“Get close enough to have fun but not too close to get hurt”

It’s so easy to “catch feelings”, to give feelings for someone, to accept people into your life after a while. We’re all humans after all and to desire social interaction is only part of our nature. That’s probably the one takeaway I’ve had in my high school AP Psychology.

Over the years, however, I’ve realized how social relationships is one of the easiest, yet one of the most difficult aspects of life. It’s relatively easy to filter out individuals who may not be our cup of tea – gradual distancing, different viewpoints, avoidance, etc. What if those you befriend end up being a lot more different than what you thought?

There are only a few friends I can confide a lot more than I would to others. In fact, so few that I don’t even need the digits on a single hand to count them. Most people judge so much that you eventually learn how much easier it is to just put a slightly false layer to cover up the “monster” inside of you. Only with the rare gem of an non-judging and equally jacked-up of a friend can you really talk to with little to no filtering.

Of course, some givens are gifts to us. If you happen to have a great and supportive family, that’s your reserve. They’re probably those who would embrace you regardless of your situation and persona. That’s when it comes down to those who you value and should actually give feelings to – for the givens, reciprocate the unconditional love. For others, treat them exactly as they treat you and you’ll get hurt a little less.

Sometimes, it’s really easy to get hung up on certain individuals. You’d like them to stick around for life and be your close companion for years’ end. But I’ve realized that you’ve sometimes got to let those desires go. People come and go. And hanging on to the string of hope that you create with your delusion isn’t the best thing you can do for yourself. Maybe it’s something about your personality. And perhaps that personality came from your previous experiences that cumulatively shaped who you are right now. But maybe that’s the best form that you function in.

Life’s too short to invest in unequal relationships. If you sense something not working out, take an arm’s distance back and regain the emotional personal space. And like the quote whose origin I cannot recall, “get close enough to have fun but not too close to get hurt”.

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