What follows is a "note to self" following this morning's ruminating.
Admit it Allen, you've been delusional for a very long time. Somehow you thought that when you began moving away from religious and political dogma that you would become clear and free of delusion; That you'd now become a Rational Thinker, relying on evidence and reason rather than prescribed, baseless dogma. Not true.
It's become clear that your expectations were unrealistic. Your expectations of yourself and of others have been based upon some ideal image that you've conjured up. Based upon what? Probably lots of psychological and developmental reasons buried in there as the basis for these images, but regardless of their source, they're unrealistic and have not produced the fruit you expected.
Do you wish things were different? Yup. But they're not, and no amount of wishing will change that. You've finally come to a place where you've accepted who you are and you've discovered some major flaws that have led to some disappointments. That's great! That's essential! You've also forgiven yourself and you're definitely moving forward with a far better understanding of what led to failure and what's far more likely to lead to success.
But what about your unrealistic expectations of others? Well, I suppose you've taken the first step in recognizing that your expectations of them were unrealistic. They're human too, you know. What they say and do are not always consistent. Just like you. What they hope for and what they achieve aren't always in alignment. Just like you. But there are lots of ways that they are not "just like you". They never will be.
Many of your friends have the best of intentions. When they tell you "You can tell me anything, anytime, anywhere...I'm here for you.", they mean it. You know they mean it and have the best of intentions. They love you and you know it. There have been plenty of times in your own life when you had the best of intentions and simply failed to meet them. You've let people down too. Why would you hold them to a higher standard?
By accident, you've discovered that there are lots of conversations going on behind your back. You're the butt of some of their jokes. They don't understand how and why you've changed. You used to agree on politics, religion, all manner of things. Now you don't and suddenly they're grappling with "What's wrong with Allen." They aren't psychologists or experts, but they definitely think that you're losing your mind and they don't understand it. Yet they aren't comfortable talking to you about it, so they talk to each other.
What were you expecting and why? They don't ask the same questions you do. They don't have the same life experience you do. Despite knowing them for decades, you don't understand the details of their past, their traumas, family issues, and the myriad of other details that have made them who they are anymore than they know you and yours. Why would you expected them to be able to understand your path and it's inflection points?
When someone tells you something, in your mind, you might want to consider prefacing everything they say with "I'd like to believe that..." For example, when someone says "You can tell me anything and I won't judge you.", consider hearing it as "I'd like to believe that you can tell me anything and that I wouldn't judge you." Perhaps that's true, perhaps not. People are imperfect and despite the best of intentions, they simply fail to do everything they say they will. You're delusional if you think otherwise.
In The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz, note the second one, Don't Take Anything Personally.
Everything every says and does is really a projection of their own reality, not yours.
So answer this critical question for yourself Allen: Despite your friends' flaws, can you love them anyway?
You know the answer is an resounding YES! But what are you going to differently? Face the facts and reality. A huge source of division and misunderstanding has been rooted in social media. Here you are again, writing your thoughts down and you're going to post them for the world to see. Some will accept your view, some will reject them, some will ignore them. That's OK too.
The geniuses at Facebook gave us Custom Lists. Be realistic. You know and love people who simply do not want to hear or see your political, religious, or economic posts (let alone your jokes with foul language). Their minds are made up and they find ideas counter to theirs as offensive. They don't struggle with the same things you do and they feel as if you're assaulting them with your stream of consciousness, or whatever you call it. Just stop. Create a Custom List of people that you find thoughtful and engaging around these topics and limit the posts to that audience. It's not that hard. What are you giving up? Not a damned thing. You can still vent your frustrations and talk through the absurdities you find. Limit your venting to those who care about the same things. No biggee.
Peace, my friends.