I’m having particular problems with a new person in my life at the moment. She came pretty much out of the blue, into one of my sets of friends, and I am feeling particularly hostile towards her and that isn’t really like me. I would under any normal circumstances enjoy having a new person in the group, someone else to breathe a bit of fresh air into things and mix it up and change the order of things, but at the moment I’m just feeling incredibly invaded.
Before I go on, I fully accept that this is my problem. I am all too aware that these are my own issues that I need to deal with but I am blurting it out on here in the absence of having anyone else to talk to about it.
Everyone has different ways of approaching new people. I’m not emotionally slutty when it comes to making new friends and establishing new relationships. I will sit back, take things in, wait and see if I really like this new person. I try not to force myself on people, I take the attitude that if they will like me they will see something they like about me, I don’t need to force myself on them and prove that I’m a great person. If they want to like me, they will find it eventually. I basically don’t come on strong before committing to a relationship with them. Because for me I do see it as that, I take my friendships very seriously and I want to be good friend to people. I don’t see life (or Facebook) as a rush to gather as many “friends” as possible, I’d rather make sure I’m investing myself in worthwhile people.
I think because of this, I have a pretty adverse reaction to new people who try to force themselves on me in an attempt to establish a friendship. Writing all over my wall, commenting on my statuses, liking my pictures, texting me all the time, is not the way to win my friendship. In fact it immediately makes my barriers go up and actually prevents me from even wanting to establish any kind of friendship with you.
It would be easier if this was a romantical thing that was going on. You could say to the guy/girl, “Hey, you’re actually coming on a bit strong, could you back off a bit please and let’s just take things slowly?” But with someone who isn’t even your friend yet you couldn’t say the same thing without sounding as if you have severe mental problems.
It’s taken me a long time to figure out what is I don’t like about this person. I’ve been saying “There’s just something about her I don’t like” which I recognise makes me sound as if I’m convinced she’s going to whip out a gun and kill us all as we drink our tea and sip our mochas. But it finally hit home the other day what it is that’s turning me off her.
It’s not just this way too full on approach that she has (I literally feel like she is everywhere in my life at the moment, something that Facebook has to answer for because it all too literally shows at times how someone is involved in your life) but it’s that she seems a very needy person.
I’m not cold-hearted in the slightest. I know that we all have problems and we all need friends/people to help us through those problems. I think the trouble at the moment is that I have a lot of “real” friends who are going through emotional trauma.
These emotional traumas don’t necessarily affect me in the slightest, but like I said, I take friendship seriously, and if my friends are having problems then, even if I’m not literally doing something to help, I’m certainly thinking about it and worrying about them and wondering what I can do to help them. Unfortunately there seem to have been a spate of traumas in my friend’s and family’s lives in the past year or so – there’s been marriage breakdowns, troubles with babies, people suffering from depression, people’s parents breaking up, relationship woes, fights with families, people not talking anymore – the list feels heavy-going. And whilst my own life is (relatively) smooth at the moment I feel like a part of me is ever so slightly invested in these woes because I love my friends and I want them to be happy and I feel upset when they’re not.
I think that this is the underlying reason as to why I’m wanting to keep this new person at arm’s length. Coupled with the fact that she is coming on way too strong, I think that this is my brain’s way of saying “Closed for business.” I cannot take on another needy person at the moment, (especially one who I suspect is prone to the “next new thing” and that I’m not convinced will stick around) I need to conserve my energy to being a good friend to my real friends, not having someone in my life who is just a drain. If one of my friends have a problem I’ll be there in a flash, but I’m not spending time on someone who puts out statuses on Facebook purely to get people to comment about how wonderful they are – that is not a person who values friendships, but is somene who’s looking to get as many people worshipping them as possible and I’m afraid I’m not interested.
It makes me sad because it means that I have made the decision to hold off seeing this group of friends for a while. And I fully accept that that is my decision – this new person is, I’m sure, a perfectly nice person - but until I can find some way of dealing with her that doesn’t make me want to scream I’m going to have to absent myself and get a grip. Unfortunately that means that some of my real friendships may suffer (although there is an argument to be made that if they were real friends then they won't let our friendship be affected by the fact that I'm not seeing them on one allotted day of the week).
I don’t know if this is a form of the “January Blues” (or if they even exist) or just the culmination of feeling the stress of other people’s issues but I don’t want them exploding out of me in a direct hit on an unsuspecting person.
That’s what you guys are for...right?
Now go clean yourselves up and carry on with your day.