When friends don’t call back…

July 10, 2006

My best and closest friends are from my college days. A couple of them are from my school days, but most of them are from the college where I did my engineering and some from where I did my masters.

I believe that most of our long term relationships are forged during our college days. That’s the time when friends are friends. You graduate from your school days where friends were- people with whom you cycled to school, people with whom you did your assignments, classmates who stayed in the same appartment complex as yours, your and their parents worked at the same office so you kept meeting at parties.

In college you truly emerge from the shadows of your family and start exhibiting your personality. A new universe evolves. In between lectures, labs, cultural fests, tea breaks, cack sessions in canteens- new bonds develop, friendships that promise a lifelong association blossom. You pass out from your college; the friendship, the relationship stays. You long to share every good or bad news with your friends. Distances don’t matter and the moment you meet or talk, you feel connected. It’s as if you’ve never been away, never been far.

But, life moves on.

People get married, parents retire, responsibilities at work increase, kids arrive, priorities change. They all demand time. Does this affect friendships? Yes and No. You still care. You still feel connected whenever you get talking, whenever you meet. But, you don’t meet often and you don’t get to talk often. Which is again okay.

It’s when you realize that you are the one who always calls, that it’s not okay. It’s when you realize that you are the one who always sends a IM, that it’s not okay. It’s when you start thinking before sending a IM, that it’s not okay. It probably means we have moved on. Does it?

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319 Responses to “When friends don’t call back…”

  1. Lalit Patil Says:

    People do care and expect certain relationships to remain the same.

    If you don’t ping first, the other person will not take the initiative, because that has been the way your relationship has been. Perhaps, that person expects that you ping first!

    People move on… Relationships move to a different level (as you have described) and yet, they remain the same.

    But, to some extent, you may be right – should only person take the extra effort?

    • Teqxan Says:

      I read somewhere a few years back that for every 5 people you meet 1 you can not stand – 2 are alright – 1 is fun and the other is a friend .. Around the same time had read that when we start making friends in elementary we have 6 -8 out of the 24 average students in our class .. when we go to middle school we loose 2 but gain 4 .. when we go to high school we have 1-2 from elementary and 2 from middle school .. by the time we graduate we have 2 true friends – 2 other friends. and after five years only 2 and after 10 years 1 .. College friendships tended to be more dynamic and stronger .. typically 4 -6 friendships 2 being extremely strong .. these two studies were completed aropund 2000 .. So with social media what it is today who knows how it will compare in 5 – 10 years ..

  2. Reena Says:

    But some relationships are such that you can pick it up where you left it, say five years back and it would still feel the same, even if you have not been in touch.
    I had such an experience a couple of years back. One of my men friends went totally off the radar after he got married. I knew he was well and alive since I got regular updates from other people. Two years after he got married I happened to visit the town where he was residing at that time. We met while I was in town. Our comfort level was same as it was before.
    So some people are worth pinging a couple of extra times than others.

  3. littlenotes Says:

    Lalit, you may be right. Sometimes relationships get defined in a certain way. Things cannot change after many many years. What is important is that despite limitations and lack of time, people do care.

    Reena, it’s true that with some people, things just remain the same. You connect with them, the moment you meet/talk.

    Yes, there is lot of reason and logic, even I give myself. But, sometimes the heart aches for long, casual conversations without a care in the world :-( It doesn’t seem like a small world at all.

  4. Reena Says:

    I found an article from my favorite romance author. I guess it is a deviation from the topic under discussion, but it is interesting inspite of it.

    “Why Every Heroine Needs a Girlfriend
    Just as Much as She Needs a Husband
    (Ooops! Did I say More than She Needs a Man?)

    My editor says that I write romances that are partially about the heroine’s love for a man, and partially about her love for her girlfriends. Well, of course. How else is my heroine going to keep it together enough to marry one of those crazy animals known as men, if she doesn’t have girlfriends? I myself am a very lucky woman: I have two friends. OK, I also have a husband who is wonderful (on a good day), and two children who are adorable (on a very good day), but day in, day out, I have two best friends. We lived together in college, the three of us. We were tall and wore the same size, a useful thing in roommates. I’m from Minnesota, and I wore my hair in a modified Farrah Fawcett do. I called Sprite pop. Marion is from San Francisco: she had long blonde hair and talked of bands I had never heard of. In fact, whole kinds of music I’d never heard of. Alissa is from Boston: she had black curls and won the Latin prize in high school. We met when we were eighteen years old, and now it’s some twenty years later.

    Together, we’ve had children, bad boyfriends and worse boyfriends, near deaths and illnesses. We’ve had two weddings, one law degree, two graduate degrees and no funerals. And we’ve racked up thousands and thousands of dollars in phone bills. Marion saved me from marrying a doctor by pointing out that he discussed his mother more than his job. I saved Alissa from a fate worse than death by noting that the wonderful man she just met had a pale circle around his finger. He turned out to be a married dentist on a spree. Alissa saved Marion from a drunken Bulgarian artist who threw fruit knives when enraged, by firmly stressing his bald spot.

    So when Gabby marries Quill, in Enchanting Pleasures, and only then finds out that he has a three-day migraine after engaging in rhythmical exercise (which puts a distinct damper on their marital life), whom can she turn to? Thank goodness, Sophie’s there. Sophie’s lessons on how to seduce a reluctant husband, involving a low-cut dress and deep breathing exercises, are remarkably efficacious. Without Sophie, who knows what could have happened? Perhaps I would have had to switch genres, and move into tragedy.

    But as it is, Gabby is lucky enough to find herself a wonderful husband (on a good day), two adorable children (on a very good day) and one terrific friend — for every day.”

    • Linchpin Says:

      What you have written has nothing to do with what the author of the main text has written. Honestly, it has nothing to do with it. The author wasn’t talking about anything to do with that because it’s clear that you and your friends stay in touch but you didn’t address the main point of the article. I just needed to say this! You didn’t even empathize!

    • Kay Says:

      What a great comment, Reena! Thanks for posting for us. I wish I had friends like those.

      Lynchpin, get lost!


  5. [...] in the future and give people no chance to complain. So forgive if I seemed like one of those friends who did not keep in touch. I will endeavor to do [...]

  6. SPARTAN-367 Says:

    How weird, I am feeling just the same and what were the chances of finding this blog post today, haha. I’m finishing my University degree soon, in 2 years. I’m noticing a lot, if not all, my friends being distant with me. Even my best ones, its harsh when you call constantly and get no answer back. I started to get fet up and I’ve stopped calling for good, because I got better things to do then waste my time and thoughts for others. I put my effort in friendships and if my friends don’t bother to put effort back, than to me there is no point in continuing.

