The Guilt Trip

Do you know that woman that finds a way to passively aggressively guilt trip you when something doesn’t go her way? She can turn anything around so that even if the whole thing wasn’t about her, it becomes about her. Instead of just addressing an issue at face value, she keeps pushing and twisting so that she can become the victim.

I know her. I used to be her.

In my last few relationships before my marriage, if my significant other didn’t do something the way I wanted, I found a way to fight and make it about me. I used to be act like things were okay but then freeze him out. I used to guilt trip and guilt trip and guilt trip. I did it to my friends too. But I finally realized though that a good relationship is based on direct communication rather than trying to force someone to understand you without talking to them.

Recently, I’ve made some mistakes. Honest mistakes that I didn’t mean to make but since I’m human, they happened. I also owned up to them and apologized for them. Now the people on the receiving end decided that instead of just accepting my apology and understanding that it happens, that they needed to make subtle comments on the fact that I screwed up.

I know when I’m being guilt tripped because I start having these arguments with the people guilt tripping me in my head. I think about what I want to say to them, explain to them so they understand why my mistakes happened. I want to yell and scream at them until they understand why it’s not my fault and that obviously there is something wrong with them if they had to guilt trip me. And this conversation goes around in circles in my head.

I don’t want that to be the case. I don’t want to have these conversations in my head and I really don’t want to have them in real life. Is it really worth arguing with someone who guilt trips? They obviously think they are the victims of whatever happened.

I like what The Four Agreements says. “Don’t take anything personally. Nothing others do is because of you.” It’s true. My mistakes weren’t meant to cause anyone harm. They were true mistakes on my part. So I will go ahead and believe that these people need to guilt trip me because of something that they are going through. Maybe it’s insecurity, maybe it’s something in their past, or maybe it’s just the way they think.

All I know for sure is that I don’t want to go through life feeling like I have to guilt trip people to make myself feel better. I don’t want to be passive aggressive in my communication methods. I would rather resolve a problem directly and move on. As my husband once told me, “You can be lame or you can have fun.” I choose to have fun every time.

When Our Past Returns

A few days ago, I heard from someone who I hadn’t talked to in 5 years. The last conversation we had wasn’t a good one and I never expected to hear from her again. Then, all of a sudden, I received a message, wishing me a happy birthday and congratulating me on my new kid. I was in shock and I couldn’t respond for a couple of days because I needed to process. It’s interesting when that does happen. It was a really nice message and I was glad to hear from that person. 

When a relationship of any type ends, there is usually a reason for it. I know, in this case, I had hurt the person pretty badly and I didn’t know if she would ever understand the reason behind it. It took a lot for her to message me just to say as much as she did and I really respect her for it. It makes me think that maybe she finally understood why the relationship ended. 

I’ve been through this before. Just like most people, I have had falling outs with different people throughout my life, whether it was a friend or a relationship. And, in my experience, one of the two people involved, if not both, will eventually come back and show that they have put the past behind them. There have been times when we walk away from something that is not good for us personally and hope that one day, the person involved will understand the reasons we move on. 

But, when we do finally hear from whomever we have had the problems with, it still comes as a shock. We don’t expect to hear an apology, let alone good wishes from someone who we have ended on bad terms with. 

I hope that, one day, every relationship of mine that had ended badly does eventually resolve itself. I hope that we can find a way to move past our past and maybe that will lead us to making sure our current and future relationships are good. It takes a big person to be able to walk forward and I still see people who hold onto the bad even though they have a chance to move towards the good. There are people that refuse to accept an apology or find ways to see the other side’s point of view, regardless of who was right or wrong. I don’t want to be one of those people. 

I’m not saying that everyone deserves a second chance but usually, in these types of situations, it doesn’t hurt to at least try.

Sometimes, we just need our past to return to show us where we used to be and where we are now.