Over the past few months, a good friend and I have been discussing friendship. Even in our thirties, it’s seldom a simple thing. Relationships are hard, and that goes for dating ones, marriages, familial relations, and even friendships. The part that feels like it should be the most challenging- the getting to a good place part- that is usually the really easy part.
Maybe easy because it’s new and fun.
Maybe easy because it feels worth it.
Once it’s ours though, a lot of us get a little lazy. I’m pretty good about realizing that though…
The part that I really struggle with however, is the part that comes next.
Because really, when it is time to say “enough”?
I have never been good at that. For the whole of my life I have been overly criticized for being too forgiving. I have been told on numerous occasions that I suffer from doormat syndrome. Maybe I do.
I talked, some time ago, about Kelly and how she really crushed my little friendship heart. She did this repetitively. (yep, cuz’ I am apparently too forgiving) Up until a few months ago I always saw this, in me, more as really loyal. Unconditional. Maybe I’ve been wrong.
But still, I’m slow to friendship due to the damage Kelly caused. I am jaded. And, as a result, I tend to be a little more prone to perform friendship maintenance than I used to be. Recently though, I had the opportunity to spend some time with an old friend. I don’t know why I did it, but I opened my mouth and confided something very big (to me) and personal. Prior to taking that step, I felt really safe in this particular friendship to do said confessing. Upon closing my mouth, however, my honesty was met with her harsh judgement. It was a total slap in the face. It was made clear that nothing I could say would affect the position that I was perhaps a liberal idiot and a complete lost cause.
And either I’m growing up, or this particular situation isn’t one that encourages me to feel super loyal, because I kinda feel like a line was crossed and I am still really hurt/upset. I feel ready to close that door and lock it tight.
Which kinda sucks.
But not as much as being in that position did, so there is that.
And so i find myself once again asking myself what it is that I am looking for in my friends. In new ones, in old ones.
And also asking, why does it have to be so dang hard?
5 thoughts on “Maintenance…”
I'm so sorry she couldn't be supportive! That's so disappointing. I struggle with finding friends like me – currently I have a big fat zero. :-(
Friendship can be rough stuff. Sorry you're feeling hurt from your experience of opening up to your friend. Big bummer!
I think it's ok to disagree with a friend about stuff but when that disagreement turns to judgement, time to move on. Surround yourself with supportive people that encourage you to be the best- to live life to the fullest. Trust your instincts. If it doesn't feel right, it's not. You are great and deserve to be treated as such!
Alessandra, that's honestly exactly what i was feeling… Judgement crosses a whole other line. Thanks!
I think my advice for friendship is the same as in marriage. Keep yourself strong and healthy so that, no matter what the other person does, you'll be OK. If you do that, then you can just relax and enjoy the relationship.