I value authenticity in my relationships with people. Authenticity in the way they treat me and others as well as authenticity in disclosures about themselves and their lives. I do not require that every person that is my friend or has a part in my life disclose everything about themselves. I am not the government. I do not vet people. But I have a difficult time trusting people who insist life is perfect for them and try very hard to cover or mask their faults.
I like flawed people.
I like people that have a history or a story or two to tell. Maybe it’s the writer in me but I feel a kinship and a trust with people that are honest about their flaws and have no problem admitting when life isn’t all sunshine and roses. This might seem weird, but I like to be around people who have had struggles, issues or imperfections they are afraid to talk about.
It’s because I consider myself a very flawed person. I have had difficulties in the past with meeting those people who seem to have the perfect lives. I like to call it “Facebook lives”. On Facebook, everyone seems to have the ideal life. They go on vacations all the time, climb mountains, their kids are well behaved, their houses are spotless, they get along with their entire family, they have the perfect marriage, they are in perfect health, they run 5 miles every day and they are better than you.
I can’t be around those people. The struggles I have with bipolar disorder, my family and life in general makes it difficult for me to be around people who I deem to be not genuine. We all have issues, we all have problems, and we all have struggles. I spent my life being around people who claimed their lives were perfect everything works in their favor and in turn it made me struggle with authenticity with myself. I spent a good portion of my life just trying to get my personality to fit.
I tried hard to hide the pain that I was feeling and deny my depression. Because of this, I never knew who I truly was and I felt that I was the only one dealing with the dark side of life. It worsened my depression and it caused me to think that I was unfit on unworthy to be happy or to be part of this world.
The best relationships for me are with those people who are truly authentic and can admit failure, defeat and pain. They can confess that yes they truly do not like their sister or had a difficult childhood. They can admit that they’re having problems with their marriage, or that having kids was much more difficult than it should be. They can admit that they used have a drug problem or one point in life had thoughts of suicide.
The more I surround myself with authentic people, the better my chances of being able to be extremely authentic with myself. It is the only way that I can accept myself and learn that everybody has struggles everyone has problems and that I deserve to be in this world just as much as anyone.