You’re probably expecting another “It’s not you, it’s me” breakup letter. I’ve seen quite a few of them recently. This is a breakup letter, but…well, it really is you. You’re the problem in this relationship and honestly, I’m tired of you yanking my chain; the chain connected to my heart and mind.
You share your heart warming stories and funny pictures. You tell me what’s going on in the world and my community. I feel connected and in the know. And then you sucker punch my heart, mind and soul with some gruesome news story, nasty stream of comments or opinions that don’t even make sense once I dissect them. I’ve tried to defend you in my mind, “But there is some good, true and beautiful,” I naively tell myself. But the bad, false and grotesque, well even a little poison mixed with something good is still poison.
Here’s one of our problems; I think I spend more time thinking about you then you do about me. Basically, I’m more invested in this relationship and I’m beginning to see I’m just one of many to you. You encourage me to share what’s on my heart—you ask, “What’s on your mind?” But I wonder if you even care or listen, much less consider my thoughts and words. You seem to get around and ask that question to a lot of people. On the other hand, what you share with me, I really consider. Sometimes I think I consider it too much. And by the time I’ve processed what you’ve shared with me, you’ve moved on.
Here’s another problem, I don’t believe we’re on the same page when it comes to friends. I’ve read in some notes from my Father, “…let your advisers be one in a thousand.” (Sirach 6:6) Wow, only 1 in 1,000. Based on that alone, I know we’re on a different page. You sure let the advice fly! It doesn’t even have to be good or true.
Also, your friendships seem to be based on quantity, not quality. My Father also said, “When you gain a friend, gain him through testing, and do not trust him hastily.” (Sirach 6:7) I know I’ve definitely thrown this advice out the window too many times. Sometimes I think we’re a couple of toddlers on the playground who meet and immediately declare we’re friends…even though we don’t really know each other. It also seems like too many of our friends say what they want, when they want without regard for truth, kindness or necessity. I mean honestly, it seems like some of them talk just to hear themselves talk. I don’t think many of them care what they say, they just want to feel like they’re being heard. I also think others pick fights for sport. I’m shaking my head here because as I write this, I’m wondering why I ever considered this a healthy relationship.
So yeah, this is a break up letter. I’ll still be around sharing the good, true and beautiful on my end. But I won’t be listening to you anymore. I’m not even going to pay attention to you. I hope I’ve explained why it is you and not me. For too long I’ve seriously thought it was me. I thought maybe I was too sensitive or too conservative or too prude or too melancholic. Maybe I am all those things. And if there is something I need to change, I just don’t feel like you have my best interests at heart to help me make any of those changes.
Even though I’m breaking up with you, I’ll still be around. See, this breaking up isn’t a run away and hide in the closet with a gallon of ice cream breakup. No, this breakup is “I’m no longer letting you lead me.” I’m not letting you lead my moods, opinions or self esteem anymore. I’ve cleaned out all your worthless junk thanks to my friend F.B. Purity. I’ve taken away your ability to tell me who or what I can see. Your so called “suggestions” or “recommendations” were really just you trying to control the relationship–trying to control me. I’ve also gotten rid of a bunch of common friends that weren’t really friends , o begin with, more like followers. We only liked each other to be liked more by you. Again, one of your control tactics.
Now the really awkward part, how do I end this letter? I mean do I say something profound like “Stay gold?” Or something flippant like, “See ya around?” Or “It’s been fun.” Something funny like, “Don’t call me, I’ll call you?” Or do I just encourage you? “You know, you really have the power to make a huge difference in lives. You have the means to encourage others on a wide scale; I’m talking globally! You can connect people through noble ideas and inspire people to be their very best selves. You can bring people together to serve each other in love. But first you have to decide that’s your goal. See, I’ve decided that is my goal. I’ve realized you’re distracting me from that goal. Maybe instead of ‘goal’ I should say ‘purpose.'”
In parting, let me ask you, “What’s your purpose?”