i have a very, um, shall i say submissive personality? i think i might actually have an aim-to-please complex, so naturally i would rather avoid conflict than start or take part in it. in doing so, i set boundaries for myself—adhere to unwritten codes of conduct like my life depended on it (e.g., i won’t talk to specific people). it’s actually really sad how many limitations i impart on myself just to avoid problems with friends.
in essence, i am entirely too whipped without anyone having to put me in that role because it’s a self-inflicted self-defense (not entirely without reasons that got me to this point in the first place).
that being said, my personality type continually attracts problems and insecurities that aren’t even mine. and what’s worse is that i take it, which i think is precisely the reason why i attract them in the first place.
i have friends who really don’t understand why i’m so accommodating. i honestly couldn’t tell you. i could go into a retrospective psychological rant, but that isn’t my area, and i wouldn’t know where to start.
you know, getting to know different types of people is awesome and is a healthy source of life lessons, but there’s only so much i can take after a while. i almost wish things hadn’t changed so drastically.
it was funny how i dreamt about you. all the little things are starting to pile up—things i ignored because i would do anything for you, and i would never do anything that might hurt your feelings—acts of courtesy that you seem incapable of returning. sometimes i look back, and it occurs to me that i have done nothing to you, and yet i seem to have done plenty of wrong by you—accused of things i have never done and never felt, which, ironically, are things you have.
and when people tell me that it’s not you, it’s them, i can’t let myself believe any of it. because i am naïvely under the impression that you would never be so intentionally hurtful or ignorant or oblivious to your own actions.
so in my dream, when you said you wanted to stop being friends because of [—], i resignedly tried to understand why it was even an issue because i try very hard not to unload my burdens of that specific kind on you. and then i woke up, and in my dazed state, i tried to sort out my hurt feelings from relief. this dream shakes me because this is the first time this has happened that i can consciously recall—the severance of something important to me.
my professor recently said that dreams are never literal, something i forget. the nature of my dream probably has nothing to do with how it actually played out. i entertain the idea that it might be about my feelings of distrust and inferiority to you because that might be actually how i feel. unfortunately. and sadly.
it was even funnier when i made an off-handed comment about something you had done because you came up—partially relevant to the ensuing conversation i was having with someone, though i conveyed it as a factual statement without judgment—and she replied, “well, you can tell a lot about somebody’s character that way,” and i got offended on your behalf. i didn’t like the implication being made about you.
… it confuses me in every possible way.
because while you have given me plenty of reasons to like you as an individual, my instincts are screaming at me to remain cautious of you and what you are capable of doing.
i don’t know what to do.
how it started:
“do you always joke around this much?” he makes a slow right turn, but he nearly clips a passing bicyclist and curses, widens his eyes as he looks to me in shared, sort of amused mortification about what might have happened.
i scrunch my nose and idly turn my phone over in my hands. we’re approaching the ramp to the freeway, heading home, and i mentally calculate how much longer we have to talk - and if i’m not finished or dissatisfied, would it be okay to ask for a detour?
“yeah,” i say, as we merge with the speeding traffic. “but i don’t really think i like doing it.”
this was the beginning of a rather important (i think) conversation i had last night, and i subsequently used it as an introduction to the initial entry.
i decided i wasn’t really going to post what i wanted to, but here are a few bits from it:
- he and i also discussed how shy i am and how that might be detrimental to nourishing relationships i’ve at least started to form with others.
- my more concrete relationships exist because the people have stuck around long enough for me to get comfortable, which takes a lot of time and constant exposure, but clearly not every relationship made is going to work that way or possess that same amount of patience.
- i don’t know if there’s a sociological science behind this, but the majority of my long-lasting relations are comprised of extroverted individuals.
- i’m largely passive about my interactions with people because i constantly think that i have to wait for some “OK” signal that i can assess as “permission” for me to take initiative and not made to feel weird or insecure about it.
