind my back to create this situation, in the first place?  Why should I take your feelings into account now, when you didn’t bother to consider mine in the beginning?

I’m being blunt now, and that’s something on which I need to work, I know.  However, I think that it’s best if I work on it alone, without someone who’s trying to fit me into their fantasy world without bothering to considering the reality in which I live.  Relationships are mutual.  You cannot make someone live in your fantasy without considering theirs, and you cannot force someone to feel a certain way about you without earning at least some part of it.  Maybe, I just exist too much in reality?  And, maybe, irony is just really overrated.

On Assumed Intimacy & Other Relationship Lies

I’m beginning to think that all my relationships (barring those with some family members and one or two friends) have been with people who see some idealized version of me, and assume that’s the person with whom they’re in a relationship.  They don’t see or want to see the real me, and when they can no longer ignore her that’s when they’re disappointed or annoyed.  These individuals try to force me into being someone I’m not, becoming surprised and/or angry when I refuse to bow down to their mental image of ‘the perfect (girl)friend.’

To add to this, in this new city in which I now live the trend is to assume an unearned level of intimacy; a trend that I cannot understand.  Why would anyone want to pretend with another person, who has not yet actually proven they can be trustworthy, that they have shared experiences that have not been shared?  It makes no sense to me.  You cannot tell someone that the two of you ‘are really close’ when all you’ve done is share a few weeks’ worth of conversations.  That is not intimacy, it is a budding friendship – relationship, if you will.  Even sex is not enough to achieve intimacy, though it is mistakenly believed to be enough by many people.

Assuming that you’re at a greater level of intimacy with someone with whom you’re not is a shortcut that can only be pretended.  With all this fabrication going on how can anyone maintain a relationship?

This is the real reason why marriages fail – constant assumptions, miscommunications, fantasizing, and expectations of instantaneous fixes to any problems.  Until people can accept other people for who they really are this institution will continue to fall and these relationships will continue to fail.  I, for one, am fed to bursting with the idea that someone can just tell me how intimate we have become, or how I should behave in our relationship.  Your fantasies hold no sway over my mind or my actions.

Thanks for reading my relationship rant, and have a lovely day.

Introspection: Broken

I’ve spend a lot of my time worrying about this silly aspect of myself that no one else is likely to notice or care about. Since childhood, I listened to my mother say that our family was cursed, and that curses follow three generations of children; I’m in the third generation. Since middle school, I heard my grandmother talk about how psychologically damaged all of us children are because both of our parents have mental problems of some kind or another, and our childhoods were all screwed up by their battles. All my life, I’ve listened to what other people said about me and my brothers, and so have they. We’re broken, we’re damaged; we’re mentally unstable.

It took having someone tell me that I was a ‘sad and broken’ woman for me to think, ‘Actually, you know what, I’m really not.” The words were spoken in anger, during a break-up, so they’re not all that reliable anyway, and I am aware that I’ve been going through some shit over the past few months that have really kept me stressed out, sick, and constantly on the brink of a nervous break-down. That’s a lot for anyone to deal with, but I got through it just fine.

Yesterday, my friend asked me if I was going to respond to my ex’s nasty remarks about me on a social networking site, and without thinking I just told her ‘no’ because I honestly could care less and because there wasn’t an ounce of truth in the post. She looked at me seriously for a moment, and then said, “You’re so strong.”

It’s funny. I never really thought of myself as strong before, but after so many different people pointing that out to me over the past year or so I kind of feel silly now because I never saw strength within myself. I only saw the problems that are my constant focus so that I can work on them, and systematically remove them. Strength? That’s a good quality, and I never really factored those into my self-assessments.

So there you have it: I’m strong, stronger than I’ve ever been, and looking back I know I’ve always been the strong one in my family. I’ve been everybody’s rock for so long that I still subconsciously look for people who need to lean on me because it feels strange to be this free of outside burdens. That’s a trait on which I should be focusing, and will during the years to come. Because my path is going to require strength along with a few of my other good traits (determination, stamina, passion, patience, silence, and the child-like wonder with which I often view the world around me) to reach my ultimate goals, and allow me to continue the ongoing battle with life’s struggles.

