Is friendship the newest form of abuse?

I’ve dealt with depression my entire life. I’ve grown up with the thought that I could be anything that I want to be/ if I can dream it I can do it. I’ve been told for most of my life that, “those people aren’t your friends.”The world we live in and life – is damn hard – despite trying to chase your dreams. More people today than not, are considered depressed or suffer from some type of mental or emotional dysfunction. And people today – people are the worst. They’re the worst to each other.

People are so self-righteous and hellbent on beating each other up mentally, emotionally, and physically, to prove their own worth that despite “winning,” we really lose. People don’t have real relationships anymore. Everything is about petty crap and manipulation tactics to force people to see things your way or no way at all. The job market is a buyer’s place and the goods being sold are us. We’re free to the highest bidder because god forbid we actually get paid a decent wage for the work we do. There is no loyalty. There is barely trust. The system is broken and those with the power are sure as hell not going to give any to us.

We rip and tear each other down so that we can feel better ourselves. We fight tooth and nail for that promotion for our own well being and don’t care how we get there. We use each other to get what we want, when we want. We shame people for being who they are, when who they are has absolutely nothing to do with who we are. We cause each other pain because no one is willing to even open their eyes to a new perspective or see things in a different light. We use and abuse each other to no end because we’re so blinded by our own greed and desires that no one else matters until we get everything we want first. And then we end up alone.

How the hell did we get here? We live in a world where you can’t be taken seriously by protesting because those in charge forgot where they came from. Those standing in the places of power are the products of an age where people fought to be treated as people and now we discriminate less because we’re all being treated like shit.

I’ve known and witnessed so many people attempting to take their own lives because they can’t handle something going on in their world. So many suffering from things like depression, anxiety and PTSD, but no one seems to take those seriously. I’ve watched people around them judge them and put them down. I’ve seen them make it the person who’s sufferings fault because they don’t take two seconds to think what happened to this person to push them this far?! Or think, “why do they think and feel that this is their only way?”

People don’t respect anymore. They don’t respect themselves let alone anyone else. We have the most ways to speak to others than ever before and how do we spend most of our time communicating? We trash each other and make fun of and judge and push aside everyone that has ever taken the time to be there for us and why? Why? Seriously why?

Is it fear? Fear of being left? Fear of being betrayed? No one commits to anyone or anything. No one has to. Not knowing someone you spent years getting to know and spending time with isn’t going to walk out on you tomorrow is a real issue. I’ve had friends and loves that hurt me, let’s face it most people do. Yes, that’s part of life and people outgrow each other, but why does it have to become vicious?  Why do we have to attempt to destroy the person we were once friends with?

I recently “broke up” with a friend. I’ve known this person since I was about 10 years old. We lost touch as we grew up but ran into each other at a later date. We have become decently close in the last handful of years until this last one. I had gone through one of the most devastating times in my life and I wasn’t the same. I watched my life and my world as I knew it crash around me. I watched myself become someone I didn’t know. I watched people and friends use things against me just because they could. I was judged in every single way because I was “different” than I was before. That wasn’t okay with these people. These people were supposed to be my friends; the ones there through the hard times. But as soon as the hard times were upon us gone they were.

I’ll admit I was a bit difficult at times. I’m an intense person in general and it is what it is. But like I said, my life as I knew it to be, was over. I dealt with 4 deaths in 3 weeks. A best friend and love lost in one. A life in another state I didn’t want to say goodbye to, but had to leave. And myself becoming a shadow of the person I once knew because I was broken in every way. To this day I’m still trying to pick up the pieces and it’s a little over a year later.

About two weeks ago I had a fight with this friend. They insisted they tried but just couldn’t do it anymore. Now I get it… we all have our own shit, but take responsibility for your actions and words. When you leave someone high and dry and basically tell them you’re not good enough to be my friend anymore what are you supposed to feel?  Then they hang out with everyone you introduced them to and not only tell you that people are talking shit about you behind your back but still can’t acknowledge that maybe they were out of line. All of it is abusive. All of it isn’t okay. From people talking shit behind your back to them making you out to be the asshole and the jerk of the group because you’re not sunshine and rainbows. Not okay. We all make mistakes but after a certain point it just isn’t okay to treat people that way.

Why do we sit here and think that it’s okay to judge those around us on their mistakes and their opinions when their life isn’t the one we’re living? Isn’t the whole point of having friends to have people there for you through the crappy, shitty, end of the world times, as well as the on top of the world, no time better than this, I love my life times? Isn’t the whole point of having friends to not have to go through the hard times even more alone than we have to?

