Normally, I’d keep doing posts in chronological order, but when something epic happens to prompt a significant change in my life, I have to break the order.
I went to Paul’s last weekend. I’usually unplug there–I take my computer but only really use it if he’s doing homework or taking a shower or I’m for some other reason left alone. Same goes for using my phone for something other than messages. Saturday night, I ended up on Facebook and I saw that Nolan was having a graduation party at Nemacolin, much like the party we’d had for his 20th birthday.
Basically, it became pretty clear pretty fast that I was intentionally left out. Deep down, before speaking to anyone, I just knew something was wrong. I was directed to Nolan, since it was his party, and I was told that he didn’t want any drama, because apparently, I’ve hurt a few Craigs through things I’ve said. I had no idea, no one said anything to me about it, and instead, Nolan decided not inviting me was best. On a basic level, I understand. Except all my other interactions had been drama-free, so I doubt this would have been very different.
I don’t understand how things got to this point, how my conflicts are his responsibility and business, and how this was the best and most mature solution.
I have a lot of thoughts and feelings about this.
On the surface, I’m hurt that I was so deliberately excluded, but the pain does deeper. I was led to believe for weeks, possibly months, that things were not just okay but improving. I’m hurt that this was all done intentionally, unlike anything I’ve said and done. How can things be held against me if I don’t even know there’s a problem? My feelings were either not considered or not important, which reinforces everything I’ve been feeling for months–things, again, I ironically thought were improving. Everyone’s been nicer to me to my face since they’ve been upset with me. I’m sure horrible things have been said about me behind my back. I’m sure I’d be devastated to hear them.
I feel betrayed. I feel attacked, ganged up on, and villainized. I feel singled out for being vocal about certain issues when I wasn’t the only Craig being vocal about those issues. I feel like I don’t matter. I feel like I can’t win. If I make amends, it’s because I was upset and was told to. If I don’t, I’m an even bigger bitch. If I say, “Hey, I’ve been hurt, too,” then I’m blaming other people and making this all about me. If I don’t and I allow things to go back to the way they were, I’m setting myself for the same hurt.
I was told I need to own up to my mistakes (mistakes I wasn’t aware of). I was told no one approached me because I’d just deny it (I haven’t actually denied wrongdoing. There’s a difference between denying a problem and not understanding why something’s a problem, or not remembering). I was told no one approached me because I’d just blame other people (I have never done this, and I don’t know how someone can blame someone else for actual words. What am I gonna do, say someone else made me say them? That doesn’t even make sense).
No matter what, I deserve better.
I don’t believe I would’ve been told a thing if I wouldn’t have asked. I believe someone was relieved when I said I was going to State College for the weekend. I believe this is really about one specific issue with one person who’s being sympathized with, and all of the other offenses cited to me were just to build a defense and then my reaction to that offense was generalized to form a defense as to why no one wanted to talk to me.
This also puts everyone else in a really awkward position, because I know that not everyone thought this was a good idea or a mature way of handling things. I appreciate that, and I understand why they didn’t do anything. How could they? It wasn’t their party and these problems aren’t their responsibility. I only blame the ones who didn’t see things that way.
I need to act in my best interests. It’s a huge deal. I may lose some people, but at this point, I’d rather lose friends than repeatedly be made to feel terrible about myself. I may have said some questionable things, but everyone else is guilty of that, too. Things have been said to me with such attitude and frequency that I’ve realized my self-esteem, self-worth, and general self-view have been damaged.
So, if I’ve been hurt, betrayed, led on, damaged, and talked about, do I really want to return to that? No, I don’t. No one would. No one should.
So I’m quitting the Craigs. At least temporarily. Otherwise, I’ll be going back to at least some that have a negative and damaging impact on me. Why should I do that? Just because that’s the way it’s been for years? I need good, positive people, and at this point, there are too many words and actions I disagree with. Horrible things are said about Craigs by Craigs. Some are made fun of relentlessly, both to their face and not. Entertainment now includes making fun of people, bigotry, immaturity, and materialism. This isn’t just about me being hurt. I’ve realized my priorities and values are different. Sometimes that’s okay. But I’ve thought too much for too long to keep ignoring what my gut’s telling me–the status quo isn’t working. It may have stopped working a long time ago. It may have never worked. I’m not sure.
Most telling of all, when I watched movies or read books depicting close friends, thought, “I wish I had that.” I used to think that about men. I knew I was in love with Paul when I stopped having emotional fantasies about the men Nicholas Sparks wrote. I knew something was off when I started fantasizing about a nice, supportive group of friends where I could turn to all of them, not just a few.
I have letters and statements prepared for the relevant parties, but I don’t know if I’ll use them. I might just approach who I need to and then just leave otherwise and come back if and when I’m ready. But just in case someone knows about this or finds it, consider this my leave-of-absence announcement.
Obviously, this is a big deal. So I’m using it as a fresh start. I’ve always thought I could benefit from seeing a therapist, and I figure I’ve never had a better reason. I am deciding to at least redefine relationships I’ve had for many years. Plus the damage news fixed, and I can’t do it myself.
In July, after I finish my Saturday rotations at work, I’m going to look into something to do on the weekends like a yoga class or writing group. While I’m checking all that out, I’ll take care of myself physically. I’m already due for gynecologist and eye doctor’s appointments, but I’m going to do another thing I’ve always wanted–see a dermatologist.
Is this my quarter-life crisis come early? Or is this the opposite? Because I kind of feel like I’m having a quarter-life epiphany.
To go with the reinvention, I think I’ll rename the blog.