Wow! How time sure flies when having fun! We are into September now. Since I last wrote, I had a birthday, school started and Clemson football starts this weekend. I am already on the phone about problems cropping up at schools concerning this abuse. Hey, I give my abusers credit. They gave me at least a month before going full throttle on me. Well, maybe three weeks. I wish we could just learn to treat others as we wish they would treat us.
So, let’s move forward shall we?
I found this blog piece on Twitter over the summer. The piece I am referring to is a blog piece by a woman named Glennon Melton. She is the one who is from a website called Momastery. One day someone tweeted one of her blog pieces. It came down my feed and it was awesome. I had to save it because I knew what was in it would benefit this population. It was refreshing to see words on a website that I have tried to verbalize for a very long time. As a survivor, I have had so many of these thoughts that she shared. From what I can gather, this is someone who is in recovery from addiction. She lived with some demons of her own. These are some survivors have had to live with. Depression and anxiety we have known for a long time. Many of us have known addictions and struggled there. Instead of feeding into these problems, she sees them as superpowers! She uses these to her advantage and to help others. I got to give this girl some props. She wants to make things better out there. My faith teaches that we are in this world but we are not of this world. We are to be lights in this world. However, should we still do our part to help make the world a better place? Of course we should! We can hide behind our beliefs or we can step out of our comfort zones and do something. In my own work, I get in and have to deal with the world. I want to make it better. Peer abuse (bullying) is a world wide problem. I have helped people on every continent on this planet. There is no escaping it wherever we go. Now, is Glennon an adult who survived childhood peer abuse? That is a question I am not able to answer. I do not know this woman in person and can count the number of tweets on one hand that I have shared with her. I do know she has an understanding of what this world is really about. That part is obvious in what she writes.
How can she help if she may not be a survivor?
I know….we tend to believe that unless you have lived something you really have no clue as to understanding it. Yes, I get that and I follow that when it comes to peer abuse. However, we have common problems. Depression, anxiety and addiction are also demons we struggle with. She has a strong handle on mental illness. How we can become more accepting and learn to coexist without unnecessary struggles.
There are many survivors who are wired to be sensitive individuals. I know because I am one of them! We develop these problems and feel we have to live up to certain beliefs and expectations. Sensitivity is not valued in our culture nor is mental illness. We have to keep quiet and hide this side of ourselves so we do not ruffle feathers. We know from experience that this gets us into trouble. Once it is out we become vulnerable. It annoys others and makes them uncomfortable. Now we must stay quiet so they can remain comfortable. I know, we have learned our ways of coping just to stay afloat. We are always wrong and they are right. We learned this at a very early age.
Why are we always wrong?
Newsflash! We are not always wrong. Listen, we are all created to be individuals. No two people are exactly alike. Not even identical twins. It just is not possible for this to happen. However, according to the world, we must conform and we must be a certain way. Now how can something be right if it is impossible to even achieve? We were always taught by the world we were wrong. However, we are not. In my own healing, I had to learn this. I found myself always trying to people please and make others happy. It never worked and never will. I had to learn to be myself. I was made to be sensitive so I will be sensitive.
The world needs to get a grip. It needs to stop making unreasonable demands on us. It is wrong of the world to set these standards. Stop trying to keep quiet so others can remain comfortable. This world is full of all kinds of people. We all have rights. There are some people who are so thick skinned they cannot see where someone who is sensitive can bring calm to their storm. We need compassion and love. As humans, we try and deny so many of these needs. When we do not have these needs, we hurt inside. I love to hug people. Not only do the endorphins this brings help my depression. I hug because I am a person and I need love from another person. As a sensitive person it is important for me to hug others. Not everyone has this strong need but I do. I am going to do what I can to get my needs met. If I have to bug someone to hug me I will.
How can this tie into friendship? Well, it is possible. Let me see if I can help you here.
Acceptance. When we make a friend, we accept all of them and that is the good and bad. Instead of dwelling on how they annoy us, why not try and see how they bring joy to us? Find something in them that drew you to them in the first place. Love them as they are.
Changing. Stop trying to change them! You are fighting a losing battle. I had a friend at one time try to change everything about me. Anything I did was wrong and needed to be fixed. The reasoning behind it was I would not fit in. Or, nobody would accept me if I did not do this and that. You know what? She was wrong and they were wrong and the world is wrong. I am not about to conform to anything someone thinks I should conform to. You should not have to either. These people are toxic and you deserve and can do better.
Compromise. No two people are alike. No two people will see things the same way. Yes, we have people that have common interests. However, it does not mean harmony will prevail 100% of the time. We need to learn to share. You will not believe how many adults do not know how to do this. Many will manipulate you into giving into them 100% of the time. Try it next time you decide to hang out with someone. If they want to go out to eat, go out to eat. However, they should do something you would like the next time you get together. Friendships are like any other relationship. There is a lot of give and take involved.
Heal. It takes a long time to get to the point of seeing things as I have stated above. The first step is getting out of that comfort zone. Try one of your friends on compromise and see what happens. Look at the good in your friend. Dwell on that. What have they done lately that has made you happy? Have they shared something valuable with you? As you heal, you will start seeing these things in a more realistic manner.
The world is wrong. No, you are not wrong. If you are anxious then you are anxious. I do not mean have full on panic attacks because you can and want to make someone mad. I mean if you have full on panic attacks that is how you are. If you take meds for these then it shows you are doing something about it. Some people have diabetes. Others have cancer or leukemia. Do we tell them to get over it? No! Nobody should tell anyone to get over any pain in their lives. THEY need to get over it. The world caters to these abusers. They try to manipulate, control and live by those standards. To them, you must also live by those standards. Follow the laws of the land but do not follow the laws the world imposes on you. We grew up with their demands and we failed at meeting them. It got us abused as children by them. As adults, we have rights and have a right to have rights. Be yourself! It’s hard and takes a lot of work to get to this point. However, it can be done. Stay away from any toxic out there. The world is full of this. Toxic that is.
Thank you to Momastery for your insightful thoughts that you have shared online. If interested in learning more, visit Glennon Melton’s website. Also, follow @momastery on Twitter.