"Why do you seem so nervous when we hang out?"
"Because you're intimidating."
At 18 years old I wasn't sure how to receive that. In fact, I mistakenly internalized it. Although I've always thought of myself as a friendly and approachable person, this made me second guess my understanding of how I present myself to the world.
I began to spend too much time examining how my actions could be perceived as intimidating. If you know me well, you'd know that I'm a like toasted marshmallow: a lil tough on the outside and literal gooey fluff within. However, he always managed to slip in harsher words to describe me like aggressive, abrasive, and forward.
He both praised and slighted me for these imposed qualities and began to place me on a pedestal; I was a woman he both craved and distanced himself from. He yearned to absorb my light and simultaneously worked to dim it.
After years as friends in a game of romantic tug-of-war, I gave up. I stepped back and saw the situation for what it was. He was a self-proclaimed "nice" guy. Polite, reserved, even a bit awkward but that added to his charm. Despite his aversion to my strong personality, we had wonderfully candid conversations. Admittedly, enjoying his company made me overlook the fact that he drained me.
At some point I had to check myself though and understand that an intimidated companion is no companion at all. We should never have to make ourselves smaller for those that see us as "too much." They are only looking to be comfortable with themselves and it is impossible to make others feel comfortable in their insecurities.
Your unwillingness to wax and wane to the whims of someone's fragile self-image does not make you intimidating; this is where your beauty and your power lie.
These energy vultures will gaze from afar but refrain from letting them really feel your energy. They admire your beauty and covet your power; they will not hesitate to siphon both if you allow it.
So when they tell you that you are intimidating...thank them.
-The Good-Natured Troublemaker