Gains and Losses

I'm coming to a sad realization about my life...for too long I have been the 'people pleaser' or the 'peacekeeper'...'pushover' would be the non politically-correct way of saying it, really...practically letting people walk all over me just so they wouldn't think I'm not a nice person. I don't know what happened, but when I hit 30 I think I started taking back my life a little. I am still a nice person...that is just me and I wouldn't ever want to change that. If you are my friend, I will give you anything or do anything for you if it is within my power. But the walking-over-me part has gotten old, and I've started to tire of it. I've started to speak my mind. Not all the time, but when something has really been bothering me or when it really matters.

In doing this, in gaining this newfound self-empowerment...or self-respect (as opposed to respect for everyone BUT myself...respect is a fine line and I'm learning if you don't respect yourself you're not REALLY respecting anyone else're just being their doormat disguised as being respectful), I have found I am losing in another way...a couple of (so I thought) really good friendships. Although my husband would say if that's the case they weren't true friendships to begin with...I don't know. I always thought they were. I loved them as family. But perhaps your friends get so conditioned to you being at their beck & call, with no return requirement, they don't understand you when you suddenly become this different person, who is actually better...but they can't compute that fact. Can't compute that I'm being a person now who is good for ME, and as my friend they should want that. Even if it requires for them to be there for ME sometimes now, and that I now make that point clear. In fact they used to comment on how I SHOULD stand up for myself more.

I guess it's kind of like the skinny friend who is all for you getting healthy and losing weight until you actually start losing weight and they try to (subconciously) sabatoge you...because they are really comfortable with who you are, and your dynamic, and are scared of the change.

Don't get me wrong, I haven't gotten mean or aggressive or even disagreeable. I still try to be nice when I'm pointing out that I don't like something or that I need something...but it is change and I guess for some, it isn't good. It is hard to have friends completely stop communicating with you simply because you point out (in a too-nice, almost apologetic way) that the friendship runs two ways...and that if you really miss me like you say, you can come see me too.

But maybe if you drive on a one-way street long enough, and become conditioned to no oncoming traffic, a crash is inevitible when you try to make that turn onto the highway.