Note to Reader: I've been writing and re-writing this same post for going on almost a month now. At one point, I started a new and different post, but somehow, I keep coming back to this topic. Obviously, my brain isn't ready to move to the next post until I finish this one in some capacity. The great thing is, time heals. Time allows (me) the movement towards being better, and happier. Time introduces you to people who change you, no matter how brief or long the encounter. At this point, I believe most of this post's original integrity is in tact, but admittedly it is a bit jumbled with (positive) emotions from encounters that occurred after the initial onslaught of my own "girl on girl" drama. If this post seems incomplete, perhaps you can finish the story in your own life for me. I know I'm still working on mine.
I won't go into the details that lead me to this post, but found this (partial) article about girl on girl drama interesting. It's geared towards teens, but heaven knows based on the people I'm surrounded by there should be an adult version. I guess the author thinks that "adults", and I use that term loosely, should be more mature and beyond the cattiness of such issues? Think again.
The excerpt below finds me asking myself the same questions. What do I have to gain or lose from failed relationships? And the answer in a few cases seems to be absolutely nothing to lose, and peace to gain.
"Learning to accept disappointment without always acting on it, and allowing someone to fall short of expectation, teaches a skill that can serve girls in every area of life. Whether it’s at school, on a sports team, or in romance, girls will encounter challenges in relationship that are trivial or intractable. Instead of pushing girls to pour themselves into situations not worthy of their energy and time, parents can ask some of these questions:
How likely is this person to change their behavior?
What might your relationship gain by talking together about this problem? What might your relationship lose?
Even though this friend has let you down, what other important things does s/he give you?
On balance, do you get more than you lose in this relationship?
Are there other friends who can give you what this friend may not be able to?"
I know I hold people to high standards and that I need to manage my expectations of others. This post is not about ditching people who aren't perfect. Rather, people should not be encouraged to pour themselves into relationships with toxic people just because of the amount of time they've known someone, or based on the type of connection (lovers, friends, family, etc) they have. Toxic is different than imperfect.
When I ask myself is this person (who's causing me pain) likely to change? What do I have to gain/lose? Is there balance, a natural give and take? I find myself answering no. Those of you who know me know this is nothing new where particular people in my life are involved. Nope, it's not a new realization that some people just can't or won't be any better than they currently are. Rather, invoking change after enlightenment is the struggle I've been dealing with. Staying in this place, space and time with these (particular) people, is more detrimental than beneficial despite the bonds that were/are in place. After much time seeking counsel both inwardly and outwardly and even in different states, I've found a new, happier place. That place is honoring what's truly in my heart, and not in the thoughts of guilt, society, or others' opinions. Finding freedom to follow your heart emotionally is amazing. It's not easy to move on or gain distance from toxicity, but even the baby steps are worth it.