Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Kudzu People

This is one of those “reflective” posts.  This may bore you. 

As I’ve grown up I’ve realized a few things about myself.  I’ve realized that certain external factors really affect me in very negative ways.  For instance, I hate tight things around my neck.  Actually, I hate anything tight on me.  I don’t like being confined, trapped, cornered, or attacked.  Certain things make me feel as though I’m being smothered.   I don’t want things like that on me or around me.  Certain people fit those examples.  There are smothering, cloying, duplicitous people all around.  It seems more prevalent now, or perhaps I’m just realizing I’m worth more and so are my closest loved ones.

There are people who are like kudzu.  They take hold and start encroaching on all the native plant life until they’ve choked it out under some wall of kudzu that devoured all the shapes beneath.  They keep flopping their green annoying bossy tentacles around until the find purchase and start digging their ugly mean little claws right inside, pry apart the structure and destroy it.  Kudzu people have one mission….destroy everything that isn’t them.

There are times when people are just too confining.  When I find myself walking on egg shells verbally, when I find myself with no emotional support, when I find myself wondering exactly what a person meant when they said something or I’m left questioning their motives I feel trapped in a dead end relationship with that person.   I don’t like feeling like relationships are unsalvageable, but there are times when the effort just isn’t worth the possible payoff at all.  There are times when the kudzu has reached so deeply the person you once cared for is no longer there and has become some ugly kudzu covered blob dictating the path of life, what should be, how it should be and who should be what.  I’ve chosen to cut out some people who choke the life out of me, leave me feeling spent and useless and don’t add anything positive to my life. 

The decision has been a long time coming.  From Oct 2010 to May 2015 specifically, thoughts of just “being done” with one person in particular dominated my mind.   I kept writing off all the slights, forgiving scathing comments, judgments, the scars were left, and the damage was growing.  The slights, the cuts, the ignorant refusal to comprehend, the dismissal and double standards just broke me.  The final slight was treating my husband and me with zero respect then the unforgivable act of essentially tossing my son to the wolves.  No one, I mean no one at all, intimates that I’m a negligent mother unless it’s my son or my husband.  I could see those darn little ugly green tendrils rising around my family members, not just me this time. 

There comes a time when a person just has to ask himself or herself, “Would I spend one hour with this person if I weren’t somehow related to them?”  , or, “Does this person enrich my life?” maybe, “Does this person tear me down?” There are so many questions to ask yourself when you start to realize a relationship may not be healthy at all.  The questioning should take long enough for you to cool off, rethink things, regroup, and look at it from another perspective.  When all angles were looked at, my decision was made. 
I think everyone knows in their heart when a relationship isn’t working, isn’t worth it, is detrimental and needs to be ended.  Ending a relationship is a sad time but can also lift a huge weight from a person’s shoulders.  I’m at peace with my decision. 

If you find yourself in a similar dilemma, I can tell you that it takes a while to make the best decision for you.  A snap decision, then a reversal makes you feel weaker and look weaker, thus opening the door for that person to hold indecision over your head.  The people that generally need to be cut are narcissistic, they are emotionally abusive and rarely if ever lift you up.  I found this checklist to be very revealing

30 Signs of Emotional Abuse

Recall patterns in their behavior, identify how they make you feel, remember their words, identify your reactions.  Bounce some scenarios off a trusted friend, leave out names and get their take on it.  Find a friend who will be brutally honest with you, even if you might have to hear that some of the blame may be yours.  Take time to mull this over and make a final decision.  Don’t give ultimatums, I’ve tried it and they’ve been thrown in my face, I’ve been belittled for it, ultimatums left me looking and feeling weaker.  People like that don’t respond to, or respect any boundaries you might set, they truly don’t care what you say at all, or how you feel.   You can identify this and prove it to yourself based on past patterns of asking them to stop, or sharing your feelings, then having it all be ignored.  You deserve more!  If you would see the situation and tell your best friend to run, then follow your own advice, no matter how hard it seems. 

If you are one of the lucky ones who has a toxic family member, but they ARE willing to listen, understand and work on it.  Then hold on, ride it out, go to therapy with them.  A relationship like that shows promise and the willingness to grow.  There are a lot of resources online; a lot of reputable resources to help you in this process.   

I’m grieving a loss, but fairly I’ve been grieving the loss since the abuse started.   There is another person who’s being held at arm’s length, simply because I feel they might have outside factors influencing their abuse, if I didn’t think they were a bit “touched” I’d have gotten rid of them too.  It still may come to that.  Fractured families are not as rare as you think.  I thought everyone had a happy family, excluding me.  How wrong I was. 

I hope you are all well, If you made it this far….I do hope to write more regularly.  Life just has a way of getting in the way of having fun.   

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