For a big part of my life I tended to hold onto people because I was afraid of having no one. Afraid of being left behind. Even slightly afraid that I was just too easy to replace. I had one particularly painful experience that I’d like to share, because I’m sure many of you can relate to it.
Back when I was in high school, I didn’t really talk to many people, but there were few people I actually felt comfortable opening myself up to. About a year and a half ago, I reconnected with one of my high school classmates on Facebook. Now at the time we started talking, I didn’t have a lot of friends. I had disconnected with many people from high school and I was not having any luck on campus either. So in all honesty, it felt really good to be able to talk to someone who already knew something about me and where I come from. We talked pretty much everyday and it soon became a very strong online friendship, almost like my personal support system for when things were getting bad again.
Fast forward a year to when I finally started to say what had been on my mind, “So, did you want to hang out sometime?” My anxiety sky rocketed after they didn’t reply after a few hours. After a day or so, they said that that would be cool. I was elated. I couldn’t wait.
Fast forward again to the next month when I wanted to test that theory by giving them a specific thing we could do. Taking into account my own anxiety I suggested we go to a movie I knew we both wanted to see. They declined. I didn’t think much of it, until a few weeks later I asked to hang out again. This time, I got crickets. Not literal crickets, mind you, but the kind that make your head spin and your heart race and your world come crashing down. No reply. No acknowledgement. Nothing.
So for the first time in my life, I decided to speak up about it. I waited for a month to pass, when I knew they’d seen my message and at which time I felt I should have gotten some response (and in my anxiety I double texted them and still got nothing in return). So I wrote them a little message, expressing how much that had hurt and how I didn’t deserve that. If they didn’t want to be better friends, why had they initially said they wanted to be? And if they’d changed their mind, why couldn’t they just say so?
I decided that day to be done with being treated like I didn’t matter. Because I do matter. And even though sometimes we all forget that, it never stops being true. Over and out my friends.