Conversations I’m Not Ready to Have

I have a lot of friends who are helping me out, and I love them for it. And I care about their lives and the things that are going on with them. And in that caring, I ask about what’s going on, how they’re doing, what they’re working on.

It’s rare, but I have had a few conversations where I asked for the information that once they started telling me, I was NOT ready/able to be in a place to react appropriately. I asked for the conversation, but midway through, my brain and heart are screaming for an exit…. and I don’t know how to stop it without being rude.

Because I do care. I care about the problems they’re having with their families. I care about the issues they’re working through with their significant others. I care about the events they’re planning… Except that right now, when they tell me about them, I can only think about how I’ll never be able to work through any intimacy issues with him. Be intimate at all. Even get a hug. Or I’ll think about how he won’t ever come to another event, even just a house party. And it makes me mad at the person who’s answering the question I asked.

I know that’s not fair to them. So I try to hide the anger, and act as though nothing is wrong.

How do you know when you’re going to ask a question that you don’t want to know the answer to? I feel like I can’t win here. I’m plunging headlong into these conversations, not realizing that I’m walking into a field rife with land mines. And then I take a step and hear a click, and know I’m screwed. No matter what, there’s no way for me to win.

If my friendships make it through this unscathed, it will be a miracle.

Written 4/2/2014

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4 thoughts on “Conversations I’m Not Ready to Have

  1. If you need to stop, I think those who love you will understand if you ask us to stop because you are getting triggered in ways that you didn’t expect. I promise I will.

  2. Hi Iris, It’s Natalie. Hope it’s ok that I’m visiting you here 🙂 I can totally relate to this post and you’ve said something in a way that I’ve yet to be able to put into words myself. I thought I was just an asshole that didn’t care about my friends anymore! This must be normal since we both feel it, right? This feeling has made me avoid social situations more and more these days, which I’m told is not good. I don’t know. I’m kind of doing the “healing” by what feels right thing. This involves lots of walks with my dog and nights alone in my apartment, lots of reevaluating. I figure the social part can come later when I can handle it. I do wonder if the old friends will match the new me but I’ll figure that out later too.

    1. Natalie, I’m glad you came to the site. I think anyone saying anything is ‘not good’ should be taken with a grain of salt. At this point, healing by doing what feels right is the only thing we can do, right?
      As long as you’re not hurting yourself, as long as I’m not hurting myself, we’ve got to just do what we can handle.
      Some days, I can deal with people. I can talk and joke and feel at least a little ok. Others, even smiling at someone in passing is too much to handle.

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