I spent part of this weekend hanging out with friends, as I often do. One of them is a sweet and thoughtful guy, who did a couple little nice things for me - nothing important, along the lines of getting things from the kitchen so I didn't have to get up. He's just like that, it has absolutely no deep meaning.
But every time he did, I flinched, tensed, and in essence waited for the other shoe to drop. My reaction to someone doing something for me without my asking is to worry about the following questions: Did something go wrong that this is "making up" for? Was I supposed to do something I didn't and am I supposed to feel guilty about this? Is this going to be followed by a mood swing that I need to be ready for? Am I supposed to remember this for the next ten times when I can't get a response even if I ask?
I hope to God that the sweet person (I'd say "nice guy" but it would make caniswolfie twitch) in question wasn't picking up on my reactions. It's not his fault, and it's not fair to him that I'm so messed up I can't accept simple courtesies easily. Or, in the alternative, I hope one of our common friends has explained to him why I'm such a godawful mess.
I need to relearn social dynamic. And how to relax, and how to trust. How to not drop to submissive at the first sign of a differing opinion. And how to interact with people who aren't passive-aggressive poster children.