Para-RARGH!a-noia (and it’s battlements)

Apprehension and wariness of others is unfortunately, for me, a consequence of feelings of fear and anxiety lingering about from some not-so-fabulous past experiences. I often agonise over the meaning behind this or that comment, searching for the clues that confirm my suspicions – they don’t like me, I’m annoying them, they think I’m an idiot, they’re just hanging out with me because they’re bored/out of pity, etc. Why the distrust? This tendency to predict rejection really isolates me from others; a lonely walled space; drawbridge raised and battlements guarded.
I’m afraid to expect certain things from people, such as understanding, compassion, time even, horrified at the thought of imposing any kind of obligation. At one time in my life I believed this approach to be realistic, fair and principled – as if to count on more is too emotionally burdensome, impeding on other’s freedom! Not too long ago though I came to recognise this as a (semi-sub-conscious I guess!) strategy to avoid being let down.
I have a friend who once jokingly labelled me a “flight risk” due to my disappearing acts; connoisseur of the “Irish goodbye”.
A few drinks hampered my stringent self-monitoring. I’d jump ship at the slightest chance of judgement or criticism coming my way. Throw myself to the waves rather than reveal my vulnerable self and suffer any form of emotional abandonment. Such a contradiction, self isolation to avoid . . . well, . . isolation!
Admitting the problem, first step, so on. It’s not easy though to lower that drawbridge and disengage those braced arrows. It feels like moving to a yurt, perched on a cliff, wind howling and waves crashing hundreds of meters below.

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