What I Wish I Could Say, 2009 edition
Photo by geekgirly; creative commons license
When I first started my “What I Wish I Could Say” exercise three years ago, I had 30-something people I wanted to say something important to but for some reason could not. Sometimes it meant that they’d be too hurt by my honesty. Sometimes I feared for my job or the relationship or even my own safety. Sometimes I knew it would end the friendship.
My list, over the past few years, has dwindled to only a handful, and in most of those cases, those are people I’ve lost touch with or cannot contact because they’re globe-trotting at the moment. In some cases, I just can’t say the words aloud because they’re not ready to be heard. There are fewer people now that I wish I could say things to but can’t because I’m demanding more authenticity in my relationships–romantic, familial, friendships, business partnerships.
In some cases, I’ve been able to tell someone what I couldn’t say before (on a previous list), and it’s ended the relationship. That happened after reconnecting with a soldier after a long deployment and finally telling him something that would make our friendship more honest so that neither of us was leading the other on. I’m sad to see that friendship go, but he has to be more honest with himself about who he is and he doesn’t want to take that step yet–and his actions impact me. That’s not the first friendship I’ve lost over saying how I feel and I have to weigh the possibility before I do, but I never say these things to hurt anyone. I say them only because I’m at a point where I’m hurting myself if I don’t.
The odd thing is, I’ve allowed people on my “What I Wish I Could Say” lists in the past to see my lists, and they’ve almost never recognized themselves. They have, however, misinterpreted other things as being about them such as a philandering mate I didn’t know was philandering.
Here’s my current list of what I wish I could say but for various reasons, I cannot at this time: …
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