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Saturday, 3 October 2015

Personal drama; real-life Rosamond Vincy; bad mood; letting go

These days I read and write little. Studies and work take lots of my time, and there has been some drama in my life.
Well.... as it happens, I know a Rosamond Vincy, minus the beauty, the musical abilities, the outward confidence and the love of luxury. But she has the key Rosamond traits. The look of meekness, the mild manners. The obsession with physical appearance. The selfishness. The narrow-mindedness. The trivial jealousy. The lack of affection. The tendency not to do things for people. The habit of taking for granted others' kindness. The narrow interests, lack of a passion, and fondness for gossip. The ennui. The self-pity. The irrationality and unreasonableness. The stubbornness and passive resistance. The firm belief in her own irreproachability. The vanity and self-satisfaction. The false modesty. The lack of self-awareness, or incapability of self-contemplation. The unkindness. 
However, my feeling towards her is a lot more complex. Rosamond Vincy, however realistic she feels, is after all a fictional character, a puppet made and controlled by George Eliot, and how I feel about her remains somewhat abstract. The real-life Rosamond is a human being, made of flesh and blood, and has been my friend till I now decide to distance myself from her. There are days when I like her and enjoy her presence, there are days when I empathise with her and see her vulnerability and feel sorry for her, but there are also days when she irritates and frustrates and exasperates me and I feel nothing but absolute contempt. It takes several incidents and painful feelings of disillusionment for me to realise that she's not a bad person by nature but not truly a good friend either, and to recognise the Rosamond Vincy in her. It takes a real-life Rosamond for me to sympathise with Lydgate sufficiently. Her passive-aggressive behaviour affects strongly because it's personal, and at some point I realise that there's no point in such a friendship. I'm not Lydgate, but I'm under no obligations to her. I'm not Dorothea, but I don't strive to be, and her saintliness isn't necessarily good in this world. Experiences have taught me that I must be kind and see things from others' point of view, that I must be just and recognise both qualities and drawbacks and forgive people for their limitations, but shouldn't be nice to those who aren't nice back. We may not be good at making friends, but have to choose who to remain a friend and who not. It's a waste of energy to be there and do things for a person who can abandon you; it's a waste of affection to care for a person who doesn't have the same depth of feeling and who only thinks about herself. Even though I can see her point of view, even though I sometimes see her in a vulnerable, helpless state and have pity for her, even though I can see what has made her who she is today, I cannot be a saint and stay friends with her and let her take advantage of me and then forsake me at other times. I refuse to be naively theoretical. I refuse to be used. 
It's never easy to realise that you've put faith in the wrong person. It's painful, in fact. But call that experience. Call that an interesting character study. 
Things happen. People come, people go, and some have to be let go. 

2 comments:

  1. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DqRC5tquyU0
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6oMFMRv5c3o
    I've had to end friendships before-- felt like cutting out a piece of myself. Sometimes it's a necessary surgery. As always, it's interesting to see your thoughts. I hope you feel better soon.

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    Replies
    1. Thank you for the songs and the kind words.
      "Necessary surgery", that's a nice way of putting it.

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