When Is It All Right to Give a Many-Times Traitor an Umpteenth Second Chance?


I’ve never had any difficulties saying “no” to people I don’t care about. It takes a lot for me to stop caring about a person. In my heart, every soul starts with 100% of awesomeness. Like a baby, you know? Babes are fresh canvases ready to be painted with life. They are perfect…

When I meet someone for the first time, I approach the possibility of a relationship with them like I approach my first encounter with a baby—open-armed. I might keep an eye on them, if someone I trust says that I should be careful… but I still give everyone a fair chance. It’s proper. It’s the witchy thing to do.

Yesterday, someone who I love with everything I am, asked me to consider giving a umpteenth-time Traitor another chance.

“Why should I do that?” I said, with more disappointment than anger in my voice. I’ve walked that path so many times, my Wicked Luvs. The bottoms of my feet still bleed… “What’s the point? We know what’s going to happen. I’ll give it a go, you’ll give it three goes, and [the Traitor] will shit all over our efforts, again and again.”

“Just try,” he said.

“No,” I told him.

“For me,” he insisted.

I stayed quiet for a very long while, wondering when exactly I had lost the battle. “That’s not a fair thing to ask of me.” I have no issues walking away from someone who means nothing to me, but I haven’t mastered the art of turning my back on the ones I love (even when I know they are wrong). “Don’t ask me to do that,” I said again.

“I already did. I wouldn’t ask you, if I thought you couldn’t do it.” He explained that the Traitor might have one more chance to turncoat before joining its maker. “Everybody deserves another chance, Maggie.”

I wanted to scream at him. I think I did… But the shouts would have carried no conviction. “I’m done talking to you,” I said.

“If I could affect [the Traitor], I would,” he said, in a voice too small for his person. “I’m not good with my words. I think them, but they don’t sound like I feel them when I speak them.” He said nothing for some time. I thought he might be crying, but I couldn’t tell. Then he continued, “Remember what you said, what you did, when I told you that you were too short and too skinny and too impossible to join the Marine Corps?”   

“No,” I lied.

“You said, ‘Watch me!’ and dropped to the kitchen floor to do pushups.” He laughed. “I think you managed to do three.”

“Thirteen,” I said. They weren’t good ones, with my body straight and my hands close to each other, but I did thirteen pushups my first time. My biceps ached for a week.

“Please, Maggie, do it for me.”

“I will think about it. No promises.”

“That’s fair,” he said.

“No, it isn’t,” I whispered before saying goodbye.

The conversation hovered over my sleep all night, filling my dreams with filthy crying babies begging to be picked up. Their mud-covered cherubic bodies had the Traitor’s face. I cringed away from the little freaks… for a heartbeat… Then I realized I was dreaming and just watched them… annoyed. It’s irritating when my own psyche roots for the other team.

I awoke to a gloomy day: Rain beating on my windows, Sun refusing to warm the Sky, a chill thickening Spring’s breath… I lit a candle and asked Nature for clarity of thought; for the ability to understand why I should give an umpteenth second chance to a person who doesn’t deserve my time or the focus of my nightmares…
bring on the light… and the wisdom… and the objectivity

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62 comments:

  1. I've been hurt too many times to give people many changes. People get the ONE second chance with me. After that they don't exist to me.

    I understand the reluctance to do that though when it is a person you love. It can be hard to let go.

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    1. I've given more than one chance in the past. The success rate hasn't been anything to write home about, but it has happened once or thrice. Yet, I feel this might not be one of those rare times...

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  2. I love what you've written here today!!!

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  3. Mags – Don’t you ever ask easy questions?

    This is not about your relationship with the Traitor, rather it's about your relationship with the One you Love. And, it’s about His relationship with the Traitor.

    Because of what you know and have experienced, The Traitor cannot hurt you again, except by hurting the One you Love. So, I think you are working to protect both yourself and the One by dissociating from the Traitor. The Traitor seems uniquely capable of hurting the One, despite your efforts.

    I believe the One knows, as I do, that you are strong enough to ward-off being hurt again by the Traitor. The One is willing (for some reason) to risk being damaged himself in order to have a semblance of wholeness - he wants both of you in his life. Thus vicariously, you will continue to have doings with the Traitor, one way or another – like it or not.

