Have you ever tried so hard to reach out to someone, but they just won't let you get anywhere close? You want to be their for them, you want to show them kindness, and you just can't get them out of your mind, but every time you step towards them they take three steps back?
I've always been easily offended and self-conscious, so when someone acts like this towards me, I often feel as if I have offended them, annoyed them, or that they just don't like me. I start panicking, wandering what I did. I start thinking of ways to ask them if I did something wrong, or ways that I can make them like me more.
But the truth of the matter is, sometimes, a person keeping their distance has nothing to do with me. Most of the time, in fact, they aren't offended, they aren't annoyed- they just have something on their mind and they are feeling distant from the world.
We all need friends, support, and encouragement, yet when we are so trapped inside our worries and fears that we can't see straight, we tend to push away the one's who seek us out and pursue us. But when we come out on the other side of those hard times we often realize just how grateful we are that people kept pursuing us, despite how difficult we were being during the process.
So I believe that we should keep that in mind when we pursue others.
Where would we be if our close friends gave up on us when we were in the midst of our darkest times? Where would we be if everyone just shrugged and brushed us off as a lost cause?
Read the Room
Now, before I go any further, I have to say- sometimes people just won't like me and sometimes they won't like you. Sometimes I forget to bring my filter with me and I can say things that unknowingly hurt others (I'm working on it). I'm sure you've done the same at some point. So yeah, we definitely have to read the room, and if it genuinely seems like we are part of the problem, then we need to back off. But I believe that a lot of the time, people pull away when they need us most.
When that's the case, we need to be persistent. We need to show that person (in the least obnoxious way possible) that we are not going anywhere. We need to refuse to take their cold-shoulder personally, and realize that there is more to the situation than we can see. In these moments, we should not stop pursuing, even if it hurts us, confuses us, or frustrates us.
The bigger picture of being there for someone in need is far more important than someone reciprocating our efforts and friendship.