I have often read, or heard it said, that we can't control circumstances, things that happen to us, and/or actions of other people, but we can control our reactions to those circumstances, things and people. Therefore, when Something happens or people do Something, one is faced with a choice of How to React. In a few cases, there's only one appropriate reaction, e.g. someone collapses in front of you, you call for help and the ambulance. In the vast majority of cases there are a plethora of possible reaction choices. For example, if someone says or does something you find highly offensive, you can choose to get mad, calmly disagree, try to understand, ask for more clarification, walk away or ignore it and let it go by.
Often in the past I have stayed in situations that I found uncomfortable because I quite simply didn't know what to do and thought maybe as time took its course, things would sort themselves out. Choosing to wait it out is a choice, too. I wouldn't have stayed in whatever situation it was---a relationship, a friendly acquaintance, a job---if there hadn't been some good things about it, even though in hindsight, the bad may have outweighed the good from time to time or even most of the time. Still, such ongoing unresolved situations make me uncomfortable. I can handle gray areas when it comes to things like political views or even personal morality most of the time. However, when it's about something concrete and not involving diverging viewpoints---say, where I stand vis-a-vis someone else, or my job---I prefer definites.
I think this was a year of taking some ongoing, uncomfortable situations and making them Definite. In a couple of cases, this involved getting rid of some people who'd been in my life for some years. It's not that they were bad people, it's not that they pissed me off once, or any of that bull crap. It's that the ongoing nature of the contacts were not healthy for me, especially over the long term. I was spending too much time dealing with my upset and not moving ahead with my life and it wasn't fair to me or the other person to keep trying and pretending. I think for some of these people, pretense may be how they get by in life because they aren't ready to face cold hard reality, but that's their choice. We all have different ways of dealing with things; their way just isn't my way. It doesn't mean I'm going to follow them home to wherever they live, or onto their web pages or wherever, and yell at them about it. Just because we disagree over something is no reason for me to throw stones at you, although if you throw them at me I'll shut you out in 2 seconds flat.
Anyway, my strategy worked. Maybe it was hard on "feelings," maybe it was even hard on my own "feelings," but I am a lot happier and doing better at life for standing up to what I honestly felt. It's good to have someone remind me out of the blue of something that really, really bothered me a year or two ago and contrast with how very little that same thing bothers me now, and realize there are days when I don't even think about it because I'm having too much fun. I hope to continue along that path, whether other people understand or are supportive or not. Although I don't really seek or need anyone else's approval to do what I know is right for me, enough people do understand, and I stopped feeling like the Freak of the World a long time ago. People who don't understand are ignorable when they keep on their own side of the fence, and laughable or pitiable when they bother to come wag their finger in my face.
Yup, I'm self-centered, centered at the core of my being. I like it that way.