    What can you do right…

  7. E.Greenwood Says:

    I’m going through the same thing, more so with friends from high school. I never had the traditional college experience; I never lived in a dorm so found it difficult to forge the close friendships you speak of.

    Now what I found most disheartening is that many of them have full, rich lives (boyfriends, husbands, even children), which seems to swallow up any need they might have to see me. I am single and would still like to hang out with the girls…But I feel a bit pathetic always reaching out and finding silence at the other end. In the end, I’ve grown more isolated as a way to defend myself from getting hurt. You can’t feel hurt about the lack of communication when you CHOOSE to distant yourself, right?

    • Teqxan Says:

      Or “would be” friends get in touch when they need a favor or your expertise ..and distancing yourself is not good – it leads to isolation and depression ..

  8. E.Greenwood Says:

    *distance, not distant

  9. Natalie Collins Says:

    I worked with another professional in a school district for 3 years and we got very close(or so I thought). My not so nice boss wanted to move me to another school so I left that job and got another. My new friend acted so very upset and promised to call me and keep in touch with my life. I called her 2 months ago and left a pretty lengthy message asking her to call me when it was convienent for her. To date I have not recieved a call. I know we are all busy- Im busy too but its very hurtful when people who claim to care about you cant take 2 minutes to make a phone call. Its called rude and thoughtless. Guess with friends like that who needs enemies??

    • Linchpin Says:

      I know exactly how you feel. I have this one friends who works in a job she makes out that is so stressful and so busy that she can’t even scratch herself. While I understand that she is busy, we are all busy, but that is no excuse when it comes to maintaining healthy friendships. I have sent messages to her and tried to call her, not incessantly you understand, but just to try and catch up and I never hear back from her. She never calls me back! I hate that and I resent her for not caring about our friendship. I also feel like I have wasted my time on just trying to reach out to her. I can only hope one day she will contact me and we can just chat as it was always nice to hear her voice. I enjoyed reading your message on her, and I empathize with you.

      Take care,

      Linchpin.

  10. Elaine M. Says:

    This topic really struck a nerve. I never had many friends when I went to school, or during my 20 years in the military. So the few friends I have acquired are precious to me. No matter how hard I try – it HURTS, really HURTS when I am the only one calling, writing, IMs, holiday cards, whatever.

    I decided to try NOT getting in touch with anyone FIRST and waited to see how long it would be before someone called or wrote to ME. To make a long story short – I’m STILL waiting. It’s been YEARS … I guess no one really gives a damn.

    The one that hurt worst of all was when I spoke with my cousin several years ago and asked why she didn’t EVER call me. Her reply? Oh, it’s TOO expensive. This was in the days of TEN CENTS A MINUTE. Geez, I’m not even worth a DIME?
    Sad

    • Stephen Derosier Says:

      Or the excuse, “I’ve been so busy…” Nothing is more insulting to me, after years ( sometimes decades ) of initiating contact. I’ve come to the very painful conclusion that, if the other person NEVER takes the initiative to contact me, there’s simply nothing left anymore.

  11. Catherine C. Says:

    Elaine M. I know how you feel. I tried the same with 3 friends and let’s just say it’s been easier not having those “friends” since June 2007.

  12. genie Says:

    wow,
    this does make me feel better, but then again, the whole wait for them to call, doesnt seem like it works in my favor….
    I have 2 great friends that talk a good game to me, but when we went out with a big group, I felt excluded at some points, then they went to a movie and dinner without me… Yes, I normally say no, but still, could ask! 1 never calls, she doesnt call anyone, yet she talks like she really cares, and the other doesnt want to talk talk about anyone cept her and her life( she is pretty conceited as well, thinks she is gorgeous, she is but really…) I have really been there for both of them this past years(bothe sep. from husbands) yet, I dont feel like I get anything back. I have been used before, and wonder if like this is it again, I doubt it. But, putting them in my head as FF fairweather friends, and not as the BF, has made me feel freer and a lot less expectations of them, and less expectations of myself….

  13. Jan Says:

    Now I know I am not alone! I was really low because some of my friends, whom I have known since I was eleven have grown distant. But after reading these posts, I realised that some people move on or are just thoughtless. But it hurts like hell, because you still want them in your life, its a pity that they don’t feel the same way.

    • Linchpin Says:

      Yes, you do want them in your life because they make you happy. It just hurts like hell when they go out and do something without you or never return your calls or just fade away. What hurts more is when they act all nice when you bump into them and you say that you want to stay in touch but they never do, even when you genuinely meant it. It just makes me feel so empty, like they feel like I am not worth knowing. It hurts so much. Thanks for posting your words, I truly empathize.

      Take care,

      Linchpin.

  14. Susan Says:

    My friend lives in another state but has family near me. She comes to town with her family and boyfriend and sometimes calls me. When she comes over it’s like we pick up where we left off. Her boyfriend said she thinks the world of me. The strange thing is that when she leaves she doesn’t return my calls.
    I want a friend that I can talk to thru the good times and the bad. I have written her off several times but when she does call I’m right there ready to be best buddies. It Hurts me that she doesn’t have the time or consideration to return my calls. I have come to the conclusion that I just shouldn’t expect much from her.

  15. Susan Says:

    I wrote the above comment and would like to get follow up comments. I have never written my feelings on the internet. I feel better just writing my feelings down on here, so it’s worth it.
    Thank you!

    • Linchpin Says:

      You wrote this a long while ago. I know that when you lower your expectations of friends that it hurts because then it is supposed to shield you from hurt if they disappoint you, which they usually do anyway. It hurts also when you try to reach out and you get nothing back from long time friends or people you never thought would do that, and even from family or cousins. Why are people like this? Have you any clue? Do you feel like it is something you have done, or it just nature? Friends are supposed to stick together and be in touch and never let anything get in the way of a great rapport. That’s what we’d all like, isn’t it? Sad that this isn’t a reality.

      Take care,

      Linchpin.

  16. Brian Says:

    I realized too late that leaving a darling friend behind was due to a misunderstanding. A mutual friend manipulated a situation that resulted in my ignoring my darling friend. Now, it’s too late.
    She loved me and I ignored her – for no good, true or solid reason. Be careful who you listen to, even if you’re very close. I was warned by the friend I’ve now lost and by my family that I was being manipulated and cornered into a “no other’s are worthy” relationship and now, so many are gone and boy, am I sorry. The manipulator is still in my life and I care about him, too, but I see now it was him all along who worked in a very secretive way to push others out, to get me to not want them in my life. The manipulator is very ill and I feel obligated to be there. Some day, I’ll get back to my darling friend where I belong and I hope, I really hope, she’ll be there.

