As a woman, I’ve always wondered why our advice is, “Leave him” when we find out about the wrong doings of our friends/family partner. Personally, I’ve always asked if they’ll leave or not, but I wouldn’t ever demand it because I’ve been there. I’ve been there too many times, so I don’t have any room to judge. Honestly, I think I’m horrible when it comes to relationship advice because I listen and I want to go, “Ah girl, that’s it?” – because I’ve usually been through worse – BUT I CAN’T. I want to be supportive and I’ve tried to be although I never feel like that same support is poured back into me.
The first thing I do is ask a lot of questions because I don’t have too much advice. Double back and read that again because I meant what I just said. My experience isn’t advice and I feel people get that twisted. What I went through and how I dealt with it can’t be advice because it more than likely won’t work that way for you. I never want anyone to feel like I don’t care because some stuff I don’t understand, but I do try to grasp some type of understanding because I’d want someone to do the same for me. Of course, while listening to some peoples story I wonder so many things in my head, yet I don’t let those thoughts slip out of my mouth because,
1. I wouldn’t want anyone saying them to me.
2. I don’t feel that because I’m your friend I get to “keep it real” by damn near disrespecting you and disregarding your feelings and/or your situation.
3. I don’t want to insert myself into your problems knowing I can’t take them on.
4. I’ve been in a space where I felt my friends didn’t care to do anything but judge me.
One thing we fail to realize before we judge others – relationship issues or not – is that we speak so fast on what we’d do that we forget their problem isn’t about us nor ours. It’s not about how YOU feel, it’s about you being a friend and a listening ear because someone trust you enough to allow you to be that. I know I’ve been every name in the book from stupid to delusional. I’ve even had people (I didn’t confide in) come back to me saying that my “friend” told my business and expressed how they truly felt about how I handled my situation. And even after all of that I still make it my business to not get overly involved in other people’s business. That doesn’t mean I don’t care about you I’m just not adding your load to mine, and you shouldn’t want me to. We can talk all day but we both know when it comes down to it – after you calm down – you’re not looking for someone to solve your problem(s). You simply need someone to listen, understand where you’re coming from and if I don’t get anything else, I get that.
In the past, I’ve had people in my life judge me for not leaving my situation and months later they’re going through the same, or worst, and where do you think they are today? Yep! Still with their person after they gave me the advice to leave – on top of their extra, unnecessary judgment. In situations like that I always found myself wanting to say something, but there was no need. People give advice that they don’t take all the time and I’m not in the business of making people feel as bad as they make/made me feel. Everybody’s reasoning for why they stay is always valid when they go through the motions, and they ALWAYS forget what they said to/about me. However, being someone who’s been dealing with the same things for years, from different people, I still can’t give people the same careless energy they give me. I’m not telling you to leave because I have nowhere for you to go, I don’t know if you have anywhere else to go and it’s very common for women to leave and go back. Once you get to a place of understanding what you feel then and only then is when you’ll make the best decision for you.
Again, I may not get exactly what you’re going through, but I am here for you. I understand pain which is sad however I feel that’s what allows me to be so understanding. Of course, as your friend, and just a woman who cares I want to tell you to leave, I just can’t. YES, I HAVE TO KEEP SAYING THIS. A great example as to why I don’t tell anyone to leave is my life currently. I don’t work, I have no consistent income, I have three children, I have two therapy sessions a week and my physical is going through it. Now, as many people as I know say they care about me and “got me”, I know that none of them can or are willing to take me, my kids and all my problems – while I’m still unemployed– on to give us a roof over our heads. The only thing that bothers me about that is they’ll keep hollering “leave” and won’t ever help me find a place to go. However, it is an example of why if I needed advice, I wouldn’t want anyone telling me to leave because where are me and my children going to go?
It’s never, “Let me help you” or “Here, take this (money) and find something to do to clear your head” or “Go for a walk to blow off some steam and call me later to tell me if you still feel the same”. Real quick, I just want to throw out there that someone did do the second one for me before and it truly helped. It’s always the advice that requires these drastic changes that you’ll need help with and many women can’t afford that luxury not even because of finances but things like verbal and domestic abuse too. And because some just don’t want to. Some of us really need help not a “friend” that’s going to judge us for staying when all they know is surface issues because they judge so much that they don’t make us want to tell them our deeper issues. It’s sad but it’s true. And I pay attention to those who talk about those closest to them too because if you’re judging someone you consider “family”, I can only imagine the harshness spoken on or about me. With that being said, I decided to stop venting and I’ve noticed a difference in all of those relationships.
These people never asked me about anything except my relationship and I had to understand that’s because they can’t let the past go. I got tired of talking about what happened then and them trying to fish for issues now. None of them ask me about my blog or my mental or my future so to me, you don’t care about me at all you just want to know my business. I’m in a space now where I don’t want to share anymore – even though there’s no issues – so what you know is what you know and that’s all you’ll know. I’m tired of having to ask people to watch how they speak on mine because YES, I AM MAD when venting but that doesn’t give you a right to be disrespectful. I don’t disrespect you and yours so don’t do it to me and mine.
The second you decide to start speaking on your relationship is the moment you set yourself up for opinions you didn’t ask for. Everyone hasn’t gotten to the place where they understand that all they need to do is listen because their opinion isn’t always needed and that’s the hard part. People will judge you, they’ll more than likely label you (call you out your name), but they’ll never stop wanting to know your business and that’s what you have to pay attention to. As a friend, your support is needed but your judgment is not. And if nobody ever told you let me be the first to let you know that being my friend does not give you the right to disrespect anyone because YOU THINK you’re telling me “What I need to hear”.
Be cautious of the friends you keep because the last thing anyone needs is someone that’s always throwing judgment. Relationship or not, ain’t nobody got time for that.