There is a saying that goes something like "when you feel that you are the only one you know who is sane, chances are it's actually you who are insane." Likewise, my father used to tell me that the only common item in all my failed ventures was... well, me. I took this to heart, and I apply it to the world around me today. I live a happy life, with a great wife, two kiddos and a really decent job. While like most, I can spend all day complaining about things; overall I'm pretty happy with only superficial complaints.
I have my problems. I talk too much. I offend the easily offended. I sometimes piss people off with my flippant attitude and comments. I'm not the greatest husband, father, or friend, but I'm certainly not the worst. In the name of humor I get myself in trouble sometimes. The instance I'm writing about now goes something like this... A friend tells me that she only has a couple of bucks left in her bank account. We discuss the matter in my cube for around ten minutes, and I even offer to loan her some money, out of genuine concern for her wellbeing. Here is where the trouble comes in. Another friend comes over, and for some reason he and I start talking about money. He says that he's got some extra cash, and I suggested that he share a little of that cash with my buddy. I think I said something like "Well, if you've got so much money, why don't you give some to [my buddy]." In no way did I imply the financial situation of my buddy. I rattled off that sentence as an inside joke. In my eyes, there is no harm, no foul. The friend with extra cash thinks my commentary is in regards to his bragging, and my buddy gets the other side of the joke.
Only the buddy doesn't get the joke. She does, but she's offended by it. She thinks that I'm breaking her confidence and exposing her to mockery. She says that I'm "throwing her under the bus." She says "you always do that", "you do that to make yourself feel bigger", "you bring up sh*t to embarrass me." I keep telling her, "Look, I think it's funny. You enjoy it when I do the same thing to other people, but you freak out when I toss around stuff regarding you" I also told her that if she doesn't like it, she has two options... stop telling me stuff she doesn't want me to make light of, or stop talking to me. Over and over again we've had this discussion, and yesterday it happened again. I was standing at her cube and she informed me that a coworker on our floor had two bags of Halloween candy. I asked her if there was any good stuff in the bags. She said she didn't know but that she heard there was lots of tootsie rolls. She then said that she didn't like plastic chocolate. The conversation continued for two or three more lines, and then we both headed down to the candy in question. Once we got there, I noticed a bunch of starburst. I asked her if starburst was one of the plastic candies that she didn't like. Then, because I have a habit of making jokes, she assumed that I was "doing it again", and got all pissed off.
Now, I've thought about this for a while, and I'm still confused by why she got so frigg'en pissed off, but then it hits me! She has a history that demands she destroy every relationship she is in. I have a lot of dedicated friendships. Many have held together for years, and I'm constantly adding to the list. All in all, I've disjoined with only one friend in the past, oh say... 5 years. HER! She is constantly complaining about how alone she is. Yet the only common piece in all her relationship failures is... well... her.
I give up. I'm not going to me mean to her. I'll listen to her stories. I'll smile at her in the hall. But just like everybody else in her life, I'm tired of dealing with her constant freak outs. I'm done. Bye bye.