Love Yourself Tenderly

“…good deeds should come from our natural instinct toward brotherhood, not from tribalism!” (or forced guilt) ~ The Golem and the Jinni, by Helene Wecker

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A week or so ago, a relative messaged me to say that another relative was ill… and that the whole thing was my fault for refusing to interact with said relative.

I was quite shocked. I mean, I know I’m freaking fantastic, but I had no idea that my mere presence came with healing superpowers. Still… I felt like I should not give the message all that much importance, since it also included pronouncement of hellish suffering and smiting from a rather wrathful god if I didn’t change my wicked ways.

I do love my ways.

Anyhoo, because nonsense spreads like wildfire (or the stench of shit in a tiny room), the first message was followed by a second and third… from individuals with whom, I assume, the first relative discussed my refusal to share my secret superpowers. Those messages weren’t unkind (there was no mention of my sexy flesh and bones burning for eternity), but they did make it a point to remind me that “loving others first is the duty of every good person. And I know deep inside that you are a good person.”

No, my Wicked Luvs, I didn’t laugh madly at the poor manipulation attempt. Neither did I pretend to misunderstand what the person was saying—passive aggressiveness and I have never cared for each other. I don’t seem to have the right sort of teeth for it. So, I just told her, “Loving me first is my first duty. Everything else is a gift. I’m not in the habit of giving anything valuable—especially myself—to anyone who believes their happiness and peace of mind are more important than mine.”

There were other messages (some not nearly as kind as the blackmail). I deleted them unanswered. I took a shower, went for a walk, returned home to blackout poems, took another shower, ate some yummy ice cream… and told the brilliant woman who lives in my mirror that regardless of what the rest of the world might think and do, she will always be first on my list. She grinned at me, with exactly the right sort of teeth.

If Walking Away from Life-Sucking People Is Selfish, Call Me Ms. Ego on Fast Legs

The world is full of well-meaning people willing to murder our Selves to save our souls. And because Fate’s sense of humor comes in all shades of nasty, the saviors rarely know what we want or need.

So, what’s a girl or boy to do?

If you ask me—and several of you have asked, hence this post—anyone who believes that their heartsease is more important than your happiness (and your sanity), deserves no space in your story. No one should have to stay in a relationship that sucks the life out of them.

But walking away is so freaking hard!

Yes, it is… especially when we’ve invested years on a relationship, or when the ones we must leave behind are blood relatives. Add cultural, social, religious expectations… to the mix, and detaching ourselves from certain people and groups is more difficult than leaving the Mafia with all our limbs.

Still, leaving is possible. It is often a necessity. And many of us have done it successfully.

There are some things to keep in mind: you aren’t an emotionally-barren beast (leaving will hurt for a bit); many people in your life, particularly the life-suckers in question, will do their best to shroud you in guilt (when they do this, remind yourself why you left in the first place); hold on to those who want to be part of your life without wanting to change who you are (they are your real family); and, unless miracle strikes, and those who kept you drained change so completely that they are now willing to understand that your life is yours to live, don’t look back (nothing good will come of it).

All this might seem harsh this time of year, when so many are focusing on family interaction and such. But this is often the most difficult season for individuals who attend gatherings not because they want to, but because they are made to feel that they must be there… or else they are scum.

People who love you won’t throw you into situations that leave you needing months of therapy, at least not on purpose. And if they insist on pushing you, after you’ve told them that their persistence is killing you, then your wellbeing is probably not at the top of their list.

I must stress that relationships between people are too complex to fit in a box (or a post). But some things are simple, to me: anyone who beats you, emotionally or physically, does not love you. And if they tell you that they do, then the bullshit that fills their hearts has probably spread to their brains.

Well, my Luvs, I must get ready for another date with the gut doctor. Do share your thoughts on this issue. Your honest insight is appreciated. Read you soon. Write you always. Be good. Be you. Be. ❤️

toxic-peopleToxic people are damaged energy.
Prevent them.