Earlier, I thought about myself.
Now, if you know me, you know that this is rare. I don’t LET myself think about myself much, because I think that’s selfish (which is ridiculous). I force myself to think of other people, to not dwell on my personality because often, I dislike it. Today, though, I decided to change that.
I get attached to people very easily, I thought, and then got scared. If that’s the case, then what kind of person am I? I thought about the different people I have got attached to, let my mind run in circles, and finally came to a conclusion.
That conclusion is that I have MANY different levels of attachment, for many different things. It’s best that I talk it through, so that I can truly figure it how I work. Ironic, that, that I have to talk to other people in order to find out what person I am.
The first one is shallow. You know those little friendships, the one where you’d hang out with someone but not actively engage with them? I feel like the people in my classes, who I don’t talk to much, would fit in here. I like them, and I’d help them out, but they’re not people I’d go to for help for myself. They’re nice, but just that. That may seem shitty, but the first step to figuring out yourself is to know what kind of friends your ‘friends’ are.
Friends that hold more meaning fit into the next attachment category, if you could call it that. I respect them, trust them, and I’d always have a laugh with them: they’re the type of people you can rely on for the little things, who would help you out but not go out of their way. Some, though, cross the boundary and help you, even when you don’t ask. I find that I have a fair few friends in this section, but it doesn’t mean that I view them as less than my other friends. They’re great people, but there isn’t that lifelong connection: it’s more of an ‘I know you’re here for me now’ feeling.
It may seem like a huge step up, but the next level are the friends that I’d say ‘I love you, to without being embarrassed. They’ve helped me through so much, seen me cry and get violent towards myself on some occasions, seen me love and hate and everything in between. As much as I know my own body, I know that they’d be there for me through whatever and that I can count on them. I’m honestly getting emotional talking about this, because THESE are the friends that truly make me happy and who have made me who I am today. The funny thing is, I can think of so many examples because the people here have meant the most to me in my life.
Imagine all of that as a pyramid, but there isn’t just one pyramid for me. There’re two: friendship, and what I cringily like to call ‘romance’. Sometimes, they get stacked upon each other, or the corners touch.
You might call this attachment an ‘interest’. It’s when I’m aware of them, when I want to lean in closer because I want to know what it’s like. It’s the possibility circle, where I ask myself what it would be like to ‘get with’ them, but never express an outward interest. Without questioning exactly why, I try to be near them, usually denying and thus stopping any romantic feelings, because I’d like to keep it as just an option. To be honest, so many people have fitted into this that I won’t bother counting them; I’m known for my interest in people or my curiosity.
Then, it’s what people call the ‘crush’ level, except if you’re a rebel like me who thinks it sounds too little a word to fit this. Unlike the supposed ‘interest’, I KNOW I want to try something with them, whether that be physical or romantic. It’s the fluttering feeling you get in your chest, the scared feeling where I don’t know what I’m doing. It’s more than a possibility in my mind, but the ‘crush’ sometimes feels hopeless. I want to kiss them so badly that I may act strange, or I have to physically stop myself from getting too close in order to not act like a moron. I want to get even closer, to find out who they really are and to become friends with them, so that I can find out if I do have a chance. Which is usually a resounding NO.
I’ve only ever experienced the deepest stage of attachment a couple of times, as far as I can tell. Perhaps people would call it love, but love seems like such a subjective word for it. Indescribable, the feeling leaps in your chest, the other person always on your thoughts. The feelings don’t have to be returned, but even so, when I feel like this I get to the point of no return. I would genuinely do most things for them, help them whenever they needed it,. The huge downside is that it can lead to some pretty bad situations, such as me getting in so deep that my judgement becomes skewed towards them, I hate myself if they ignore me, or I slip into the cycle of being fixated on them. On the other hand, it can lead to feelings of security, happiness and the knowledge that they ARE there for you. It’s similar to my friendship attachment, but two steps further because when I get this feeling, I know that I’m on the way to being in love with that person. Let me tell you, it’s terrifying.
When you think you’re in love, you second guess everything. The person who stays in your thoughts is always there, and every conversation lifts your spirits. You associate different things with them – like when this happens to me, I can’t think of certain songs or memories without thinking of them. I try to stop the feelings, but it never works because this rare piece of attachment is so strong that I can’t force it away.
It all seems simple, doesn’t it? Everyone in their category, so that I know how I’ll act towards them. Though I wish it could be like that, it’s not.
The lines blur. I’ll talk to an acquaintance and within a day, trust them implicitly. I get confused as to how I feel about people on a daily basis, whether I have a vague interest or I want something with them. Categories change, people change, and people switch from one to the other and even in between two categories in the blink of an eye. It unnerves me, but I learn to deal with it.
Fitting people into my own boxes isn’t how life works, but it gives my mind a bit of order. Now I’m thinking on it, I can sort of know which friends and which romantic people fit into which category: from the present and, of course, the past.
I’m trying to discover myself, and remind myself that it’s okay to do that. Thinking about others is second nature to me now; I do it without thinking. Giving myself room to breathe doesn’t come naturally any more.
I hope that you could find out a little more about how I think through this post. I certainly realised that I’m more complicated than I think, and that the way I think about so many people is nowhere near clear-cut.
From Elm 🙂