Observing, Thinking, Changing

How to Lose Friends and Alienate People

Moving frequently as a child meant learning how to fit in quickly: it meant learning how to read people and become what they expected and wanted. I’ve been a social chameleon for so long, I realized I don’t know who I am.

Today on how to lose friends and alienate people: utter those words to your dearest friends to lose them. Utter those words naïvely, thinking you’re leveling with them. Forget that of course, your friends will feel conned and deceived.

I knew that I’d lose acquaintances and possibly friends in the course of figuring out who I was and becoming that person: by shedding parts of my personality that don’t truly resonate with me, I would lose the people who’d found me tolerable only because of those bits. I hadn’t expected it to start yet, though, since I haven’t yet started shedding parts of my personality, so the threat to this friendship feels like it’s come out of the blue. Of course, it hasn’t.

It’ll work out, one way or another. It could, of course, be another line that’s caused this issue – I don’t know – but in any event, either she can handle my forthrightness, or she can’t. What’s emerging of my authentic self cries out for strong friends to go with a strong me. She’s been a dear, dear friend – one of the best I’ve ever had in my life – but if I have to ever feel like I’m holding back, I’m best relegated to a diary and a blog instead. I’ll be sad if it comes to that, but better to have happy memories than to put the friendship on life support.

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