Friday, July 27, 2007

Is This What the Sofa Feels Like?

As mentioned previously, I've been extremely restless the past few weeks, and have been questioning almost every aspect of my life. Frumkeit, men, friendships, men, staying in Chicago, and men are currently at the top of the list. Last time, I raised the subject of frumkeit, but we'll leave that on a back burner for now. We'll skip over men, and jump on ahead over to the realm of friendships...

I have a good friend who's a grad student in clinical psychology. Actually, I have several friends studying clinical psych, so we'll give this one the codename "JL". In a recent conversation, JL and I shared an empathetic moment over being Wierdo Magnets. They just seem to find us, and we decided the primary reason for this is that we are nice to them, whereas many other people just make them feel like freaks. Okay, so we're nice people. What's the problem? Well, this thought was apparently percolating in my brain for a while, and suddenly out popped:

Uncomfortable Realization #264
I'm always the therapist, and rarely the patient.

For years, I've found myself in the position of sounding board, Wise Guru, stalwart friend, and/or shoulder to cry on for many, many people. And I'm not complaining, though it probably seems that way. I'm happy to be there when people need me. In fact, I carry lingering guilt over the few times I wasn't able to be there for someone.

The issue here is that there are very few people that serve the same role in my life. Admittedly, I'm usually a fairly low-key, level-headed, self-aware individual, and thus rarely truly in need of a sounding board, Wise Guru, stalwart friend or shoulder to cry on. And in the cases where I truly have been in need, my friends have always come through.

But what about those times where I'm not actually in crisis? What about when I'm just inexplicably disgruntled? So many of those friends who repeatedly call on me to listen to their gripes, however small, just don't have time for me when I wish for them to return the favor. Or, just as often, I'm in a good mood, and they're too busy dealing with their own issues to let me bubble (or babble). Or they're just plain busy.

Am I a doormat? Am I really just letting people take advantage of me? Probably not. But asking such questions led directly to:

Uncomfortable Realization #265
I have intimacy issues, and have difficulty letting others in.

To be continued. I don't feel like talking about it right now. Let's talk about you...

No comments: