I have a problem. I like people. Or not. It tends to be an immediate swing one way or the other, but it’s usually quite definite* and definitive. Every now and again I do change my mind about someone, but since this involves admitting that I was wrong, it is of course quite a rare occurrence.
That in itself isn’t really the problem. The main problem is a two-parter: there’s the fact that I tend to like the people I like a little too much sometimes, and the fact that I always seem to naturally assume that people like me a lot less than they actually do. So I try too hard. In a couple cases I have even tried so hard that the people in question thought I was in love with them. No offense, but if you knew the people in question, you would see how utterly laughable that is. Of course, they were special to me, but only in a purely platonic, friendly way. A kind of friendcrush if you will.
Trying too hard, and liking people usually means that I tend to lose my limits in what is acceptable “niceness”. I quite often have to really stop myself from buying gifts, or going a little over the top in my friendliness, which may come across as weird, or creepy to some I guess, but it’s just from genuinely liking to make people happy. Maybe one day I’ll tell you a few stories about how easy it is to abuse my generous side**. Or maybe I won’t.
Where it gets rather complicated is with this whole internet malarkey. Because, as I think I may have mentioned at least once before, it’s so very easy nowadays to meet people, and in the space of a day or two, spend as much time chatting with them as you have speaking to the “true friends” you’ve known for years and years. And it is therefore oh so easy to fall for a whole new bunch of people, and make the same mistakes all over again. In fact it’s even easier, because over the web you have even less idea what people really think of you.
Lately, I have had a few experiences of people whom I really thought merely tolerated me, and probably barely even that, who suddenly let me know in one way or another (the worst being the dreaded direct compliment), that they did actually appreciate and enjoy my company. So I’m trying to be good, to hold back a bit, and try to go the other way a little. Assume that people like me, and just relax.
It’s not easy. Being a nice person sucks.
**Stands up, hangs head in shame…**
Hello, my name’s Kathy, and I’m a Nice Person.
I guess, by writing this, I’m just hoping that maybe a few people will stumble across this, recognise themselves a little and maybe realise that quite a few people like them more than they think.
*Yes, people, that IS how you spell it.
** No, I won’t send any money to any African dictators’ widows. I’m nice, but not completely stupid.