- what it ultimately comes down to is that i’m afraid of losing people - so much that i oftentimes find myself paralyzed from forming bonds with others. it’s essentially a passive way of saying, it’s your call; do whatever you want, leave whenever you want. i don’t want to sound like a cliché, but it’s kind of something i’ve grown accustomed to, so i use the concept of “initiation” as a way to determine whether my presence means anything to another person.
complexes: what ever would i do without them?
as for the whole bit about joking around, it really became more about how i felt towards those who (unknowingly) make me feel like there’s a certain way i can only be around them. and in the bigger picture, i intuit the perceptions people have of me and consequently live up to a designated role, which is why some aspects of my personality are emphasized depending on whose company i’m sharing. to say i’ve lost myself is a bit of an understatement.
i used to read tons and tons of articles on how you become a product of your parents’ relationship and every relationship you’ve witnessed (or experienced yourself) thereafter. i used to scoff at that notion because i felt like i had enough self-awareness to avoid what i didn’t want.
i failed miserably. i’m not good at this. there’s a reason why commitment is a constant battle for me, and a lot of that has to do with the fact that every important one i’ve observed hasn’t quite been the healthiest.
i fill voids. that’s what i’m good at because that’s as far as i feel i can go. my feelings might run far ahead of me and self-destruct in due course, but as the owner of those feelings, i’m lagging behind. it’s this bizarre disassociation, but not really, because i know i feel things and know them to be genuine and powerful.
last week, i cried. i just sat on the floor and cried, and for once i didn’t quite care that my mom was seeing me at my most vulnerable. i’ve cried numerous times in front of her about other reasons, but this somehow felt more demoralizing. i never talked, shrugged off inquisitions and remained tight-lipped. and then she said:
“not on the outside, but [of the three] you’re the most emotionally vulnerable […] love yourself first.”
and i ruminated over it, thinking that had been the most ridiculous advice i’d ever been given. i felt like i loved myself enough, and though partially aware that i cried easily or felt things a bit more heavily, i thought of myself as a fairly decent trooper in all matters of emotional health.
but that’s the thing. i build things - mental fortresses and armors and stone walls. i take hurtful things and store them somewhere for reflection - to remind myself of the things i need to be more careful of when i’m really only doing a disservice to myself by keeping them. sometimes, in an effort to be strong, i act like it. i give off the impression to those i want to impress that feelings are just specks of dust that warrant no more attention than something that might occur in your periphery. and they like it. what better encouragement, right?
i am of the belief that i’ve honed those skills fairly successfully. some see through it, like friends, and then there are the others who poke around and hit the bullseye, only to be told that they’re “being stupid, don’t assume, you don’t know me.” default. call me defensive because i am. you’re not allowed anywhere near me - not when i want you to be.
it’s moments like these that make me uncertain about how i really feel about the (non-platonic) relationships i develop with others.* in some ways, i know the situations i get into are hardly desirable, that i hate myself for it, but patterns consume, and they’re the ones i’m comfortable with and have seen how “well” they work:
get physically close, stay emotionally distant. get emotionally close, get hurt, stumble a bit and blame yourself, pick yourself up, and repeat the cycle. pick the ones who love to have you and love to hurt you, and compartmentalize each feeling you associate with when you’re wanted and unwanted. choose the ones who leave and always come back. find someone you can insincerely profess deep feelings for, but in a twisted way, convince yourself of emotions you don’t even feel.
i’m afraid to like people because i’m going to default to any or all of these, and they’re going to find out how fucked up i am, and i’m going to pretend it’s okay and stick to that familiarity, and they’ll know i lack self-respect and will therefore treat me accordingly. and it’s conflicting because a part of me - most sincerely - just wants it all for fun. because i’m good at it. because i’m used to it. because it isn’t as messy and confrontational and no one can get near me and we’re all laughs and no pain and nothing to fight about.
how exhausting it is to like and fear somebody at the same time.
