As regular readers may already know, I can get pretty philosophical at three in the morning. The following text messages were written by me, taken from a conversation with my friend, Anne. We were talking about what it means to be vulnerable, and what it means to open up to someone.
I’ve only posted my texts here, and not Anne’s responses, for the sake of her privacy. Names and specific references to places have been edited out.
Apologies for spelling, grammar, and capitalization.
so I asked if anything was wrong and he said “there are so many things wrong but none of them are of your concern” and we talked about it for a little while without him ever actually opening up to me and then he just abruptly changed the subject. so I guess that’s where I stand with him.
I hate it when people do that. because they’re bringing it up, so obviously they wanna talk about it, but they’re being cagey. it’s a cry for attention, it’s basic psychology. people never want to actually discuss their problems because that would lead to actual vulnerability on their part. they just want to force other people to notice them.
nobody ever wants to open themselves up to being vulnerable. some people are only vulnerable when they’re around their closest friends (like me) but some people never, ever open up (like him). nobody wants to burden other people with their problems, but, more importantly, nobody wants to open themselves up to beig rejected.
we get this notion, somehow, that if we allow someone else to see the deepest parts of ourselves, that in their eyes we’ll become a different person.
but everyone wants to be understood and accepted. and everyone wants someone to pity them.
I’m everyone’s therapist. I’m used to it.
Now, a lot of the points I raised here were similar to what I mentioned in my last post. It’s something I’ve been thinking about a lot lately. Teenagers in particular seem to be afflicted by this problem of wanting to draw attention to their issues, but not wanting to open up.
In my experience, people are fortresses. Some people are guarded only by drawbridges and battlements; others, by moats full of alligators. And when I encounter somebody with a moat full of alligators, my first instinct is to try and swim across it.
And most of the time, I end up getting bitten.