Thursday, October 31, 2013

The insecurity of living

I've noticed that people have different ways of dealing with insecurities.  Have you noticed that too?

Some are reactor-type of people, and others are more introspective.  Some are doers, and some are avoiders.  Some need to talk and others need space to work through it.

One good thing about getting older is that you've worked through a lot of your insecurities.  And I don't really consider myself in that category.  It just appears to me that the older people in my life are far more secure than I am.  And I would guess that the younger people in my life would say that it appears to them that I am more secure than not.  Except I am an extrovert.  And I blog.  So, like.. everybody knows the truth: I still have insecurities.

But one thing that has come into focus is that other people have insecurities also.  And some times "the problem" whatever that is-- really isn't the problem at all.  The problem is that I happen to be friends with someone who is working out their insecurities.  I'm just a willing target--cuz I care.  And I get involved with people.

And here's another one.  The MORE you get to know people, the more you interchange with the "real" person that they are trying to hide from the world.  And it's not pretty.  (most of the time)

Unless that person has gone through so much pain that their entire insides have been transformed into pure gold, there are still some chunks of coal within that person.

So, what do you do?  Do you give up getting to know people for fear of getting hurt by all the gunk that's in there?  Are you afraid of the reacting style of insecure people who are going to make your life crazy for a while?  Or do you forage only superficial style of relationships with people?

You can.  I know plenty of people who do that.  I was even advised to do that when I was in my early twenties.  "Just talk about the weather.. and such.."  with (this person) because..  (they were gossiping about me so much..)

But superficial is not in my vocabulary, except in the negative sense.

Everything I believe in and stand for is in stark contrast to superficial.  If I have to go back to a superficial style of friendship with someone (after having been close to them), I'd rather not be friends at all.  I suppose that isn't loving.  I suppose that is not politically correct.  But hear me out (even if I'm wrong)--

But it is one of the greatest insults someone can give me (after I have invested in them and developed a trust) to somehow go back to a "hey, how's the weather?" type of friendship.

But the rest of the world considers it normal.  Get to the point where you can be cordial and friendly in public with each other.  O.K. then.  But really?  What then?  I don't know.  It never seems normal again.

The other option is to not get deep with anyone--ever.  And we all know people like that.  Truth be told--they've probably been hurt one too many times and don't have it in them.  They distrust everyone. And they are usually like..pastor's wives or something..  prime targets for everyone picking on them.  But it could be anyone.  

So, here is how I am dealing with this enigma.

I am not superficial.  Never have been--never will be.  I don't plan to stop taking risks with people.  And guess what?
I am planning on getting hurt.  If that friend or whoever doesn't eventually hurt me, I will give God the glory.

If I do get hurt, then I am going to remind myself that Jesus is the only one who is selfless, kind, true and loyal and secure at all times.. not just when things are going well.  A constant reminder of who God really is and what he means to me.. are the many humans (including myself) that are on this earth.


Bernadette Veenstra said...

I agree that people seem to be more secure and comfortable as they get older. They have less to prove. They dare happy in their skin and competition is not the call of the older.
I noticed these things about this year's blogging conference as opposed to the one I attended last year. This year was an older crowd. Much nicer.

sara said...

Jena, You are awesome. :)

I may need to apologize to some people. I don't make friends easily at this stage in my life. I prayed for years for God to put IRL Christian friends in my life and I cherish the new, blossoming relationships he's recently given me, but sometimes it is overwhelming for this introvert. Sometimes after beginning to get close to someone, especially someone with an outgoing, forceful personality, I feel like I have to back away a tiny bit - it's no reflection on the other person, but I need time to process and be quiet. I was thinking that the other person would think that I am a flake, but what I just learned from reading your post is that the other person might feel like I am pushing her away or rejecting her intimate friendship. *sigh*

Any way, thanks for helping me see how other people might perceive it.

Jena Webber said...

Sara-- I am learning how not to be that forceful, pushy person! Thanks for teaching me! I LOVE introverts, and I wish I could be more like them. sigh.. Still learning. YOU ARE awesome. And I hope you find as many IRL friends as you can handle. :)

Ruby said...

Jena, I do hope you are right. I feel I am becoming more secure in myself but also less out there. Not putting myself in the position of having to make the effort to forge new friendship. Tired I guess :-(
A pastor's wife and I were discussing a lady who needed a lot of support ( some years ago now when I was very motivated in this department). She( Revs wife) told me that relationships take time and she just didn't have it. I was gob smacked at the time. Not only because she was saying she wasn't going to reach out to this other woman, but she made me feel as though I was sucking up her time just being there :-( Now I can see that more clearly. As you say, pastor's wives in particular sometimes need to put up barriers just to cope.
I haven't been blogging much. I think I need to ~ my comment is starting to "run on". Nice to chat over here anyway.

Jena Webber said...


I love your expression "gob smacked" . What I think you are saying is that you were so surprised by someone who was clearly being called of God to be a pastor's wife and had no energy left for relationships. Then what's the point, right? Two thoughts.
Maybe what this woman was saying is that she has reached her limit on "high maintenance" friends, such as this woman. And Some people really do need professional help. I've encountered that more than I'd like to admit. Not every one is a project that you'd like to take on--pastor's wife or not. But no one deserves to be treated like "I don't have enough time for you". That is just wrong.