I’ve been thinking to myself that perhaps I would have more patience for the ignorant idiots who work at Tim Hortons, for example, and other random strangers, if I cut out the amount of bullshit that I end up having to deal with on a day to day basis from my inner circle. Anybody who is a friend or family member of mine can attest to the fact that I go above and beyond for the people I care about, and will do anything you need, if you really need it, even if it is at my own expense. I don’t have this selfless attitude because I expect anything in return from anybody. To be honest, I’m always there, and always willing to help, because I know what it feels like to have nobody who really cares about you, and nobody to turn to yourself. I never want anybody I care about to ever feel that way if there’s something I can do to make sure that they don’t.
And I ask for very little in return, if ever, because to be frank, I really don’t need to. I do better dealing with, and working through, my problems personally in my own head, I don’t like other people’s input, especially when the wounds are fresh, and I’m absolutely terrible at sharing my feelings, or demanding (or even asking for) a conversation to focus on something that is, say, deeply troubling to me. That’s not to say I don’t need my friends and family at all, and I’ll tell you that I value those relationships above most other things, they are so precious to me. It’s just that, what I need from them is not what they need from me – all the same, it ends up being a symbiotic relationship, and everybody wins.
And that’s the way most of my inner circle relationships work. Unfortunately for me, I’ve also been dealing with some rather parasitic people as of late. Now, here’s the thing: because I give so much and expect so little, you may have my definition of parasitic relationship confused…because on a very technical and basic level, many people may find that basically all of my relationships are parasitic in nature. Let me assure you, nothing could be further from the truth. While I don’t ask for much all that often, I do expect, and my true loved ones always come through, that if I DO need someone, they will be there, in whatever way I happen to need. Rarely will I need something huge or impossible, and rarely is it some type of equal return – as in, I’m not asking for whatever it is that I’ve given. For me, the very small things count for oh so much, mostly because there was a time in my life where I didn’t matter enough to anyone to receive the mandatory big things, let alone the small ones. So, I’ve learned to give myself those big things. It’s the little things that I feel I can’t provide for myself, and that my inner circle provide to me, sometimes without even realizing what a major impact they’ve just made.
So then, what is a parasite, to me? I’ll spell it out for you, with a few of the ones I’ve been recently dealing with in mind. It’s someone who takes, takes, takes, takes…asks for more…takes, takes, takes again, never with appreciation, never with a thank you. It’s someone who clearly forgets my name and number until they need someone, or something, and then suddenly I am the first, or only, number on their speed dial. It’s someone who feels as though I somehow owe them a pound of my flesh, and who tries to treats me as though I am someone they can manipulate into following through on their wishes. It’s someone who feels as though I should be subservient to their wishes, because it’s their God-given right that I bow down to them (which, by the way, will NEVER EVER happen. EVER.)
Someone who is never there when you call, never there when you need them, never asks you anything about yourself other than some surface “how are you?”, or something slightly more specific, like “how is your chronic back problem you’ve had for the past 4 years?”, but never more personalized than what some random acquaintance could ask you. And it’s not because they don’t know, or have never been told, any specifics, by the way. It’s because they really couldn’t give a shit less how you’re doing: they aren’t asking you because they’re interested, they’re asking you because it would be rude, after ignoring several of your texts and calls and letting months fly by with nary a word, to send you a text saying “hey I need X from you!”.
This parasite, when confronted, pretends that they’ve done absolutely nothing wrong, or in fact tries to swing the blame onto you. They are willing to die to defend their own honour and will totally play the silence/ignore game with you, until the very next time they need you, in which case they attach a teary, fake-ass so-called ‘heartfelt’ “I’m so sorry I’ve been a bad friend lately, and I totally don’t deserve having such a kick-ass friend as you” to their next request for a favor. Someone who will shit all over you, be rude, disrespectful, inconsiderate (and you all know how much I hate inconsiderate people), dismissive, or downright mean, and then turn around the very next day and without any acknowledgement as to their previous behaviour and how wrong they were, try and text/chat with you like all is rosy and golden in the world between you. Really, to them, your feelings, your pride, who you are and you you’ve been to them, aren’t really worth a damned thing, and you aren’t worthy of any of the above from anyone, least of all them. Therefore, why SHOULD they feel any ways when they’ve just done their best to degrade and demoralize and demean you?
I’m sure you’ve met, or even suffer from, some lowdown parasites at some point in your life. I’ll tell you, the best thing I ever did in my life was to begin a one-by-one extermination of them. Seriously, sometimes people just get caught up in their own world, and their own problems, and kinda forget about how everyone else feels, because their own feelings are so all-consuming. If that parasite was once a true friend, it may be worth trying to work it out. Sometimes, it’s the reality check they need to realize exactly what they’ll be losing if they continue down that reckless path of rude, ignorant abandon. Sometimes, they need to lose you for a while, lose that undeserved crutch you provide, to find themselves again, reconnect with the person they are on the inside, the real them that brought you together to begin with. And sometimes, they are so stuck in their delusion of privilege, or are truly in a place where they do think of you as something to be used and discarded whenever they feel like, that they won’t miss you when you walk away. And those one’s hurt you the most, because you realize you were the only fool invested in that friendship to begin with.
But eventually, one day, you’ll thank yourself for finally excising these parasites from your life, one way or the other. How can you EVER move forward in life, how will you ever have room in your life to nurture true friendships, and spend time with people you truly value, and who value you in return, when you’re stuck being obligated to this thing that’s going to suck your life away and leave you sapped and needing a hand up…only so they can step on your face as they walk away, ‘til the next time?
Do you really want someone in your life, even if they don’t show any appreciation for you? Do you think that you can somehow prove yourself worthy of them returning the care if you just hang in there? Does it have something to do with not wanting to be like everyone else who has let them down? Do you feel sorry for them? Are you afraid to let go of that relationship for another reason? Even for someone like me, who gets true inner happiness and pleasure from helping those I love succeed, I’ve got to tell you that putting it all on the line for someone who is just using you just ain’t worth the trouble. It really, really isn’t. Time to realize you deserve better.
And if they want to pretend that you’re really the problem? Who cares?? You get to walk away with your conscience clear, and dive right in to your open world of honest, deep, and caring relationships, and they get to sit on their couch and play pretend life. Let them keep lying to themselves, and the world via the internet, about the perfect little life and wonderful social network they have, and keep deluding themselves that if they keep this shit up they won’t end up lonely, pathetic slobs with fake-ass lives built solely on lies, and bitch-ass attitudes that drive away any friend they ever had.
You get to move yourself far, far away from them before the shame of being their friend is just too much to handle.
See? I was nice, right? No finger pointing or anything (although, I must say it was hard to remain so general. Next time, I might have to let a few tell-tale details slip).
Some food for thought this Monday morning for y’all!
*runs off to drink her green juice*