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I’m a Contradiction in Vulnerability

I’m realizing more and more each and every day why I need therapy. Yeah, yeah, yeah – I’ve got self-esteem issues. So what? I’ve got minor social anxiety, too. Nothing new there. I could have told you those things 20 years ago.

But I’m realizing that even after acknowledging mistakes I made in my 10-year relationship with Matt and promising never to be that person again, I’m still doing the same things.  I guess the key issue I’m referring to is communication. With Matt, I bottled up my opinions and issues for years. I know it all boils down to the self-esteeem: I never want to upset other people or have them think less of me. I do everything I can to avoid confrontation – and that never leads to good things.

That was one of my major faults in my relationship with Matt. It was one of my major faults in my relationship with Rich. Notice a pattern here?

Yet, at the same time, I seem to have no problem expressing things through text. I feel less vulnerable discussing things through email, instant messaging or this blog. I can understand why – it’s much easier to talk when you can’t see the reaction in somebody’s face or hear hurt and anger in their voice.

For example, unless it was with an incredibly close friend, I would most likely not share my bar experience from the other night. Yet I had no reservations about posting it here for the world to see. And just recently a friend of mine, Will (of designerblog), connected me with a friend of his who is also an employee of Harvard. Once again,  I’m much more comfortable planning to get together for lunch with him by email than I am by calling him…and he’s just a 5-digit telephone extension away.

Ironically, although I feel less vulnerable by expressing myself in writing, it actually makes me more vulnerable since what I say can come back to haunt me (there’s proof!).  Well, believe it or not, I do show restraint on here. I mean, I’ve not blogged about the orgy I had while participating in a bank robbery with key local Republicans (while high on Oxycontin).

Though, I do suspect my pizza, sauerkraut and turkey hot dog dinner will live in infamy. I guess I do have some regrets.

Anyway, enough drama. I’ve got therapy tonight (that works out well) and then I’m off to Cape Cod tomorrow for the weekend to celebrate my Dad’s 77th birthday. He wants to go to Newport, Rhode Island on Saturday. Not to see the mansions. Not to shop in the charming downtown. Nope – he wants to go to the slot-machine casino down there. I guess I should plan to lose a bit of money.

1 Comment(s)

  1. Comment by karyn on February 23, 2006 7:44 pm

    Actually I think this is a fairly common thing; and probably the principle behind so many therapists asking their patients / clients to start writing a journal. I feel the same way, but way too many people know about the blog – family, people-who-piss-me-off, etc., for me to write REALLY candidly there. So – I will be a study in repression for a while longer. Eh. Whatever.

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