The Other Way

17 Aug

When those close to us have problems with others, they may decide to change the dynamic of their relationships. Of course, they may do whatever works for them, but sometimes they pull us into the situation. If they decide they no longer want to be friends with someone, they may tell us not to befriend them anymore as well. If they want to control the situation, they may tell us not to contact the other party. These requests may put us in an awkward situation, and we may feel unprepared to comply with them, or think it’s inappropriate for us. Some feel that because we’re close to them we need to follow their lead with changes they decide for others in the circle. But that’s not true. We need not do anything just because someone else is doing it. We can choose for ourselves.

Relationship dynamics can be complex. We can be friends with lots of different people and each relationship is different. We can choose who we want to spend time with, who we want to talk to, and who we want to get close to. The relationships we build are ours. If someone else doesn’t want to be involved with someone we share our lives with, they may make that choice. But if they ask us to sever our ties with them over an issue they’re having, it can be uncomfortable. Continuing a relationship after someone close to us has asked us to stop does not mean we don’t care about them. Going our own way doesn’t mean we aren’t loyal. It just means we are making our own choices.  And we are always entitled to make our own choices.

When we face situations like these, we may feel pressure to comply. It’s normal to want to do things for those we care about, but it doesn’t mean we have to follow them blindly. We don’t have to agree with every decision they make. Their decisions are theirs, and they own them. And we own our decisions. We are free to decide what we want to do even if it’s the complete opposite of what is being asked. We can choose how our relationships roll forward on our own. We don’t have to go along, we don’t have to agree, and we don’t have to do anything that doesn’t feel right. We can politely, and patiently decline. We can express our concern and care for the person involved, but calmly and quietly make our own choices.

Today if you’re being asked or pressured to end or change a relationship with someone in your circle because of a problem with others, you may choose what is best for you. You don’t have to go along with the request if it’s not the best decision for you. No matter how close you are to the person asking, you can make your own choice. Your relationships are yours to manage. It doesn’t matter what anyone else is doing, you can go forward your own way. Be strong. You know what’s best for you. Stick to that, and be true to yourself.

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