It’s also interesting in retrospect that those seven good traits I wrote up there were written on the fly, without thinking, just typing my own thoughts as fast as I can to keep up. So I’ve known about them, I just pushed them aside for what other people have told me my whole life, which is silly because those people don’t know me half as well as I know myself so their perspectives should not be held in higher regard than my own, and that’s what I need to keep in mind for the months and years to come.

Fresh eyes: such a good quality with which to continue the long and arduous journey ahead.

Thanks for reading my introspective nonsense, and have a lovely day!

Silence: A Break-Up

It’s funny how angry I was before all of this began. I had started dating someone who really annoyed me pretty much the minute he began to be himself around me (which he began to do after we had sex). I’ve never experienced that before, but, being who I am, I sat back to figure out why I was often annoyed to be around him rather than breaking it off right away.

After noticing several traits in him that are pet peeves of mine, I breathed a huge sigh of relief. I had been afraid he was my mirror, and that the things that annoyed me about him might be my own traits reflected back to me. Don’t get me wrong, one or two of them were, still are, and are on my list of changes I’ve been working on in my life. However, the traits he accused me of having… it’s funny how seriously I took him before. I believed him about the things he said about me even while knowing that he was incapable of seeing past his own ego long enough to see anyone else clearly, including me. No, he had this idea of what he wanted, and he thought he could force me to be this fantasy, only to become surly and irritable when I would break stride with his imagination.

‘He who does not understand your silence will probably not understand your words.’
– Elbert Hubbard

He sent me a nasty message via Facebook. It’s funny because before I read it I thought I had a lot to say to him about the way he treated me or the lies he told me or the things about him that bothered me so much. Then I read what he had to say, and realized that he already knows about those traits. He doesn’t see them in himself unfortunately, but he’s well aware of their existence. I know myself well enough to know projection when I see it.

I thought I would be angry or hurt by his harsh words, and was afraid to read them at first. The moment I read them, however, everything dissolved. I pity him, in a way. I thought I could help him for a time, and after several failed attempts to do so I realized that it’s not my responsibility; someone else’s happiness is not my responsibility. That might sound cold, but it’s true. I’ve spent my entire life trying to make other people happy, forgetting entirely about my own happiness in the process. I’ve done this so habitually ever since I can remember that people simply expect if of me. They call me ‘selfish’ for changing and wanting to focus on bettering myself and my own life, but it’s not anymore selfish than their expectations that I focus only on them and making them happy. I moved away from home so that I could finally do something for myself, to better my life and my future, and I do not need to let anyone shove his or her way into my life to interrupt that pursuit.

I’ve been happier since he stopped contacting me, and his sporadic communications during the past month have only made me tense. In fact, I’ve found that when the relationships end, the ones that dissolved in the last year and a half, I suddenly feel huge weights lifting off of my shoulders and my heart. I’ve been able to breath easier once those people are gone, which is sad really because I feel that relationships should be about sharing, and should make one’s heart lighter… not heavier. Clearly, I keep allowing myself to be drawn into the wrong kind of relationships. It’s time for a change, I think, and I’m well on my way.

After all, art is, and has always been, my mistress and my master – art in the form of writing and acting, and it makes me happy – it keeps me sane, in a way. Anyone who tries to get in the way of that should receive a good, hard whipping.

Thanks for reading my retrospection, and have a lovely day!

One Woman’s Rant | A Looming Break-Up

(Wow, you think, what an apt title. It actually states precisely what to expect in the content. :P)

So, this is my soon-to-be ex’s exact words on my voicemail from over the weekend: ‘I haven’t heard from you in a couple of weeks, and I’m starting to get really worried.’ Just to clarify, this is the guy who just disappears on me for weeks at a time, then comes back like nothing happened. Of course, at this point I’ve stopped chasing him down. Actually, I’ve stopped really caring what he does or doesn’t do. Granted, this is one of the few times I did not try to get hold of him during said disappearance, so perhaps he’s noticed. It’s also the first time I didn’t just go running back to him the second he texted me after his lapse.

Now, I know that guys need their space, and that two or three weeks isn’t all that long for guy-time or whatever it is they call these evaporations. However, all of his disappearances have coincided with major issues going on in my life, which I’ve only shared with him because he pushed me into talking with him about them, and he only ever returns if I say everything is going well. He gets irritated with me if I recognize, bring up, or in any way acknowledge anything that is not disgustingly and unrealistically optimistic, and if I even mention anything remotely like politics or criticism of any kind about anything he takes it personally, as though these things are his doing, and I’m criticizing him for them.

