The Value of Attractions
I have a strange infirmity, which is nothing
To those that know me.
– William Shakespeare, Macbeth
The other night I was scratching rather loudly at my forehead and after 15 minutes Orion left the room saying “I have to go somewhere else,” and I couldn’t help but reply “Sorry!” After a bit he came up to me and said “It’s not you. Sometimes the sound of the scratching gets to me, but that’s not you. You’re not the eczema.”
I was very relieved to hear that, even though I already knew it. Some people look at me and only see the disease, and it’s degrading to be considered a thing rather than a person. Others know me, despite the skin issue, but still act like I’m a liability to their good time.
As another shade of gray, several people have told me that they would never date me, simply because of my allergies. While that stings a little at first I think this gray is more positive.
- They’re being honest, a very important quality in friendships.
- They know that eating out, frequently, at random places, at the drop of a hat, is important to them. It’s part of their lifestyle they wouldn’t trade.
- It means that I’m not valuable enough to them – in ‘that way’ – for them to try to find the loopholes in my allergies. Which lays out definite boundaries.
And that’s fine. Some of my best friends feel this way, and have said so. But it’s the only odd thing in our friendships, the only thing we don’t really talk about. And we’re all comfortable with it that way. After all, your body can effect your personality and sense of ‘self’, but it isn’t the same thing.