Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Inside the mind of a Chronic People Pleaser

I suffer from an overwhelming need for other people to be happy.  Especially when I'm with them.  I mean, I'm talking it's bordering on a condition.

And for whatever reason, if someone is unhappy, my brain will logically and conclusively find a way to make it be my fault that they aren't happy.  Even when I know for a fact that it's not my fault, it becomes my fault in the end, because of whatever circumstances my brain has decided on for this particular case.

Sometimes I can ignore it or at the very least let my brain work through it until it's no longer my fault again.

But what I'm trying to say, is that it affects me personally when people are unhappy with something, quite especially when I actually have had a direct impact on their happiness.

Which has lead to me being quite unhappy in the past because I can't fathom making someone unhappy, even at the cost of my own sanity.  We'll take the PC issue since that is the most recent (but this is a longstanding issue).

PC is a very nice guy -- even if I'm not interested in him as more than a friend I don't talk to that often.  He's had some unfortunate shit happen in his life that I feel bad about because he's a great guy and bad things shouldn't happen to good people.  And a lot of this bad stuff has made women treat him in a certain way because they're not attracted to him.  And I get that.  I do.  However, no one should ever want a pity date or girlfriend.  No matter how nice of a person this date/girlfriend might be.  And that's what I felt like.  I felt like I was only hanging out with him because he didn't feel good about himself, and I wanted him to feel good about himself.  But not because I liked him, because I felt bad for him.  And that's called pity no matter how you look at it.

But because of my weird happiness condition, I didn't want to make him unhappy, so I didn't say anything and didn't say anything and just kept avoiding the issue to keep him as happy as I was capable of for as long as I kept avoiding it.  Even if it made me angry, upset, annoyed, and quite frankly a little used.

And then I let it reach maximum capacity and I couldn't take it any more, and I vented on a public forum.  But I kept it anonymous, I didn't name names, I didn't say specific things, I was very nice about the whole damn thing and I kept apologizing because in my head it's my fault that I'm not attracted to him and he's attracted to me and I don't want to deal with it.  It's my fault and I feel bad about it.  Even if most normal people don't.  And it HURTS.  It hurts so much when I realize it's my fault that someone isn't happy with their life because of something I did or said or didn't do or didn't say.  And I know he's angry and that makes it worse.

And yet, I don't want to change what I've said.  I said what I needed to say.  I'm just going to feel guilty about it because it means someone else feels bad.  So I still end up being hurt and being unhappy, but now he does too.

And let me remind you this isn't the first time this has ever happened to me.  Because it's not.  This is what I live with in my brain all of the time.

My dear, dear, dear GL pointed it out offhandedly yesterday (or Monday) when I was hanging out with her.  I was helping her clean up, put dishes away or something like that, and I kept asking where things went, where she wanted them, how she wanted them put away -- because that's what I do.  I make sure people are happy and that things are done the way they want them to be, because I'm a people pleaser.  I want them to be happy.  And she looked at me and was like "you're doing something nice for me, I don't give a fuck."

And it's just...I just want them to not be frustrated with me, with how I've done something, with how I've handled something.  I don't want them to be disappointed, or to be upset or angry.  I just want them to be happy.  I want them to be pleased with me, and how I've done things.

And if it's legitimately on my side that someone is unhappy and hurt and upset or angry or any of those things, it really does hurt.  It makes me feel ill and uncomfortable and nauseas and worried and anxious and God help me if anyone's having an argument anywhere near me, because then it ramps up at least three times.

The hardest lesson I've ever tried to learn (still learning it in fact) is that I can't make everyone happy all of the time.  It's weird that this is the lesson that's hard to learn because I'm actually very accepting of this rule in relation to other people's actions affecting me.  It's fine that they can't always make me happy all of the time, I don't care.  But apparently in the opposite version I cannot stand not being able to make other people happy.

It's the strangest thing.  I'll get there eventually I imagine.

Once I stop telling people what I think they want to hear, and when I finally decide that my happiness is in no way connected to other peoples' and that I should just do what I can, and be done with it.

Hahahaha, I'm so funny, that's never going to happen.

Until Next Time, Dear Readers,

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