Nope my phone is not broken and I’m not talking about the CV joints on my car needing to be fixed (although that might be a future blog). I’m talking about a specific thing – Broken People. I have run across two types of broken people lately and I will discuss that at length, but first I want to discuss what a Broken Person is.
There is a difference between a Broken Person and someone who has problems. Now I have a degree in psychology so the generalization I just made is bothering me and I will try to explain it as best as I can without going into too much detail.
First something has happened to them. Not something small but very big that has altered how they view life and the people who they interact with. Let me be explicit here this IS NOT AN EXCUSE. Bad things happen to everyone and as I’ve stated before, your experiences in life make you who you are. It is how you deal with experiences that show who you are.
Let’s look at me for example (ta da) and I’m not trying to pin a rose on my ass here. I have a lot of faults and I do stupid and crazy things but I man up to them, and I will apologize when I need too. That being said, I have had bad shit happen to me. I’ve been raped (yep I have), abused (little kids with rubber hoses are bad news), I have a chronic disease (it’s so much fun), have had tumors removed from my body (yep that’s plural), and that is not even really all the bad stuff. However, I think it gives you a good idea about how I’ve had interesting things happen to me (smile).
I like to think I am a nice person. I don’t treat people badly on purpose, I help people when I can, I keep myself grounded in reality, and I try to do what I can to be a better person, always.
Broken People live in their own form of reality. If they realize that or not is nothing I can speak too but I do know that what makes them broken is that they hurt people.
Now let me state here again that we all hurt people. I do, you do, and your mom does, everyone. Maybe Mother Theresa didn’t and Jesus surely didn’t, but since I am not Jesus I admit that I have hurt people. I also apologize to those people. Am I perfect? No and I never will be perfect.
The difference here is that the people who are broken hurt people and then convince themselves that their actions are justified. It is not them it is you. Always someone else’s fault/problem/issue and to be fair sometimes it is the other persons fault. I am here to say with 100% certainty that it is never ALWAYS someone else’s fault. Ever.
Let me give you two examples.
Example 1 – I know a man who thinks it’s ok to cheat. Not just cheat but cheat a lot and keep his wife, a girlfriend, and maybe someone else on the side. This person has somehow convinced himself and the girlfriend that they are star crossed lovers. “If only the world was different and fate had intervened!” (holding up hand) My name isn’t fate but I can intervene for you. If you want to be with the girlfriend get a divorce. TA DA (standing like a tap dancer that just finished a performance)!
”It’s not that easy!” Well actually it is. You may not have as much money as you did and your ex will probably hate you but…yeah it is that easy.
Hurting the girlfriend is fine because…well he has a wife! She knows that! He has also convinced himself that the girlfriend does not think he’ll leave his wife for her (blink blink). (holding up hand again) Trust me she does.
Above is what I call “fantasy land”. That person has convinced himself that what he’s doing is fine if someone else gets hurt it is not his fault or problem, he’s been honest with the girlfriend. Not so much the wife but that’s something I’m sure he’s justified to himself. Remember the whole star crossed lover’s emo story (smile).
The thing about this guy is that he’s broken. Now I’m sure you all are thinking he’s an asshole and that I’ve painted him as huge asshole. Well you know what? He is an asshole because of what he does to women but he’s not an asshole at other times.
He can be a nice guy, he can give great advice to people, and he really loves his children. He could be an amazing person and a great husband but he’s broken. If he wanted to fix himself he could still be that person. He doesn’t though.
Yes I know why he is broken but that’s not for public consumption.
Example #2 – I’m not so sure why this one is broken, although I do have my ideas on the topic. Those are also not for public consumption.
This one has a pattern of behavior. Every one of his close friends, at every point in his life, has done something to him that justifies ending the friendship. No, that is not an exaggeration. Every single close friend/roommate/best friend of his has done something to him. They have either abandoned him, come on to him, or something else (mired of stories can go here).
This person has never had a serious romantic relationship and can only keep a “best friend” for about 3-5 years before something happens. This is also everyone else’s fault. Remember what I said above? It’s never, with 100% certainty, the other persons fault all of the time.
Once that “something” happens this person then badmouths their ‘friend’ to everyone they can. They make the stories worse than they are to try to justify the actions. “Oh she was a psycho stalker.” “He was a non-Christian horny man just whoring around.” “She wants a relationship and everything has changed.” “He changed and wasn’t there for me.” another example of fantasy land.
And as above this person is broken but does not want to fix themselves. So they will stay broken which is a shame. They could also be an amazing person.
Now I can see your argument that things like this happen all the time. Just because it happens once doesn’t mean that that person is ‘broken’. I agree with you but I counter with that the examples I have given you are not examples of a onetime incident. Example 1 has cheated over 20 times and Example 2 has gotten rid of 3 friends in the last 3 years. These are patterns of behavior.
I know them both personally and I care about them both. I’m the only one who sees the first one for his good and his bad and I see a lot myself and what I could have been if I were broken, in the second one. The simple fact is I accept them both for who they are with no judgment. I call them on their BS and won’t put up with their fantasy worlds.
And how do I know I’m not broken? It’s a good question and one I discussed with a good friend of mine yesterday. I think what I got out of that conversation is this. If I were broken I wouldn’t be able to recognize my own flaws and contributions to problems. I wouldn’t be able to apologize to people for things *I* have done wrong. I don’t blame my problems or actions on anyone else and I take personal responsibility for things in my life. Half-Korean Girl fantasy land does not exist (smile).
Broken people can be exhausting. Don’t take their BS it’s not worth it. You don’t have to cut them out of your life but you do need to know who and what they are and move forward. If they’re in your life don’t let them drag you down and understand that if they do drag you down it’s time to cut your losses.