Confession: I don't trust people, not completely anyway. When it comes right down to the indecorous truth I can count on one hand the people in my life I have trusted with the best and the worst of me. The sticky thing is that my ability to allow people past my very well designed iron gates of superficial interchanges has been hampered by the hostility and rejection offered by the world at large to a young girl who lived her life with her heart on her sleeve.
When you spend so much of your life recovering from the unkind even cruel responses to the essence of who you are the human psyche seems to develop an intangible type of portcullis to prevent the enemy from wandering in and laying waste to your inner sanctum.
Sitting on my friend's couch the other evening I blurted out a statement that I now see as a fundamental road block in developing a healthy relationship pattern with many people I know and some I may not yet know: I don't trust "people". I don't trust them with who I am and what I really think and feel. I don't trust them with the broken bits and the brilliant bits because throughout my life it has frequently come with a heavy price when I have shared any aspect of the ephemeral things that make me "me". I don't trust them to care for me as I do for them and really don't trust them to treat my Jenielleness as something special and so I keep the gate lowered. Occasionally, I have attempted to raise the bars but it has rarely been to allow for ease of access to my world more often it was for the purposes of becoming a testing ground. It is as if my inner warden says "well, we will open ourselves up just enough to see if this person is willing to crawl through this small space to see who we really are...and then perhaps we will put faith in their capacity to value our friendship."