Friends come and go - but are they truly friends?
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Friends come and go - but are they truly friends?

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Old 03-20-16, 01:22 PM   #1
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Default Friends come and go - but are they truly friends?

At my age of 51 and 3/4 (ha ha), I've observed that friends seem to come and go for the most part. Two years ago, I was amazed I had so many friends in my life. I was busy and engaged and felt fulfilled socially.

Yet now, most of those people have dropped out of my life. They are either busy with their own problems, or the connection has just dried up and died. And it feels very lonely these days.

I have to admit, the past 6 months I've been keeping more to myself. I always reply to their phone calls/emails, but I don't initiate much interaction. Been dragged down with health problems. And now that I'm coming up out of the fox hole I was hunkered down in, I look around and think, "Where did everybody go???"

It leaves me questioning what defines friends now. I'm not an asshole - I don't think. I needed some quiet time to focus and heal and regroup. And now everyone seems to have carried on without me. Ouch!

And here's the worst - one work "friend" thought I was "misrepresenting" her feedback about a presentation my colleague and I did, which I shared with my colleague. He jumped in and emailed her, asking her about it. Then she got super pissed at me and left me the coldest voice message saying I "misrepresented" her words (some kind of clinical employee code of ethics language). I've never heard her talk to me like that before. It just froze me when I listened to her message. And I think it was totally blown out of proportion! I shared her feedback with my colleague because I value and respect her viewpoint and I thought it would help strengthen our presentation. But it seems she felt I had violated some kind of confidential communication! I emailed an apology to her but she has not responded. At all. And every day I stew about it.

So now I'm thinking, how does a 52 year old woman make friends? Most people are friends with people they've known a long time. that really trims down the friend pool. And me being sensitive, I feel painfully rejected when my attempts to initiate a friendship with someone new are ignored or dismissed.

Maybe I will just turn into a crazy bush woman, get a hundred dogs and cats, and give up even bothering with humans. Just feeling really discouraged.

thanks for listening.
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Old 03-20-16, 04:39 PM   #2
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Hi RavenDarkLight

I agree... some friends do seem to come and go throughout life. I'm so sorry though that people seem to have gone their own way while you weren't feeling well . I am a friend to some people who have depression. It took me a while to get used to their tendency to isolate, but I certainly wouldn't leave them.

That's awful what happened at work too.

Making friends is something I find tricky too. Are there 'meetups' where you are? It's a popular app that I hear about now and then. You can enter your interests, and find other like-minded people to do things with.

Maybe attend the classes or meetings they give at libraries or in the community? I guess there is also googling "how to find friends" or something like that... because I can't think of any more suggestions at the moment :)

I'm sorry you're discouraged And I hope things work out okay at work.

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Old 03-20-16, 05:05 PM   #3
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Hi RavenDarkLight

I agree... some friends do seem to come and go throughout life. I'm so sorry though that people seem to have gone their own way while you weren't feeling well . I am a friend to some people who have depression. It took me a while to get used to their tendency to isolate, but I certainly wouldn't leave them.

That's awful what happened at work too.

Making friends is something I find tricky too. Are there 'meetups' where you are? It's a popular app that I hear about now and then. You can enter your interests, and find other like-minded people to do things with.

Maybe attend the classes or meetings they give at libraries or in the community? I guess there is also googling "how to find friends" or something like that... because I can't think of any more suggestions at the moment :)

I'm sorry you're discouraged And I hope things work out okay at work.
Hi, PrairieDawn. Just your kind compassionate reply helped a lot. That's what great about this community!

I just might check out that meetups app. I got to admit, I'm a little skeptical and nervous about meeting new people that way - but it sounds intriguing.

And yeah, when I start feeling better, I think I will go take some classes at art stores or book stores. I've made new friends before, I'm sure I can do it again.

And the work thing ... I've been doing a lot of journaling and reflecting on that. I've concluded that her behaviour says way more about her pain and harsh judgement of herself than of me. I honestly meant well - and if a "friend" can't understand and forgive, well then that's not friendship material to me. Not to sound arrogant or superior - it's just that I'm too old and too tired to slave hard at making people like me when I'm doing my best to be honest, live like a decent person, and apologize for my innocent mistakes. I am grieving a little, cuz I thought she was a friend. But she showed how she feels about me beneath the exterior. So that was useful (although painful) information!

Thank you for your reply. Here's a wave of kindness right back at you
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Old 03-20-16, 05:41 PM   #4
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I like that little waving guy :) Cute!

I know.. I'm skeptical about meetups too! Haven't tried it yet but I need to force myself to try. I know people who do it and love it.

Journaling is so useful, isn't it? I'm glad it helped you work it out, and come to some very wise conclusions. I think you're right. Sorry... I know it's hard when you think somebody is a friend, but then they turn into somebody else out of the blue . I've had that happen, and it was very upsetting.

Keep writing... it helps a lot.
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