We’re supposed to be on the “right side” of history yet here we sit continually fucking it up. We’ve come a long way but we’re not even a fraction of the way there. Civil rights. Women’s rights. Movements that defined generations fought for equality. We’re now fighting for LGBTQ rights and as much as it may make me a little uncomfortable I’m all for people having the respect and the rights they deserve. Why do we have to hold everything against each other? Why do we have to tear down our so called friends to feel better about ourselves? Why do we have to abuse each other when we’re all screaming for acceptance and understanding and dare I say it -love? What are we all so afraid of when it comes to actually giving people what they have earned or should have a right to?

Why is it okay to be put down and talked about and made out to be the jerk and hated on when all you did was break? Why is it okay to suffer from depression or some other kind of mental ailment or even physical ailment and have it be used against you? We’re all individuals and we’re all different as much as we’re the same. Why do we direct such anger and hatred towards each other when we all are seeking acceptance? Because let’s face it, no one strives to be the outcast. If we spent a fraction of the time actually trying to build each other up instead of beating each other down or even gave people a chance to prove their worth or their skills without projecting an “I knew you’d leave, I knew you’d hurt me, I knew you’d screw this up”attitude, we all might approach things and life a lot differently. If we all showed a little more respect and dignity within ourselves this world would be a far better place.

Why are we afraid to be nice to each other? When does the abusive bullshit end?

Los Angeles Chronicles: Insecurities are a bitch

Alright so life is hard, we all know that. We also all have a “mommy issue” for lack of a better way to describe it and it always finds a way to fuck with us in some way… i.e. insecurities.

For those just tuning in, I’ve recently moved to Los Angeles to follow a dream. I drove 3,000 miles across this country in my car alone. I’ve fought with movers, I’ve ditched shitty friends, I’ve missed old memories and made new ones, I’ve applied for more jobs than anyone should ever have to apply to, and I finally got my furniture a month later. To say the least it’s been a journey.

With that being said, I know I made the decision to leave and I know I “did this to myself” but I had to. The issue becomes, as I sit here applying for jobs and thinking about what I can do to stand out and to build myself and my career and everything that goes with it I feel like I can’t do it. Why? My mommy issue is never being good enough.

I hate to toot my own horn but I’m not most people, at least not most of the people I’ve met.  I have a fierce sense of loyalty, I’ve been good if not the best at every job I’ve had, I graduated from college with two bachelors degrees in 3.5 years while working and dancing and I’ve been to about 8 countries, lived in 4 states (3 on my own), and done almost everything I’ve ever wanted to do in life so far. I’ve accomplished a lot of things in my 20something years of being alive. So why does it feel like it means nothing?

I submit application after application into the void that is the internet and never hear anything back unless it’s a rejection. And as everyone who has ever applied for a job knows, no answer is also a rejection. This world thrives on everyone’s mommy issue. Why are we living in a world where we all use each others’ downfalls as bait and a way to get people to do what we want? Why keep people down? I mean it sounds a little ridiculous when I think about it because I’m basically saying “why can’t everyone be happy and the world be full of rainbows and sunshine” but why can’t it?

Life is hard, people suck, we can be our own worst enemies and I certainly am, but why can’t we all give people a chance? Give someone unexpected a chance to prove they can succeed and maybe you’ll be surprised. I mean it’s all about perspective and if we stopped ripping each other apart and started building each other up how much would things change? Just because I don’t have 5-8 years of experience as a Moon Landing Technician on the Spaceship on Mars doesn’t mean I can’t learn how to do it. Yes, I’m trying to be ridiculous.

We all try for a while and then when things don’t work out how we’d like or want to we give up. Or on the opposite hand we fight for all the wrong things. Why is it a bad thing to want to chance to prove yourself? Why can’t someone actually say, “your experience isn’t the best but you seem like a fairly intelligent person let’s take five minutes to talk to you based on your actual abilities and maybe you can learn how to do this well.” Or take a chance and actually date someone for real. Not just hook up or be friends with benefits but a real relationship where both people are all in and vulnerable without fearing what everyone else has to say about it? No one does that. No one even takes the time to read your damn resume anymore. No one takes time to give a damn about anyone else let alone themselves. Job searching is the newest form of prostitution as far as I’m concerned and they win every time because even if you get the job you still fight your biggest insecurities. And relationships are a shadow of what they used to be that prove your biggest insecurity is exactly what you thought it was every single time.

I don’t have the answers here and I know I may never get over feeling like I’m not good enough even if I’m the next Mother Teresa, again yes I’m being ridiculous but it proves the point. That doesn’t mean I hadn’t accomplished anything and everything I wanted. It doesn’t mean I shouldn’t be given a chance. It doesn’t mean I’m nothing to no one and will never be in a relationship where I know and they know we’re loved and we’re okay.