I’m the woman, but, despite having to listen to him complain about how emotional all of his girl friends have always been, I have to walk on egg-shells around him and his childishly sensitive ego. No. Let’s be honest, I’m an actor and a writer and… I’m an artist. Artists have to get used to taking criticism, constructive and otherwise. They have to know what’s going on in the world to appropriately comment on it (in my opinion). If a so-called ‘sensitive woman’ can take it, then get over your fucking self and stop your whining human being with the misnamed ‘tougher genitalia.’ (I’d pay good money to watch any ordinary man handle regular, monthly period pain, let alone child-birth. We’d find out who the tougher sex really is then, wouldn’t we? ^_~) Not to mention the fact that we do not live in an age (uh… the information age. Hello?) where ignorance is a good enough excuse for the things that we do.

“I don’t like following politics because it’s depressing’ is essentially saying that it’s too difficult to keep myself informed, so I’m just going to shut my eyes to what’s happening around the world, and whatever happens won’t be my fault because I didn’t know about it. People who can read that last, and see nothing wrong with it… are morons who I’d rather not share a planet with let alone a country. Further, I have to add, I do not want to share a room or a bed or, even, a conversation with anyone who thinks this way, either. It’s immature and pathetic to ignore all things slightly unpleasant just to avoid dealing with their existence, or being made to think in any way about the world around us.

Perhaps that sounds harsh, but let’s be reasonable and consider the fact that people who do nothing about a situation, whether or not they agree with it, do more harm than anyone involved in it. That is, and has always been, a fact. If you were not appalled by the people who stood back and watched the woman get raped, not saying or doing anything at all, then there is something genuinely wrong with you. Yes, those responsible are horrible, but how do you just stand there and watch silently while these kinds of things occur?

Anyway, back to why I began that rant: yes, I do plan on contacting him back eventually, to let him know that, if he hasn’t figured it out already, this is just not going to work out between us. To be honest, I’m surprised he hasn’t figured that out on his own. Then again, people with egos that size tend to think the world revolves around them, and can’t fathom a world that works any other way. Either way, I do not have time during my current journey to deal with people like that in any capacity.

Frankly, I’m too busy commenting on the world around me to put up with someone who wants to pretend it doesn’t exist.

Random Thoughts: Star Trek

You know what’s sad to me? The fact that a bunch of new Star Trek fans out there never watched TOS, TNG, or even DS9. Why is that sad? Because when you watch the new movies, the movies that focus more on action and suspense than on story-telling, character-building, and the things that made Star Trek what it is today, you miss out on something. You miss out on what it means to ‘boldly go where no one has gone before’ because that’s not what’s happening. The new movies claim to be starting a new story line, but what they’re actually doing is poorly recycling old ones.

I want it to do what it claimed to do at the very start. Boldly go where no one in the franchise has gone before, imagine new things, make use of their fresh start. Otherwise, all you’re doing is pissing where someone has been before, and we don’t need any more territory battles this century, if you know what I mean.

All About the ‘Christmas’ Tree

All About the ‘Christmas’ Tree

The Prophet Jeremiah condemned as Pagan the ancient Middle Eastern practice of cutting down trees, bringing them into the home and decorating them. Of course, these were not really Christmas trees, because Jesus was not born until centuries later, and the use of Christmas trees was not introduced for many centuries after his birth. Apparently, in Jeremiah’s time the “heathen” would cut down trees, carve or decorate them in the form of a god or goddess, and overlay it with precious metals. Some Christians currently feel that this Pagan practice was similar enough to our present use of Christmas trees that this passage from Jeremiah can be used to condemn both:

Jeremiah 10:2-4: “Thus saith the LORD, Learn not the way of the heathen, and be not dismayed at the signs of heaven; for the heathen are dismayed at them. For the customs of the people are vain: for one cutteth a tree out of the forest, the work of the hands of the workman, with the axe. They deck it with silver and with gold; they fasten it with nails and with hammers, that it move not.” (King James Version).