* emotional relationships; i’m strangely conservative in other matters, all things considered
“it seems like you’re always unhappy / we try to talk to you / it would be nice if you could ask what we’re doing once in a while / if you’re not out, you’re locked up in here / you never want to talk to us”
i never really know what to do or say when people call me out on things like this. but yeah, sometimes i’m aware of how ghost-like i try to be - like i don’t want to have this physical presence at all. i don’t know. i’ve always been somewhat subdued, but it feels different when it’s implied to be a trait that hurts everyone else around you.
i really didn’t think it mattered.
some things, i guess:
- i need another haircut. not a massive change, but the longer length i have in the back is getting on my nerves, especially when i’m working.
- i can steam milk and free pour rosettas like a pro. pulling shots, on the other hand, makes me want to punch <insert delicate beings here>. and it really sucks because i know i could get hot drinks out one after the other if only i could pull consistently good espresso shots. i’m unable to maximize my multitasking potential, so i get really frustrated with myself and unhappy with my performance. i know it takes time, but i feel like i have to perfect it now now now.
- don’t want to jinx it, but i’ve been consistent for the past 1.75 weeks - to the point where i dread weekends since those are my designated “off-days,” and sometimes i’m afraid that i’ll get lazy once monday rolls around.
- mmm, sandwiches.
- so there’s this guy that i see regularly nowadays and, you know, he’s nice to look at, and sometimes i wish i could develop this magical crush on him so i have this cool and fancy, girlish preoccupation, but it’s not happening at all. not that i particularly need a crush; i’m just bored … among other things. guh.
- one of my co-workers said i should check to see if i have a gluten allergy after i told her that i am sleepy all the freaking time. i mean, i know we can develop allergies - and, as far as i know, i’ve had none - but it would explain why i’m constantly exhausted. too bad i really don’t care. i just think my sleep cycle is screwed up.
and i’m hungry now, so bye.
please stop taking everything away from me.
you’re like that stray puzzle piece i need fitted somewhere, but in an effort to force you in, i’ve accidentally displaced myself.
- i had lovely bedhead this morning. and by “lovely,” i mean, “did you stick your finger in an electrical socket while you slept?”
- the only thing great about DST ending is that it gets darker earlier. i love the nighttime, so that’s really no surprise. and maybe, when i’ve woken up on the right side of the bed, the morning can be pretty great too, especially when it’s unseasonably warm and motivates you to go for a light jog. but otherwise, this time change is seriously disrupting my sleep cycle.
- the last month (and the present) has been a total blur. a slow blur, but blurry nonetheless. time is fractured, dates are a mishmash of each other. i’m finding it difficult to stay on top of deadlines when it’s mingling with unresolved personal matters or insignificant things. every time i’m pulled in a different direction, i can only briefly acknowledge it before stuffing it into a mental closet to sort out later. it gets - not irritating, but i’ll end up thinking about XYZ during an inappropriate time/when i should be doing something else. and it’s not like they’re solid thoughts; they’re abstract, so i don’t even know what the hell i’m thinking about half the time - only that it bothers me and that it’s worth skimming through as an overview.
- interactions. i don’t know why, but i’ve been thinking about that a lot. a lot. like i cycle through the relations i have/had with people, and those people with other people, i compare and contrast as if interpersonal relationships are things that can be charted and diagrammed when they can’t. my observations have been as fascinating as they are personally frustrating, and i don’t even know what to do with this information.
- on a sillier note, i just got out of a week of vegetable craving, and now i have this insatiable hunger for boba all the freaking time. like i would not mind having my fruity drink with tapioca as my sole source of nutrients if it were feasible - or if, you know, i didn’t have to drive 20 minutes just to get any. come to the ‘buuuuurbs! ;(
- oh yeah, and i’m moving, which is stress-inducing in itself. not only is the actual act of moving going to be a pain (and a little sad, which i haven’t totally accepted yet btw), but of course i would worry about how to set up/arrange things/organize. which is half good because it’ll keep me busy but at the same time … meh.
this post is mostly for me. a lot of it is valuable to me. it should be private, but i found that i have to go rummaging through my virtual shelf if i want to access it, so this is my only option. i can’t stop people from reading what’s below the cut, but this is something that is wholeheartedly personal. and to you: seriously, no pressure, but come back to the states, please. also, thank you. ♥