Relationships During Recovery the inner work

the upside of being the bigger person, even when you don’t want to be

Without going into extreme detail about my own personal experiences with being the bigger person, — this is a subject that in the past few years I have learned a lot about.

I’m talking both, online humiliation and in person instigating and/or two faced behaviors.

In my own experience, the online humiliation was by far the hardest to manage for me.

Two-faced behavior or trying to hit me below the belt in an argument was something I ended up being very used to.

Being used to it didn’t help with me emotionally managing it, but I definitely always expected dialogue like that to happen.

Though, having a very private situation of mine be put online, … that shit absolutely blind-sided me.  

When your most intimate details and situations are broadcasted without your permission and are fully intended to humiliate you, — it’s a betrayal like you’ve never experienced.

In an instant, your life doesn’t feel like yours anymore.

You feel exposed, foolish and incredibly embarrassed.

Your heart starts racing a million miles an hour and you contemplate on how to either get back at that person or how the fuck you’re going to protect your ego and show the rest of the world that you’re unbothered.  

Especially when that person makes it super public to other people you both mutually know.

Even in person – for along time I fought back, if I was being pushed. (literally and metaphorically)

My words were never enough (as they never are around toxic people) and before I knew how to rise above in my own way–

I’d yell, I’d scream, I’d cut people at the knees. Whatever I could to hit back.

I had no control over my anger and often would get physical (or threaten the physical) because of it.

I didn’t like being that version of myself but after the gas-lighting, criticism and being dismissed over and over again – I’d somehow black out and just let myself go there.  

So, believe me when I say it takes a very special person to be pushed, humiliated and exposed to STILL somehow find the ability to rise above.

But as a I mentioned, it took me a LONG time to be able to calmly keep it together even when I wanted to go to fucking town on someone else.

It took moments where I had to believe in my version of the story so much that I literally had to teach myself not to care about what other people thought.

That the people who I did care about, wouldn’t participate in drama or gossip and would have my back no matter what.

Even if that meant no-one at that particular time (this is true) –I had to trust that the people that were worthy enough to need any type of clarification, wouldn’t engage and or encourage that type of instigating anyway.

But it had to start with me.

This is what I learned from that;

When an unhealthy person loses their power over you or the situation, they very quickly are willing to become your worst enemy.

It’s painful, confusing and can be truly devastating.

And it’s an incredibly challenging situation to be in.

It shows you that people aren’t always who you think they are.

It forces you to make decisions you never wanted to make.

It forces you to do whatever it takes to just take care of yourself – simply out of survival.

Again, being the bigger person has really taught me to believe in my version of the story.  

Because it has to be enough.

Whether its my mother, father, sibling, old friendship, old relationship, old co-worker – If I continue to engage and play the game, — what am I truly communicating to myself?

That I’m okay with passive communication?

That I’m okay being treated a certain way, if only I can lash out in return?

That I’m comfortable with having people around me who don’t handle disappointment well and think violating someone’s private life is appropriate behavior?

Because, fuck that.

When I think of a year ago and again two years ago when being the bigger person took the most effort I’d given to any personal development project I’ve ever done (at that time) …

What comes up for me is – wow, this version of me, that I am today — is so fucking grateful for my past self.

Because I stood my ground without being shady.

I didn’t expose shit that could have ruin someone else’s life.

I didn’t hit back even when my back was up against the wall.

Even though, the shit people were saying about me was disgusting and ill-intentioned.

It also taught me I was around too many people who wanted to see me fail.

Too many people who loved the drama and chaos as a way to avoid their own work and this granted me the opportunity to clean it up, … IMMENSELY.

The upside of being the bigger person even when you don't want to be.

Because your real friends, lovers, support system (and this was a major lesson) – won’t ever put you in that position.

They won’t challenge you to re-gain control.

They won’t question you and badger you on a subject that you’re working hard to heal.

They won’t put you in the same situation 1000 times after hearing you plead your case on how much it affects you.

They won’t socially (online or IRL) humiliate you because they think that’s the only way they’ll get your attention.

They won’t talk shit about you aimlessly to other people as a way to tarnish your image to prove they were right about you all along.  

Being the bigger person, even when I wanted to go fucking ape shit – granted me the peace and integrity I have now.

I didn’t let the emotional instability and immaturity of anyone else deter me from who I am.

I didn’t just walk away (literally and metaphorically) I used that energy that it would have taken to fight back and I invested all of it into me.

Into developing a self-esteem that is so solid and indestructible that I would never not only allow this behavior close to me again, but I also know that I will no longer attract anyone into my life who would think any of that behavior I described, as appropriate.

Yes – it takes a lot.

There’s often no apology given.

There’s often no justice granted.

And there’s definitely not a press conference held just so you can clear up your name.

It’s just you.

Surrounded by gossip, drama, shit-talking, instigating and massive immaturity.

It’s just you making the decision to rise above and do what you’ve been meant to do all along.

To choose you.

To choose a life where you’re not constantly defending yourself or convincing others you’re not a cold-hearted piece of shit.

To choose relationships with people who aren’t petty and who won’t turn on you the second they disagree with you.

To choose conversations and interactions that are fulfilling, thought-provoking and way less critical and defamatory.

And it takes whatever it needs to take.

Whether that’s blocking someone or muting someone socially.

Whether that’s cleaning up your actual social life and who you engage with.

Whether that takes you developing the discipline to not search for people who you know are trying to hurt you.

Whether that takes you surrendering and walking away from conversations with people who are just trying to bring the worst out of you.

It’s different for everyone.

But in my opinion, it’s absolutely necessary.

For me, I refused to become bitter and I also refused to spend the rest of my life playing defense.

I have dreams too big for that and it was time I started doing shit a lot differently.

And I wouldn’t change a damn thing.

What about you?


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