    Unfortunately, you cannot make decisions for the One regarding his relationship with the Traitor. Just as the One cannot reasonably ask you to actively renew an association with the Traitor, you must recognize the One's right, or maybe need, to have such a relationship.

    So, now it comes back to you. Since you are ever in control of how you deal with what you deal with, and from whom – it is my turn to ask questions: Do you give a gift to the One by showing tolerance for the Traitor? Or, do you continue to try to protect him from himself? Measure the costs, and decide.

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    1. Your two questions offer so many answers. None easy, but true and necessary. Thank you.

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  4. That's a tough one Magaly. Your friend hasn't lost his hope that the other person can be helped, saved, whatever.

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    1. And in a way, even though I know it would be best for him just accept the truth, see the Traitor's true colors, and move on... I also know it will break hi heart. I guess sometimes we need to break them before they can have a chance to rebuild themselves...

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  5. I give 3 chances...then it is their choice not to follow my advice...it is their choice to continue along the path of their making...it is no ones fault but their own. I can live with that ...whether they live or die...it is their choice.
    Strangely I have been dreaming about hubby's eldest brother(who I loathe to my core). In my dreams I am being nice to him!!! He is still being horrible to others...then I wake up. Even in my dreams I know that no matter how much I helped...he still chose to be horrible(as in life)...so I am glad I choose to have nothing to do with him.
    If the thought of helping someone makes you feel ill...you shouldn't be helping them. That's my way of thinking anyway <3

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    1. I've also been thinking how bad I'll feel after the Traitor does it again, and I remember that in a way I contributed to the betrayal. I'll leave well enough alone and behind, like a smart person suggested, "If it's meant to be, they'll catch up."

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  6. Maggie this is not an easy question to ask. I think you should do whats right in your heart. I know your love one wants you to give this person another chance but if it does not feel right for you then you will have to tell your love one no. I only give a person one second chance because I don't have the time to deal with drama. I am like you I give a person the benefit of the doubt. I always try to find the good in people. Always have. So I will say good luck and you will make the right choice. :)

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    1. Sometimes it is best to just move on. There is such thing as people with so much bad that the good gets drowned in it. Sad, but true.

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    2. It sure is. i agree totally. :)

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  7. {putting foot down} Actually, the answer is quite easy: No! Because we should NEVER do something for someone else. Emotional blackmail is bullshit. Our first instincts are almost always the right ones. I love you.

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    1. "we should NEVER do something for someone else" So true. And the universe knows I wouldn't be doing it for me. Honest first, right?

      You are loved, right back, my Snowy ;-)

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  8. It's wonderful that you care so much about your friend that you are even considering letting the "traitor" back into your life. My worry for you is that if this negative person hurts you again, it could damage your relationship with your friend. Kindness under duress is not compassion. Giving with resentment is not generosity. If you truly believe that what begins as a favor to your friend can lead to making REAL peace with the troublesome one, wonderful. If you know you will NEVER trust that person again, no matter how well they mend their ways, you should decline.

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    1. "Kindness under duress is not compassion." What great words... Sometimes is difficult to stay objective when your heart is at the center of the dilemma, but it's clear when we get to see reason through another's eyes...

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  9. That is a tough call, lady! Btw, I missed your blog in my away time. I'd like to say give another chance, because everyone can change and you might be what they need. However, reality has shown me that even though they can change they rarely do. If it weren't umpteen already I'd say go for it, but at this point you would be just setting yourself up for failure. Good luck lady cakes!!

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    1. All the failures (with the Traitor, in particular) are my reasons for caution. I think that, for a bit, I tried to convince myself that there was hope. I know better...

      P.S. I saw you new shop and it looks fantastic. I shall visit soon. Candles are always a necessity ;-)

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  10. I would say -- do what is best for you. Let the others do what they want or need to do; that's their business, not yours. Just as what you decide to do is your business, not theirs.

