Great Expectations

I have already touched on the general subject of opening up a few times in the past, like in the post about my trust issues and here. But I have never really written about the expectations that come along with it. 

Opening up has always been particularly hard for me. Ever since I was a child, I have always needed time in order to feel comfortable enough to share my thoughts and feelings. To my dismay however, some people can’t respect my boundaries and constantly nag me even though I am clearly not ready.

To me, talking about more private details of my life has always been surrounded by a dark cloud of pressure that could burst at any given moment. Transitioning from surface-level friendships to a real connection is a hard and slow process for me as opposed to people who are very open about their feelings and lives and tend to share very quickly. Oftentimes people misinterpret my unwillingness to open up over night as unkindness or disinterest and in some instances people will probe into my personal life for details, demanding I tell them my entire life story in one day, stating that they are totally trustworthy. I had this one experience where I opened up to basically a stranger and all I got in return was “wow, now I know why you don’t share much”. We stopped talking shortly after that. At least I have a tactic if I want to scare somebody off. Almost every person I meet gets impatient at some point, even if I have explained that I just need a little more time.

Privacy is the safety-wall around me, it is my own way of protecting myself. And like shedding any great armour, it takes time. So there I go, stripping away layer after layer until I feel naked, vulnerable. There is nothing to protect me anymore. The last thing I would want is for someone to bait me into knocking down the wall and then stabbing me. So you can understand my hesitation to show myself fully in the first place. But what I hate above all is when people try to tear down the layers, my protection, by themselves. And I should just be okay with it? Of course I am going to defend myself, and build a newer, more unpenetratable wall.

To translate this into a real life situation; When you meet new people there is a lot you can talk about. At some point however, more personal topics are bound to come up. If I get the feeling that I am being pressured to share I tend to shut down completely. My whole body just rejects the idea of being forced into telling something I am actually not ready to just yet. In those types of situations I get very quiet and defensive, often fleeing the scene all together. If someone steps over the line I drew or tries to adjust it, it’s very hard for me to trust them after that. The result is that I distance myself from them even further. 

The pressure doesn’t always have to stem from other people though – it can also come from myself. Every now and then I catch myself feeling guilty for not having shared anything of value yet. ‘Can I really blame others for just wanting to get to know me better?’ is something I ask myself all the time. This results in me pushing myself even though I know that I am just not ready yet. Afterwards I nearly always regret telling the person what I did and even though it isn’t their fault I push them away because of how uncomfortable I feel. For once I wish that people would just let me unfold at my own speed. Sadly, this occurs rarely. What an endless cycle.

I admire people who can just share everything at once, I really do. I wish I could – it would make things a lot easier. Despite all of this though, I don’t think that being a private person is neccessarily a bad thing. There is a reason I choose to share my deepest thoughts only with the people closest to me. I can’t really blame myself for wanting to establish a foundation of trust before blurting everything out. I guess the one good thing I get out of this is that I can quickly spot real friends, people who are willing to stick around for a while because they want to get to know me. If you have that, then you have truly won in life – because good friends, the kind that you can rely on, are very hard to come by.

12 thoughts on “Great Expectations

  1. This was very relatable, and I felt like I could see myself in your words. I totally agree, building up walls is something I do to protect myself too. It’s quite unfortunate that some people don’t understand, but the one’s who stay are most definitely the true one’s, and dealing with nagging, probing people seems worth it when you find the real people out there. 🙂
    Thanks for sharing.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I m very sociable but I won’t let out my deep feeling and situations that easily.nothing bad about it.people should never pressure others to talk.everybody talks when they are ready and when trust is established.
    Don’t feel bad never about your love for privacy.We are all different and I wish everybody would understand that every person needs to be treated differently.Sometimes to let people open to us the best thing to do is do nothing,take a step back and wait for them when they are ready.I learned this with my eldest daughter.Pressure and intimidation don’t work.let be and words will come as a flow.❤️

    Liked by 1 person

    1. How true. I couldn’t have said it better myself.
      “Sometimes to let people open up to us the best thing to do is do nothing” – I wish more people understood that. Placing pressure on a person only causes them to shut down even more. This is something a lot of people I met weren’t aware of. Trust doesn’t come overnight; it takes time and has to be earned. Like you said, every person is different in that regard.
      As always, thank you for sharing your in-depth thoughts, I love reading your perspective! Wishing you the most pleasant of days ☀︎

      Liked by 1 person

      1. You two my dear.❤️I have to say I’m making treasure of your your point of view and questions so I will kind of prepared for when my daughters will be officially teenagers 😉so thank you for sharing😊

        Liked by 1 person

  3. I can 100% relate to this. I don’t think being private is bad though at all; I’m really sociable, I just don’t tell people about my family or things personal to me and those aren’t things people need to know. I feel like people that feel entitled to know personal things about you generally AREN’T trustworthy, because there’s absolutely no need for them to know things before you’re ready to tell them xxx

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I completely understand where you’re coming from. My biggest problem when I was in high school was opening up to people. It can be good and bad. I dated a guy for nearly 3 years and I STILL hadn’t completely opened up to him. It’s easier for me now because I’m better at reading who is and isn’t a trustworthy person quicker. Plus, I have gained a certain confidence in myself that I no longer care about what other people think in my past. Being a private person is a great thing. Not everybody needs to know your deepest thoughts. Real friends will understand and allow you to share what you want. People who pry are rarely doing it for the right reasons and when you do open up there’s a pretty good chance you will have strangers hearing about your business. Great post! It’s very brave of you to even share this much!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. This was so enlightening to read! It’s reassuring to know that there are other people out there who understand. Life can feel like a bubble sometimes. I feel like dating is on a whole other level of pressure because it’s just a different dynamic in comparison to friendships. They’re harder. Thank you for your kind words, it means a lot!

      Liked by 1 person

  5. I completely understand what you meant. I think it’s just all about the trust, love. I used to be like that before but when I met people who I know will not judge me and still accept me no matter what I say, that’s when I start opening up to them about everything. Being a private person is not a bad thing, as well. You don’t have to worry about that. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I agree. Trust comes to people at different speeds and the most important thing is to just acknowledge that. Having a great support system is all anyone could ever ask for and I too am fortunate enough to have found some pretty amazing and supportive people. Thanks for reading, Amielle! 😊

      Like

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