I’m not a big scorched earth person. Not really. I’m generally okay with things being messy. I have friends who are imperfect. All kinds of relationships that fluctuate from incredibly close to ships in the night (family, friends, even lovers).
In general, I think the pursuit of emotional closure is usually an impossible one. And the best curative agents are time and self-compassion.
I’ve found that forcing things to be more tidy and clearcut than they naturally are inevitably involves violence. Yes, even when done with surgical precision. (After all, what is surgery but controlled, therapeutic violence?)
But every now and then, I cut someone out of my life. I am done. Bye-bye. Moving on.
And what’s interesting is that I have never, ever regretted it. Sometimes I wonder if it’s because I err on the other side of things. If I’m more likely to tolerate behavior that I shouldn’t.
Or as one friend put it, “Page, the way you are, when you finally get pissed with someone, they deserved it a long time ago.”
It’s something I try to remind myself on the rare occasion I have to cut someone out. It’s funny. I know intellectually that you don’t need a reason to set such a boundary. That you get ultimate say over who you allow into your life as friends. But some days it would seem that self-doubt is the closest, best friend that I’ll ever have. So I have to remind myself that I’m being reasonable. Even if it would be obvious to me if I were considering someone else’s situation, that it’s entirely reasonable for them to cut out people who treat them badly. (Or who they simply don’t enjoy being around or have much in common with.)
Anyway, it’s unnatural for me to cut people out, but I never regret it.