Friday, July 23, 2010

Clarity and Closure With Help From The Real Housewives of New York City

As I stated in my last post, I struggle with liars and boundaries. I feel like my Inner Little Girl wants to be trusting with soft, mushy boundaries. But the Grownup Me has to explain to my Inner Little Girl that not everyone is honest and not everyone is meant to be my BFF. And then my Inner Little Girl asks for New York Super Fudge Chunk ice cream for dinner, and then the Grownup Me caves because she was just a bad ass when it came to protecting Inner Little Girl that Grownup Me feels that she can bend this rule. It’s hard to be a bad ass all of the time, right?

Anyway, there are a few people in my life that have taken advantage of my sweet, innocent Inner Little Girl. I talked about that here. But long post short, I had trusted that some people had me and my Babes best interest at heart. In the end, I realized it was all about what they wanted. They had been so generous with us, and I thought it was because they truly loved me and my Babes. Come to find out, they do love us . . . as long as I followed their rules and boundaries, which were completely different from mine. For quite a long time, I felt confused by this and maybe even a little guilty. I mean, they had been so giving, why shouldn’t I let them do whatever they wanted with my family?

And during this past season of The Real Housewives of New York City, it all became crystal clear. I would like to preface this with the following statement: I am only basing this on what was actually shown in the show. I have no idea what was left on the editing room floor. I saw how Jill became outraged at Bethenny when she didn’t play by Jill’s rules. It appeared that Bethenny felt like she was being hounded by Jill, and when Bethenny wanted some space, Jill became angry. I don’t think that Bethenny didn’t want Jill in her life; she just wanted the room to create her life. Then Jill would throw all that she had done for Bethenny in her face, as if Bethenny owed her something. Jill “helped” Bethenny not because she truly wanted to be kind, but because she wanted something out it, either to brag about how great she was for helping and/or so that she can have some sort of control in what Bethenny does in her life.

And that’s when it hit me: these people weren’t helping me and being generous with us because they truly wanted to be kind. They liked show boating their help and thought they had a right to have some control over me and my family. When the boundaries had been redrawn, they weren’t interested in hanging around anymore. When they couldn’t have full control over the game, they took their ball and went home.

It’s a sad situation, but I find it humorous that I was able to find clarity and closure through a reality show. It was helpful to see a situation so similar to mine play out before me on TV because I was too close to mine to see it for what it was. It was also helpful to see Jill’s side; she really thought that because she helped Bethenny, she was entitled to some of Bethenny’s success. I had to see how Jill operated in order to get that her intentions were not good.

So thank you, Bethenny and Jill, you have helped me find closure and clarity on this troubling issue. Bethenny, after you reconstructed your boundaries with Jill I was able to see that it wasn’t a bitch move; it was imperative in order to live a healthy life. It’s tough when I realize that some people aren’t truly happy for me and try to make me feel guilty for evolving as a person. But in the end, there is no need to apologize for protecting myself from these kinds of negative people.

Next post will not be so dark and heavy because who wants to talk about that stuff when BlogHer is right around the corner?! I am so excited! There will also be some new changes to my blog in the very near future, so keep a look out for them!!

Have a great weekend!


Bossy Betty said...

Wonderful post. So glad you got this clarity. Growth is a good thing.

Kim Murray said...

I'm so glad Jill and Bethenny helped you find closure! It was a real drag watching those two wasn't it?

I found clarity with the housewives of Orange County (Lessons We Can Learn From the Real Housewives of Orange County) in that, I will no longer watch the Real Housewives of Orange County. I can't do it anymore.

I am "this close" to tuning out the Real Housewives of New York because I'm not sure I can stomach another season of Jill's narcissism or Kelly's incoherent ramblings. We'll see what next season brings!

Kendra said...

So glad you were able to get some insight! Sometimes I feel silly when I get real insignt into my life from a bad reality show or silly fiction (not badmouthing Real Housewives specifically, since I've never seen it). But then I remember: whether we're taking it as truth or fiction, it's obviously a story line that rings true, and that's what matters. It's hard to see, when it's your own life, what the broad strokes are. But we can easily look at someone else and see the ways they have done wrong or had wrong done to them. I'm glad you were able to see the lessons for your own life; maybe I should try that!

Erin Janda Rawlings said...

Thanks, Kendra!

Anonymous said...

I had a situation last year with a friend and I ended up just asking her for a few months of space. I just needed to quietly evaluate some things, you know? Well, you would've thought I lit her puppy dog on fire by her reaction...she was absolutely appalled and offended when I set that boundary with her. Our friendship ended shortly after, and obviously it was for the best.

Setting boundaries with people is something I've really been learning over this past year. It's a GREAT thing! Good for you, Erin!