  17. Vicky Says:

    I feel alone alot…I suffer with depression
    and anxiety. I have few friends and over the years i have tried to make friends but I feel I make most of the effort to call. I am 40 and will be having my first baby and I will be having a baby shower but only have 2 friend that might show up(I call them more).

    This bothers me so much these days I cannot get a proper nights rest and my hubby does not understand.

  18. Johnny William Says:

    if they do not call back/respond within a reasonable length of time after a call/email/letter (5-7 days) then they are NOT your friends. Many boomers are addicted to work, and they love money and greed. Hence, their terry nickell diming philosophies pertaining to their “friends.”

  19. Dustin Says:

    I feel the same way. This really hits a strong nerve with me. It’s horrible cause I feel so alone. For years I tried to keep in touch with people and slowly stopped cause nobody stayed in touch with me. I am so sorry there is an experience like.

    And it always goes with me at least that people call me when they need something or I have something they want. Honestly I just cant be fake about it anymore… I feel old and resentful and I am only 31 years old.

  20. renee Says:

    I have been feeling the same way lately. I just don’t have room in my heart for “friends” who don’t have the courtesy to pick up to phone and return a call. For me it is a clear message that our friendship is no longer important to them. I think for me is is better to just realize that the friendship has faded and move on.

    • Linchpin Says:

      I think I should do the same thing with the supposed friends in my life. It’s taken me a while to realize that I am just extending my suffering by keeping these people in my life that do not feel like calling me back or going out with me. It is clear that the friendship is no longer important to them when they just don’t contact you or message you or call you back. Now, I am moving on! I am glad I found this site.

      Take care,

      Linchpin

  21. Emma Says:

    Hi All,
    I think the answer to repeatedly being burned is to be very slow about friendship. be acquaintances first and see how things are going; if your friendship needs match,and the depth of the rlationship,and only then take it to the next level.

    People outside of North America take friendships much more seriously than Americans do (except Mexicans)and are very clear about the difference between acquaintances and friendship. We tend to call people friends after 10 minutes of pleasant banter; we’re much to easy.

    I have two friends of the soul that I talk with only a few times a year. We don’t do day to day chitchat and don’t discuss the kids, work,etc.We talk about what makes us happy,what matters to us, and how we’re really doing inside. I love them and wouldn’t have it any other way.

    Two other friends are close,but not friends of the soul,and we talk about every two months. We’re both excited about our friendship and don’t have to keep count of who calls who first, or how often. When there’s a crisis we’re there.

    The problem is when one person is more excited about a friendship than the other,because the least interested one can take it or leave it and invest little in maintaining the friendship.

    I thought someone was my best friend, but she has never initiated anything,phone calls, outings, nothing. If I call her for help she’ll be there,and when we talk she will tell me what’s on her mind. She’s no user,but if I don’t call it’s out of sight out of mind.I”ve been out of state now 6 years, and she sends birthday and Xmas cards,but never calls.

    I gave her the benefit of the doubt by saying that she’s the youngest of 6 and is used to being passive,but I just don’t get how a friend could go 6 years without wondering how you’re doing and sending an email or calling. That’s inconceivable to me regardless of what’s going on in your life unless you’re severely depressed. Who doesn’t have 5 minutes for a quick call?

    I don’t know whether to just stop calling and drop her,or talk to her,or and just accept the cards and leave it at that;look for someone else as a real friend. She’s one of the kindest people I know, but I really think that this is a out of sight out of mind thing for her,and that she just isn’t that invested. (People from large families generally don’t make good friends anyway.)

    • Shannon Says:

      I disagree about your comment for that passive good hearted friend, it’s not that she doesn’t care, she maybe just passive….I am like that too, and most time I was too pollite to think calling people is disturbing their life, even though I die hard want to know how your life has been.

    • Emma's an Idiot Says:

      Hate to burst your little bubble. While I agree with most of what you say, I don’t know where you get this ignorant idea that because someone is the youngest of 6, that it automatically follows that they are passive. You need to drop that.
      Maybe your friend dropped you because you have such stupid judgmental ideas about people from large families.
      I am the youngest of 6, and I am the most pro-active about trying to keep in touch with useless friends who never initiate contact. I have tried over and over and OVER AGAIN for years on end, because I am the most loyal friend those fuckers will ever have, except now I am so sick and tired of
      their indifference that they can all fucking go to hell.
      People moan on and on about being lonely, yet when it comes to making the least effort, they don’t even bother.

      • Ariell Says:

        I strongly agree with what you’ve written Emma. Coming from a large family has nothing to do with anything! It angers me too when people assume I am spoiled because I’m an only child and yet I’ve noticed that people with siblings tend to be the most selfish (not all) because they’ve spent their entire lives being forced to share with their siblings. I, on the other hand, come from an extremely hard-working family who had zero support from extending family members and had to “bust” their hump to achieve anything. I have a strong work ethic because of my parents and I never ask for them to buy me anything. I’m the one taking everyone else’s shifts at work, I’m the one sharing my belongings with others and I’m the one who is the most LOYAL of friends and yet all other people do is mope and complain that they are lonely but they make zero to little effort while I put in more effort than a normal person should. By the way, I am NOT insulting you by saying that you are selfish because you come from a large family. It’s just ignorant to assume that only ONLY children can be spoiled, when in fact, it works both ways. To me, you sound like a very generous person at heart and your bitterness and anger are justified. And my parents were never rich, so I never had the opportunity to beg them for this or for that! I lived with the basic necessities of life.

      • susan Says:

        wow, you’re a bitter person. I wouldn’t call you back if my life depended on it!!!!

      • Ariell C Says:

        Right on!

    • In reply to Susan Says:

      In reply to “Susan”…shut your face, you judgmental, withholding person. You sound like the kind of uncaring, insensitive, self-absorbed person who just loves to call people bitter at the drop of a hat.
      What goes around comes around, and one day, when you’re on the receiving end, we’ll see how you react. Jerk.

  22. Lucy Says:

    I don’t know if I’m glad to hear of so many others feeling ignored by their good friends…does it mean I just have to get used to it? When you’ve been honest to a friend, that you need to hear from them to feel like there is a friendship between you (and especially for them to call or email you back) – and they say,”That’s just how I am, I don’t use the phone much”…do you cut off the 10 year friendship? We have seen each other’s children born, have had lots of good times, but not lately. To threaten to take away your friendship when you know that will only hurt you…leaves me feeling manipulated and so angry!

    I do know that some people are just better at keeping in touch – we need to start a support group, because there are too many people who think they can say, “Oh, I’m such a bad friend,” and then get on with your friendship like nothing is wrong!

