If you pull my hair back behind my right ear you’ll find a handle. Honest to God I’m the biggest mug on the planet, one of those ones that they used to have in Central Perk that needed two hands to hold. I get myself into these situations where people take advantage and then because they’re people I love I let them get away with it, even if it’s to my own detriment. I’ve painted myself into a corner with a dear friend and although I know they’re taking the piss I’m putting up and shutting up about it because I don’t want to make waves. Pathetic right? They’re abusing my generosity and I’m letting them off the hook.
The fact I’m about to come into some money has made me realise that I need to look at how I relate money to friendship and love. It’s partially to do with my childhood where the message that money = love was reinforced by a spendaholic Mum and a Dad who was absent through work and so used to shower us with gifts. I convinced myself early on that people would only like me if I was lavish in a similar way to my parents, I didn’t believe in my own ability to make friends. Even at primary school I judged myself to be not good enough when aged no more than about 7 I bribed someone in my class with a crisp £5 note to be my friend. It’s heartbreaking to look back at that and mortifying to admit it but I guess it goes some way to explaining my lack of esteem to this day. What had happened to me so early on that I didn’t believe myself to be worthy of being someone’s friend? I’m not sure where it came from but even now it’s something that afflicts me.
I’m cavalier with my money if I think it’ll make someone like me more and (here’s the crucial bit) not abandon me. Oh yes the abandonment buzzword is a biggie for me, I can’t bear the thought of people deserting me even members of my family who couldn’t shake me off if they tried. I’ve lost count of the number of times I’ve stretched myself beyond breaking point financially to do or buy nice things for people I love or people I want to like me and really it’s about time I stopped it. I caught myself the other day seconds before I offered to pay for something exceptionally expensive for a long term friend, I wasn’t even going to loan them the money, no my head was telling me to just gift them the money even though I can ill afford it. I haven’t really got a clue how I can break the pattern which I’ve clearly been stuck in from a young age, I just don’t seem to be able to stop myself reaching into my bag and splashing the cash in return for friendship. Sad huh?