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  11. A question more to the point, for me, is why your friend is so desperate to give this Traitor another chance. His request signals, to me, his issues that he is ignoring, or, conversely, hoping you will address. (&, no, no more chances. too much to do with too many people who deserve chances)

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    1. Oh you have no idea! Actually, you do. The person in question has been hurt, pushed around, and hurt again by the Traitor. But for some reason that escapes my level of understanding, he doesn't "see" it. And when he does "see" it, he blames the whole thing on instability or the environment or heck! the weather. It's not pretty to watch, and I think I'll just stop looking...

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    2. Now let's cross out fingers...

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  12. This is hard Magaly! I know you are a good person! Do what is right for you!

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    1. I need to remember to embrace the witchy Aries within, don't I?

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  13. Is this someone you've written about before?

    And I don't know how many chances are too many. I really don't.

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    1. I'm sure I have. And I'm almost sure that I ran out of chances...

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  14. You know what .... do what will NOT leave you in conflict with yourself. If the "Traitor" died tomorrow, would you regret not giving that extra chance?

    As Stacy said, Do what is right for you ....

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    1. If the Traitor dies tomorrow, I hope they bury the body deep.

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  15. I have always said, "It's my life and if you want to come along, best step lively or you might get left behind." Some people never catch up.

    Trust your instincts. There are times I wish I had... I would not be in the position I am now, if I had. My children would not be in the place they are now...

    And there is no reason, if the one you love is still a part of the [Traitor's] life, that you have to let it become contentious. You can still see and interact with this [Traitor] but you do not have to allow them to affect you or your life or your relationships. And you can be there to offer aid and comfort afterward, should the [Traitor] show their colors again.

    -Fox (have to make sure when we post now that we say which it is, lol)

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    1. Wise words. I don't think the Traitor deserves anything from me. I can be civil. I have manners. I think that's as much as I want to invest. It's difficult to see someone you care about getting cheated and laughed at, but we all learn with our own heads.

      P.S. I would never confuse your voices. Unless you try to trick me ;-)

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    2. I agree with what Fox has stated, but keep in mind that your friend has put you in an awkward position. Though this traitor deserves nothing from you, your friend has implied that you, as his friend, you owe him the chance to prove that this person can be... lets say redeemed. In your situation it would probably be best to say that you in fact nothing to do with the traitor. I, However, am a chess player. I would have told my friend that he needed to understand that by him pushing my hand to give this traitor another chance, that he is knowingly placing the sword of Damocles over his own head as well. ~Dragon

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    3. Dragon, I think the heart of the person asking is in a good place. I also think that he is not looking at things realistically or beyond his own feelings, and that isn't fair for anyone. Also, I think that he is one of the people who would see in the throne and stay there, for he would fail to see the sword until it pokes him in the eye *sigh*

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    4. As I said, well sort of said, my answer is not for everyone. I'll be honest I say I would have handled it that way. Truth be told I would have before I came across my Foxy dearest, now I am a bleeding heart to a fault. So, with that being said, stick to your guns, your instincts and let that wise head of your guide your actions. It'll work itself out.I will have the situation on my thoughts and send positive energy your way. ~Dragon

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    5. It's a difficult situation. And I think things will evolve, and let's hope that people do the same.

      I now this is a silly thing, but I love how good Fox and you are for each other. It's one of those hidden treasures Nature sets aside to show during difficult times ;-)

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  16. Anonymous5/08/2013

    With my every being, I hope you find your way through this. I also have rh utmost confidence that you will!!!
    RAK

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    1. Thanks for the trust and enthusiasm, R.

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  17. I have mulled this over all day. I wanted to make sure that when I spoke on the subject that I wasn't just speaking from my own, "oh no, you are not going to dance on this old lady's last nerve", perspective.

    I don't believe that you should give the traitor another chance and I do believe that the one asking you to do so is not thinking of you but himself. You are fair, loving and loyal to those that you love. You also do not suffer fools. I don't see a problem in not honoring the emotional blackmail of the one that you love so that he feels better. Everyone must grow a pair and face the truth of a situation. The traitor was obviously dubbed so for a very good reason. Let that stand as the truth of it all.