    Urgh!

    • Linchpin Says:

      I wish we could start a support group and help each other, because not having the help we need or the friendships we built is just soul ripping and makes me feel so alone. I don’t get why people are like this. I’m like you, URGH!

  23. Nila Says:

    I totally feel the way most of you do. Dejected and abandoned. I really really wish we could get a support group going. Maybe a yahoo group called Friends of the Friendless or something. Man, I’m lonely. Not in a relationship way, but in terms of not having friends. I recently realized that my 2 closest friends don’t give a flying fig about me. Maybe they care, but not in the way I care for them. So, I know it’s time to move on. But it really hurts. They were so precious to me because I don’t have many friends, none actually.

  24. irene Says:

    i think i have the same situation as u.
    i don’t really have a particular someone that can be considered as the ‘best friend’.Its nice to see others who have that one particular person that they’ve known for a long time,who they can share their heart & soul with.I do have lots of friends & acquaintances to hang out with.I also have this one friend while i’m in college,she lives next door,and i would always hop in her room to share gossip and stuff,and she would do the same.We share each others secrets,our family stories and such.Therefore,I consider her as a bestfriend.Now we’re both at different places and I desperately trying to keep in touch with her but to no avail.I thought i have we keep track with each others lives even though we’re far from one another but it seems like i’m the only one who’s making an effort here,so now i’m not sure whether she considers me as her bestfriend as well.It’s sad.Maybe the only friends i need is my family.My family will always be there for me.But then again,when my sisters got married and have their only,then there’ll be a different story.

  25. Bill A Says:

    The question the author is asking is:
    “If one starts thinking to themselves that they are always the one to initiate communication with a friend, then is this person in question truly our friend?”

    To me the answer is no. If a friend is truly interested in maintaining a relationship they will find a way to communicate. Whether it is email, phone, facebook, a letter, a visit… if someone cares they make some kind of effort.

    Having a one-way friendship is called being a fan.

    I’m 35 and have recently encountered emotions similar to what I’m reading on this page. Over a year ago I started to have the feeling that I was the one who initiated contact with 95% of the people in my life. Some of whom have been friends for 20+ years.

    So as an experiment to deal with my feelings of disappointment I decided to wait until people contact me.

    And what do you know after only 1 week all my friends called and said “Where have you been? We missed you so much!” Just kidding… I’m still waiting.

    The hardest feeling for me to deal with has been adjusting from the feeling that I had many friends to the realization that I have maybe one. I feel a little bit worthless since I’m not important enough to call, but I’m used to that feeling.

    What hurts me is that I feel stupid for caring about others who are indifferent to me and for mistakenly thinking they cared more than they did.
    Also I know that that feeling will stand in the way of making new friends if I don’t get past it.

    The only way I can deal is by treating new people in my life the way I would want to be treated. It doesn’t help much, but it’s all I’ve got. Plus it beats the alternative which is not giving a crap about anybody.

    • Craig Says:

      Bill, I agree with you 100%. A friend will find a way to communicate.
      You are never a worthless person just because someone else can’t see your worth. The fact that you were always willing to reach out says that you are not centered entirely on yourself.
      I think what we all need to understand is that we are all, in fact, equal. We deserve friendship as much as the people we are trying to befriend, not less. I encourage you to like those qualities about you. Someone once said that we are the only person we will never be able to get away from, so we better like who we are. I like who I am when I am loving people, even if they are stupid, rude pigs, lol:). Actually, I like myself even more when I decide to love people who don’t love me back- it’s very liberating; but that doesn’t mean I will keep on reaching out to them. I give it a couple tries, and then I’m done. No mind games or manipulation; if we are friends and we can help each other in some ways, we will both communicate with each other in a respectful and timely way.
      If it’s obvious that someone is just using me for convenience , then it’s over. I have been told by a number of people that I am their “best friend” or “the best friend they ever had” and I agree with that- based on how much I have reached out and encouraged and prayed for them….but the interesting thing to me is that those same people don’t even register on my “good aquaintance” list because they are never available when I need someone to talk with or for any mutual need.
      I have a couple of old friends who I have known for years, who I trust and who I know are always available if I need them and I feel very fortunate and grasteful for them, even though we don’t get to talk very often.
      I often wonder what the world would be like if we all kept the thought ” I love you” front and center in our minds, in our thoughts…..I think it’s a cruel and heartless thing to devalue a person and brush them off without consideration just because of being preoccupied with self….some day we will ALL, and I mean ALL, need someone close to confide in, to help us up, to be completely honest without the fear of judgement or rejection. I have decided to be that person even if I never meet another person like me, because I like myself when I am that way.
      Thank you for your honest post. I really appreciate it, and it encourages me to know I am not alone in the pain that unreciprocated friendship often brings. May we all find and be worthy friends.

  26. chocolate Says:

