– I blame you.
– Because it’s your fault.
– My fault.
– I never used to talk about myself. Brooding. Bottling. That was me, for me. I saved my best, happiest self for people, for friends.
– And then what?
– Well, now I have this tendency to share my problems – what’s wrong with me – with people. I can’t stop.
– But you told me there are just some things you don’t share with friends. That’s why you and I started talking.
– True. I need to keep what I tell you separate from what I tell my friends. They can’t handle it.
– We haven’t spoken in almost two years.
– Hmm. That line has blurred again. I can’t handle it. I appreciate their sincerity. I can tell they want to help, but they can only hear so much. They can only say so much. It feels like they’re getting tired of me.
– Your friends. Tired of you.
– Friendships are give-and-take. What are you contributing?
– It doesn’t matter. I try to give, but it’s not appreciated.
– Like I said, friendships are give-and-take.
– I just want to be able to talk about my problems.
– You don’t think they’re listening.
– I don’t know.
– You don’t know.
– I don’t know.
– Do they respond, ask questions?
– Do they sympathize.
– Offer advice.
– I guess so, but nothing strikes a chord.
– You don’t think they’re listening because their advice doesn’t resonate for you.
– I want to be understood.
– Everybody does.
– What about when you give advice?
– They’re fine.
– You think you’re some pan-sympath.
– Huh? Oh. I do feel I can relate to just about anybody.
– You can understand everybody, but no one understands you. Seems unfair.
– It is unfair.
– Huh. You don’t see it?
– See what?
– . . . Forget it.
– It’s not like I want to feed them the right lines to give me.
– Because you’d be giving yourself advice.
– I’m pretty full of myself.
– It’s just not realistic.
– They’re not listening right.
– You demand too much.
– More like take-and-take.
– You’re not sympathizing
– But I am . . .
– Is everything okay?
– It’s just . . . Then people start talking to me like I don’t know anything about the gospel.
– They’re trying to help.
– As if I don’t know the Atonement won’t make up for what I can’t figure out or understand. I just want to talk.
– Your friends let you talk. And it sounds like if they can’t quite understand what you’re going through or aren’t in a place to help you figure things out, they remind you where – to whom – you can really go.
– I just want to talk through issues. Maybe when I do it, it sounds a lot like complaining. But ever since I discovered how talking can help me feel better, I want to do it a lot. It’s nice to be able to trust people with my life.
– Talking won’t help everything. You’ve proven that yourself with the disappointment you feel when it seems like they don’t understand you. Maybe instead of spilling everything, just use a little discretion. Your friends can’t carry everything, you’re absolutely right. Neither can you, or anyone. So maybe they’re onto something. Maybe there are some aspects to the Atonement you’re not considering.
– Some aspects.
– Think about it.
– Here, it’s give-and-give.
– I guess I just don’t like the way it shuts me up when they mention it. It makes me feel that was their intention. That my talking is pointless.
– Sometimes it is.
– You’ve made me feel like it isn’t.
– Then that’s my fault.