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It's OK to Be Selfish

by Pamela Dirr 4 years ago in friendship
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You owe it to yourself.

I’ve never really been a selfish person, until this year. I had always, always, always, put everyone else’s needs before my own. I realized that by doing that, I’ve been unfair to myself. Now, I’m not saying that I don’t care about other people, because I do. All I am saying is that I’ve started caring about myself a little bit more. I’ve noticed that some of those people who I used to “drop everything and run” for aren’t doing the same for me. Why should I continue to put in the same effort for them, if they are no longer going to be there for me? I never used to be like this, and part of me actually feels guilty for putting myself before others, but it’s something that I have to do. I’m the only one who can really make things happen in my life. I’m the only one who will always be there to stick up for and defend myself. No one else can be there for me 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. I’ve been noticing more and more who will be there for me and who won’t. My circle of trust and circle of friends is getting smaller and smaller. I didn’t think I’d be OK with that, but I’m learning to adapt.

There is someone in my life who I had considered a friend. That person turned their back on me about a year ago with a rumor. The rumor almost ruined a friendship between me and another friend. I’ll never understand why grown adults act like such children sometimes. I’ve been trying to fix the friendship ever since then. Why should I be the one fixing it when I didn’t even do anything wrong? The person who started rumors should be coming forward to apologize and make things right again. That would make sense to me. But, instead, all the person has done is threaten me and try to belittle me. Should I take the threats seriously? I don’t know. I do know that I have tried to cut that person out of my circle. The friendship that was almost ruined isn’t what it used to be; but the person is still in my circle. I had to defend myself to people about childish nonsense that someone else had caused. If I didn’t stick up for myself, no one else would have. I’m a little stronger because of it. I also trust certain people less because of it.

I value the friends I have in my life. I really do. However, I find it no longer necessary to stick my neck out for anyone. Very few people do it for me anymore, so I’m only helping those who truly deserve it. There are very few people who I can vent to. I usually just end up keeping things to myself until the time comes where I feel like I need to go on a rant. Then I’ll reach out to one of my true friends. I’ll vent to the person, I’ll cry, and then I’ll apologize for bothering them. I’m always told to not worry about it and that they’ll always be there for me whenever I need someone. Those are the people who have proven time and time again that they will always be there for me. They never make me feel bad for venting. They never make me feel bad if I need to cry. They never make me feel like a failure.

I’m doing what makes me happy in life. I don’t do things just for the sake of making others happy. I don’t do things just because other people tell me to. I know how to think for myself. I might seek advice from others, but that is because sometimes I feel like I need a different perspective on things. There’s nothing wrong with that. I shouldn’t have to explain myself to others; and I don’t. If I tell something to someone, it’s because I want to, not because I have to. I’ve noticed double standards with a few so-called friends lately. I will no longer allow myself to be fooled by them. I will no longer do things just because I think it will make them happy. It’s difficult for me because I had always worried about what other people would think if I did (or didn’t do) certain things. I’m learning that what they think shouldn’t really matter. It’s what I think that matters the most. My true friends will stand behind me no matter what. People will always disagree with things at some point in life. If it costs a friendship, then maybe they were never really friends to begin with.


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Pamela Dirr

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