    I understand how it feels to be ignored by someone who was your best friend. I’ve been there. Relationships change when your life and environment changes. Maybe not right away, but definitely will over time.
    However, after slowly healing, I learned that it’s best to not focus so much on the pain, to resent your old friends. That will hurt yourself. I learned the most important thing that it’s OK to put a friendship on hold. If you’re secure about this friendship, maybe it’s a good thing to do when one of you is busy.
    It sucks that keeping in touch or keeping friendships strong is much harder than we thought in our younger years. and it takes two. So try not to “take it personally”.
    I did not do anything wrong, so the person ignoring me probably didn’t do this to me on purpose or to me only. Some people are very busy, a lot busier than others can imagine.. You never know. Even if they do catch a break, they have a right to do whatever they want at that moment.
    They can be busy working, and although a lot of people complain how friends won’t take 5 minutes to return a call (I hate those too. I may not call back within the same day but my good memory allows me to always call back…but that’s just me. I try to remind myself everyone’s different and not expect the same on others) but those real busy people want to catch up on sleep, on errands or on family time when they have some free time. It’s best to give benefit of the doubt as to not judge others too harshly nor to hurt ourselves. They probably ignore everyone else, too, since right now, they don’t have time or energy to maintain close relationships.
    Maybe they’ll regret someday, for eventually, there will be a time when they need a friend and then can’t find one. Or maybe not, if they move on and can make new friends.
    If we’re very understanding and good friends, we’ll allow them to put our friendships on hold, let go for now, without hard feelings. We did our part and now the ball’s in their court. Someday it may be my turn to be too busy to meet for coffee or write emails and I don’t want my friends to hate me for it.
    It’s best not to wait for reply, to expect so much. After all, the best friend from your dorm no longer lives next door, and we’re no longer care-free students, sharing the same life. The best friend can live on the other side of the country, having a family or job as priority, and she belives that you ‘should” understand her wishes to catch up just a couple times a year…
    Some people don’t really value talking on the phone either. They just don’t like it. (I agree though it’s rude to not call back…)
    There’re many forms of friendships. Keeping constant touch is great, but may not be for everyone. Some people prefer out-of-sight, out-of-mind but will always welcome to drop by. Some people need more companionship when others are independent. It depends on the personality. If more communication is demanded or expected of the independent, they feel “pressure” and even “guilt” which is the opposite of neglected, but is just as bad.
    When I decided (was left with no choice, lol) to switch from ‘keeping close touch’ to ‘i’ll just inform him only if I’m in town’, I felt free, knowing I don’t have to try so hard to get my friend to email back anymore or fear being ignored again…and if he felt pressure because I wanted more contact than he did, then it was a good relief. Still I don’t like thinking I’ve lost my best friend from college for good. Since I couldn’t find logical reasons for him to cut me off, I just leave it as it is, tell myself he’s busy and focus on other things in my life.
    We can analyze forever and feel sad…but it’s not going to help the situation. My conclusion is that we should go with the flow. Any relationship should grow and die naturally and our effort shouldn’t be overdone because it sometimes contributes so little.(why do you like you friend? Because she would do things for you? Because she’s the kindest person in the world? No! Because you just like her. You like spending time with each other and the friendship started so naturally and effortlessly. Right?) Friendship takes two and you have to respect what the other person needs right now, going with the flow of how you feel as well. If you love the person too much to cut him/her off, then give them benefit of the doubt and put the friendship on hold for now. Don’t expect anything but don’t lose hope. There’s no need to regret or resent your dear old friend. Although relationships change, I do agree with a writer above that in a way it never changes. As long as you remember each other, remember the good old times, then the bond will never change, or can always be renewed.If you don’t mind dropping this person in return, feeling more anger than sadness towards this relationship, then you don’t love them that much in the first place, or not anymore. You’ve already got the answer from your heart: Once you stop caring, there’s not much can do. which matches the other side of the story and this is a natural death of relationship.
    I believe we have ALL been on each side of the story…we just might not realize when we’re the ones who cares less….After we met our best friends in the college dorm, who was supposed to be friends for life, did we slowly drop some friends from high school? I did, but it felt natural. : )

    • adventure Says:

      Thank you for your compassionate and realistic view, chocolate. Sometimes I struggle with allowing friendships to change without resorting to sadness, anger, and resentment.

      It seems like I trick myself into believing that I understand friendship in the first place. When I step back and do a reality check, I realize that I actually have virtually no idea how anything in life is “supposed” to work. Frustration and pain arise for me when I believe I understand how things are “supposed” to be, and also when I think I can control other people into fulfilling my demands for attention.

      It seems to me that life represents a sort of pioneering, an exploration into the unknown. Can I remain open and curious and compassionate in the face of change, or when my hypotheses about how I expected things to turn out prove incorrect? Can I cultivate compassion and forgiveness for myself and my friends as we fumble our way through life? Can I cultivate a sense of humor and realize that it may not be “all about me”? Can I cultivate awareness and gratitude for the abundance of life and love I experience in *this* moment, and for the good times past that I shared with friends who seem more distant now?

      Maybe friendship has more to do with my willingness to extend compassion, forgiveness, and encouragement to myself and others, even when situations do not fulfill my expectations, than with whether another person fulfills my idiosyncratic demands about how friendship is supposed to work.

      However, whining and feeling like a victim of life has not worked for me in the past. I have done it plenty, and the only way to get out of it seems to be a complete shift of perspective away from my expectations and demands and towards gratitude and appreciation.

  27. Bill A Says:

    I agree with most of what chocolate says, but not the part about ‘being too busy’. That’s just an expression, something that is easier to say than “you are a lower priority than my other activities.” Which is the real meaning.

    Everyone has been insanely busy at some point in their life and I don’t think it’s hard for others to imagine someone else being very stressed and busy.

    My comments weren’t directed at the friend who takes months to get back with you, but the ones who express desire to continue communicating when you speak, but whom you never hear from again if you don’t contact.

    Maintaining an old friendship with infrequent contact is fine. For example my one friend is someone I have visited on average once every two years. Phone calls are almost as rare, but I have no problem with that because on the occasions we do get together we have fun and he is honest about his time constraints.

    It’s when a former friend is insincere that gets to me. Making commitments to meet or call that you don’t intend to keep, suddenly ignoring calls without explanation. People call it a “white lie” when you fake sincerity to get out of an uncomfortable social situation. But it is still a lie.

    Everyone is different, personally I hate using the phone. So when I overcome my aversion and make that call and then get no response it feels like a wasted effort. I don’t care if the person calls me back in a timely fashion, or even at all. They could send an email, or visit or whatever lets me know they are still alive.

    In the end there is no choice but to ‘go with the flow’ as chocolate says and try not to take things personally (I suck at that.) The emotion that I’m talking about here is not the natural erosion of a friendship over time, but the more sudden feeling of reaching the breaking point in terms of initiating communication that is not returned… kind of like how I felt after leaving a sales job… except this was with friends not potential customers.

  28. shalu Says:

    I just read this post…the whole of it….I was feeling so sad and disappointed over this similar behaviour from my friends who dont bother to return emails, phonecalls etc. I feel so stupid that i make myself available to them everytime they need me.I genuinely get very concerned/worried if they dont respond to my emails/phone calls because to me I will never do this to anyone otherwise. I feel totally used and ignored.but I liked what chocolate said…not to take it personally…they may be do this to evryone and that keep the friendship on hold and dont burn ur heart over this…
    thanks
    it helps

  29. ann Says:

    There was a study not too long ago that found we are all down to an average of one or two confidants (guess you could call that good friends) – people you could count on to talk about things. And those confidants were almost always significant others. The sad conclusion is that we have so little regard for people as people anymore that unless you are married you have a high risk of meaning nothing real to anyone. Pathetic actually.

    The only real way I can think of to deal with it is to put your efforts to finding new friends through social groups and organizations. You may not get the deep friendships you like, but at least you will have more social contact.

  30. Nancy Says:

    Wow, I am so glad I found this site. I too have had several people say “Lets get together once a month”, only to never return calls you make.

    I have a friend I met at a job 10 years ago. She and I have kept in touch forever. She is almost 60, has no children and 1 job. Recently, I have left a couple messages for her only to have her not return the calls. However, she sent a Valentine’s Card. She is not that busy–believe me! I am the one with a small child. I have decided to let her call me and to not immediately pick the phone up and be available to her.

