Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Emotions, Pain, & Vulnerability...Oh My!

I expose a lot of things about myself and my family and friends on this blog for fun and catharsis, but I rarely expose things where I'm genuinely vulnerable.  I don't deal well with expressed emotion.  I don't like for others to see my weaknesses and, if I'm being honest, I'm more comfortable not seeing theirs either.  It's a rare occasion when I show a lot of emotion.  I'm good at being fun, and I'm okay at being supportive, and I'm awesome at adding humor to an uncomfortable situation, but I suck at being vulnerable. 

Not too long ago, I had a friend bare their soul to me and I was visually uncomfortable!  This is a friend that I love dearly, and I knew they were hurting and needed to share these feelings, but I couldn't hold it together.  I was hot and I had to turn the AC down and I was miserable, then finally at one point I cracked!  My friend sat on my couch crying with sincerity and all I could do was make an inappropriate joke to MAKE IT STOP!  Keith laughed at me and told our mutual friend, "my wife can be such a guy sometimes..." 

Just because I'm not good at expressing my feelings doesn't mean they aren't there.  I love deeply and there isn't much I wouldn't do for a dear friend.  I cry when they cry, I hurt when people I love hurt, I am fiercely loyal, and I will keep a secret until I die.  I really do try to be a good friend, but if my friends need a touchy feely emotional person, I can't be that.  Occasionally I will send a text message or an email or even a card telling my friends how much I appreciate them, because I do and I LOVE them dearly, but I am nearly incapable of being emotional in front of people.

I think all of this stems from my, near paralyzing, fear of abandonment and betrayal.  I won't go into details on my blog because I write for catharsis, I don't write for revenge and I would never want to hurt anyone just because I felt betrayed or abandoned, but I have my scars just like anyone else.

A recent disagreement with someone in my life has opened up a lot of old wounds and I'm struggling to work through them.  I have developed this defense of not letting people in.  When people get too close, I start to find flaws or excuses to pull away from them.  I've done this to some good people, and people that I wish I could be friends with, but I can't.  I can't make myself trust people not to hurt me.  I crave friendships, I long for a close girlfriend, and I wish Keith and I could have a close couple that we were friends with but I road block it every time.  I'm trying to heal, but each time I start feeling more confident it seems something happens to slide back into the memories of why I became this way to begin with.

I act like things don't bother me, and I let a lot of things roll off of me, but when someone makes me feel inadequate I shut down. I know this isn't the way to overcome these problems but it's the way I deal with them.  We each have our own way of dealing with things, and that is mine.  It does force me to rely on God more, so that's a beautiful thing.  I can be vulnerable with God, and I know he will love me anyway, and I am thankful for that!

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