Gary provided some good thoughts, I must say.
I used to always think that "oh I would NEVER do that" or "oh that would NEVER happen to me" but guess what, it did. I have found that life experiences definitely have made me a better person, even if in only coming to an understanding about everyone else.
I think everyone tries to surround themselves with good, honest people, and, the majority of time that happens. Sometimes though, people who are probably good at heart are not always good for you. There is a difference.
Honesty and truthfulness to me are feelings expressed from the heart, at that moment. What's true today however, may not be true tomorrow. And that's the tricky part with people and emotions.
As far as deciding how long or at what point to decide if something is right, well, I've always asked that question and never really found an answer, other than a gut reaction. Like this job I'm in; at what point do I bail? Hmmm hard to answer. Is it affecting my personal life? A bit. My stress level? Yes. How much of it can I take? Well that's all an individual answer. This you know.
Rick, as I've gotten older and exposed to more and more shyt, I too have taken on a "selfish" attitude, in particular with my family. I have an evil grandmother who is 80 some years old. Is it "right" that I don't see her, speak to her, etc? No, not really. Some people may argue that I'm the youngest and I should respect my elders. But she doesn't respect me. As a child she blamed me for just about everything. So...in order to live MY life as happy, I cut her off. Plain and simple. I've learned that life is entirely too short to constantly live it for others. What makes ME happy is peace and simplicity. If someone/thing doesn't encourage or foster that, well...shoo they go.
I know the feeling of your life spiraling out of control sometimes; it sucks. But Rick I am TELLING YOU that it doesn't have to be that way. You CAN say no, you CAN make decisions for yourself that make YOU happy for once - whatever that is.
So, I don't know if I answered your questions or provided insight - I think sometimes I still know what it is your asking, but then again, it's been a long time since we've corresponded and we've changed quite a bit I'm sure. But in either case, I do think it's high time you invest in yourself for now.
Your friend always,