It’s so easy to blame other people. It’s so easy to point fingers and say “Look what you did!” without ever once looking in the mirror back at yourself.
As a friend of mine said when I was telling her a story about a friendship I recently lost, “In groups, there always has to be an odd man out. And tag. You’re it.” While I’ve spent the last day racking my brain, going over what I said or didn’t say, and ways I might have hurt or not hurt someone, I never once looked back at myself and thought that I did the best or worst that I could have done.
Everyone makes mistakes. This is a fact of life. I know I’ve had my fair share. Between relationships, friendships, and otherwise, I’ve lost people who meant a great deal to me and spent too much energy on those who really shouldn’t have mattered all that much in the first place.
While I know I’ve hurt people in the past, I can say there are very few times I ever did it on purpose, and even fewer times that I didn’t own up to my mistakes. Last night, however, as I was getting ganged up on by people who I thought were my closest friends, I couldn’t figure out what I might have done wrong. After all, I hadn’t even seen several of these people in weeks, and some of them I saw a week ago at dinner when everything was fine and dandy. So what did I do in between last week and last night?
I wasn’t left wondering for long. They pointed fingers and called me out and told me all my faults, but all I could think while I was apologizing profusely (and I don’t even know why) was that the things I was getting blamed for were not only things that everyone does, but things the accuser does too, and on a daily basis.
Being ostracized is something I figured only middle and high schoolers have to deal with. Maybe I’m throwing myself a pity party over here (as I was accused of last night), but I didn’t think that adults and adult friendships and adult problems between friends would include ostracizing someone else. I guess I was wrong. Bullying is real, even in settings where it shouldn’t be or wouldn’t be expected in.
How do you get past being hurt by someone else? Whether it’s an ex-friend, an ex-lover, or a family member, what are the right steps to take to move on and get past the past?
When I think back on things that happened before, I can’t think about what I did to move on. When my high school boyfriend of several years broke up with me just a few days before my 17th birthday, I can’t remember what I did first. Do you grieve? Are you angry? Do you throw away all the things that remind you of that person and just say good riddance? What do you do? Better yet, what did I do?
As someone who has always felt like I put a great amount of effort into my relationships, the end of one puzzles me. And after I think about it and stop being sad/angry/confused, all I want to do is let it go and flash forward several days or weeks or months to when I’m over it all and things are normal again.
I want to not grieve forever over something that I can’t do anything about and maybe shouldn’t even be worried about doing anything about.
I want to lay in bed at night with my husband and watch a show and not think about damages. I want to snuggle our sweet girl and not think about what I could have done better or not done at all. I want to not miss anyone who doesn’t have a place in my life anymore.
For now, I’m still figuring out the steps. For now, it’s all about getting over it.