Saturday, February 25, 2006

Open Mouth, Insert Foot

I don't know if it the fact that my mom raised us Catholic. I feel this tremendous guilt around me daily. It could be my intense dislike of people who hurt other people's feelings. I don't know. I have this recuring habit of saying the wrong thing and the wrong time to the wrong person who takes a genuinely nice thing and thinks it is bad and I'm mud.

The most intense one I still think about today is an event from High School. This girl came to our school from a neighboring town. I really liked her. She had a quiet way about her. I had friends from that school she went to. I learned that she came to our school to change things in her life. Mainly to get away from a drug problem. I respected that and really thought she was a strong person for trying to change her life. In the school yard, another girl was looking at her and said in a typically ugly way that she thought the other girl was on drugs. I was furious. I thought she was great for overcoming a problem and here was this perennial jerk telling me that she thought this girl was bad. I, in my innocent way, demanded that she doesn't do drugs! I know this for a fact because she came to our school to get away from them.... Basically this girl now had ammunition to hurt both of us. A couple of weeks later the later girl and I were on the school bus with the best friend of the girl who moved to our town. In my typically passive way, I was sitting alone looking out the window. I hear her tell the best friend that I said that her best friend had a drug problem. I was horrified. I didn't know what to do. They left and I dind't sleep, had stomach cramps all night and dreaded going to school the next morning. Sure enough, the girl I admired so much came up to me and told me I was a gerk, among other horrible things that I deserved considering the story she just heard... I was too much of a coward to confront the issue. To this day, I cannot say anything. She looks at me with such hate... well the one time I saw her at UMASS years later. I cannot even use real names today...

Most currently I was talking to a friend talk about a job she has with the government. She is going through some of the same frustrations I went through. I felt the tensoin in my chest as she described what was going on. I was distracted by the computer not working with a tax deadline looming. In my famously obnoxious way, I said that she must love chaos, or be one of those who create it if it isn't around. Basically, I'm talking about me and trying to bring a bizaar comforting parallell to her situation. Well, it was a crapy thing to say. The faltering phone conversation said everything. I felt like crap. I meant nothing more that to say that I had to leave my job because I couldn't take that stress and I was overwhelmed with the idea of her staying to put up with people treating her like they do. I cannot stand it and I slowly eat away at myself in that situation. Rather than say it like I just did two sentances ago, I try something smart and it turns out cheeky this time. I am a moron and certainly not a good friend. What an ASS I am.

The sad thing is that the thought process that goes into saying things and the feelings behind them are often so disconnected that I am so suprised at what I hear come out of my mouth. Even in positive, hey you sound like a rock star - everyone loves you, I am listening to myself and saying, may you squeaked by on that one this time moron. Is there a class or workshop on how to connect what you are trying to say with what you are actually saying? Or- try to think about what you are saying and offer some strategy to your thought process. I dunno. I cannot even articulate what it is that I want from myself in this regard. I just wish that I could just shut up and listen rather than try to take part in every conversation. Just stop getting so excited and be normal...

Sorry Donna and Georgia. I was trying to be nice. I can be a moron and a coward.

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