Public Service Announcement: Drawing a Line in the Sand

I was raised with a wonderful set of parents who taught me to become the person I am today. They taught me to turn the other cheek, be kind to everyone, and to live by the golden rule. These are great principles to instill in your children, however it doesn’t really teach you how to deal with people that are assholes and people that will never give a shit about you, no matter how nice you are or how much you go out of your way for them. 

Unfortunately that opens you up to getting your feelings hurt and trampled on, a lot. It teaches other people that they can use you or be disrespectful to you, or tell you lies with no consequences or repercussions. People will treat you how you allow them to treat you. And while living by the golden rule is great in theory, sometimes you gotta throw that shit out the window and draw a line in the sand. 

But that’s the funny thing, when you decide to stand up for yourself, or create boundaries after not doing it for so long. People don’t like that. People get pissed. And people want to turn it around on you and act like you are the one with the problem. They like to try to say hurtful things to get a rise out of you, or try to belittle you or your family. But let’s be honest, that says a lot more about their issues and their attitude than it does about your own. 

So here’s the deal, I’m laying it out how it is and how it’s gonna be. And if people don’t like it, like I said, it says more about themselves than it says about me and my family.  

1. I have never and will never think that I am “better than” anyone else in this whole wide world. Do I make wiser choices than some people?  Am I nicer than some people? Am I more honest than some people? Do I handle shitty situations better than some people?  Sure. And there are people out there that do those things more than I do too. Being who I am and having positive traits when others lack them does not make me better than anyone else. But I also will not apologize for being a good person either. 

2. If you have repeatedly lied to my family, then you can’t be trusted. When someone says one thing and does another, time and time again, it shows they are unreliable and undependable. Trust is not a given, it is something to be earned, whether you are friend, family, or otherwise. 

3. My husband has long-term, chronic pain. He has had 13 surgeries and likely more before the end of the year. This does not make him weak, it does not make him a “pussy”. This is simply his life, OUR life, and we are trying to make the best of it. He is also bipolar and lives with anxiety and panic attacks. Again, this does not make him a weak person. It means that he has to take medicine for something his brain doesn’t produce naturally-just like a diabetic would take insulin because their body doesn’t produce it. I will not allow anyone on this earth to try to use his physical or mental health against him. He does not owe this explanation to a sole, but I will share to set the record straight-he is probably one of the more stable people I know because he is regularly monitored by his doctor and adjustments are made as needed. This doesn’t mean life is all unicorns pooping rainbows-when shitty things happen, it makes him feel shitty, just like anyone else!  Additionally, do not EVER ask my husband to share his medication. Not only is it illegal, but you are essentially stealing from a person who NEEDS that medication. If anyone in our lives needs pain meds or anxiety meds, they can do what he does-go to a damn doctor and deal with your own problems!

4. Because of Eddie’s physical health, we have been a 1-income family for our entire marriage. We do not have a lot of money. We have never cleared $30K as a household of 2. We have to budget like crazy if we don’t want to go into a great deal of debt. When we have had times in our lives where some money crossed our paths, we were generous and shared with others. Whether that was as a gift, or a loan, we shared because we are giving people. But unfortunately, not being more selfish with our money has not been great for us. We live paycheck to paycheck. We save for things we want or trips we plan. We aren’t extravagant people. But a lesson has been learned that we need to be more selfish. From now on, we are taking care of ourselves and ourselves only. That doesn’t mean we won’t be giving people, but we will be sure to prioritize what needs we give to and make sure it’s a wise decision that doesn’t leave us in a bad financial situation ever again. 

5. Why would I publicly make this service announcement rather than confront people face to face?  Because history has shown that words get twisted, lies are told, and our sharing of frustrations is perceived as being wrong in some way. Instead of being listened to, we are talked over, interrupted, and belittled. I will not continue to allow myself and my husband to be disrespected and our frustrations swept under the rug because it makes other people uncomfortable to face the truth. 

The line has been drawn. If it’s not respected, then we don’t need to be in each others’ lives, plain and simple.