It occurs to me that I censor a lot about myself before it ever gets to even the second tier of my friends.
Yes, I have tiers of friends; don’t you? My first tier is obviously comprised of two people, with whom I am, separately, Involved, and have been for years now. The second tier is a bit trickier, because I think that I have mentioned in passing some aspects of myself to members of this group, but in some cases they haven’t been really talked about, and I suspect that has to do with my modest way of bringing delicate subjects up. I tend to censor these subjects because I realize some of my defining characteristics are in the TMI bracket. Not the “ew, that’s gross” TMI bracket, but more along the lines of – and I’m sure I’ll offend someone by mentioning this, but what the hell – “let’s not talk about this because I don’t want to think about how this applies to my own life.”
This version of TMI is totally valid. Really. I don’t want my friends to have to think about things they don’t want to think about, regardless of how valid I think those things are. I despise making people uncomfortable, and so when it comes to talking about myself, except with a very few people, I tend not to.
This makes me miserable. Not only do I deny a huge chunk of myself in doing this, but I give people the impression that I don’t like talking about anything more than vague chit-chat, or worse: that I don’t like talking about myself. I’m desperate these days to do so.
I need to find people to talk to who aren’t in my second tier, is what I need to do, people who don’t mind thinking and talking about things that aren’t immediately within their realm of experience, or perhaps people who have much more similar experiences to my own than my close friends do.
(Disallowing comments because I don’t need the inevitable, “you should just be yourself and get rid of those so-called friends who don’t accept you for who you are!” Or even, “I’m your friend; why won’t you tell me everything about you? I can handle it!” That’s not my point. Of course, if you want to bitch me out, you can always call or email.)