Inktober Day 11 – “cruel”

I’m falling behind! This is yesterday’s word, and it was also some serious art therapy. Years ago, when I first heard of art therapy, I thought that must so healing, and it is! When I saw the word “cruel” on the list, the first thing that popped into my head was when my closest friend dumped me because I wasn’t supporting her pursuit of a hugely inappropriate relationship. The quote in the image was the thing that really wrenched my heart. The last time we went to get coffee, I asked if everything was okay. I felt like we were off, but she kept reassuring me, “No, everything is fine, I love you, you’re like the sister I never had!” I believed her. She went home and never returned a text or email again. A couple weeks later, she and her guy friend both unfriended me on Facebook in the same afternoon. No apology or explanation. My therapist later told me about narcissistic personalities, and everything clicked into place.

Looking back, the hardest thing to realize was that there had been clear red flags all along. I’d just ignored them (so desperate not to offend, not to rock the boat – that’s my baggage to work through!).

Life lesson: if someone tells you right at the start how cruel they can be, believe them. Believe them hard. We’re learning that about people, as a culture, aren’t we? Take people at their word. Allow for growth, of course! Everyone makes mistakes, everyone is human. A sincere attempt at fixing things should never be ignored. But when someone is cruel without acknowledgment, believe what they’re telling you about themselves.

When someone shows you who they are, believe them the first time.

– Maya Angelou

3 replies »

  1. This sounds very familiar. It took me a very long time to unpick my feelings about her, and even now I find the sentence goes: she was my best friend for years until I started really hearing what she was saying about me. Because for years, she was a big part of my life, and if I drop all of it, I lose a lot of what was fun for me as a kid and a teen. I’m going half full on this one.
    Hey and the other half full stuff: you aren’t behind. No one grades this month. It’s a prompt, not a punishment.

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    • Oh, I know there aren’t prompt police, but I loved the idea of doing something regularly every day. But again, shifting it around to see the bright side – I’ve done way more daily art this month than I have in years! It’s always a good reminder, whenever you start looking at the distance between where you are and where you want to be, to switch over to looking at where you were to where you are now. In that respect, I’m doing great.

      I’m sorry about your friend! Yeah it’s really hard when you realize you actually weren’t being treated well. I feel like I wasted those few years. I don’t have a lot of half-full feelings, I just wish she’d never contacted me at all (she initiated the friendship). I felt (still feel) like the victim of a long con. People can be so mean, it just blows my mind.

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