Monday, August 5, 2013

Black Holes and Vacuum Cleaners

Over time, I've come to realize the sad truth that some people are, simply put, like black holes and vacuum cleaners.

They just plain suck.

The term suck, in this sense, refers to people who, to paraphrase Bruno Mars, "take, take, take it all but (they) never give." Whatever their motivations may be, they take your time, emotions, goodwill, compliments, money, possessions, etc. and they offer none of their own in return.

Like the lady who, a few years ago, ran past a Yield sign, entered a roundabout I was already in, and collided with my car, they will not only refuse to accept blame for the trouble (in this case, car accidents) they create; they will then turn around and accuse you of being the person who instigated the whole mess.

People who suck are something unfortunately encountered among some supposed friendships. As a result, their behavior tends to be something of a friendship killer. It's also an unfortunate result of some dating experiences - and I think we've all been there at one point or another.

In dating, they are the people who string you along and use you for any number of what amount to be selfish purposes. Dating them is like pumping quarters into a slot machine for hours on end; all the while you dream of some kind of reward or result, but you get bubkes back and end up bankrupt emotionally.

I bring this all up as a result of a conversation I had with a friend the other night. This friend is a mutual friend of someone I went on a few dates with not long ago, and I learned a few things that helped me to understand why this person completely flaked out what I thought was our potential relationship. In a nutshell, someone she had dated earlier, who had acted like an utter tool and whose behavior led to them breaking up, decided he was suddenly interested in her again and wanted to get back together with her. Therefore, even though I had behaved gentlemanly toward her and she had only nice things to say about me, I was dropped like a rock.

I felt, in a word, used. I doubt it was this person's intention to make me feel this way, but that was the effect nonetheless.

Of course, some very good advice was given on this subject 2,000 years ago. The Savior instructed us to "pray for them which despitefully use you" (Matthew 5:28). I know that statement applies in all relationships in which we're adversely affected by people who suck and that it's what I need to do in this case. There's no other sane way to move forward.

It also leads me to reflect whether I have unintentionally ever been a person who sucks, be it in dating or in any other relationship. The AWL has admitted before that he is a work in progress, and if this is the case, he begs for your forgiveness.

At the same time, it doesn't mean we need to keep people who suck around us. What did Nephi and his clan do when Laman and Lemuel had used up all of their opportunities to be good? He put a great deal of (physical) distance between himself and the Lamanites. Though they were his brothers and he still loved them, he could no longer stay around them, or he would perish. He even lived long enough to see wars with them during his lifetime.

Forgive? Absolutely. But forget? Well, that just leads to our being vacuumed up off of the carpet, like so many particles of dirt, again and again.

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