1) If I don’t want to chat right now, online or by phone, it doesn’t signal some kind of problem between us unless I say that it’s because of some problem. I’m an introvert, remember? And there are times (lots of them) when I just don’t want to talk to anyone. I’m not one for talking just to talk, anyway.
2) Please don’t read hidden messages into my words or actions. That’s not how I communicate. Really.
3) If there’s something you want to tell me, use words. Not only do I not send hidden messages, but I also don’t read them very well. No, that is not a Girl Thing. Or maybe I’m just not much of a Girl.
4) I have a chronic disease. I hate it. I don’t have as much energy as I should. I’m always in pain, and sometimes the pain gets to a level that I cannot handle. Being in pain and tired is something I cannot, in all honesty, help. I do not use it as an excuse to avoid things I simply don’t want to do. If I cannot do something with you because of pain or fatigue, it isn’t because I don’t love you, find you good company, or I’m not interested in whatever it was that we were going to do together.
5) I do not have a good relationship with food. I don’t even like to eat in front of people, generally—if I consume anything in your presence, I must feel pretty damned comfortable with you. It is chemical fuel, and sometimes it is a comfort, but I’m not capable of being passionate about food in general. I’m sorry. I’m not rejecting the love you put into the preparation of the food.
6) I assume that people mean what they say. If you tell me to go away, I will. If you say you hate me, we don’t have a relationship of any kind, period. Yes, that includes things said, “in the heat of the moment.” If you can’t control your tongue when you’re really angry, learn—because I do take whatever you say to be the truth.
7) Don’t ever be dishonest with me, even if it seems like a really minor thing. No, it will not be okay. Yes, it will damage the trust between us, and there’s no guarantee that it will be reparable.
8) This should go without saying, but past experience says that it needs to be said. Don’t yell at me. Don’t try to back me into an enclosed space. Don’t ever even think about laying hands on me in a less-than-gentle manner, much less hitting me. Don’t throw anything at me. Don’t use verbal threats with me, or even intimations of them. Yes, I take them seriously, and I have zero tolerance for them.