THE REASONS I CHANGED HOW I RELATE TO OTHERS
* There are tigers in this blog, please be warned *
This is hard to say, because it reflects badly on my ability to judge people. For most of my life I have literally ignored bad behavior in people I was friends with. It is only in the last few years that I became tired of seeing people act the way they did and started to cut the bad apples out of my life. The following is an account of one of these people. No names will be used as always.
The person would say things like "I'd do you" and think it was a compliment. In fact his ultimate compliment was "I'd do you twice". This alone should have made me realize that he was not someone I should be hanging out with. But he could also be very loyal and helping when you needed him, so I did not walk away.
The big change in how I saw him as a human being was when he had a very intimate relationship with a mentally challenged person we both knew. Now at the time I knew she was disabled to an extent but I did not realize she was outright challenged, that came later.
When I realized after hanging out with them both how she was mentally, I was hit in the face with the reality that this was not something that should be happening. I distanced myself to an extent but would still go for coffee and so on. The respect for him was gone at that point.
This was the beginning of the transition in my life when I started to no longer tolerate bad behavior that would never change in people. It spanned several people that I know in the so called real world and a couple of people online - all of whom I have nothing to do with anymore.
The power that an able minded person has over someone with special needs in the form of the ability to influence how they act and what they do is not to be taken lightly. When someone uses that influence to have their way with the person, it is never the right thing to do - in fact it is in some cases criminal. Not going into the fine points on that BTW as I am not a legal minded person.
The justification was that she had allowed several others to do the same thing with her. The fact that she was easily victimized is not at all a justification to do so yourself. The pack mentality is the worst thing about being a human after all - we tend to justify doing things because others are doing it. It is still wrong in every single case.
That was 70% of why I cut them out of my life for good. At that point in life, they had lost every last bit of respect I had for them and I was no longer their friend but just someone I knew and that I would be communicative with.
The last straw was when they went off on a big tie raid rant to me over a situation that was obvious to many of my friends at the time. Something to deal with another person we both knew. Well, it was also obvious with the rather long rant, that his anger had nothing to do with the person - but with his issues in life. I'm not going to list the issues, but they have been obvious to many of us for years.
His anger and willingness to express it on random people such as myself was the last thread that came undone. I then walked away and cut them from my life.
For the others, it was a matter of them only caring about themselves. One of them was a person who I had known for the vast majority of my life. Someone I had done literally hundreds of things for. From fixing electronics and setting up software to just being their for them when they needed someone. Then came the first time in decades that I needed his help and well, he wanted money to help me. Lets just say, at one point I had actually helped this person go to the bathroom after surgery.
So yes I've been far to willing to overlook things in people or just blind to their actions for most of my life. The change in attitude and willingness to deal with people like that came at a time when I was searching myself and trying to change for the better. Part of that change was distancing myself from extremely selfish and negative people.
I am deeply saddened that it took me over 40 years of my life to realize I don't need people like that in my life to validate my existence. I have seen this behavior in so many others now that I have corrected it in myself. As I mentioned, we are pack animals and we justify actions and relationships far too easily.
To become a single person with relationships instead of a group minded person is not easy. But it has improved my life very much. Now the people I hang out with are people who care about me as much as I care about them. The rewards are worth the change in lifestyle.
Now if I could just once and for all be rid of food addiction, life would be better yet. But that is another story.