Thursday, August 23, 2007

Beware of the HIGH talker...

Have you ever met someone and found they had an annoying personality trait or tick that you just couldn't get past?

Have you ever been that person?

The answer to both of these recently may be a "yes" for me.

I instantly labeled her a living and breathing, walking Seinfeld episode. I could see Jerry and George talking about how she was a bit of a "high talker." And, my daughter had befriended her daughter of all the kids in her Mother's Day Out class. She approached me for playdates and chit-chat often at drop-off and pick-up.

The first few times we chatted, I tried not to cringe. The voice that came out sounded so comical, almost cartoon-like, as if she'd just been sucking on helium or something. I noticed the people turning their heads to look and see who was talking that way and were the really SERIOUS.

After awhile I got past it mostly because she was a friendly and nice person. But, honestly, I think I had already subconsciously decided that I didn't know if a full friendship could be formed and if I could get past this annoying trait. And, I felt guilty for that because I really strive to be a non-judgemental person.

Mostly I wondered, did she know she was different? Did she realize she had this nails-on-chalkboard pitch to her voice that made heads turn? Did she get a clue of this whenever she'd called someone and never had to explain who she was on the phone? And, most of all, was she comfortable with this about herself? Was she like, "What the hell! This is me. I'm a high talkder. Deal with it already!"

Most recently, I think I have found myself in a similar situation with new friend who I seem to have a really ironic number of things in common with and someone for which I hope to build a really long friendship. She's the first person I've met in a few years that I really can say I click with and enjoy her friendship. But, now I fear that, this time, I'm the annoying Seinfelder to this person.

It's not anything that anyone has ever talked to me about before, this thing that I can tell completely irritates her about me. It is nothing as unusual as the high talker, nor something that would annoy me in a friend. And, I'd spell it out here, but if she reads this I don't want to risk embarassing or making her angry. But, let's just say I can tell that I annoy her in conversation with this thing, and yet until her I have never been told it is an issue at all by a single other person in my life.

And, the real problem is, I can't stop it. It is just a part of me--a sort of form of enthusiasm I express as a friend who is connecting to what you're saying. So, before I know it, I'm already doing it again and feeling her tension when I repeat my bad habit that I didn't know that I had.

And, lately, she's been making really blunt comments about it to me, that have not gone unnoticed. Each time, I first cringe and then feel a little annoyed because really is it that bad? My husband says absolutely not and he thinks this is just a sensitive pet peeve for her that must be from her past and to not take it personally. But, I can't help but now feel somewhat paranoid and fixated on this as I try not to annoy this new friend more than I already have. Yet, I start to feel annoyed myself that I have to sensor my normal flow of talking for someone when I have no issue with their way of talking which is sort of distinctive. And, if I change this about myself, will there just be something else with this person later on? Is this friendship not the good fit that I thought it was to her?

And, I am left to really I, like the high talker, walking around causing people to exchange glances behind my back and wonder if I really get how oddball that I really am?



Blogger Dipu said...

I'd say no, since I can't even imagine what this trait in you might be...

11:28 PM, August 23, 2007  
Blogger LadyBugCrossing said...

I'm thinking she's not the friend you thought she was. I can't imagine what it might be that you do to be annoying to her. She's the oddball -- not you.

5:03 AM, August 24, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm having a little trouble imagining what this trait might be too. But I say this will sincerety - don't change who you are for anyone. You just be yourself. She will either like you for who you are or she's obviously not the friend you thought she might be.


7:20 AM, August 24, 2007  
Blogger Babs said...

OMG, what could YOU do that would be that annoying? Can you maybe post a super-secret hint somewhere for us?

(btw, High Talker reminds me of the guy we worked with that talked like Mickey Mouse... heh heh)

8:02 AM, August 24, 2007  
Blogger Nicole said...

Well I just spent a few hours with you last week and noticed nothing annoying or weird!!! In fact, I wish you lived closer (in the same state would be a start) so we could hang out all the time! Sounds like she's the one with the problem ;-)

9:20 AM, August 24, 2007  
Blogger Crazy MomCat said...

Thanks guys! Especially to all of you who have met me personally because I know that maybe this is more her issue than my own. I'm going to try and be considerate of it, because she's a really great friend and I really do like her.

But, at some point, hopefully, she'll chill a little with acting so annoyed with me about it. That or I guess she'll stop wanting to be my friend. I hope it isn't that big of a deal.

11:51 AM, August 24, 2007  
Anonymous Angela said...

I can't imagine what the issue could be, but I really hope it doesn't come between your friendship! Pet peeves are hard to overcome, but if you two really do click I hope she finds a way to get past it, because good friendships are hard to find!

Totally unrelated, on your recommendation I looked up Sara Bareilles and I LOVE her! Thanks so much for mentioning her album!

5:30 PM, August 24, 2007  

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