This world is a tough place and no one gets out alive. Why can’t get figure out a way to love instead of hate and forget the insecurities and remember all the good things we are? Why be miserable and fight for the wrong things if you can excel and be happy period? What’s the end game if it isn’t happiness and love? How do you leave the insecurities behind? Can you?

 

Oceanic Scenes

The ocean makes me happy. I was driving down Topanga Canyon and little did I know I was about to hit Pacific Coast Highway and there she was. The ocean.

There she was, the ocean in all her majesty.

Proving how small and insignificant we all truly are in the scheme of things.

The ocean, most definitely woman, roars at the mere touch of her fellow: land.

She guides sailors from port to port, pier to pier.

She cradles and rocks ships sometimes to breaking point.

Sometimes she pushes too far and has her way with them.

Sometimes wrecked are the planks once sturdy. She now engulfs their entirety and in all her power floats the pieces to land or keeps them as her own.

So vast and splendid she knows no bounds.

Only the land can hold her back and keep her in check, but only with help from the moon.

The moon pulls her heart strings from dusk till dawn.

She never fades till she meets the sky of blue as he horizon blurs as one.

 

Los Angeles Chronicles: Crossroads

As I stand at a crossroad not knowing which path to take next, not knowing what I want, nor knowing my true feelings for you, I look to the past for answers for the future, but I am left with pointless memories of a time that used to be…what do I choose? No. Who do I choose? I choose me.

And here I am. Been in LA about two weeks now. Still looking for jobs trying to make things work. Spending a lot of time thinking about the past, but learning from it as well is making things change. So long have I lived in a place I didn’t belong in or really exist as a part of. So long did I love the wrong person because that’s not only part of life but I didn’t know how not to. Not making excuses it just eventually fueled the fire.

I’ve been reminiscing constantly the last few days and I’ve come to realize a lot that I didn’t put too much thought into before. I looked through an old cell phone and made note of the messages and the pictures I had stored in it. They’re basically the same people I currently have in my phone give or take a person or two. And the two people that have meant the most to me in the last decade aren’t found in either list on either phone. Ironic don’t  ya think?

Just goes to show that you may put a lot of stock in a friendship or relationship with a person but the ones you care about most may not be around the longest or the way you wish or hoped they might be. Things change. And I spent a ton of time saying the same thing over and over and over. It took me about a year but I finally did something about it. I needed that year. I needed that time. It made all the difference. I won’t ever give up  my memories because they’re mine, but they say that when you remember something you don’t remember the actual event. You remember the last time you remembered that event. Food for thought.

I’m glad I left. I’m glad to be starting a new life in a new place and trying to put the pieces together as anxious as I am to truly start “living” here. I can’t wait to get out and start working and trying to achieve things I want for myself and live the passion and way that I want without all the crap I was dealing with before. You past never goes away but it’s in the past and sometimes it’s best to leave it there. Not deny its existence but not live in that place. I chose me this time for the first time in a very long time and it has made all the difference. I’m anxious but only because the pieces aren’t yet formed and put together. But I’m also happier than I’ve been in a very long time and sometimes we just need to take the wins where we get them.

Is love a basic human need?

Love. It’s amazing yet can be a train wreck. It’s fleeting yet everlasting. Cruel, but kind. Meaningful in one moment but absent minded in the next. It’s something that almost everyone seeks in some way shape or form, but something we all have been broken by as well. We’re all seeking this feeling as we seek happiness, but it seems that both are fleeting. So that brings me to my title, is it a basic human need? Do we need love in all of its greatest evils and greatest bliss to go on in life or not?

We spend a lot of our lives either in pursuit of love or trying to recover from it. Matters of the heart are never as clear as they may seem and most definitely are not black and white. I believe love exists in the gray areas that we try not to lurk in, for confusion and the unknown tend to join us for the ride. I speak from experience here when I say that this kind of love is everything and nothing, but it becomes an enormous part of who you are. I’ve experienced the gray area love and it was a part of me like breathing or having to eat. It wasn’t something I didn’t entirely chose, but I definitely chose it… and when I was in it there was what seemed like a bubble between us that wouldn’t allow anyone else in. We loved, but it still eventually would prove to be insufficient.  When it comes down to it…despite all the hurt that can come with love, is it a necessary evil?

Love like happiness is tricky. Holding onto it is hard and it’s definitely work. This gray area love came to be so easily and had an attachment so severe it took me years to even attempt to sever the strings of friendship and I definitely did not walk away unscathed. I was broken and brokenhearted standing there trying to the pieces of my life back together, trying to figure out who I was without it. I had no idea which way was up, nor did I think anyone could really love me after that. I like so many people chose to stay in toxic relationships because despite the complications the love exists. Are we as humans truly dependent on the forces of love, whether they’re good or bad? Are we really only here to become pawns in the game of love in hopes that it leads to the fairytale ending most of us know probably won’t happen or will eventually end in divorce?

