In my experience, the people who loudly proclaim that they are an independent person are just establishing an excuse for their upcoming rudeness. I expect most people would like to avoid being entirely dependent on someone else. As a parent and a pack animal, I understand and am comfortable with others depending on me.

It came as something of a surprise to me when a friend commented that I was an independent person. Over the last two years, I have noticed quite a few cases where my image of myself differs from everyone else’s image of me. In those cases I have been forced to reevaluate myself and change my thinking. So when my friend called me independent, I had no choice but to introspect and determine to what degree that is true.

While never stated explicitly, I learned in my childhood that the best I could expect was indifference; any interest taken in me was rarely benevolent. So it stands to reason that I would have become rather independent: I knew that I was on my own. Of course, as a child I had limited resources and that independence grew in a warped way.

I think that factors into a lot of aspects of who I am. I rarely ask for help not because I arrogantly think I need no help but rather because I am surprised when someone helps me when I ask. My first instinct is to not share what I am feeling because no one else but me cared what I felt. The experience of being an outcast manifests as paranoia and defensiveness. I strive to be strong and capable so that I can control my own destiny.

I have worked hard for decades to create a new family, a new pack, that can depend on me. I am not sure how that reconciles with my newly-discovered independence. I hope to remain polite, though.


One Response

  1. […] with the anxiety and mistrust. But it makes sense that it would be of significance to me since a packĀ means no one gets left behind or […]

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