Thursday, July 03, 2008

Doesn't Play Well With Others

I seem to be having trouble dealing with real, live people as of late. I mean, it's surely no surprise to anyone that I'm not the most personable (warm, comforting, nurturing, friendly, outgoing, [insert more desired personality characteristics here]), but in the past few weeks, I seem to be doing a particularly poor job of managing interpersonal relationships. And, yes, I know it is has something to do with therapy, I'm exhausting myself with this process. But I really can't start out every personal--or any professional--conversation with "You know, I spent yesterday evening telling my therapist how it felt be sexually abused when I was young, so do you think you could make an extra effort to be kind to me today?" I mean...really. It's expecting a bit much for people to magically ascertain my mental and emotional fragility before speaking to me (although...the fact that I flinch every time someone speaks to me makes me think that deduction shouldn't require great magical powers).

On the other hand, I sometimes think that I should demand people to be more gentle with me on an every day basis--is there a reason I have to be able to stand there and listen to whatever someone else wants to say to me, no matter how insensitive it is? Is there a clause in the code of collegiality and friendship that I neglected to read? I guess in the end, I find it surprising that I have to provide a *reason* for someone to be gentle with me ("I'm fragile because of therapy, so be nice!"). Shouldn't I be able to expect that, anyway? I'm not sure, and I guess that uncertainty is a sign that I really just don't get people and the way people relate to other people. And I suspect I'm not going to learn this in therapy, which is is just too bad.

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