I pulled this piece out of a book I’m writing entitled, “Churn: And other gut feelings.”
Disappointment is a funny thing. If you disappoint someone either you give a shit or you don’t. It first happens when you’re younger, and you don’t know what to make of it. You have to figure out what that person means to you before you can decide how to feel. With me, disappointing others became a way of life.
What would be considered unthinkable today on the disappointment scale, was considered every day life to me back then. “Oh, they’re yelling again, big deal, as long as they don’t hit me.”
Seems as I got older, my sphere of disappointees grew larger and I had to constantly bob and weave. Like running from a bunch of bookies I owed money to, they were always gunning for me. My evasive tactics could chop up my roaming territory in a big way. If I ended up in the wrong place, I could get hurt. Today, I can’t imagine having someone think really ill of me without getting ill myself.
It was that first day of school in your gut, every day. A feeling I had to adjust to all the way up into adulthood. Then it became an out by design. I remember breaking up with someone when I was older, offering, “It’s not you, it’s me.”
Lessen their expectations. Always let them know how fucked up you are up front. You are aware also, that when someone tells you they are disappointed in you, they are manipulating you.