There’s nothing you can say I’m not aware of. About myself.
I know I’m irreverent. And sarcastic. And that sometimes I don’t know when it’s inappropriate to be one or the other. Or, in most cases, both.
I know that it’s what many expect of me. Which means I’m “the friend who will be facetious and never make a serious comment”. Most times I’m okay with this; it makes people smile – or laugh – when they are feeling least like doing so.
Sometimes, I’m not okay with it. Sometimes, I want to say the serious thing, and have you know I really, really do care. I mean, I know you know, but I’d like you to know with my genuine words.
I know I interrupt with witty repartee, and sometimes, just because my mind is overloaded with so many ideas they burst forth from my gob, whilst my brain (Brian) is saying “Shut up and listen!”
I know I’m intense and highly emotional. Highly, highly emotional, and I cry when having uncomfortable conversations.
Some thing I use it as a manipulative tactic, others think I’m just far too sensitive. You may say these things behind my back, but it is one thing that I know, but you have wrong. I am intense and I am highly emotional. It’s because I’m an empath, and uncomfortably conversations usually mean I am forced to say something that I know will upset you in one way or another.
I’m am pathologically adverse to doing anything that upsets anyone, intentionally or otherwise. I cry because the feels are soooooo incredibly overwhelming, it is my only release. I’d like it if you could ignore the tears; pretend they are not there, and talk to me as though they’re not.
I know the tears exacerbate … everything, and they can sometimes make you feel worse. Which makes me feel worse. Which makes me cry more.
It’s a vicious circle.
But I know that. And much as I try, I have never been able to control it. On the inside, I’m totally okay with whatever is going down. On the outside, I’m an emotional mess, and making you feel manipulated, frustrated, upset … something I don’t want you to feel.
This level of empathy I possess contributes to my intensity. Although many see this as “stubbornness”. As though I have to always be right.
I see how people see this, and why they find me a pain in the arse. See, I will follow directives, and I will always, always ensure the recipient of whatever is happening is looked after.
From the kids I’ve done volunteer stuff for (basketball, cubs, whatever), to the small businesses I’ve worked with, and the customers of large corporations … the end user, the target market, the central focus of whatever it is I’m doing, are always in my focus.
Any decision or activity that happens that hasn’t considered the impact on them, I will make sure it is brought to the fore. Often, like, a lot of the time, it will upset someone. As though I’ve looked for a flaw in their idea and pointed it out.
I am perceived as “aggressive” and “asserting my position”.
I get that. I get how people can see that, experience that. It’s not the case. I’m merely defending a group that can’t defend itself, for whatever reason. No more. No less.
So I’ve started letting the people in any group I’m in, whether it be a committee, a community group, a project group, a team, know that I do this. I let them know that I’m so passionate about it that I will, inevitably, piss them off.
They, just as inevitably, laugh … because I’m a nice, bubbly, compassionate person, how could I possibly piss anyone off? Oh, but I do.
And it’s not like I haven’t warned them. But they never believe me, so it never goes well. Which is where things get said behind my back.
I also ask a lot of questions. Waaaaay too many questions.
It doesn’t matter the scenario. If it’s meeting someone new, I may ask what they do, and then I ask loads of questions about it. Usually commencing with “Do you enjoy it?”
If it’s a project or a workshop or work group, I ask things like “Why do you say that?” or “What’s your reason for wanting that?” and other questions along the same vein.
I also ask “How does that work?” and “If we do this, then how will that work with it?”
People, by their very nature, find these kinds of questions confronting. Their innate response is to feel challenged, their ideas questions, and their thoughts wrong.
I get that, too.
I see how people feel like this, and I have tried many, many ways to ask these questions differently.
You see, I’m insatiably curious. I want to know more and more about all the things. I want to know how things work, I want to understand more about the world and what goes on in it, and I want to just … learn. I want to know more. As much as I can.
That’s not said about me behind my back. I’m just a pain, who challenges any other idea that’s brought up, and wants to prove everyone wrong.
That’s what’s said.
The reality is, I genuinely want to know your thought process. I am really interested in other ideas, other perspectives, and understanding.
I just want to understand. I want to understand your perspective.
I meant it.
There really is little you can say about me behind my back that I don’t already know about myself.
Sometimes, you are spot on.
Other times, you’ve missed the mark. I can, however, always see your point of view and understand why you see me in that way.
When I’m in my deep dark hole, there is nothing you can say that is correct or otherwise, that I don’t say to myself with a lot more venom and hate.
There is nothing you can say behind my back, or to my face, that I haven’t already said to myself. Only worse.
I also find it funny when people are a certain way, every single time, in the same scenarios, and don’t appear to have any clue. Even when you point it out to them.
The person who complains constantly about their job / partner, and how much they hate it / them. Then are surprised when they lose the job / the partner leaves. Completely and utterly incredulous.
The person whose modus operandi is to start a group private message on Facebook with the intent of gathering support to harangue an individual out of the main group. Every. Single. Time. And when they do it to you and you mention it to them, they straight up lie and deny it.
The person who causes drama so all attention is focussed on them. When you point it out, when you let them know they how they’ve just had your undivided attention for an hour and a half, they’ll contradict you … whilst eliciting more drama and more of your attention.
Yes, I also know I get sucked into people’s need for attention and the dramatics they perform to get it … and I give it to them.
I know I have a tendency towards obsession.
I know I can hang onto hurtful things for too long. Far, far, far too long.
I know I talk and talk and talk … or don’t talk at all … because talking helps me to sort things out. It has the effect of clicking the myriad thoughts in my mind into place. Creating sense of things, and coming up with solutions.
I know I can be indecisive.
And a perfectionist.
I know all these things about me.
I know you don’t always like these things about me.
Some of them I can contain. Others, not so much.
Others still, well, I really don’t want to. Because whilst they can be annoying to those closest to me, letting go of them is not the person I want to be.
But still, I know … I know …