(title is taken from Oh, The Guilt by Nirvana)
“You have no reason to feel guilty.” I’ve said it. I’ve heard it. We all have. But if it is being said that means that you do feel guilty and where else would it come from if you didn’t have a reason to feel guilt?
We feel guilt when we do something that we know will hurt someone, but we do it anyway for whatever reason. When we have no reason to feel guilt is when we don’t owe the person the sort of consideration that would prevent us from doing what we want to do. What happens then when you’re the kind of person who believes that we owe everyone consideration? Where do you draw the line and say, “enough, I’m taking this for me. I’m looking after myself for once.”
Will you lose your soul if you do? I am so fortunate to have a large group of friends who have very different points of view on life; friends who live their lives differently from each other and who lead very different lifestyles. They are all always willing to listen to my story or give me advice all without any expectation that their advice is going to be the one that I take.
The truth is I do feel guilty. I feel guilty because I feel like I said to the universe that I was finally, honestly ready to start dating again and I seem to suddenly have more than one suitable person to date. Why does this make me feel guilty? Because I know a lot of great women and I think they deserve to have their pick as much as I do. And yes, I know the response to that is: “But you can’t control other people’s attraction to your friends”. Well, you know what? I wish that I could.
I don’t like being happy when people I care about are unhappy. In fact, when I am unhappy and I hear some great news from my friends it lifts my spirits because all I ever need to see are the people I care about be happy and all my problems don’t even matter. My problems are my own and I have control over them so I don’t fret too much about them; but when my people are unhappy and I can’t control the outcome it just kills me.
I know I need to look after me. But how do I just turn off wanting my friends to be happy even if it is at the expense of my own happiness? Especially when I don’t even know if this is really what’s going to make me happy? So I guess I have to live with this guilt for a little while. My gut is telling me to ride this one out and it’s telling me to be patient for once in my life.
Most importantly, it’s telling me to just be honest as ashamed of my truths as I may be sometimes.
Here goes nothing.