Monday, August 13, 2018

The Hard Way

The past few months have been full of change and disappointment and realizations about how this world, and the people in it*, really are. It's been sobering and sad. But, there are some things I know now:

1. People really have a hard time when someone is honest and says no when they are not able to do those things themselves. This is very, very threatening to people. How dare I set boundaries if they (mistakenly) believe that they can't?! How dare I.

2. People think that they have authority to tell other people how they should be and how they should live in this world, with seemingly zero awareness that no one knows another person's life, path, motivations, or reasons for making the thousands of decisions we all make each day. It is stunning how many times I have been told how to be, and that who I am and how I take up space in this world is wrong, without ever being asked who I am, why I am, or what I'm going through.

3. Working as hard as I have to be more and more authentic each and every day, and being honest and clear about my boundaries, my needs, and my wishes, leads to a lot of people feeling that I am challenging and dangerous. It's hard to be treated as dangerous when I am just trying to live without the burdens of being who everyone else wants me to be--being who they want me to be so that they feel more comfortable, but then I am left feeling caged, pinned in. I lived that way for most of my life, but refuse to stay in that cage anymore. I am not dangerous, just real. The two are synonymous apparently.

4. People seem much more willing to abandon me and write me off for telling my truth (and not even in a mean or aggressive way--most of the time, in fact, I speak from a place of caring and vulnerability), than deal with the realities of their own choices and lives, which they choose to ignore, but I do not.

5. Being honest in this world isolates me more than I ever would have guessed. It doesn't matter that I am honest with compassion, not cruelty. I was told that "the truth hurts" and therefore it should sometimes, often, not be said. I know, though, that secrets, lies, repression, and suppression hurt much more.
I have learned these things the hard way.
I will keep telling my truth.
(* for those following along, this post has nothing to do with my romantic life! All is wonderfully well with Elle.)

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