Monthly Archives: July 2014

The things we do not say

A quote

I am currently reading a wonderful book called “There is no Fear (Children of the Knight Vol. 3)” by Michael Bowler. I just came across a line that inspired me to write this post. It goes like this:

“Sometimes saying the things we’ve not been saying […] was the hardest thing in the world to do.”

The quote is a thought from Lance, the main character, who thinks about his feelings for his best friend. Feelings that he hardly ever puts into words, partially because he has problems with accepting them, and is afraid of what would happen if he spoke those words.

The things we do not say – and why we do not say them

The things people do not say to each other play an important part in the series “Children of the Knight”. Another quote is

“It’s the things we don’t say to each other that make all the difference.”

I know the meaning behind those quotes only too well. I also know the inner conflict that comes with feelings that are left unspoken, feelings that you enjoy but that you do not want to show because you are afraid of being pushed away, of being misunderstood, of being rejected, of being ignored or even ridiculed for your honesty. It takes a lot of courage to tell someone the truth about your feelings, be they positive or negative, esp. if you don’t know what the other person feels for you. Sometimes we simply cannot find that courage, maybe because we have been hurt too much before when we were honest. The reason why we stay silent can be manifold.

Wanting to say something positive

In the case of feeling very positive towards a person (it doesn’t have to be the romantic type of love), you sometimes just would love to tell that person. For some reason you just feel so very positive about someone, you are filled with happiness and your soul is full of light.

When you know that the other person already is your friend, or a close family member, then it’s usually not much of a problem. But when you have just met someone a while ago, and you are not sure whether the other person would be interested in staying in touch with you, or even becoming a new friend, then it all is a bit different. The options are that you either communicate your feelings and face either rejection, acceptance, or being ignored (the worst case in my opinion), or that you say nothing at all and lose the contact to that person anyway. Of course, in the latter case you could hope that the other person would take the first step – but this might very likely not happen, maybe because he or she has the same problem like you, or because they simply do not like you. In any case, you would not find out. The chance would be lost.

But what happens if you are courageous enough to take the first step, and to make your feelings known (even if not the full extent)? You can either get a positive response, a negative response, or you might get no response at all. Being honest is the only option you have if you want to have a chance at something positive. However, for some of us the risk of the other two options is just too much to bear.

Should we just give up on saying the things that are important to us?

It might be easier just to be the passive party in all of our relationships. The problem would then be that you might miss out on some of the best friends you could find in life – just because both of you were too afraid to say what you both wanted to say. Even if it’s just something like “Wow, I would like to talk about that a bit more, could we stay in touch somehow?” A simple question like that will give you the chance to find out whether the other party is interested in staying in touch, too. They might be, they might be not. They might also be lying about wanting to stay in touch. You simply can’t predict what will happen. Even if there have been many negative experiences in the past, you should not give up.

I know….

I know how hard it is to be honest about your feelings. I know what it is like to be really interested in someone (for a variety of reasons). I know how vulnerable you feel when you open up to someone, and how scary it can be. I recently have made two rather disappointing experiences – and that only after I found the courage to actually be honest in a long time. For a while I believed I would never tell anyone I liked them before I wasn’t sure they felt the same. I didn’t want to ask anyone to be my friend because I was (and still am) terrified of rejection and being made fun of.

Yet, in the last six weeks, I told two people who were very important in my life, what they mean to me (one of them I told everything, the other one I only tried to establish some sort of contact after we met). I asked one of them whether I could become her apprentice because during the time I volunteered for her company, I learned so much, and gained so much insight into my own life. I would have loved to learn more, and gain proper knowledge in that job. I thanked her for everything she did, and told her that she was an incredible human being. I know that she has had a hard time recently, but even before that time, she did not respond. By now she likes some of my Facebook posts, and asked me to write a reference for her. But she never replied to my question. I was gutted about that.

So when I met someone who really fascinated me, I tried to keep my interest under control. I did not want to talk much to him, I did not want to know much about him. The first time I met him, I kept my distance. The second time we met, we talked more and I couldn’t keep it from myself that I would love to know more, that he was the kind of person I would love to have as a friend. For a while, I told myself there was no point in asking him to keep in touch. He’d be too busy, too popular, would not be interested anyway. But then I also reminded myself that I would never know unless I tried. I dared to communicate. When he left this place, I gave him my email address. Unfortunately, he never got in touch.

So my success rate isn’t that high. I tell myself to assume nothing. They might have reasons that have nothing to do with me at all. But it is easy for me to fall into the thought that they do not reply because they think I’m a boring person they would not like to have around / stay in touch with. It’s easy for me to beat myself up verbally, to believe that I’m simply not worth it. This is something I need to work on. I guess it’s something many people need to work on. At least I can tell myself I did my part. I was honest. And receiving no answer is also an answer.

Your experiences

What are your experiences with unspoken feelings and thoughts? Do you prefer to be honest at all times, or do you keep a lot to yourself even if it’s something quite positive?

 

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Online dating from my point of view

When it comes to online dating, I’ve had not as many experiences as others, but enough to doubt that this kind of “dating” would be the right option for me in the future. The first problem would be what I put as my location – would I have to update my location every time I move, or would I simply put a central place in Scotland and hope that the right person would find me (but what if I was hundreds of miles away when that person turned up?).

But then, it is not very likely that I will try online dating again. When I still lived in New Zealand, I gave it a try at various times. Once I even got to meet a very nice guy, and was quite hopeful. Just to later find out that he was dating a multitude of women at the same time – not being honest to a single one of them. Other times, it never came to a meeting simply because the messages I received were hardly ever appealing enough.

The big problem I have with online dating is the superficiality of it. Most men don’t put any effort in their first message. They send you a wink, a smile, or the equivalent you get on the various sites. Then there are messages like “Hi, u r cute.” That’s it. No question, no introduction, nothing. I always wonder about whether and/or how to reply to such messages. The sender obviously didn’t even feel the need to use correct spelling. A real turn off for me – I don’t mind typos, and I don’t expect people to be perfect, but a few basic things matter to me. A lot.

Other times, people ask for a meeting after only a few very brief messages. Often this comes from people who don’t have a very detailed profile and I’m intelligent enough not to put myself at risk of meeting some weird creep.

A while back, I saw that the “New Scientist” had a dating service, and I thought “Okay, you should be able to meet some intelligent, nice people there.” I was wrong. It wasn’t any better than other dating sites.

From my point of view, online dating is not a very good way to find the right match. It is indeed like looking for a needle in a haystack. Somewhere amongst all those profiles, there might be a guy or girl who would be a good match – or maybe he or she has also given up on online dating.

Have you made any experiences with online dating? What is your approach? Do you fill out your profile and write thoughtful messages when you see a profile that interests you? Or do you just use it to find a quick date?

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A focussed mind

For you to reply to (I would love some of your opinions):

When it comes to achieving goals (and goals are dreams with a deadline), then it is very important that you are able to keep your mind on track, i.e. you need to stay focussed. You don’t necessarily have to get to your goal in a straight line, but you always need to keep your eyes on it.

Motivational speakers, personal development authors and other people who already are quite successful always tell you that there is nothing that you cannot achieve, nothing that is out of reach, once you put your mind and your heart on it. What do you think: Is this really true?

And if it is, how do you keep focussed? 

 

My personal attitude, and a problem:

Call it coincidence, call it synchronicity: For one of my writing jobs I had to read a book called “The Slight Edge”. It is a book about how you can achieve your goals, i.e. make your dreams come true by simply doing little steps at a time – steps that might be so little that they might seem insignificant to you. I worked my way through the book, and found it raised some very interesting points.

And this was also the time during which a very interesting person came into my life. I met him a couple of weeks ago, and hoped that he would come back here for another stay. Fortunately, he did indeed return for a few days (for a project). Even though I did not want to be interested in people at my current stage in life (because I move around so much that nobody could seriously be interested in building any sort of friendship with me), I could not help but be completely enthralled by the person’s whole being. One part of myself says “Stay focussed, don’t even dare to think about things like friendship,” while the other little voice inside me wishes for nothing more but staying in touch with that one person – for what reason in particular, I do honestly not know. He is the kind of person that simply makes my soul expand with gladness. The mere fact that someone like him does indeed exist on the planet is astonishing.

So I get a bit distracted – but as the situation is, it is not very easy to actually talk to him without appearing like an idiot. I can also hardly walk up to him, and ask him whether there would be a chance that we could stay in touch. It might come across the wrong way, or the right way, I don’t know. I’m horrible when it comes to dealing with people.

And this is one of the topics that is also covered in “The Slight Edge”, to take little steps towards what your heart really desires – but what little step is there to take?

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How people treat you is how you allow them to treat you

In the last few weeks, I made a few disappointing “discoveries” about the true nature of people.  It is not the first time that I am disappointed, and I’m sure it won’t be the last. But this time, I felt that I need to put a stop to always being the nice, reliable person EVERYBODY can rely on. I feel that I need to choose more wisely – after all, if there are people who only remember that I exist when they need something, then they are not really worth my time. If they can’t be bothered “wasting” their time on me, then why I should I spend time with them, or for them?

I need to learn that people only treat me the way they do because I allow them to. I need to make wiser decisions when it comes to people, and I have to value my own time a lot more. And value myself more.

I will still be a good, nice, reliable, trustworthy person – but I won’t let people take advantage of me any more, and I won’t let them hurt me. The people who are worth crying for will do their best not to make me cry ever. And the ones who make me cry, and don’t care, should not have a place in my life. I deserve better. It took me a long time to see this, but I do indeed deserve better. I am worth something, too.

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