Friday, November 16, 2007

Selective Relationships...

This is the first time I have purposely ended a friendship in the whole sordid tale of my life. I have always befriended everyone, and many times to my detriment -- choosing to be friends with just any old soul that wanders into my life. Most past friends have chosen to end our relationship and not vice versa. It feels powerful and invigorating -- that I can choose what people I have in my life. That is an option my loneliness, mental illness, and lack of self esteem have never afforded me!

The nice thing about online life in that you more easily pick and choose your friends. Tired of the constant questions? The prying inquiries? The emotional onslaught? The well meaning, but incessant advice? Detach yourself and quit writing back. Delete the emails without responding to and reading them. Remove the bookmarks and links of their blogs to no longer read and to be involved in their lives. Relationships are as easily removed as the delete button in an email program. That is what I have done with Pipe Tobacco (The Frumpy Professor). He had been reading me since my homeless blogging days -- years as I poured my heart out. But I knew nothing about him. I just knew he was a morose fellow with an obsession about his mother's death and a penchant for self punishment. He knew everything about me. My deepest fears. My trials with mental illness and drinking. My relationships and all their ups and downs. My family strife. I didn't even know his real name as the one he used in our emails for years was obviously made up -- sounding like something out of classic work of fiction. There is no one on his Universities website by that name. We had been corresponding for years and I didn't even know how many kids he had or his wife's name. I knew nothing. It was a one way street. An emotional roller coaster that was exasperating and with which I no longer wanted to participate. I felt like I was always having to coddle him and pander to his emotional needs fearing I would lose him as a friend, or that he would quit commenting on my blog at the slightest hint of adversity. It grew so tiring and uncomfortable -- having to be someone I really wasn't. It is unlike me to ditch a friend, preferring to hang onto the worst of them as my self esteem and self confidence can be lacking. I feel emotionally mature for making that decision though. It was for the best. My online life and blog has been much more pleasant. It was like finding an undiscovered country full of pleasantly up-front aboriginals and not pseudo friends hiding behind deceiving masks of anonymity and obscurity.

A friend asked last night why I haven't been going to A.A. They were worried about me -- worried I would start back drinking after 15 days of being sober. I just haven't felt the need to go. I haven't wanted to drink at all and that is a damn fine miracle. I hate that feeling of being out of control these days. I've replaced that old addiction with blogging, writing, and photography -- much healthier and more passionate options. I would not be able to do either of these if I was sitting at home drunk all the time. I withdraw when drinking and will not write or be creative. My passions and hobbies are extinguished as drinking takes over my life. If I fall silent for a few days then you know I am in the throes of my alcoholism. That harsh mistress that has almost taken my sanity and my life. I've lost too much and don't want to lose any more. It feels good to write that this morning -- writing that I no longer want to harm myself in such a way. It is a revelation! I feel like the first astronaut on Mars discovering a strange new world!

19 comments:

justLacey said...

There have been times I have had to do as you have with online relationships. I guess you are right in that it's much easier online than in regular life. I am sad that Rosa is having such a difficult time. Perhaps Alyssa would be better in a family of her own. There is nothing wrong with adoption and there are many options out there where Rosa and her daughter might still be able to have contact with her. Does she have any family on her fathers side? They may also be better equipped and more willing to handle the responsibility. If Rosa begins to drink and use someone will have to intervene on Alyssa's behalf.
I am so happy to read also that you had a good time at Joyce's. I knew her cooking would be just fine as well as her company. It's good you have someone who's company you enjoy close by. I really love to read when things are calm and you are content and I love the video blogs too. Have a wonderful weekend or even just a quiet and content one.

AlabamaGal said...

You are very creative and talented. It is such a joy to get to read and see the creativity that you so kindly share with us all.

I've been online several years and yes, some people can be very ungenuine. It is best to just move on when you run across that type of person but I have to say, many people are very genuine and can be true friends. I try to be online the same person I am in real life and wouldn't it be great, if everybody was that way?

Congratulations on not drinking. It is not so much a "miracle" as you put it, as hard work and self control. Be proud of yourself!

Good Morning To You! I am having my online time after work. I need to get to bed though.

-M

Summer said...

I understand this all too well.

CRUSTYBEEF said...