    I think I have learned that friendships are transient and NOT to expect much of anything from friendships. It is sad because I keep a wall up, but I don’t get disappointed that way.

  31. Bea Says:

    Well, I must say, I feel sooo much better now, after reading about so many other people feeling rejected! Especially the post discussing the research which says that we only have a couple of confidants now? I have been thinking that this phenomenon is due to social networks, where people feel satisified by posting all their doings for all their “friends” to read, and, just don’t need to make a phonecall to various friends anymore? And, something to do with egocentricity that this new form of “communicating” has nurtured? Hmm….. but, glad I’m not alone!!

  32. Hannah Says:

    I just wrote a long message about all this…and managed to somehow delete it!! Which is probably a good thing cause it was a bit of a rant tbh!! I’m so glad I came across this site and grateful for people’s honesty as I have felt very sad about my friends’ behaviour lately. We’re talking people who have been in my life for up to ten years and now no longer think they need to do anything to keep a relationship going. I think it takes guts and a bit of a thick skin to say “no I won’t accept this anymore” and be prepared to end a friendship that is basically dead anyway due to their lack of communication. I abhor apathy in people, and yet I accept it in my so-called friends. These people who say “I don’t like using the phone”…what’s that about?! One of my friends said this as well as never emailing, and I was all “OK, fair enough” (thinking: well seeing as I live 3 hours away how is this going to work, telepathy?!” I think what the people on here have in common is being passive to other people and their way of behaving, and it’s time to say no more! This site has given me the confidence to think it’s not me, I’m not alone in this and there are others like me, so thanks for all your comments.

  33. bird Says:

    I know exactly what you mean. I’ve let go of friends (if only in my mind) in the past year, deleted names from my cell phone list. To me, the saddest part is that I hardly have any friends left now. It’s really pathetic that I have so few friends like me that are the kind of people who value friendship (in general) enough to keep in touch, even if only once in awhile. The “friends” I deleted NEVER kept in touch. I was just too codependent to notice until more recently.

    In solidarity…

    • doggiezen Says:

      I am also deleting names on my cell phone list, only to end up with no friends at all. After I sat down to think about this fact, I decided that, instead of feeling I’ve lost all my friends, I’ll just learn from my mistakes, start from scratch and make new friends, setting my standards higher this time.

      I now have one good friend who is worth more than all the old ones put together. She’ll call or e-mail me, asking how I am and always answers my calls and e-mails. She’ll call me from a store saying “they’ve got this thing you were looking for, want me to get it for you?” and I’ll do the same for her. She’s supportive, positive and never makes me feel bad about myself.

      Now I’ll tell you about my previous life long friend who suddenly stopped contacting me. All of a sudden it was a one-way friendship. Her life was the same as always but she was BUSY all the time. She used the word BUSY to the point where I hate that particular word even to this day…. At the same time I could see from her Facebook page that she had time to contact all her old school friends.

      Since she was BUSY, I tried waiting, respecting her time and the courses she was attending etc.

      After 2 years things seemed a little fishy to me, how BUSY can you get? I asked her why I never heard from her anymore unless I called and if I had said or done anything wrong? She answered me “Of course not, you are my best friend and always will be my best friend”.

      We met for a weekend trip, stayed at a hotel. She, who always talked about giving time to people, was on her computer or cell phone the whole weekend and made a big fuss over how her boss needed her and made calls throughout our whole meal. She was the one who called her boss – he seemed a little surprised to hear from her on a Saturday evening if you ask me….

      I went home after this trip, realizing something had changed. My friend used to have the top job, top pay, top boyfriend, top everything and as long as that was the case, the friendship was fine. I got a very good job 3 years ago, which was when my friend stopped contacting me. I think the balance of our friendship shifted due to this change. She seemed to have a need to show me how very BUSY and IMPORTANT she was and shut me out of her life completely and there was nothing I could do about it.

      I felt sad for about 2 years but now I have accepted that I have lost my best friend, and that it is not because of anything I have done.

      RAE

  34. Nancy Says:

    Turns out that the friend I was speaking of earlier did call me and took me out for lunch. I mentioned that I hadn’t heard from her in a long time and she really didn’t offer any explanation, but we did connect.

    I wish I could say that all friends have eventually contacted me. Some I never hear from again or at least until I run into them at a store.

    If you want to find out who your true friends are, let go of the reins and see if they respond.

  35. Fly Says:

    I’m glad I’m not the only one who’s experienced this.

    I have a friend who I met 4 years ago. I could tell her anything. She moved away, got married and she promised to keep in touch when she left. I’ve called her plenty of times to catch up, sent her emails asking how life is, and never got a single reply back. She is very busy though.

    But what kills me is that she’s always talking to other friends of hers and she always has time for them, yet she acts like she really cares about me and gets upset whenever I contradict that. The way I see it, she’s screwing me over. I think she’s not worth knowing.

  36. Nancy Says:

    Fly, I know I hate that when friends tell you they love you and they want to keep in touch with you and go on and on about it.

    Then when it comes to action, they ignore you over and over.

    I wish they just wouldn’t say anything in the first place.

  37. Steph Says:

    I, too, am glad I found this site! I just happen to be really disgusted with someone that I was trying to build a friendship with for several years. I extended myself, and that always carries the risk of injury. However, I personally feel that friendships are grown, just like plants, and need mutual maintenance. It should NOT be totally one sided. Seriously, I don’t mean that the other person has to make every other call, but when it it is onesided, the person making the lion’s share of contacts really should reevaluate whether it is a friendship: it may be just one person getting “used”. I have this “friend” who only intiates her contacts with “I need a favor…”. Otherwise, she doesn’t write back to written e-mails, just forwards jokes. Leave a phone message? Don’t bother, as she never listens to them. One saving grace is that I was with her and a mutual friend called her on this stuff! Her proud reply? “I never write back to e-mails! Who feels like reading 30 e-mails? And I never listen to phone messages either!” Well, for one thing I felt better that it wasn’t just happening to me. I was also happy to see the other woman call her on it. She may find that if people realize this is her “MO” that all contact from the outside world stops, which is what someone like that deserves. Frankly, I think this happens so much that if I can Google “friend that doesn’t call back” and find a website with such prolific entries as this, it tells us its a pretty cold climate out there!

  38. Lee Says:

    I was feeling lost as to what to think regarding the original OP’s comment. I am almost 40 and came to the realization that certain people I call friends NEVER call to see how I am doing. It is definately a one way street regarding effort to stay in touch. I feel better that I am not alone in these thoughts. After reading so many comments from people who have similiar feelings, I think I will summarize my quandry over this whole friend thing with: “I am happy that I have had shared memories with them that made me smile and laugh, and leave it at that.”

