Friday, October 28, 2011

Burning Bridges When We Get There

.:Food For Thought:.

Fewer things upset me more than cutting ties with people I consider my friends, and yet there comes a point where you have to do it.

Now, realize I do it not out of some stupid sense of personal pride. Nor do I do it just to delude myself into making a statement unto a person who probably isn't the least disturbed that I cut them out of my life, to begin with. I do it for my own emotional well-being, because I know that being broken up over it for a few days or so would be much more preferable to being forced to pretend everything's hunky-dory with that person on a regular basis. It isn't, and chances are, it never will be.

Alternatively, here's what happens when you CAN'T pretend it's all hunky-dory anymore...

We always say that love means never having to say we're sorry, but in reality, burning bridges means never having to say we're sorry. It doesn't even matter anymore who's wrong or who's right in the thick of a fight: just cut the ties that bind, and let go, no matter if they promised to be there for you for as long as you need them, or if they reassured you they will always be your friend while they betray your trust in them right in your face, or if they simply turned you into an emotional punching bag for so long, and found it shocking that you apparently resented it when it went on for two years too long.

I have found that as time goes by, it has gotten easier and easier for me to just ignore the resentment bubbling up inside by simply cutting off the vexations to my soul. Truth be told, I'm probably doing them a favor all the same by distancing myself from them: I no longer give them an opportunity to delude themselves into thinking that we're okay and we can get along just fine, when in reality, the crack in the armor has gotten larger and larger until it can no longer be ignored.

I write this in the hopes of reminding myself why I burned these bridges in the first place, and to keep myself from letting my sense of regret over the years I've invested in these people get in the way of the undeniable reality that I am flat out better off without them in my lives at this point. I shouldn't really care how this makes them feel, because they obviously didn't care enough about how I felt before everything just went up in flames. Neither should I care whether or not they feel regret over the whole thing, for that matter.

It's food for thought because for an emotional packrat like myself, I find it difficult to let go of people, in general. I always feel that pang of regret that maybe I didn't do enough to fix things between me and them, and perhaps I should have been less hasty about burning bridges with them. Half of the time, I actually give in to the weakness and outright apologize, even if the sensible part of me knows it wasn't I who was at fault.

Each and every time, those efforts blew up in my face. Apparently, I have yet to find a burnt bridge worth rebuilding, simply because many people have gotten this nasty habit of misconstruing an apology as an excuse to assume they were right and the apologizing party was wrong, when in reality, it was simply the fact that the one who tried to reach out with an olive branch simply wanted to do the right thing.

Mending fences shouldn't some stupid game of "chicken" where the first one to actually try to make things better is actually the loser. Personally, when attempts to become the peacemaker become mistaken for that, it makes you wonder why you even tried, in the first place. It just ends up becoming more fodder to make matters worse, rather than an opportunity to finally set things right.

I guess, ultimately, that's a sign that some things aren't really meant to be set right. And when that's the case...

... I think that you should let it burn.

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