I know how you feel..you had to do what was best for you, that's for certain. If going forward I ever annoy you, or piss you off, just let me know..so I won't make the same mistake..
I too have a difficult time holding onto relationships/friendships that can be so warm and then so toxic..
I tell myself it's just codependancy issues.

But you know what's best for you.
Maybe in time things will align back and you'll return to your friendship..but no matter what, whenever someone enters your life, they have a purpose..some don't always stay..but I can gty that you took something good from your relationship with FP. That you learned something more about yourself..that if it hadn't been for the FP you'd never have realized it. SO FP served his friendship purpose. It's sad that it ended...but everyone can only take so much.
I will keep both you and FP in my thoughts so that he too will understand this break of friends.

Always,
Crusty~

CRUSTYBEEF said...

P.s. On a completely different note, would you be able to share with me (off line if you'd prefer, you have my email) what you use for these ads? Or rather their contact information..I'm liking the different selections. Sorry to be a pest..
Always,
Crusty~

abbagirl74 said...

Hey booger. I guess you could say that the phrase 'Perception is Reality' does hold true for some. I hope that Rosa is going to be okay and that she does well with Alyssa.

I love how much you have been taking pictures and showing us your world. I should do more of the same, but always forget or run out of time.

Have an awesome day!

Cheryl said...

Hi Buddy. The things you wrote about today ring so true. You sound so happy and that makes me feel great. Thanks for putting a smile on my face.

Josie Two Shoes said...

Wonderful self-affirmation,Andrew! You are right, we have to make the choices in our lives that work best for us. There will always be people who want to take on the role of savior even when you haven't asked for one. You are doing great these days and I a proud of you!

Barb said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Barb said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Barb said...

Friendships should never hurt, weigh you down, or make you wonder why you are friends with them in the first place. Good show of strength, Mr Andrew!

Have a frosty day dude.

B~

Portia said...

I can relate to that bit about the friendships.
I'm glad you are feeling so well!

Augs Casa said...

Interesting, this hit a cord with me. Maybe not to the same extent, but as in on-line aquaintances. Tomorrow is another day and I move on.

Kelly Jene said...

Good for you for making your life what you want it to be and not what others want you to be. We choose our online life and it is easy to make sure it is a pleasant experience. I love your voice of freedom. Take care dear one!

mago said...

Hello Andrew. I can not say something about you and the professor's relationship.
But I can say that the last paragraph of your text is the most positive and good thing I read from you for some time! You creativity is there, you ability to express yourself, your ability to see and to wonder: Ride this wave! Alcohol is the total opposite to this, just switching out the brain. A clear head is the best drug.

I realized that after a pretty hard time, when I had to reconstruct some time of my life. Some parts are still missing.

Marilyn said...

I noticed that PT's blog was gone from your list. Frankly, I went over and read it a few times, but I wasn't compelled to go back.

C. R. Morris said...

I've had to end a friendship as well. Mine was in real life and after she stole from me, I had to simply give up on her. I tried. I always try to be kind to people but this just couldn't keep happening. It's great to hear that you've replaced the urge to drink with creativity. I love the pics on your blog though I don't always have time to comment on all of the posts. I still read and love every word. Because of you, I've opened up a lot more in my own blog. I post my silly creations, my ideas and thoughts as I have them. I don't select which ones will make me more popular. I'm a dork, plain and simple. ;-)

groundedgrl said...

Hi, Andrew. I've skipped a few days of reading your blog and so am only now reading this post. I don't know if you come back and read these comments after you've moved one, but just in case . . .

I just wanted to say that one of the reasons I keep coming back to your blog is the authenticity with which you write. You really do open yourself up to us--and I'm so grateful you do. You inspire me to dig deeper for the truth in myself.

You are brave. So many other people spend so much time running from the truth from themselves that when they encounter someone like you (and on some days, like me), they think that we just don't know how to handle life--when the truth is closer to being that they can't handle the raw honesty. So they correct and direct.

But you are brave. You are more real than most of the people I encounter in the day. I'm grateful that you've made the decisions you've made that keep you blogging and keep you honest.

Yay, Andrew. Keep on going!

alyceclover said...

Like this post. So true how much easier it is to deal with online people. Over at AC, I was getting drawn into arguments with strangers and I finally decided it was okay to simply delete the Personal Messages unread. I used to say: If I wanted to fight I could always go back to my ex-husband.