One thing I've tried to do throughout life is make my own decisions. I find that when people with vested interests weigh in on an issue, they want you to do what they want you to do. If you truly make a decision, you only have yourself to blame if things go south; you can also give yourself credit for a good decision.
If the Internet weren't such a tattletale, I wouldn't even know anyone back in Winterville cared the slightest bit about how I'm doing. I figure if I'm out of sight, I'm out of mind, but LinkedIn.com reports otherwise. Someone I haven't talked to since 2009 has viewed my profile. In truth, she was a nice person with some miserable and unhappy friends who took some of their anger out on me. Still, I stopped talking to her, knowing that I needed to break with ALL negative influences to create a better future.
That was 5 years ago. In just the past three years, I've changed jobs 2 times, found my handsome prince and married him. One year ago, I took that flying leap and moved across the country. The two years prior to my action-packed three years were preparation: getting permission to sell the money trap house, saving what money I could, and looking for a better-paying job. Of course, other stuff happened too, both good and bad.
The people I knew back in the day who were judgmental and gave me "advice" about how I could follow the scripts they'd written form me were escorted offstage, or left of their own accord. One loony person "confronted" me about how I needed to have a baby (with an ex-boyfriend who was incapable of dialing my number) because she wished she'd done it. I remember her saying, "I've talked it over with my therapist," as part of her explanation.
Long story short, if people from Winterville saw my "I got married" update on LinkedIn, I can only imagine that they are talking with their therapists about it. It's strange that I may have produced fodder for other people to mull over with therapists, though.
I hope that tongues aren't wagging about this; I really do. I hope those formerly unhappy people are now engaged in their own lives and enjoying every moment.