Overexposed: A Self-Love Project.

Overexposed: Tainted Judgment.

“You don’t know what it means to have friends because you don’t know how to be a good one, Liz. It’s why all of them left your life.”

I grew up having a ton of friends. I don’t know how I was able to have these group of friends and be able to keep them for longer periods of time, but I did. Maybe because it was just a lot easier to communicate with people that didn’t have responsibilities at the moment. I don’t know how I literally lost everyone in my life; perhaps it was because I got lost in a boy for the last decade, maybe my social anxiety just got bad; maybe I just changed as I got older and well, adult friendships are just harder to keep.

As I got older and started to find myself and who I was, I started to build friendships with people. I was starting to figure out that I was able to make friends, but I always struggled keep friendships for longer period of time. I never understood why some of the closest people in my life would disappear with absolutely no rhyme or reason, I figured it was just my lack of ability to keep friendships due to my social anxiety, but I’ve come to realize that it may be something that I’m subconsciously doing that isn’t fair nor healthy to do.

Hi, my name is Liz, and I sometimes allow my tainted judgment of people ruin the friendships I make with them.

I don’t know how of why I allow myself to think this way, but I started to realize that I was allowing my feelings and my emotions take the best of me in situations, which then lead me to feel like my friendships with people were now tainted. For example: I am learning through my best friend that even though we may disagree on how we handle things and we will argue about our thoughts and opinions in those confrontations, I shouldn’t allow the things that they can’t control to hinder how I see them or taint the friendship overall. I love my best friend, and there are amazing things about them that I never had in a best friends before, and I think because of that, it allowed me to see that perhaps I was being shitty in some of my past friendships with people and allowed my hurt, unsaid feelings to completely take over the friendship, which lead to resentment, which lead to me disappearing.

I’m tired of disappearing.

I’m tired of not speaking up when I feel like I’m hurt in a situation or like I feel like I’m not being heard, but I’m also tired of allowing every little thing get to me and taking things personally. I know that people say things out of frustration and out of anger, and I know that sometimes the way I may say things or the things that I say may come off as hurtful or defensive. We are all human, and we are all going to react the way we react. It doesn’t mean that when the confrontation is over, we don’t come back, talk things out, and carry on with the friendship. We are adults, and if the friendship is as valuable as we say it is, we will talk things out and see the positive things in said friendship.

I am learning that there are going to be things about me that my friends don’t like, but they won’t see me any differently or treat me or the friendship any differently, so why should I do that to them? It’s not fair, and it’s extremely biased to take those things about my friends and allow them to be deal-breakers when really it’s just a misunderstanding.

At the end of the day, friendships are a two-way street; you treat your friends the way they treat you. If they treat you with respect and they genuinely want the best for you and care about you, then you do the same. If they treat you like shit, you treat them like shit. IT’s simple as that. But! Don’t allow your sensitivity and clashing of personalities influence the overall goodness of a friendship. Sometimes you need that different perspective to see situations in a different light. Sometimes, you need a personality in your life so different than yours to spice things up while learning and doing things that you haven’t done before! It’s so important to have these friendships in life because they bring something exciting to the table, but also you learn how to interact and handle different people within your lifetime.

Don’t throw away your friendships when you feel attacked. Talk about it, understand it, and deal with the uncomfortable nature of these situations for the sake of the friendships.

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