We Should Run Toward What Scares Us

It’s what we’re here to learn.

I recently had an unsettling experience and it’s the only thing I can think about. A close friend just undercut me and my business. It’s been so long since I had a close friend, I forgot how it felt to have that trust broken. Now I’m regretting letting her get close, then feeling bad about that regret; she was a great friend until now. My head is spinning.

I’m not naive about human nature. I know people operate on the level of what their needs are. But it’s one thing to have your own self-interest at the forefront, it’s another to deliberately hurt someone when it was completely possible to avoid it.

I’m forcing myself to not question our friendship, to not question the conversations we’ve had, to not cringe at the personal, emotional, vulnerable parts of me I shared with her. I know, we all get betrayed, get over it, move on, there are better friends to be made….

The point is, it happened, and now I have to decide how to react. This is the hard part. This is the part that scares me. This is where I would normally do nothing and wait for her to drop off my radar.

In theory I know I should call her out for what she’s done, but that’s a confrontation and miles outside of my comfort zone. I know it’s the right thing to do. I know this is what I would tell someone in my shoes to do. I can hear myself say confidently, “It scares you? That’s the reason you need to do it.”

“But wait! What are some alternative approaches?” the conflict-hating part (huge part) of me calls out, trying to make it sound like reason instead of cowardice. I give in, I have to consider these alternates first, lay them out in all their pathetic inadequacy.

Option 1: I could ignore it, hope it’s not the first thing I think of each time I see her name light up my phone (it will be). Eventually the sting of it will lessen. We may not be close friends any longer, but we’ll still be friends. That’s something, isn’t it?

Option 2: I could hint around at it, poke at it a few times, and hope she gets my meaning. She might feel guilty and apologize. Passive-aggressive, I know, but it has potential. I’ve done this before. But it was awful.

Option 3: I could give her one word response texts until she gives up. She’ll blame me for the demise of our friendship. I can live with that.

But I can’t. I have to confront her because this situation has happened to me for a reason. My avoidance of confrontation is more than a hobby, it’s a lifestyle, and this is the perfect opportunity to change that.

Wish me luck.

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