"Here’s something I’ve learned about people. We think we know someone, but the truth is that we only know the version of them they have chosen to show us. We know our friend in a certain light, but we don’t know them the way their lover does. Just the way their lover will never know them the same way that you do as their friend. Their mother knows them differently than their roommate, who knows them differently than their colleague. Their secret admirer looks at them and sees an elaborate sunset of brilliant color and dimension and spirit and pricelessness. And yet, a stranger will pass that same person and see a faceless member of the crowd, nothing more. We may hear rumors about a person and believe those things to be true. We may one day meet that person and feel foolish for believing baseless gossip." - Taylor Swift, Reputation 2017.
People are always going to think they know you. You might talk to a person every day of your life and believe that this person is telling you everything about themselves, but there's always something that they are holding back. There is always something manifesting beneath the skin that we do not see. We hide these things away from the outside world, and sometimes, even from ourselves.
It only takes one act, one unthought about sentence, one mistake, and everything comes crashing down. A hole opens up and people begin to see the person you truly are. Sometimes this is nothing to worry about – most people accept who you are and you continue on. However, sometimes it is the complete opposite. You show people a side that is completely different to who they original thought you were. You show them a side they never thought existed. And then they are left wishing they never saw it. But it cannot be ignored. Once true colours have been shown there is no going back.
You can deny that it ever happened, or claim that it’s all a lie, but may the odds be in your favour, especially when the evidence is so heavily weighted against you. One thing you can do is twist the truth to prevent others from finding out. It’s never a good idea though, because you only hurt more people. You shy away from the person who found out, and due to your own mistake, you decide to cut them out of your life and possibly everyone else’s. You make them look like the bad person. Like it was their fault.
Within the past few weeks I have begun to uncover a side to someone which has been hidden away for the past few months. I knew them well. We became close so fast. However, that all came crashing down within 24 hours when the final wound was made.
Gossip does the rounds. Although you tell someone not tell anyone, it is almost certain that they will tell someone, whether it's a family member, a therapist, or their best friend - someone will be told and the cycle of gossip will continue. If you do tell someone, don’t then continue to lie to my face. And don’t be surprised when the gossip gets back to me and I uncover who you truly are.
Due to past experiences, my biggest fear is ruining other people’s friendships. I know that I’m never going to like every single person in the world – that’s life. Not every single person is going to like you and you’re not going to like every single person. However, the person you may not get along with, is someone’s son or daughter; someone’s best friend. So, I sit here and bite my tongue. I refuse to tell people what happened because it’s none of their business. I refuse to tell my side of the story because tarnishing another person’s perspective on their friend is not be something I can live with. But maybe that’s not safe for me?
By not telling my side of the story it hides the justification for my actions. People only hear the twisted story that the other person wants to tell. Why can’t people see that a disagreement is between the people directly involved? Why must people become so obsessed with gossip?
I’m scared to go back. I’m scared of what you’ve said while I’ve been gone. But I stand by what I’ve done. I stand by my decision. I wish you would realise that I can still be civil with you; I just can’t have you running to my door needing help. I can’t give you another chance. I always do this. You know that I always give people too many chances – you even told me yourself. Give people the number of chances they deserve. Sometimes people slip up. We’re human. The world didn’t come with an instruction manual, so we’re bound to make mistakes - that’s how we create who we are. However, some mistakes you can foresee as a bad idea. Some mistakes you predict, but you still choose to ignore the red flags and continue with it all anyways.
This mistake you made was one of the latter.
"Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me. Lessons have been learnt, true colours have been shown."