How do you tell someone that they're beautiful?
I have a friend who has a self-fulfilling prophecy that she's worthless. I say I *have* a friend, because she thinks our friendship is over, and I refuse to believe that. My acceptance would make things easy, and I'm not about easy in these situations. It's self-fulfilling because instead of looking towards herself and working to believe that she's fabulous, she seems to truly believe deep down that she's worthless, and instead looked to myself & others to pull her out of it. Well, I failed her, and now she's gone back to believing her perspective, instead of accepting that she truly IS fabulous.
How do you convince someone that they deserve love when they don't believe you? When they don't want to believe you? When they choose not to believe you?
The story begins when she confided something in me that just simply shocked me. I had no idea that she could be so (for lack of a better word:) spiteful, and frankly, it scared me. There were several avenues she could have chosen, and the one she did just shocked me. I was really unprepared for that. So I, in shock, reacted poorly. Very poorly, in fact. In truth, I'm not proud of my behaviour at all. I distanced myself from her, when perhaps I should have been drawing her more tightly. Had I understood and recognized her behaviour as a lash out in the name of being wanted and desired, I would have approached it completely differently. I would have drawn her as tightly as I could in the cyber realm to myself, and would not have let go. I would have made her understand her choice.
You see, my friend doesn't believe she deserves anything. Not love, not friendship, not anything. She believes she's low. Which is ironic, in a way, because I believe that at the same time she has a negative emotional connection, she has a "positive" physical connection. I put the physical in quotes because it's not really positive. You see, something happened that involved a negative emotional response, and to counter it, she responded physically in a different arena.
Here's where I worry.
How do you tell someone that you don't understand why they choose to hurt themselves when they don't have to? So she's ended our friendship, which I don't accept, because I think it's easier to walk away from someone who loves you when you're hurt, than to face the music and battle it out. I'm also fighting for this because she's one of the true friends I had who called me on my fears even though the situation was a little bit different (my fears came before my current bf & I were together, hers seemed to stem after and during her relationship).
How do you tell someone who chooses to be alone that they don't have to be? I'm still here for her, I never stopped being there for her, even though she seems (attempting not to speak for her) to think it is I that ended the friendship. I didn't. I reacted poorly, and I've since apologized for it and asked forgiveness, but neither seem to come. My main mistake was projecting my relationship with my mother onto her at the very moment she told me her news. My mother and I have a rocky relationship when it comes to debates and argueing. They leave me in tears, my nerves are shot in the end and I can't function properly for a day or two. So I've learned to bite my tounge sometimes, to avoid the two-day recovery period altogether. My friend, however, is not my mother. My friend craved the brutal honesty. Had I not been in shock, I'd have been able to tell my friend bluntly, that it was her choice to act out. That my job is not to judge her, but to help her through her issues as best as I can. But this issue (at the time) seemed beyond my skills. She accused me of believing certain derogatory things about her which were and still are simply untrue. How could I tell her that these words were not coming from my conscious OR sub-conscious mind, but that if she felt their heat that perhaps she should listen to her own conscience? How does one realize that sometimes judgements aren't external, but internal, and if you perceive yourself a certain way, maybe you should step back to see where the self-perception stems from? What place in the arguement would she have heard the love in that statement?
Anyways, this projection of my mother led me to withhold my tongue for fear of an arguement which would result in the end of our friendship, which in fact, *backfired* miserably and led to the many tears and two-day nerve shutdown and apparent one-sided dissolving of our friendship anyway. Self fulfilling prophecy indeed.
In the end, the one judgement, I suppose, that I did make is that my friend victimizes herself. In many situations, it was justified, but as with my mother (who also does the same thing, and myself, who was learning to do it until I had someone snap me out of it) the habit had developed into a trait of sorts. There was a person who loved her, and when he made a mistake, the primary response was "how could he do this to me?" When he made a choice, the response was along the lines of, "how dare he reject me?" These primary choices to choose pain even came to me, "how could you think that about me?" When in fact, I hadn't thought anything one way or the other, I was merely shocked by the action itself, and hadn't had the time to fully digest it, or it's meaning. Like I already said, my reaction was poor and regrettable, but it was a choice nonetheless and I have to own it.
As far as choices go, "choice" itself is a strong word. When a person starts using it, he or she begins to take ownership of their actions. When a person takes ownership of their actions, they begin to sort out the behaviours they like and don't like, and can better change towards the person they may like to be. The things I type aren't just bs; I've had to do them myself. I had to go from "I don't deserve better" to "I dated down because I knew that the men would appreciate me, and I had a strong need to be loved- or what I thought was love." Since accepting the choices I've made in my life, much of the drama I used to swim in has been cut out, and I'm in a reasonably functional relationship which earned the label of "power couple." This label did not come without a fight, though. Both of us fought hard for this relationship; both with each other, and within our own selves. I've had to fight off my cut and run instincts, and he had to battle his own demons. Yet, we persevered, stronger for it. I wish my friend could experience this as well.
I'm just sad that an otherwise wonderful relationship dies because of this. She seems to think I think ill of her, but my attitude towards her hasn't changed at all.
How do you convince the person who is convinced you hate, despise, or are embarrassed of them that they're wrong and you don't at all?
I've been saying a healing prayer for her since the incident. I'm scared that she may choose to push myself and others away in order to give herself an excuse to lash out and place herself in more situations that allow her self prophecy to manifest itself and feed her cycle. I love her to death, and it freaks me out. But baby steps. Maybe I'm way off base about her. Maybe she's not going to self-destruct. Maybe she's going to find her inner Queen and accept nothing less than honor and decency. Maybe she's going to find a man who loves her, thinks the world of her, and wants to spend the rest of his life with her. Maybe she'll be strong enough to face her demons and share them with him so that they can work on them together. Maybe they'll be the next power couple.
Here's to them.