  39. Megan Says:

    I just don’t understand some “friends”. I have one who for years used to call, make time to get together and now, I leave a message and she doesn’t call for weeks at a time. She just has a fulltime job and that is it!! She has no other responsibilites but claims to be so busy!! Just tell me you don’t want to be friends anymore, if that is how you feel.
    She does everything on her time and now and then, she will send a card telling me “Lets get together” but never suggests a date or time.
    I have pretty much moved on and let it go.

  40. L Says:

    After reading this, what I did was erase everyone out of my life. If they claim that they care so much, pick up the phone and call.

  41. Jadene Says:

    I can so totally relate to all of this! I had a very bestfriend for ten long years who disappeared(after wake and funeral) after my parent died cuz she met her now husband then boyfriend and was too busy to answer her phone, not take messages, not answer her door, etc. I forgave her becuz she called me crying saying I wasn’t a good friend to you and I am sorry, but then she did something else and I decided to end the friendship. 7 yrs later she went by my old address asking for me saying she drove by all the time but noticed my vehicle no longer there for a yr or so and wanted me to call her and asked where I was and said she really missed me. Took me some time to find her cuz I had been sick but I finally did and went to leave a note at their house cuz of private tel #. She was there but didn’t answer the door. She did call me at least 6 times before she got a hold of me and wanted to know all about my life but after 2.5 hrs of talking she ended it with keep in touch, I’m glad I talked to you. I asked if she wanted to all get together her and her husband and I for breakfast or for dinner or a coffee and she said that we would see eachother and do stuff and that she had to get better from a sore throat which was 6 months ago. I called her several more times with time spaced in between and she’d only return my call if I called her and when I did call her she just made excuses; had to get her life together, was going thru menopause, was depressed yet told me she was able to do things with others and now it is to the point that she hasn’t returned my last few phonecalls. My thoughts ……Why did she bother to come by my old address in the first place, meaning why stir things up and act like she was worried and cared and why did she wait til I was gone….and why did she rub it in that she drove by all the time for yrs with her husband and her mom and I said you never pulled in she said no but I always thought of you you were like a sister to me. UGH!

  42. Nancy Says:

    I have been trying to schedule playdates for my son this summer. I spoke to 2 moms who in person (at the beginning of the summer) both said they would be interested in scheduling playdates with our sons. Then I decided to call them to get a date set. In both cases, I left a message and then called again and talked to them over the phone (There was no chance they could say they didnt get my message). They said they would get back to me with a date. They never did!! Unbelieveable. Our sons are friends in school. At least do what you say you are going to do when kids are involved!!! Why are people like this?

  43. Ariell Choy Says:

    I am sooooooooooo happy to have found this site and read the stories of others. I have actually been suffering from lack of decent friendships since the age of 5. I know that sounds like an exaggeration but even in school, it was always a difficulty for me. It worsened as I aged and went to high school and even in university (I just graduated and received a Specialized Honours Bachelor of Arts), I realized it is not worth my time to keep in contact with or care about people that don’t care one IOTA about me. I have grown since and like Chocolate says, I no longer take these things personally. I realized more than ever, we live in a SELF-ABSORBED CULTURE in North America. Egocentrism is the name of the game. On every other continent, FRIENDSHIP is held in high regard (maybe even more so than marriage!) What hurts are the ones who say “they love you” and “care about you” but NEVER communicate unless you dial the phone or send the email first. I delete their phone numbers and block their email addresses and move on. I only join hobbies that interest me and live my life to the fullest. I know partially keep a wall up as defense to feel less hurt. It feels great to read everyone else’s story and be able to empathize with you all. It seems we are the TRUEST of friends out there! Yay for us!

  44. Jadene Says:

    That totally makes sense to delete their phone numbers. I did delete her from my cell phone(thank you, Ariell Choy!). If she has time to call her family, nieces, husband, and everyone else but hasn’t got time to call me and I have to do all the calling, it’s not worth it.

    I thought on it and I think all the times she drove by my old residence for 8 yrs going to the stores that she just was reminiscing about our old ten yr long friendship and when she actually did get to talk to me the reality came to be that she got to know all she wanted to know by our tel conversation and decided she just doesn’t care.

  45. Nancy Says:

    I find it so funny that the people who will be my facebook friends (and are on it several times a day) always have the excuse that they can’t return my email or phone call. I hate this impersonal world!

  46. Flossie Says:

    I am also 35, and also realized that I was the one doing all the work in my relationships. I quit calling or contacting all of them to see how long it took them to contact me. Almost a year later & nothing. Not one of my friends (some of whom I’ve been friends with for over 20 years) are even curious how I’m doing, how depressing. My heart is heavy from the rejection & my self esteem is damaged right now. I’m terrified to invest in anybody else because it just seems a waste. I am depressed and lonely. At this point, I cannot call them, my fragile ego can’t handle it. It wakes me up at night still. I dream about my old friends still.

    • Joanie Says:

      I too am glad I found this site. I for years have wondered why people don’t have the common courtesy to reply back in any fashion when contacted. I always wonder, is it me? Did i do something to piss them off? Then, I think, ok, I will NOT call/contact them again, but usually I break down and try one last time, acting “dumb” on my message and all cheery, like nothing is wrong, or the fact I am pissed off as to why I never hear from them. Then, if still no call back, I can at least think, well, I tried, and left the door open for them to communicate. My theory as to why people don’t respond is, 1. So much time elapses that people are embarrassed to finally call/answer back, 2. You are not a “cool” enough person in their eyes to be friends with 3. There is something about you that they are envious of/jealous of 4. There are issues within themselves that make them feel inferior when compared to you. 5. They are inconsiderate and have no sense of urgency or caring when it comes to trying to keep in touch 6. They are mad at you about something but don’t have the courage to talk with you face to face about it, so they just ignore you completely. So, therefore, you as the “friend” have no idea what is going on or if you “did” anything wrong.
      I cannot count how many times I have wondered why someone does not
      Have the common decency to respond back to me, even if the person said to me , never call/contact me again! It would be
      So refreshing, I mean, fish or cut bait. Don’t leave a person in constant
      Wonderment. Also, I agree with previous posts that people are more self-absorbed, and therefore rarely think of others and their feelings. But, it is half my fault if I allow myself to be a victim and be used. I would just like to learn the reasons that people don’t respond, because if there is something I can do to on my end to change that, or increase the odds of people actually calling back, I would try it. One last reason I thought of for people not responding is, I think some folks see it as a power play, and think, I will not contact that person, they need to contact ME first. Anyway, I think I need to care less than I do…it wastes too much energy, and I have come to the conclusion that people/friends who don’t respond are so rampant in this world, I don’t forsee I big revolution of change coming in folks’ behavior. The only one I can control is myself. What is embarrassing is when you see “said friend” somewhere out, how do you act? Like, wheee, hi there, nothing is wrong at all??!! What purpose would it serve to be honest and say, “oh, nice to see you after
      You have completely ignored my attempts to reach out to you.” Sad.

