“I just don’t want to love people anymore. It hurts too much.” There is a reason I am in therapy y’all.
This weekend I had a slight emotional breakdown on the beach at the end of Park Point mid-run in the freezing cold wind. And by slight I mean I sobbed for a half mile leading up to this quote and it culminated in 10 minutes of ugly crying and yelling and slimy snot running down my face. It ended with me weeping into Dana’s shoulder telling him I just felt so bad because I didn’t want him to be stuck with me forever. It was beautiful. I wish you could have been there. Talking about your feelings is awesome!
One of the biggest things I struggle with and my main focus in therapy right now is relationships. I am not super good at healthy relationships. My personality is sort of all or nothing, and when it comes to relationships and loving people I err on the side of all. I am really great at loving people but I have no boundaries. I am all in, 150%, and there will be no doubt that I love you but I open myself up to all sorts of hurt in the process. I am not good at “acquaintances” or “surface friendships”, I am all about being your bestie. I am a care-er and a do-er and I will care and do like all of your happiness hinges on my ability to make you feel loved and I take it as a personal failure if my people are not happy. It also doesn’t help that the level of empathy that I have for others is frightening so I feel everybody’s pain deeply. I am compassionate and I will sit with you through your pain and suffering, be a source of unending support and comfort. I will be with you and share your pain but I will take it with me and I feel it later, I will worry on it, I will cry about it. And because I am uniquely qualified to love broken people because of said empathy and compassion I surround myself with them and feel a sort of constant ache in my heart for those that are suffering around me. It is a recipe for misery.
The way I am a friend to others and my ability to love are both my biggest strengths and also my biggest liabilities. We are working on making them more into strengths and less into liabilities. The building blocks are all there. I want to be able to continue to love people in a way that shows them that they are important to another human. So that they feel that love deep down and completely in their soul and that there is no doubt that they are valued. I am good at that. But I need to learn to do it in a way that is healthy for me, a way that doesn’t hurt so damn much. And I need to realize that if somebody cannot love me back that is not a failure on my part. I get my choices and they get theirs. I have to learn to let that shit go. It is not going great right now but I am working on it.
I have a particularly hard relationship that I am dealing with right now that led to this breakdown. A friend that I care about and love an enormous amount but it is one of the most unhealthy relationships I have ever had. It is nobody’s fault, it just is, because we both are the people that we are. I need to find a way to move on and be healthy. But love and pain have a pretty deep correlation so because I love this person so much it is causing me an enormous amount of pain. And I don’t want to let go of the good because of the bad. But the bad is hurting me a lot. It’s complicated I guess but I need to figure it out because it is emotionally draining. Also I have approximately 350% more feelings than an average human and I feel them 5 times more intensely than anyone I know so that doesn’t help an already emotionally charged situation much. I guess the moral of this situation is that love is complicated and sometimes it hurts us in the end. But that doesn’t mean we should give up on it completely. I need to realize that just because this one relationship is causing me pain it doesn’t mean I should give up on all of them. Just because my ability to love so completely caused me so much pain in this one situation I cannot stop doing it altogether because it is valuable. It is not all or nothing.
I have a gift. A pretty incredible one and I do not want to stop using it because it occasionally emotionally destroys me. I have to find some balance. I have to see some grey. And thankfully I have a team of people helping me to do that. A partner that lets me feel all of my irrational feelings and tells me they are okay because they are mine and holds me on the cold beach while I break down and is my constant voice of reason and is forever trying to help me be the best me. Children that deal with my crazy in ways that are both beautiful and humorous and that have an unending stream of love for me. A few friends that love me fiercely and make damn well sure that I know it on the daily by giving me constant support and affirmation. A community of other crazy people I have met through sharing my struggles who are so supportive it blows my mind. I am lucky. And I need to keep reminding myself of that. Especially when things get hard. Because loving people is hard work. But it is absolutely worth it.