Them's Fightin' Words

Here is probably the biggest thing for me being an only child that I’ve had a hard time with. Because I didn’t grow up with any siblings, fighting, squabbling and tiffing on a regular basis, I never really learned the impermanence of anger, frustration or fighting. I never really learned that you fight, you pout, you make up. In my only child brain, even though the rest of my brain knows how thoroughly irrational this is, I fight and then of course the person I just fought with never wants to speak to me again.

So because of this, it’s incredibly hard for me to go back to the person I’ve just fought with to make sure everything is ok. Because that little crazy piece in me is screaming “NO everything is not fucking ok! You are never going to hear from this person again! It doesn’t matter whose fault it was – you just lost this friend forever!” Which automatically sends me into guilt mode and no matter whose fault it was, it automatically becomes my fault. I must have done something, somewhere to make this person never want to speak to me again. And granted, sometimes that is indeed true. But mostly, it’s just my crazy with a megaphone.

It’s usually the smaller fights, that in the biggest picture are really fairly silly, that usually bring down the worst rain of crazy tirade in my head. Because I know they don’t really matter. That perhaps we were both having crappy days. That perhaps trying to hash something out over IM isn’t the best way to handle something where inflection of voice is everything. That perhaps there was a shit ton of miscommunication. I know that in the spectrum of a friendship lasting 20 years or more, that these skirmishes won’t amount to much and will be forgotten in a relatively short time.

But there is still that only child in me that refutes it all. That in her scared little 9 year old voice is weeping and saying she’s sorry over and over. And she is only overshadowed by the 32 year old rational voice that says, “Oh just fucking get over it already!”

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