What Do You See in the Mirror?

There's no mirror like the mirror you get in a relationship. Having someone to show you all your faults on a pretty consistent basis can be pretty healthy, but definitely become annoying over time.

I've been wondering how to replicate that in our more regular and average relationships. Last night, a friend and I talked about how much we hate being taken for granted. Of course, this topic isn't new for us as I've talked about it before. We started talking about how people can be so selfish and never think about us, while we're spending a lot of time being concerned about them and their feelings.

I asked him a question that I still don't have an answer for, what are we going to do about it? He was silent for a moment, and then he said,
I don't know. It feels like there's nothing we can do. We can't control these people.

No, we can't. But we can control how what they do effects us.
There was silence on this end, so I quickly followed up,
I know that's easier said than done...

He cut me off-

You're damn right that's easier said than done! You made it sound like it's like making a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. Just go make the sandwich and you'll be aight...
I laughed and we kept talking.

Eventually I mentioned that I wished I could treat some of the people in my life the way they treat me. I told him I couldn't because these people would probably stop being my friend. "the thing about it is, I explained, "they would swear that's not what they do. They wouldn't even see it. I would show them their reflection in the mirror and they would deny the accuracy."

I've been in situations where a friend will reach out to me in some way -- perhaps make a leading statement that I know is them fishing for sympathy. I'll play the game, give the sympathy... and then later, just to see what they'll do, I'll also make a similar, if not the same, leading and searching statement. Consistently, I'm surprised at how they DON'T respond in kind. ::shrug:: I don't get folks...

We never came to a satisfactory conclusion on how you show people what they do to you. Maybe you guys got something...


CurvyGurl ♥ said...

Gosh, wish I had some good points to make but I don' I've experienced this to a degree and my reaction has been to limit contact (with those I can't avoid) and cut off contact with the folks who I can live without. These aren't the best ways of handling it, some might say it's passive-aggressive but it's the way things have played out. If I find myself in this type of situation with a close friend or relative I'll speak to them about it.

Sometimes I think people honestly don't realize they have offended you, so it's one of those things you have to address if it's worth it to you. I want people to let me know when I've done something less than desirable or respectful, it helps me grow.

kalopsia said...

I am trying this out now. I've got a few friends who like, never make plans with me. I have decided not to invite them out for a week and see if they notice. They probably won't, but I am curious about it. We'll see how that goes!

A.Smith said...

CurvyGirl ♥ - Your last paragraph is something I thought about while writing this but didn't know how to address succinctly. I think most times people offend you accidentally. And as a result they do it regularly or just more than once. How do you show them that mirror? They don't even know what they're doing to recognize it! #connundrum

Kalopsia - do let me know how that goes. My experience with doing stuff like that is that they don't notice because they never notice you. If they did, they would invite you out... so unless they happen to need you/want you in the next week -- it'll all be the same to them. Sometimes, though, you can get a little opening to discuss the situation. I hope you do get that.

Post a Comment

Now open to everyone! Leave a comment -- let me know what you think.