The Intellect is a lonely hunter.

Oh no, another Anonymous, whine, I'm still reeling from havin' Mr. Rogers on this website, and did Matt just call me "Sharon" (below) instead of Sister Morgan? Or was he talking about someone else?
I gotta agree 100% with Chan below in his response to Matt. Julie's right, and I'm right, and Chan's right. Ah, says Fiddler on the Roof, but we can't ALL be right. Yep. Yep. We are. Your post is filled with a lot of stuff, Matt. You do try hard—maybe too hard. I also know you want to be honest more than you want a lot of things, but you really were pretty much a jerk this semester (I missed the sentences in your post where you list all the ways others responded to you in the last weeks of school.) It did got serious the day I ended seminar, and then said “Everyone who had been offended by Matt this week, please stay.” I can't believe I did that, but did you notice the full room? You can’t surround yourself with barbed wire, using your mouth to strip down people and still feel surprised at being lonely. "Intelligent wit" is way overrated. What were you thinking? Others may not have been as worried about you as you think; they just wanted to stay close to you, Matt, seriously, but they didn’t want to feel hurt and were confused. As you implied in your post, any kind of judging and rejection is pain--for everyone.
Here’s the thing: I'm your friend, and I'm not going away no matter how jerk-faced you get, but I listened to more sensitive people than moi feeling confused about your actions and not knowing how to respond to your acid comments and angry tongue. You hurt them.
What I, myself, saw was you driving people away intentionally because you were one big open wound this semester, and that wasn’t ok with you for anyone to see, so I excused you—though maybe I was wrong—and didn’t pay much attention to it. (Except I took seminar time to publically shame you when too many people came into my office, and it got to be a dang, irritating pattern. . . . Nay, I didn't do that, did I? Crap. I'm sorry. What I meant to do was explain you to them. However, I shouldn't have to explain you to them. I think what Chan is saying is YOU are responsible for your relationships, and I think you know that already.)
We accept you because we like you—when you LET us. You're such an idiot about this. And you either like us, or you don’t. Keep it that simple. But, I don’t know anyone who has TOO many friends, especially of the caliber who work at the Center—every dang one of them.
Relationships are two-way, like Chan is trying to point out. They’re blessed responsibilities. They exist in the space BETWEEN people. The Savior (and the Beatles, not to sound irreverent--no comparison) said it well: You get what you give. To have wonderful friends, you have to BE a friend. Ha. Now I'm a Hallmark card, great, but, hey, I'm serious. And I know you DID try, Matt, you really did, but not enough. You don't just quit when it gets hard. You stand by people; you don’t run at the first sign of weakness in friends because it scares you about the weakness in yourself, you stay; you don't push people away when you're hurting (I'm the worst with this same fault); you don't take offense if you want true heart-friends—the kind that need no silly maintenance over the months and years but stand with you forever: as in our kind of friendship. It may be hard for you to believe, but people in the Center really care about you because they’ve seen what a good heart you have when you're being your "real" self. They like you in spite of your wit and sarcasm. Do you know how many people DON'T have that? I think the feelings in your post are real and honest, but it’s YOU who needs to accept you and face your self-betrayal right now. Plus, take yourself off the cross. You’re ok. It’s ok. You're going to make many more mistakes along the way. But, you are literally our brother—not figuratively—whether you like it or not. Like I said, I think we already do accept you—when you allow it. Stop pushing your friends away. Your friends, your future wife, and your relationship with the Savior are all you'll ever care about later. I know you don't want to be rude and unkind. I honestly know that about you.
How about a plan to help you stop being socially retarded? Here’s what I propose: You calm down, settle back into who you’ve been becoming for millions of years and just be who you are now--when you're not distracted(oh, here goes this 60’s stuff again), ya know? And when you don’t show respect and start testing your friends with your acid tongue again, I cut ¼ an inch off your tongue with a sharp knife. Huh? Huh? It’s quick and easy, and it’ll work—because I KNOW how much you want to be the good person you already are. You just got distracted by your own intelligence and forgot how wit is nothing without humility and love. How sad that it's its own lonely reward. That's not you. It's not. Stay with your heart. (Whew. I'm just reeking with the 60's stuff tonight. Sorry.)


Aly Nicole said...

"they just wanted to stay close to you, Matt, seriously, but they didn’t want to feel hurt and were confused"

This is so true.

I apologized when I didn't even know what to apologize for, because I wanted to "stay close to you." But I felt like my apology was rejected, as well as my friendship, so I left it up to you the remainder of the semester to save things. You never did, and I am hurt by that.

I understand that you are going through a tough time. You just needed to tell me that. I think there are more people out there who understand you than you believe.

And when you have a problem with someone, it is so much easier to bring it out and talk about it.

It all comes down to whether or not you really want a friend and the maintenance that might come with one. I can't invest as much of myself as I did before, because I am hurt, but I can still be a friend, Matt. I can't force you to do the same.

cinderkarli said...

I'm always slow getting onto the blog, so I guess this is a few days old. However, I did want to say a few small things.
I was hurt too by you this semester; mostly because you had been such a good friend to me before, and I too felt pushed away. But I never wanted to "judge." And I am still a little sad that when I quietly knelt down by you in the back and whispered to ask you if you were okay, you thought, along with the others who showed concern, that I was condencending to "save" you. No, I was sad because I could see that you hurt somehow, and I wanted you to know that you didn't have to be alone.
All that said, I didn't expect you to come with an "I'm sorry" band-aid after all the confusion had blown over and stick it on the hurt you had caused me. It was enough for you to stop by my apartment one last time before the end of the semester to talk and be silly and just be you. Because in the end, Matt, I just like you for who you are. You don't have to improve or show off for me to accept you. I think you will find that your friends understand you a lot better than you believe.