I could cut you off entirely. I could decide that you’re no good for my life, that you are the kind of person who will deplete my time and energy without conscious intent. I could step away because I can’t handle a relationship that isn’t what I wanted it to be.
I could do all of that, and I’ve made similar moves in the past to preserve my own health and sanity. I’m different now than I was at that time. I understand where you are and I understand how tough it is to be in that place. I know it’s confusing and I don’t fault you for where you are in your life. You can’t help it. I can see that now, feel sympathy for you, and at the same time place boundaries on the relationship in a kind and compassionate manner.
I don’t want to erase you from my life – far from it. I care about you. I value the connection we share and how organically we interact. In the past, I would’ve gotten angry. I would’ve thought you were a complete idiot for not appreciating our kindred spirits. I would’ve been unable to comprehend why you don’t understand how wonderful it is that we enjoy each other’s company in a natural and easy way. I would’ve turned away in frustration, feeling rejected yet again for being who I am. Yes, I still wish that you felt differently. I wish that very badly. At the same time, I know that most of what I’m feeling has to do with me. You don’t have the power to force me to react in any certain way. I have to decide what to make of all this for myself.
The truth is, I don’t know what you feel and don’t feel, and it doesn’t matter anyway if you don’t choose to share that information with me. I can only deal with what I am given, and while I would like it to be more, I recognize that you are not willing or capable of such communication now. You may never be. I don’t know. I can’t cling to any hope or concept of something that does not actually exist. I’m aware of that. I’m also aware that I am not the type to hold grudges or hate someone for not giving me what I want. It’s not anyone else’s duty to fulfill my wishes and needs. I will never try to force you to do so. That is a recipe for heartache.
I can promise you that if we continue growing this friendship – which if my instincts are correct, I’m fairly certain we both want to do – I will always call you out on your BS. I will pick your brain and engage deeply with you and always and forever encourage you to be the best you can be. If that’s not your style and growth isn’t your aim, part ways with me now. I know who I am and I will keep you accountable. I expect you to treat me with respect and consideration, because that’s how I will always treat you. This is a reciprocal relationship and if you aren’t in, then you’re out.
I can promise you that knowing me will only make you better because I am a quality human being. I am loyal and I will always be here for you as long as you are honest and straightforward with me. All I ask is that you be authentic and present.
This is what I offer. Take it or leave it. If it’s too much for you, if you are still trepidatious, I am disappointed but I understand. I have only empathy and compassion to offer you and I truly hope that someday you are able to face the fears, confusion and chaos that you hold inside. I want you to figure it all out. If you decide to take this journey of deeper understanding and closer friendship with me, than wonderful. I am here whenever you need me. I don’t compromise who I am because of fear – I no longer allow other people to control my emotions.
Only I can do that, and I must. I am strong enough to be there for you and to keep myself whole at the same time. Love – not grasping love, not attached love, but giving and honest love – is the only path to freedom. I choose love.
Now it is your choice – whether you can believe that I have no conditions and accept what I give, or whether you will draw back because you’re worried about letting me down. The truth is that you will let me down. I will let you down. That’s the reality of any human relationship. You can live in fear of it or you can open yourself up and we can help each other navigate. I will never fault you for being human.
It’s up to you.