Losing friends is hard, even if it isn’t through death. I have found this to be all too true within the past few days. I have recently had to cut off friends that I never thought I would have to cut off. Friends that I’ve known a lifetime. But when toxic is toxic, there really is only one thing you can do. But sometimes I wonder: how does a person become toxic? How can anyone justify just being cruel to another person, or a living being in general? I don’t understand it. I never have, and I never will.
It’s hard to cut off friends, and I’m quite young to do so. But still, things need to be done to protect my own sanity. It makes me wonder what led up to this point, if I could’ve stopped it, or if it was my fault. But I have to remember one thing: the phone rings both ways. If a friend isn’t calling you, then they probably don’t care that much about talking to you. That’s what I’ve experienced. But recently, some of the kindest people I have known in my life have turned away, embraced something darker or just gone off the rails entirely. It’s understandable; this world is a very hard one to live in, especially with all of the war and injustice. But becoming toxic to those who have always supported you is still unacceptable.
I always thought that I’d have friends by my side, but now that I’ve cut off the ones that I have, I am truly alone. I don’t have anyone other than family now, which is alright. I’m a loner anyway. I’m fine with that. The thing that I truly mourn is the relationship, and knowing that they used to be best friends, and no we’re strangers. And I’m not talking about the girl in high school who alienates you for the clique of mean girls. I’m talking about the friend you’ve known forever who never calls you and barely talks to you when you are there until you finally realize that they don’t prioritize you in the way that you prioritize them. I should have guessed, but I suppose I wanted to remain optimistic. Regardless, I feel more free now. Less judged, and more able to do the things that I want.
I’ve always felt held back, but it wasn’t until today that I remembered from someone who is a real friend, what it truly feels like to be believed in. I’ve been bullied all of my life, which is typical, considering that I am disabled physically. Still, I had forgotten what it was like to be valued. I had forgotten what it was like to be loved. And I had forgotten that it was possible for people to care about me. Perhaps I had grown so accustomed to being nothing in the eyes of my ‘peers’ that I never realized how distorted it had become. My mother once told me that things don’t seem that disturbing until you’ve made it out of the situation. And that applies here.
it’s not something I ever anticipated, but I think that the decision to take toxicity out of my life is something I will thank myself for in the long run. It’s something that I will truly be grateful for. Something that I will look back and know that I made the right decision.
It’s never hard to cut off those we love, but sometimes it’s very necessary. And in some cases, it’s life-saving. That would be in the case of my extended family, but I’m not getting into that right now.
The world is an unfair place. I truly don’t understand how someone could be nothing to you, especially if they have given their all to be there for you. I truly don’t understand how cruelty can become a way of life, or how bullying can be justified. But neglect is apparent, and sometimes it can kill. This also goes for role models that we see in the news and the music industry/Hollywood. Someone I’ve looked up to for over a decade – a person who saved my life through their music – has turned and become a different person entirely. And now I turn the other way as well.
I’ve decided that the friends that don’t think I matter shouldn’t matter as much to me. As cruel as that sounds, I need to preserve myself. It’s scary and hard and seen as very selfish. But in the end, when you’re on an airplane and it starts to crash, you must put your own mask on before you put on anyone else’s. That’s the rule of thumb; in order to save others, you must first give yourself the attention and appreciation that you need in order to survive. Hatred can kill just as much as neglect, and I’ve recently discovered that if you don’t matter to someone, it can destroy you when that very thing is all that you ever wanted.
But things can be tough. Things can be so complicated that we are unable to understand them. Though at some point in our lives, we will understand why things ended up this way, and why we had to walk in a different direction. At least, I know that I will. I know that things will become more clear as I age, but for now, they are very clouded. Still, I am grateful for my decision.
I suppose the point of this post is this: don’t let others take advantage of you. If you are hurting and they won’t validate it, that is just as much bullying as it would be if they were to punch you in the face. It may not leave bruises on your body, but it can destroy your inner being. It can destroy everything you have from the inside out, and you deserve more than that. I deserve more than that. Every person in this world deserves more than that.
It’s a dog-eat-dog world. But it doesn’t have to be, if you let that person go. That’s what I’ve learned. Even though others will happily trample over you to get to the top, they won’t stay there long, for it is the ones that work for it that have the capacity and assets to anchor themselves at the top of that mountain, rather than the ones who raced up unprepared for their journey, only to look back down and realize what they’ve let go, and to understand how they treated everyone around them just as they are pushed off of that mountain. I feel for those people, but I can’t help them.
Sometimes all you can do is help yourself. And that’s what you deserve. You always have, and you always will.