Yes, love and loss is a part of life, and life is hard, but for something that is so hard to explain, so personal, so hard to attain, why do we all go after it so wholeheartedly? Is it really better to have loved and lost than to never have loved at all? What do you do then, when the person that you’d take a bullet for is the person standing behind the trigger? When – if ever – do you stop loving for your own self preservation? And can you ever really exist without love in some way?

If you need love to survive why don’t more people really and truly “love themselves.” Or rather have love for themselves? Why aren’t people nicer to themselves and others? Call me naive but if we’re all in some way or another in search of our greatest love, like we’re in search of our dreams and our purpose in life to, “do what we love” or attain what we “want” >cough< love… do we not need on an entirely basic scale? I know I asked more questions than I answered but what do you think? Can we exist without love?

Feelings, feelings everywhere

I’ve never been one to do well with feelings and emotions. More often than not I find myself repressing anything and everything and trying to push things like feelings away. For as long as I can remember I’ve had these issues and in the last two years that’s been beginning to change.

I’ve always been an intense kind of person. Willing to do what I need, when I need. To stand up for myself and to be the only person I can count on despite anything else. I grew up in a house that had married parents, one of the very few of my friends to have them. They loved me and cared about me as most do, but they couldn’t ever give me what I wanted from them. Acknowledgement and emotional support. Every step of the way from kid to teen to young adult I’ve tried to deal with the insecurities I’ve been harvesting my entire life. And I know I’m not alone in this.

I can finally admit certain feelings I have felt because of my parents, even though I completely understand that they’re only human and tried their best. But I think we all have mommy and daddy issues and some of us are just better at hiding or escaping them. At the end of the day I am allowed to feel how I feel. I am allowed to be angry and be hurt and feel sad or be happy or grateful or loved. It’s taken me years to learn that I am allowed to feel how I do and nothing and no one can take that from me because my entire life it felt like that wasn’t the case.

I’m the person who gets people. I look out for them. I’m loyal. I want with my everything to love and be loved and it is always at the expense of myself. It’s what I know. It’s what I’ve been taught by experience. It isn’t entirely a good thing and I know that but it’s a part of me.

I love the people that need to be “saved” and I build them up and let them in. I don’t consider them that but its the best way I know how to put it.  I become their lifeline and they become my demise. It gets to such a point that eventually I break and shatter and am left unknowingly to pick up the pieces of myself by myself. Now I know what you’re thinking…I don’t do this on purpose. I do this with friends and relatives and people in general. I’m the person everyone tells their life story to. I’m the person everyone is semi intimidated by and then realizes I’m one of the nicest people you’ll ever meet. But after years of doing this and not ever really knowing how to deal with my own feelings I finally started to change.

At that point I became the jerk or the asshole in my group of friends. It became my fault that things went badly or weren’t as they were to be expected. I was expected to act and be a certain way because well I had to. Problem was I couldn’t play the game anymore. I wasn’t about to hide how I felt because I needed to be okay with it. For the first time it was finally about me and that wasn’t okay with everyone else.

All of the insecurities I worked so hard to help others with, came shooting back in my direction at full force. I’m not blaming anyone, but again this is about how I feel. Life is hard enough. We’re all jaded in some way and we all need a little help from friends and those around us at some point. Everyone gets a little difficult to deal with at times but keep in mind everyone is allowed to feel how they feel. It isn’t about being PC or a pansy or a tough guy or anything else. We are all only human and maybe if people allowed people to actually be themselves then we wouldn’t be dealing with half the bullshit that we do. Maybe if we actually took time to figure out how we feel towards one thing or another we’d all make better decisions for ourselves.

Take it from someone who’s been destroyed a few times… someone that keeps trying to pick up the pieces… and someone who is still continuously learning about themselves even if its things that I already knew but life allowed me to forget… We have potential to do so many things and we have potential to feel so many things. I know I’m sick of feeling like I’m not good enough for everyone around me, but the things that bother people the most tend to be the things that keep coming back. We start to believe these things because they’re proven to us. We get to a point where we don’t know what to do or feel because we’ve even repressed ourselves. How different of a world do you think we’d live in if people actually lived up to their potential or truly believed in their abilities? What possibilities would we have? Why is it okay to stomp on someone’s feelings when it’s the only reason you probably reacted in the first place?

Everyone has a different role, everyone has a different perspective, everyone has their own feelings. So why isn’t that enough? Are we doomed to this cyclical reality despite changing our surroundings or does it take a lifetime of attempts to be the person we actually want to be?