“O wad some Pow’r the giftie gie us
To see oursels as others see us”
and I have often wished I had the power to give to some folks so they could see themselves as others see them. I have several people in my circle who make me absolutely paranoid about the possibility that I might be as delusional about myself as they are about themselves.
One of the people ( they all shall remain nameless, of course), is absolutely convinced she is being persecuted, maligned and talked about by others which makes people dislike her. This woman is a bully, who talks nastily to anyone she feels she can get away with talking to thus, she likes to throw her weight around, does not listen to anyone and is simply the phoniest person on the planet. She is quick with hugs and “darlings” but actually obviously cares little about anyone. Yet, she is firmly convinced that people do not like her because someone else has told them not to. Poor beastie.
The second person is constantly sick. She has every ailment you could possibly imagine and seeks cures from bizarre and amazingly weird places. I happen to believe that your body listens to you. If you keep telling it that it is sick it will probably agree with you some day. The irony is that she eats almost exclusively so-called health food. Since I have known the individual s/he has had back trouble/foot trouble/t00th trouble/headaches/digestive problems/and some odd disease that makes him/her break out in bruises ( which look suspiciously like perhaps s/he ran into something). I like him/her and I hope s/he decides to stop being a hypochondriac before s/he ends up like the joke, dead, with a headstone that reads, “See I told you I was sick!”
The third person is convinced that every man on the planet is in love with her. She is not a young woman, nor a particularly attractive one, but she is just positive that all members of the male species are struck dumb with lust at the sight of her. There is a new story frequently about how she has to fight them off with a stick. Men, according to her, approach her in public to ask for her name, engage her in conversation, request her phone number. Oddly enough I have never seen this happen in all the times I have been out with her in public. Perhaps it is my unattractive vibes that are canceling her siren song and making the men flee? I have to wonder if this is the kind of pathology shown by those women who send pictures of their naked body parts out on the internet seeking approbation of their beauty or desirability from strangers. All of us want to be attractive, but do you have to convince yourself that all men are attracted to you, and that it is so important that they are? What exactly does that do for you?
My fourth and final specimen is a person who is so egotistical that they beggar belief. They are positive they know everything about virtually everything and yet they are always saying others are vain or self-aggrandizing. This person is in a position that they did not earn, has not done well with and will not be in much longer, having been declared redundant as the British say. Yet, they are very willing and quite prone to go tell others what they are doing wrong, and suggesting improvements, of course or how they do not need to toot their own horns. This person has no clue that most people in the workplace find them both annoying and arrogant. The reaction to being told this was outrage that folks “beneath” them (none of the people who said it report to this person) were unable to grasp their splendor.
Being around these folks makes me, as I mentioned above, very frightened that I might have enormous misconceptions about myself. I am constantly doing a self-check to see if I too am nuts. I know I have faults. I am judgmental, stubborn, set in my ways, tend to think I know everything, have a little OCD, love to gossip, etc., but I know these things and work on them, sometimes unsuccessfully granted. My examples above literally have no clue!
My daughter used to call some of her friends who were chubby and thought they were slender ” anorexic dyslexics.” I need to come up with a term like that for my folks who really, really need the gift to see themselves as others see them. It might not be a pleasant sight but at least they could stop living in a land that does not exist.
You know the saying, neurotics build castles in the sky and psychotics live in them. I think some folks are definitely pulling the U-Haul up to a cloud.