I have never been one to care whether people like me or not - because there always will be those who don't and those who do. It doesn't mean that they are kind or unkind, nice or mean, good or bad. The world, I've found, is not a linear as we wished it were. But because of that, I create distances from people I feel are insincere or questionable. My judgement is often flawed, and I trust the ones who would ultimately bring me the most disappointment and hurt. One such person told me that nobody can hurt you, "you hurt yourself". It made sense immediately because you are the only person who could let it matter. Everyone else may try to guilt you into feeling like you caused someone's suffering, but the truth is, no matter what it is, anyone can either marinate in their own sorrow or brush it off and rise.
The thing is, when you enter the workforce, it is different. In a perfect world, it wouldn't be. But there are balls to lick and superiors to obey. Paired with my no nonsense attitude and expensive respect, there are places I can not go. Lies taste like poison in my mouth and disdain is all I can manage for those with painted masks.
It took me longer than it should, for me to even entertain the thought that those people are true to themselves. I, who applaud those who parade blunt honesty. Hold your high horse or not, but do it without a front - it is what I believe. If you are a bitch, show the world. Can't keep your pants on then leave em at home! Gold digger? Own it. Be proud of who you are and wear no shame. So why couldn't I deal the same hand to those who hide? Our morals are clearly different, so just because I am not willing to do whatever it takes does not mean they feel the same way. I was so afraid of penetrating that invisible quarantine where their venom would spread and infect me. But it was all in my head. They aren't even hiding, it is who they are.
Acceptance is hard, even when you know it to be true. Especially when you imagine respect as a currency which is earned, not given freely due to status or position. People should be free to choose whom to follow and when leaders fail, it is only natural to step back and reconsider. If you are not loyal to what they believe in, they can never be loyal to you. But society was not built that way, we are appointed what we have and must make do or pack up and search for what we seek. You either stay true to who you are or allow yourself to melt into a herd of sheep. I miss my long ass air so f what the devil says.