Hey everyone! Welcome to this week’s post. At the end of last week’s post, “Are You Hurt?“, I mentioned I’d be flipping the tables today. Telling the story from the other side. So if you haven’t read “Are You Hurt?“, be sure to read that before you continue with this.
Last week I talked about how we tend to get hurt by others and instead of dealing with the pain, we convince ourselves “It’s okay” and carry on with life while unknowingly harboring hurt and negative emotions that sip into our relationships. Today, I’ll tell you about how I was in the offending seat. How I hurt someone and just seemingly carried on with life whilst the other person was left to deal with what I had done.
Just like last week, I won’t give away too much in this story because you and I are not at that level yet (Lol).
I know a girl who I was starting a friendship with and we were getting to know each other. Everything was going fine and just the way things go when you are getting to be friends with someone. So, as months went on and time went on, something happened/ I did something that I knew she would not be comfortable with. I had no control over my response to what was going on and honestly a huge part of me didn’t want control at all.
I knew it was something that would negatively affect her and it was something that I had to talk to her about. But, of course, in true “run away from problems” fashion, I chose not to and decided I would talk to her about it in person, knowing very well we rarely got to see each other. Days turned to weeks and weeks turned to months and not once did I talk about what happened. I just kept talking to her like everything was okay when I knew it wasn’t.
Long story short, she found out about what happened but she didn’t hear about it from me. I was happy she found out but sad she didn’t hear it from me because I knew I owed her that at least. I knew that I had hurt her feelings but I was afraid to bring it up because I was trying to save myself and not look like a bad person when in reality all my beating around the bush did exactly that.
Many many months later, I decided to put an end to the foolery I was doing and texted her about it. I told her everything that had happened and she told me that it did actually bother her/hurt her.
Why am I telling this story? A lot of times, we talk about toxic friends or how people can be toxic but very rarely do we talk about actually being the toxic person in relationships. It’s the same situation here. We are always so quick to talk about how so many people have hurt us but we don’t talk about how we hurt people.
In 21 Things I’ve Learnt in 21 Years, I wrote, “Address issues that need to be addressed when they happen.” That lesson came from this situation. I knew there was something that needed to be addressed. I knew there was a huge elephant in the room and it was my responsibility to deal with it. But I didn’t. The effects? Ruined relationships.
Deciding not to talk to about something wrong that you have done to someone, or just keeping quiet about it may not affect you but it definitely affects the other person. The other person involved is left to deal with pain or hurt that you caused but refuse to acknowledge or apologise for. It is hard for someone to get over something that another person did if the person hasn’t even apologized or acknowledged what they did.
Doing things like that destroys relationships. You have to deal with the guilt of knowing you hurt someone and just avoided it, and the person has to deal with you being around them knowing very well you did something against them. It’s not a good look at all.
My point is, if you’ve done something wrong to someone, acknowledge that what you did was wrong and apologise for it. Not for your sake but for the sake of the other person. Give them a chance to heal and give them the closure they very much deserve.
Your relationship with them may never be the same but at least you gave them the peace they needed and that is better than anything else you could have done.
I am not perfect and I know that I have hurt people. In a situation like this where I tried to save myself or protect the other girl and I from a conversation we didn’t want to have, I just dug myself deeper into a hole I was avoiding in the first place.
I think it’s important to acknowledge when we are wrong or when we are toxic than try to pretend that what we did never happened. Pretending just makes you try to start overcompensating by trying to be the perfect friend or the perfect person when the truth is you can’t be that person.
If you are reading this and you know you did something that hurt someone, or you offended someone and you didn’t talk about it with them, text them and let them know you are sorry. We never know how deeply our actions can affect others and we never know how someone may be dealing with something that you did but my advice to you is that you apologise. Clear the air and just talk it out. Your relationship may not be the same after that but at least you did the right thing for their sake and for yours too.
You may be wondering what happened after I told the girl everything. Well, we talked it out and cleared everything. Are we close? No we aren’t. If anything, our relationship is probably worse than it was before but we make efforts to talk here and there. I am not forcing any sort of friendship or relationship between us. I’m just allowing time and nature to do it’s thing.
So, go and apologise to whoever you know you hurt! Give them a chance to heal. Remember to always address things when they happen. Don’t run away from the tough conversations.
That’s it on this topic. It’s been a fun two posts and it sparked interesting conversation with some of you. Let me know your thoughts on this topic in the comment section. Have you been the toxic person in a relationship? I’d like to know.
Thanks for reading!