May 29th, 2006


Everyone is Broken

(Which, by the way, is the kind of subject line you get if you start writing while listening to Nine Inch Nails, although I suspect Radiohead would work just as well.)

I have all sorts of problems. I've driven all of my girlfriends mad in different ways, stressed out pretty much all of my friends at various points, caused arguments over trivial things and generally meant that my friends have to expend effort to deal with me.

And in this one respect I am completely normal.

There is not one person on this planet who does not have foibles, problems, issues, neuroses, unreasonable standards, illogical feelings, inconvenient moods and expectations that are the very least likely to lead to disappointment. If you cannot live with the fact that your friends are like this then now would be an excellent time to retreat to a small cave and practice your hermit-hood.

Which isn't to say that you should have to put up with their shit, because goddammit, that would be _unreasonable_ - you have your own problems to deal with after all. But be aware that your friends are adjusting themselves to deal with your foibles, and have made the judgement that putting up with _your_ shit is worth the effort, because underneath it all you're a pretty cool person.

Your friends aren't blind either. They don't picture you as some perfect person who has descended to bring joy to their lives. Unless you're associating with autistic idiots they will have noticed that you are as flawed as the rest of us. Which means that if you go around subjecting yourself to ridiculously high standards, just in case your friends find out you're not perfect, then all you're doing is stressing yourself out, and probably your friends too.

You're broken.

I'm broken.

Everyone is broken.

Nobody has the time and energy to put up with _everyone's_ foibles, which is probably why we only have a few people we're really close to. They're the ones who we feel are worth seeing close up, the ones who we can let see our own cracks and dents, the ones we've tested enough times to know that they're not going to run screaming from our own flaws. We put up with them and we get something back.

I've stopped trying to fix myself. I've stopped trying to fix my friends. I'm still learning and changing, but I no longer believe there's anything like a "perfect" person to aspire to - just day-to-day decisions to make and always work to do to keep me happy, cope with my friends and try not to piss them off too much.