there is, i think, a certain, uh. human behavioral pattern, that i’ve noticed cropping up in some people
where they are particularly desperate for affection and emotional intimacy, and experience kindness with a much higher degree of intensity, and assume that caring about them costs their friends a great deal more than it does.
and i say this with all the sympathy and understanding in the world, because the first person who i noticed this pattern in was myself.
i’m still wrestling with it, to be sure! but i’ve been dealing with it for long enough that i have a better perspective on the way in which it has effected me, and the way it effects others.
i suspect that this behavior is a result of certain kinds of emotional abuse and neglect. it makes sense - you spend the formative years of your life receiving less kindness and emotional intimacy than you need, so you adjust your expectations of what kindness is. you assume it’s being denied to you because you’re not worth the effort, because people don’t care enough about you to bother. and when you finally get to experience the real thing, it’s overwhelmingly powerful.
i’m not just writing this post to ramble. i’m writing this post because there are so many people in my life that i think that this applies to. if you have the faintest inkling that i might be talking about you? then i am. even if i didn’t realize i was talking about you, i am now. this post is for anyone with whom it resonates, anyone who might get anything out of this message.
because here’s the secret that no one bothered to tell us - emotional intimacy isn’t a zero-sum game. caring about someone is worth so much more to the person being cared about than it costs the one who cares. two people, emotionally supporting each other, will be much happier and more stable than if either tried going it alone. emotionally draining relationships exist, where one party takes and takes and gives nothing back, but if you’re worried that you’re not worth your upkeep, then you’re almost certainly already giving far more than you realize.
and here’s the other big secret:
human beings - on a fundamental level - need emotional intimacy. and we didn’t deserve to have it missing from our lives.
we deserve to have friends who care about us.
we deserve to have people who love us.
we deserve all the happiness in the world.