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A Teen's View

How much is too much?

Kat Dart

(12/2011) Last month I was at a conference, and many of the subject that were talked about dealt with tolerance of other people. The people guiding the conference wanted us to be able to take home that we should always be patient and always calm when dealing with others.

For the most part I agree with their point of view. But after a while, I got to thinking why should we continue to tolerate others who would refuse to tolerate us? Why should we deal with people that donít want to deal with us? Isnít there a limit to how much we should take from other people before we decide that theyíre not worth it anymore?

There are those who believe that no matter what happens we should always band together. Those who believe that we should just take everything as it comes to us. Those who believe that silence is the key.

Well personally, I believe that there is a time we need to turn around and say that Iím not gonna take this anymore. A time we have to turn around and say that Iím not going to deal with this. And a time where we need to crack off whatever relationship we have, because I believe to move forward there are parts you have to let of from your past. If we always remain with the present, how can we expect to move into the future?

We have your acquaintances now, and theyíre the ones that change you now. Theyíre the ones that unintentionally teach you how to live, how to act and how to better yourself. Sometimes thatís because theyíre not a person you always want to be around, but rather a person you need now to show you how you want to improve yourself.

We all have our friends now: the ones we believe will last forever, the ones we know will drift away soon, the ones that we break away from easily. Sometimes friendships die a natural death, and sometimes they are encouraged from one or both sides.

The question is, how do you know when itís time to break a friendship?

However, there comes a time where you have learned all you needed from someone, and they from you. Thatís the time an acquaintanceship or even a friendship cracks and two people drift apart. Sometimes itís for the good, sometimes itís for the bad.

Once, a composer wrote a song saying that "who can say if Iíve been changed for the better? I do believe I have been changed for the better. Because I knew you, I have been changed for good [For Good, Wicked soundtrack, 2003]." His song was a reference to two close friends who realized their friendship was no longer able to continue, due to opposing views on how the country was ruled. They drifted in the end, fighting about themselves, about other people, about their morals and what was right and wrong. They let their friendship die after learning all they could.

Related to friends (though hopefully not drifting ones) is family. This month held Thanksgiving Day, and Black Friday or as I so fondly refer to it, Sparta. Everyone is so excited for black Friday and the Christmas or Chanukah or Kwanzaa that they skip over thanksgiving. I mean, really, this is one of the biggest American holidays of the year and most people are worried about Christmas decorations. Why do we have Christmas songs playing all over the radio? Why are people in such a hurry to decorate the house? Shouldnít we slow down, stop, and appreciate a lovely four day weekend to spend with family? Why do we all feel the need to skip the smaller for the Grand Prize? Itís a great thing to wait and watch in between. Itís like the Super Bowl - you get the main event where everyone is focused on watching the game. But then you have commercial breaks, where all the ads tend to be funnier and wittier than normal, and you can laugh about them with other people.

I guess my point for above is that if we hurry too fast, are we going to miss the point of the present? I donít want to miss the now, even though I look forward to the future and plan and wait. I know many people live in the present so the future doesnít come that quickly, or so it comes faster. Shouldnít we all do that to try and be happy in the here and now?

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