How many times in life have I thought that I found a place to call home, something to be a part of or a friend I could trust? How many times did those all turn out to be nothing but fantasies created from my own mind?
I cannot say. I no longer remember them all. I don’t remember the faces, I can barely recognise faces at all – don’t ask me why, but if I try to imagine the face of someone who hurt me I will most likely not be able to describe it. I remember some of their names, but not all – far from it.
It’s just people who hurt me. Even people I care deeply about are nothing have nothing but blank spaces in of a head in my memories.
No, the thing that stays behind in my mind clear as day is the hurt, the pain and the heartbreak.
In spite of all that, every time I meet someone new, I want to trust them.
I want to believe that they are good people, even after they hurt me, I still want to believe in them. I always believed it when people told me that trust is a choice we make and because of that I never wanted to risk losing out on a great friend simply because I never gave them a chance – or a second or a third chance.
We are all human and make mistakes, so why should I judge someone just because of a few mistakes? I make mistakes all the time.
Well, for those other people, the so-called mistakes were not always something I can call a mistake, but conscious choice. People make choices, and they have every right to make whatever choice they should desire, even if those choices are not the same I would make.
Sometimes, the choices people make are not even choices I can respect or tolerate. I can accept their choices, but that doesn’t mean I will stay connected with those people or situations. Indeed, there are times when removing oneself from a situation is the best thing we can do.
Not all people want help or support even if we offer it, and sometimes the only right thing to do is leave. There are so many people from my past I never wish to see again. In fact, I can barely think of a single person from my past that I would be anything but unhappy to see again. Not because of them, but because of me. I know, I am too easily fooled.
I was too trusting in the past, even as a small child I would freely trust anyone and offer them my whole heart should they ask for it. I didn’t worry about how I felt, but only about being kind to everyone and not judge others when they made mistakes. What a silly child I was.
I truly believed that trusting everyone meant I was open and shared myself with everyone, but in reality, when you blindly trust everyone, you don’t really trust anyone at all. I never really let anyone in. Yes, I shared my life, my world and my heart, but I was never free.
I was always hiding in plane sight. I think, everyone always knew. People were always telling me how cold and heartless I was. How unfeeling could I be? No one ever really trusted me either, always thinking I was hiding things and lying.
I never did. I always tell the truth about myself and my feelings if people ask, but no, I rarely offer anything willingly. I never really understood, however, because I always fooled myself into thinking giving myself completely to someone, being loyal and honourable, always standing by their side even when they did dishonourable things I can in no way tolerate – I thought that meant I trusted them and gave them everything.
I did give all I could, the problem is, I couldn’t give them anything but an illusion. Why? Because my life was hardly more than an illusion. I didn’t lie to them, I simply did not understand my own heart or mind.
I don’t want to trust everyone anymore.
I don’t want to trust anyone ever again.
I don’t want to care about anyone ever again.
Too many times have I suffered because of that, even just recently when I tried to get along with my new classmates in culinary school. Again and again I trusted people, mistook their actions as kindness or openness to friendship and in the end, I am left ridiculed every time.
Enough is enough.
But in fact, I am not stupid enough to believe I can go through the rest of my life and never care about anyone at all. I know it is impossible no matter what I do.
Just recently, a sweet and kind friend texted me nothing but the words “I miss you”. I don’t know why, but she did. She understands me in a way not many do and even just thinking about her message, I almost feel like crying. I am grateful to know her, and I trust her, even though I am afraid to do so. I care about her, just like I care about a few other friends who have all stood by me – albeit sometimes from the opposite side of the earth.
Even though I am truly trying to avoid people in general, even though the covid-19 lockdown has been able to help me stay disconnected and kept me from interacting with people and helped me grow even more afraid of meeting new people and caring about them, I know that it is out of my hands. I have no control over who I meet or whether I like them or not. I can try to avoid people, but I know it won’t last.
Therefore, the best thing I can do is not trust anyone at all and trust that if someone is truly trustworthy, I will figure it out in time. Perhaps, I will end up friendless and alone, but it will definitely be a better life than the one I have had so far.
Is it perhaps even healthy to not trust everyone without consideration of their character or personality? I feel I should have thought about that earlier in my life.
I cannot help but wonder if I feel like this because I am ready to open up and let people truly be a part of my life or if I have ended up closing myself off entire. Can we build walls around us that are too thick to ever be broken down?
My life has been, in some ways, wasted – I have trusted all the wrong people and hurt those who least deserved it. I would like to think that because I didn’t know that the people I trusted didn’t deserve my trust, I can be forgiven for all my mistakes and wrongdoings, but I think not.
Yes, you may think that none of my wrongdoings are really that bad – what is a few mean words to a person who didn’t deserve to hear them? Indeed, the worst things I have done in my life towards others is mean and hurtful words, but who knows how my words affected those people? I feel deeply ashamed because I was pretty good at being mean and back when I was young, I thought it was okay to be mean to those who deserved it.
I was bullied a lot and in many different ways as a child, so what I did at the time didn’t feel very bad. Those were bad people and so they deserved it because they made my friends hurt. None of it was worse than what others had done to me.
I only found out later, the friends I trusted had lied to me and I had been just as cruel as those who had bullied me. No, I didn’t bully them over a period of time. It was just a moment, but I judged them and knew how to make them hurt – just exactly like my bullies had known with me.
I was wrong and never apologised. With time, I lost the chance to do so.
To this day, I apologise the moment I realise I have done something wrong, because I never want to lose the opportunity to make amends. My great grandmother would always tell my mother, who in turn told me, “Never let the sun set over an argument.” I try to live by that and never go to bed knowing I have not done all I can to right a wrong I have made.
The really horrible thing is, even after I realised that those people had lied to me, I forgave them and allowed their bad behaviour to continue. I trusted them the same as before. Can you guess how often I trusted their lies? I don’t even know.
Even when I know people are lying to me, even then, I would still trust them. Sadly, I might still today, even though I don’t want to.
My memory, at least related to odd facts, is quite amazing. It is pretty much one of my only skills. I can’t remember anything, really, except for strange facts and conversations have had with people. Liars tend to lie about silly things, which makes it quite obvious that they are lies. I used to tell myself that they probably just forgot, that their memory was lacking compared to mine, but it wasn’t always the case.
Liars can rarely remember their own lies properly, but I can and discrepancies in facts almost hurt my ears. So, yes, if I know someone long enough for them to lie more than a few times, I will start to see the pattern of broken facts which leads to only one conclusion; lies.
When I cannot even be sure that I won’t trust other people’s lies, even knowing that it has to be a lie, how can I trust anyone ever again?
I don’t want to make the same mistakes and I most certainly don’t want to hurt people anymore. Even those in my past that I have done everything to protect have called me heartless and many other horrible things. To try and trust everyone and always forgive, I feel, has caused others far more harm than I ever did good.
I have rarely felt anything but heartbreak, but is it not the same for all those I have interacted with? I have hurt both those who didn’t deserve it and probably those who deserved it, both on purpose and unknowingly, because I am unable to distinguish between people who are worthy of our trust and those we should never trust.
Why does it feel like I should be protecting other people from me instead of healing myself from all these many years of hurt?