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- My little sister burst into tears at the baby shower yesterday because we made her come along even though she didn’t want to, and when we sat at the table she begged me “please don’t make me socialize,” and then when I had a conversation with her she started crying and couldn’t stop. It was my fault. She’s eleven.
- My brother can’t do anything with people this month, can’t talk to them, can’t tolerate their talking to him. He avoids public spaces because people “never stop talking” and “it feels like it’s sucking out my soul.” He’s twenty.
- He used to not talk to strangers until we were in high school. He would whisper his order in my ear and I would have to tell the waiter.
- My dad is sympathetic; he says, “I know exactly what’s going on with him. He’s the one who couldn’t go anywhere unless I had him on my hip the whole time. When you were kids we tried to bring him to a family reunion and he wouldn’t let go of me.”
- My dad admitted to me, as a kid, he once cried for days because he left behind a pile of bark he’d collected in the woods. He chose to put it down so he could jump the stream. He succeeded, as he’d wanted, and then he never stopped crying. “It was the weirdest thing. I guess we’re just sensitive people, and then we grow out of it.” He was nine or ten. Now he’s sixty.
My husband called me for the first time in a week and we talked for hours. He confessed the only thing he wants right now is to leave it all, go live in the mountains, build a house with me, keep each other company and raise our kids however we want, and stay to ourselves for the rest of our lives. My reaction was both empathy and relief. I’m sorry that’s the way things are with us, sorry the world is wearing on him, and glad his reaction is something I totally, absolutely, thoroughly understand. Glad he’s the kind of person who also understands the same in me.
^^ I wish more people understood this