I try not to write posts on Mondays because Mondays are just inherently depressing, but I have to get something off my chest today.
One of the big downsides to what I have been through is that I’ve become a master wall builder. It’s a great skill to have if you’re a construction worker but not a skill you want when it comes to your personal/relational life.
As I’ve talked about before I’m an introvert by nature but a rather social one. To meet me you would initially find me rather shy and nervous (emphasis on nervous) but once I become comfortable with you I open up greatly and am very sociable. I don’t have a problem making friends, but I do have a big problem with maintaining them or going to a deeper level.
I think part of it is I suffered a deep friendship trauma in my teens. I had a friendship where I considered her to be my best friend only to have her rip my heart out and stomp on it several times over many years. I should’ve realized early on that she didn’t value the relationship nearly as much as I did and cut my losses, but I loved her like a sister…mainly because I didn’t have one and was desperate for one. She played me like a fiddle. She was my BFF when it was advantageous for her and dropped me like yesterday’s news when it wasn’t. The fact that it was a long-distance relationship didn’t help matters either.
I guess I should’ve moved on by now but I haven’t. My first serious romantic relationship went a similar way…although I eventually went on to have a great romance and relationship with my husband of now almost 21 years even though my wall-building nature has created challenges there too.
So I know that the ability to make friends and cultivate relationships is somewhere deep down inside of me. I’ve just locked it away and forgot where I hid the key.
So many years were consumed with trying to have a baby. Friendships were not a priority, and honestly I’m not a person who needs to have a gaggle of friends around me all the time. Honestly, when I met my husband he became that best friend I had always dreamed of…the search was over as far as I was concerned. Thus another big mistake…while your spouse should be your best friend continually leaning on them to meet all of your emotional needs drains them. I’ve learned that the hard way…thus my quandary.
Now I realize that during the IF experience I put up a lot of walls. All of my female friends (mostly church or work friends) eventually graduated to the Mommy Club, and my relationships with them changed as they all migrated towards other women who were mothers. While on the surface I couldn’t blame them deep down my soul took a serious wound each time they moved on and I was left behind.
So as a defense mechanism I quit making friends with women…at church or at work. Oh, I was friendly but I’d only let them get so close. They would encounter a big cinder block wall…and no one ever cared enough to try and break through nor did they understand what I was going through as an infertile woman. The most I ever felt from them was pity.
So now that I’m moving on I would love to find one or two close women friends. I do have a few via the internet and locally but the problem is I’m so insecure and out of practice in the friendship department that I don’t know how to get to more than a surface level. Then there’s the introvert in me who finds it easier to keep with the status quo and avoid the potential pain that could come with close friendship.
To sum it up…in relationships wall building is easier than tearing down of walls. I have a lot of work in front of me if things are to change.