Over the years, I’ve had a few friendships come and go. Thankfully, I’ve never experienced unpleasant confrontations of any sort – we just drifted apart as time passed. But the loss of these friendships still hit me hard. I spent many nights, wide awake, thinking of what I might have said and done to drive my friends away. I picked apart and microanalysed my behaviour in hopes of finding what they would have felt uncomfortable with. I came up empty.
It’s been a few years now, but whenever my brain unwillingly brings up these memories, I still feel a pinch in my heart. However, I’m also lucky enough to be surrounded by a small handful of people whom I thoroughly enjoy spending time with, and I’m keeping my fingers crossed that the feeling is mutual, as I’ve been meeting these people rather constantly over a long period of time, and up until now nobody has avoided me or given me the cold shoulder. I appreciate my friends I have, however few there are.
Are your friends the problem, or are YOU the problem?
My point is, if one person unfriends you, it might be their problem. But if you’re being collectively unfriended and avoided, I think it’s time to sit down and reprioritise whether you’re the one driving everyone away.
I’ve had the opportunity to meet a lot of different people, and at different stages of life. I’ve met people who talk incessantly about themselves and how good they are, only to find out eventually that they’re all talk and no action – basically empty pots banging on their covers. I’ve met people who take the fun out of everything you say and do, and spew philosophical jargon that nobody cares to listen to. I’ve met people who think that they’re God’s gift to mankind, and that their attractiveness will get them places. I’ve met people so calculative; every meal is a mathematics class to see how much money can be saved.
I was recently at a gathering, where we enjoyed endless amounts of food and drink (but more importantly, the latter). Towards the end of the night, one individual started putting his vocal cords to excessive use, his tongue having been loosened by many a tipple. For all the years I’ve known this person, I have never felt inclined to strike up a conversation with him.
Despite his self-professed success, I have never met him in a situation that allowed him to show him at his best behaviour. He’s always obnoxious, overbearing, overly-opinionated and disrespectful. People endure his presence, but nobody enjoys it. He never seems to have any friends, and only hangs out with family members.
Extract yourself from a toxic friendship ASAP
If maintaining a friendship with someone makes you even more exhausted than a tough HIIT workout on a bad day, maybe it’s time to reconsider whether it’s worth keeping.
If you’re in a group and find yourself wondering every time you get together, “What the **** am I doing here?”, for sanity’s sake, the better thing to do is to update their status from ‘close friends’ to ‘acquaintances’, just like on Facebook. This article lists the 10 types of ‘friends’ you should avoid, and it couldn’t have been more true.
Maybe at one point I used to be a less-than-desirable friend. I might have been the toxic one people stayed away from. Now, I consciously try to be a better friend to those around me. But I’ve also grown to trust my instincts – if a friendship doesn’t click, I don’t force it.
Spend your time doing things you love, with people who are more deserving of your company.
(Images: facebook.com, quotesgram.com, 9gag.com, wonderhowto.com)