Part Seven is sadly another reason why some partnerships need to end, but like last time, some are up to us to end them. One thing that I have personally felt when I have experienced so much loss around me, on so many levels, is the desire to hang on to what I have. To be so thankful for the friendships that have stayed, that I don’t see the forest for the trees and allow some friendships to become toxic and some people to get away with stuff that I would never have let them do if I had the energy to do anything about it.
I’m going to talk next time (maybe the last in this series of losing friendships?) more on the difference between walking away from a friendship and keeping it and setting boundaries. So please don’t get me wrong and think that I am condoning sweeping changes in my life by getting rid of anyone who looks sideways wrongly. I am not doing that at all, I am just trying to point at that some friends may not actually walk away but I need to. Or at least push back or set some boundaries.
I have noticed that a small group of people who have stayed (and yes I am thankful to them for that) are causing me more harm than good because all the want to do is give me advice, and the advice that they are giving me is extremely unhelpful and it is sapping my energy having this conversations over and over. They never listen to a word that I say and when I try to explain what I need they give me a barrage of advice that if they stopped and thought about it for a millisecond, they would realize that it is totally ridiculous. This is an example of a medical interaction rather than a friend but it is a concise example:
My Lisfranc injury in my left foot meant that I could not weight bear on it at all for 10 weeks. That meant crutches, but after only a few days both my hands collapsed and I couldn’t even pick up a pen never mind bear the weight of my whole body to get around. The crutches had to go and I was in the ER having X-rays of my hands. The physio came and checked them out as we needed a plan that no longer used my hands. She was quick with a brilliant idea and returned with a walking frame.
I don’t know if you have ever used one or seen anyone use one, but they work by using ….yup, your hands to bear your weight between each step. I looked at her blankly waiting for her to realize her mistake but it never occurred to her. I had to then spend over five minutes explaining to her why this was no better than crutches. She was not amused! The look on her face when left told me that she thought I was just being difficult and she did not even realize her mistake.
Friends and family can be no different. They love us, care for us, want what is best for us and they want to help us. But some of them think up stuff to help us that is not well thought out. A solution might be great for someone with a different problem, but when they don’t think through the whole discussion beforehand, through my problem, then I am left having to think it through, explain, and have a long discussion over why it wouldn’t work.
I am not saying that advice is not welcome, it is, but please put it through it’s paces first. You might think that you are only person to off me advice on any given day, but I can assure that you are not. I need my friends to meet me at my point of need. I need them to see me and work with it and help me, not come up with plans that are totally inappropriate for me. For this reason alone I have had to pull away from a small handful of people. It makes me feel very sad, but it is vital to my well being…