Ask Me Again
How I Overfunctioned: I repeatedly invited Betty to various social activities. She would repeatedly decline my invitation then say, “Ask me again.” Incredibly, I did.
Epiphany: Then came what would be the last, “Ask me again.” Finally, I said to myself, Uh, no.
I had an emotional, maternal attachment to this woman but that was mine to manage, not hers. I needed to take responsibility for wanting more from a person than she wanted from me.
Instead of further attempts to conjure the magic invitation that would open our relationship to more than what it was, I allowed myself to feel the truth of the situation. No amount of my running around picking up metaphorical tennis balls was going to change that, though for a long time I had deluded myself that it would. Betty was not available for a relationship beyond what we already had: a professional but friendly context of her being my dance instructor.
Revolution: Before my epiphany, I thought her “Ask me again” comment was narcissistic. I now understand such judgment was my interpretation of her declinations, most likely because it was easier for me to demonize her than experience my feelings of hurt and sadness.
I’ve come to understand that it’s not for me to judge or interpret the behavior of other people. As Andre RuPaul Charles has famously said, “What other people think of me is none of my business.” That energy is better invested in taking care of my own.