I Attract Crazy People

Ever since I can remember, I’ve had a knack for attracting colorful characters in my life. Whether it was the weird kid in my first grade glass who genuinely thought he was a cat and meowed at people or my AP History teacher who wanted to be my friend IRL, made me mixed tapes, and asked me for advice on men (I was barely eighteen and, hi, you don’t know me like that.) I’m not entirely sure why this is, #NotClearOn my status as a crazy person magnet, but it is what it is. People always feel the need to tell me things and I’m too much of a Curious George to ignore them. It’s served me well in my life but it’s also been sort of a hinderance with people I actually want to get to know. It’s like, “I thought you were cool until you told me about the time you got molested within an hour of me meeting you. But what the hey, right?! Let’s go there! What’s your name again?”

I understand this is probably my fault. Subconsciously, I’m attracting these people because of reasons x, y, and z. It might have largely to do with the fact that I’m very personable and have trouble establishing boundaries. I’ve always been that person who befriends the people at my bank or dentist’s office. I can’t help it. People’s stories and personalities are interesting to me. If they weren’t, I probably wouldn’t be a writer; I probably wouldn’t spend all of my time writing about humans if I didn’t care about them.

But it’s worrisome. With the people I could potentially care about, I want them to hold back. I didn’t know that the art of self-disclosure was that hard to master but it apparently is. {Wait, I just realized that you might be calling BS on my own self-disclosure, considering I’ve spoken openly about colonics and anal sex, but you’ll just have to trust me when I say that I’m not TMI in real life.) It’s all about being aware of social cues and assessing someone’s comfort level. With instant friend connections, I have felt okay in revealing a lot about myself in the first meeting. It felt permissible and it was reciprocated, but with most people it’s a slow, delicate process. It’s exciting to learn about their lives little by little. There’s no need to rush things. Information and secrets will come out organically.

I don’t think this is something that will ever go away for me and I’ve come to terms with that. I’ve come to terms with the fact that if a crazy person comes on the bus, chances are they’re going to sit by me and tell me their whole life story. If I go to a house party, some drunk person is going to spill all of their problems on me before they spill their drink on themselves. And at the end of the day, that’s really okay. It allows me to hear every insane life story, which I’ll keep forever in the back of my brain under lock and key. Who knows what I’ll do with all of the information I receive but chances are it’s going to go somewhere real good one day. Thought Catalog Logo Mark

image – My So-Called Life

Ryan O'Connell

I'm a brat.

More From Thought Catalog