    You know I do understand your situation and I think you are a spectacular human facing a no win bundle with this mess, but you will do what is wise for you. Oma Linda

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    1. If someone would understand how difficult this situation is, it would be you. You've been disappointed and now have to watch as others disappoint those who you love. I bet you would do anything to keep them from hurting, but in the end we know there is little we can do. Just wait and be there to comfort when the malice strikes.

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  18. This is a difficult situation no matter what. I understand that the person requesting you do this is someone you love, but the way they are approaching it is manipulative and disrespectful. The person you love should love you enough to know that if you are choosing to keep someone from your life there is a good reason. If he makes the decision to continue being friends with this person that is his to make, but you should not have to be guilt tripped into joining him.

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    1. Difficult and then some. Regardless of where I look there is nothing pretty to see. I guess it could be worse, I could agree to give the Traitor another chance and be step on again. Why can't everyone just open their eyes and see what's just in front of them? *sigh*

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  19. I don't really thin it is worth it to follow the same pattern again... if you know what awaits once you've finished the pattern, the same pattern follows again , it is just boring... just my thought of course.

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    1. Boring and dangerous, too.

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    2. Exactly.. and also how would you get to know if that person himself/herself wants you to give him/er another chance?...

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    3. Indeed, and thinking that we know what someone else wants can be a tad... disappointing.

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  20. Well that resonates. The part about giving everyone you meet an open-armed greeting. I still tend to do that but some folks read it as vulnerability and an invitation to flex some pretty nasty power. I don't have the knack of adjusting their attitudes without confrontation. And so sometimes the relationship can be mended but it is never what it could have ben if they hadn't tried to be such soul vampires. If you agree to this, I would say, lower your expectations and extend the time frame of what changes you might expect to happen.

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    1. My expectation when it comes to this individual have been low enough to taste like dirt. Somehow, this person always manages to do something worse. But life is not a short as people think, maybe things will get better.

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  21. NEVER. period.
    My therapist once told me that dreaming of crying helpless little babies is rarely about someone else you need to help, or something you need to do. It is often about you yourself, lying there crying. You are the baby. And the baby is very upset. Will you take care of her? Or will you go against everything you know is right?
    This might sound harsh, but that person who asked you to do something like that, doesn't sound like a friend either. Friends shouldn't ask shit of others just to feel better about themselves (for very cloudy reasons). Cut all vampires out of your life!

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    1. Your therapists idea on babies on dreams are really interesting. I don't necessarily agree with the whole thing (I don't think my psyche would put the Traitor's face on something that is supposed to represent me). I was thinking that the babies might represent the person asking, and my psyche is there telling me that the Traitor is the puppeteer behind the shrieks.

      Then again, it might just be a dream about really ugly babies ;-D

      *Grabs a pointed crossbow, stakes are so 10 years ago*

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    2. I always preferred an axe :)

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  22. I'm not sure if it sounds like a good idea to give this traitor another chance.

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  23. You have gotten some wise and sound advice on this hard and ugly situation, so I won't repeat the words of those wonderful friends.

    You have a good heart. Let your stubborn mind protect it and keep those boundaries drawn. It's hard to stand back and watch those we love get hurt, but sometimes, that is exactly what they need for their own growth.

    AS for your dream -- if it were my dream, I might see the babies with the traitor's face as they are. The traitor really is in a place where he needs to looked on with compassion. But that is no reason to pick him up and invite him onto your life. Pray for his soul, light a candle, and move on with your own life. *Hugs*

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    1. My candle is burning. And it's working double duty because it is lavender and chamomile and my soul is breathing it in ;-)

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  24. Boy can I relate to this one and sadly I'm of no help either, since I tend to give f-a-a-a-r too many chances to those who don't deserve them. One thing I'm sure of though is that you will make the right decision for you. *smile*
    ♥Sharon

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    1. It's a tricky place to inhabit, isn't it? Forget the rock and a hard place, this is more like two points of a sword lol

      I will think that we'll both do what's best, every time we find ourselves in front of the sharp tips.

      Hugs!

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  25. Burn the bridge and hold onto your matches incase the traitor builds another one.

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    1. I'm keeping those matches dry ;-)

      I've missed you, woman!

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