It’s tough to let someone go, but your intuition will always tell you when it is necessary.
I used to be like a chameleon; I would adapt to the situation and behaviors of those around me. I was brought up to care deeply about what others thought of me, which resulted in me not really knowing who I was.
“If you don’t stand for something, you’ll fall for everything.”
I’ve always known in my heart what my values were, but out of loneliness or a hope for acceptance I pushed them to the side to be liked- even loved. I knew deep down that what I was doing was uncomfortable, but I did it anyway. I kept people around, apologized for not being what they wanted me to be and took the blame for not being the “ideal girl.” My hair was too short, I wore too much black, I drank too much, I didn’t drink at all. Damned if I do, damned if I don’t. This guilt was unjustified.
I used to try to stand up for myself with aggression, resulting in anger and resentment. My repressed feelings later manifested in lashing out at the people who wanted me to be what they wanted. Needless to say, this never ended well.
As I practice new skills, I have learned to communicate in a different way; not letting those resentments eat me up inside. I’ve learned to set boundaries, even when it’s hard and even when it hurts. I have learned to stand up for myself and stay true to what I believe is right- especially when my own mental health is involved. It’s been an uneasy feeling to communicate my feelings instead of shoving them under the rug, especially when removing people I care about from my life.
I definitely cared far more about them than they cared about me. It’s a bittersweet feeling, but I can no longer be someone I am not for someone else with the false hope that they’ll change and suddenly be happy that I’m getting healthy and far less vulnerable.
The right people come into our lives at the right time; teaching us lessons and helping us grow. I have developed amazing relationships with female friends, who have encouraged me to be okay on my own and have lifted me up when I doubted myself. Today I know the people in my life love me for the person I am, through both my strengths and my weaknesses.
I am who I am- and that’s a beautiful thing.