Let me start with an apology. For as long as you have known me, I have probably gone out of my way to make sure you were emotionally intact despite having my own issues to worry about. As people in my social network, I have devoted too many hours caring about what is going on in your life, and neglecting what is going on in mine. I have made you feel like a priority, and that is comfortable for you. It’s nice to have a pushover as a friend, especially a friend who gets things done. Makes things happen. Follows through on promises. Stays up all night editing your crappy undergrad writing for no cost, despite your access to a writing center.
So, I’m sorry to be taking that away from you. I don’t say I’m sorry because I feel sorry for me.
But I know how hard and confusing it must be for you to see me giving myself the priority, putting myself first.
I’ve stopped telling you what you want to hear, or stopped talking to you altogether. That makes you feel a little icky inside, I know. But I don’t blame you. I created this monster.
But here’s the thing: while you definitely matter in the world, you are not exactly important to my immediate life. Unless you are my significant other, family, a former student, or in my very small group of close friends, your daily distress means about [ ] that much to me, and I’m tired of hearing about it.
Now, of course, I’m always here for you for the things that matter. You know what those things are.
But I’m tired of hearing how inconvenient it is for you that I haven’t planned a whole weekend, found dog sitters, taken time off work, rented a car, and driven 4+ hours to come visit for lunch. I’m tired of hearing how much it sucks that I won’t stay up until 3am again to re-write your essays. I’m tired of hearing how you’re returning to your cheating partner again, and isn’t there something I can do to help the situation?
I’m tired of being asked to give pieces of myself, hours, investments, emotional energy for no return whatsoever.
No, readers. You are not the priority anymore. You never should have been.
I know you’ve felt the changes, but we all know it needed to be said.
I no longer live in a world where you come first, because I now live in a world where I come first.
Your petty bullshit will not be tolerated.
I will no longer be manipulated.
I won’t feel bad for not having lunch with you, or for missing your performances half way across the city/world with a days notice, while knowing I also have limited access to transportation and funds.
You will no longer dictate who I am by saying, “The Nikki I remember…”
I won’t be guilted.
And if I extend help out to you, I will expect you to say thank you.
So this is what I have to say: if you can’t handle not being a priority in my already busy, wild, crazy, emotional life…
you can get out.
It will be exactly 0 sweat off my back.