It can kind of hard to be open when you’re a teenager. You’re not a little girl anymore, and you’re becoming more and more independent every day. You want to have it all together. Sometimes you’re open but other times you don’t want anybody in your business, so you get upset when people pry and ask questions about your life.
When you’re open with someone, you become vulnerable and transparent. You allow someone to see a part of you that would otherwise be hidden. Sharing something deep with someone else is an intimate experience. It’s also a very beautiful experience, especially when there’s trust, acceptance, and comfort.
Sometimes it’s hard to be open because we’ve been hurt before. The acceptance and trust that should’ve been there, wasn’t. Maybe you told your deepest darkest secret to your best friend, fully believing in your heart that she would keep it between the two of you, but then you find out that she told someone else. Or maybe you let your guard down with someone and you became really close to them, but then for some reason the friendship/relationship fell apart and you feel bad because you gave them so much of you. That kind of disappointment makes you so your best to make sure that history doesn’t repeat itself – so you build walls, high and thick so that no one else can ever hurt you again.
The walls you build do indeed keep others out, but they keep you locked in…imprisoned even. You don’t experience the hurt you fear, but the bad thing is, you don’t experience the love you crave either, because you’re caged in.
The walls you build cause you to keep everything inside, holding secrets that should be talked about, and carrying pain that should be released. Are you one of those girls? Are there things that you know you need to talk about, but you won’t because you’re afraid of being open?
No matter how much we try to hide sometimes, there are always people who can see past the masks we wear. Sometimes they don’t say anything to us, but sometimes they do. It could be the coach that keeps asking if everything’s alright, because your performance is no longer passionate. Or maybe it’s the family friend who asks if you need to talk, because she notices your smile has started to fade. If you have a wall built up because you’re not a fan of having open conversations, even when you’re confronted by those who really do care for you, you reject them. You say things like “I’m fine”, and “nothing’s wrong”, when that’s the farthest thing from the truth. You scream for help on the inside, but when help comes, you pretend like you don’t need it.
No, you’re not a little girl anymore. Yes, you are becoming more independent, but you still need others for help, guidance, wisdom, a listening ear, and at times, a shoulder to cry on.
There’s nothing wrong with having questions, becoming frustrated, needing help, being angry, or having struggles. There is something wrong with trying to hold everything in. We carry such heavy weights sometimes. Weights that we don’t need to carry by ourselves.
Sometimes you just need to talk. Sometimes you just need to get it all out, but you can’t do that if you’re fighting openness.
It takes courage to be open. You take a risk when you’re open. You risk being hurt again, but it’s a risk worth taking. Maybe they won’t understand, but maybe they will. Maybe they can’t help you, but maybe they can. This one simple act can free you in a huge way – from secrets, pain, unanswered questions, and struggles. It’s ok if you don’t know what to say at first. Just start out with the words “we need to talk”.
The next time your Mom tries to take you out for ice cream so that the two of you can talk, don’t run up to your room….go – and talk. When that person who genuinely loves you asks you what’s wrong, don’t blow them off. Don’t lie and say you’re ok when you’re not. Let them unlock the key to your heart. Drop the heavy weight. Demolish the wall. Be open.
If you need to talk to someone, and you don’t know who to go to – your parents, teachers, school leaders, Pastors and church leaders, coaches, and trusted friends and family are a good place to start. There is nothing wrong with talking to a professional counselor. They have been trained to help, so reach out if you need to.
Just knowing you don’t have the answers is a recipe for humility, openness, acceptance, forgiveness, and an eagerness to learn – and those are all good things. – Dick Van Dyke
Have you been carrying secrets that you really need to talk about? If so, what are they?
Who can you talk to when you need help?
Is it easy for you to be open with others? Why, or why not?
Do you have a wall around your heart because someone betrayed your trust? If so, how can you move past that?
If you are more open with people that you can trust, how will that make your life better?