      • Reann Says:

        That is exactly what I was thinking! when they fail to respond to your calls, 1. Did I do something wrong, but didn’t realize and their too worried that it may cause an argument 2. There is something about you that makes them feel less of themselves, compared to you. e.g. jealous envious. And 3. That they think you are not ‘cool’ enough. That just hits the nail on the head for me, when they fail to reciprocate my calls and ways of reaching out to them. I have never been one to have that many friends but a small group of close friends, and have realized its not about quality but about quantity friends. I think in this day an age and believe social networking/technology has been the cause of why people have really suffered in making and forming, great real long lasting friendships and relationships. When in truth those people that invented social networking and technology were trying to make, our lives more easy and make it easier for a way for us all to communicate. But instead it has made our lives far more worse, because people don’t know how to act or treat each other with common courtesy and respect! I wonder if these inventors have sat down and realized the negative impact this has had in the World? Like really. I have decided one way to deal with these people, give them three chances i.e. meaning call them three times, on separate days and if they do not find a way to get back to you, leave them alone and don’t bother because, when you think about it that time wasted on them can be time wasted on someone else that gives a damn who wants to be real friends. And another way to deal with these people is by letting people befriend you instead, as of course people like us are open and welcoming. That’s the conclusion I have come down to to be honest, because as far as I’m concerned every time I try with certain so called friends or to befriend new people they have a way of letting me down and my big heart can no longer handle it. I’m too good for them, and I know for a fact I deserve nothing but the best and will not except flaky funny friends, because I know who I am and what I am worth an wont except no less. May we all get past our pain and suffering and attract better people! All the best to everyone. Adios!

      • Reann Says:

        That is exactly what I was thinking! when they fail to respond to your calls, 1. Did I do something wrong, but didn’t realize and their too worried that it may cause an argument 2. There is something about you that makes them feel less of themselves, compared to you. e.g. jealous envious. And 3. That they think you are not ‘cool’ enough. That just hits the nail on the head for me, when they fail to reciprocate my calls and ways of reaching out to them. I have never been one to have that many friends but a small group of close friends, and have realized its not about quantity but about quality friends. I think in this day an age and believe social networking/technology has been the cause of why people have really suffered in making and forming, great real long lasting friendships and relationships. When in truth those people that invented social networking and technology were trying to make, our lives more easier for a way for us all to communicate. But instead it has made our lives far more worse, because people don’t know how to act or treat each other with common courtesy and respect! I wonder if these inventors have sat down and realized the negative impact this has had in the World? Like really. I have decided one way to deal with these people, give them three chances i.e. meaning call them three times, on separate days and if they do not find a way to get back to you, leave them alone and don’t bother because, when you think about it that time wasted on them can be time wasted on someone else that gives a damn who wants to be real friends. And another way to deal with these people is by letting people befriend you instead, as of course people like us are open and welcoming. That’s the conclusion I have come down to to be honest, because as far as I’m concerned every time I try with certain so called friends or to befriend new people they have a way of letting me down and my big heart can no longer handle it. I’m too good for them, and I know for a fact I deserve nothing but the best and will not except flaky funny friends, because I know who I am and what I am worth and wont except no less. May we all get past our pain and suffering and attract better people! All the best to everyone. Adios!

  47. Jadene Says:

    Flossie,

    Just find things and do things that make you happy and be good to yourself, treat yourself well. I am in same boat as you are and it is so frustrating but I decided not to waste all my energy on them as they are just not worth it.

  48. Jo Bloggs in Oz Says:

    I have found that being in my 40′s and single, mostly my friends who have partners never bother to call me and i get sick of being the one to call all the time. I suppose it’s ok for them as they have someone to talk to whenever they want. I have a need to communicate and i do my best to try to meet new people but it’s frustrating to have no friend to talk to when you want to talk. So spare a thought for your single friends, they have feelings too! Sometimes i get get in very dark moods about this. It would be nice to get a call.

  49. Ariell Choy Says:

    Jo Bloggs in Oz,
    Hello Jo, I am in the same boat and what I’ve come to realize is that (and I’m in my thirties by the way and single) is that if someone truly wants to keep in contact with you and wants your friendship, they will make the effort. It’s a two-way street. If a person requires that you call all the time, they are being totally selfish. People are always shocked to see other aspects of my personality and the truth is, people are shallow/superficial at best – they CHOSE not to see other sides of me. I love to laugh and joke around and be silly and talk about all kinds of issues as I have feelings too but if people only take or expect you to call ALL the time, they are selfish twits who don’t deserve an ounce of sympathy from you. In fact, I would like for you to email me so we can be friends and hook up sometime! You have my word on that!

  50. Emily Says:

    I’m glad I found this site, because this issue has been bothering me for a while now. I moved to the US from England 3 months ago, to marry my US fiancé (now husband) after planning the move for over a year and waiting ages for my visa etc. I made sure I got all my friends’ contact details before I left, and I met up with those people I could see before leaving too. I have since sent some of those friends multiple emails (not obsessively, I’m talking about 3 or 4 emails in 3 months!) and heard nothing back whatsoever. One friend, who I considered to be a good friend, insisted that I re-join facebook so we could keep in touch easily – well, I did, and have sent her wall messages (in addition to the emails) and heard nothing back at all. I saw her on skype a few weeks ago and she didn’t send me a message so I ignored her too. Then the day after I saw her on there again and thought “give her the benefit of the doubt” so I sent her a message. Fifteen minutes later, nothing – I thought if it gets to 20 minutes I’m just logging off, just as I was about to do so she finally replied. She didn’t apologize for her lack of communication, it was never mentioned. She was all like “I saw your wedding photos on facebook, they’re really good” – but she’d never commented on any of them! Then the conversation turned into her wanting me to proof-read something she’d written for a job application – I now feel that she’s probably not a true friend, and it felt like she was just using me for her convenience. Great!

    It’s not even only friends who can be terrible at keeping in touch – I have relatives who’ve hardly bothered with me since I moved over here! I mean, really, what does it take to send a quick email? I know people are busy and have their lives to lead, of course, but even if it takes them a whole week to get around to replying to an email they could still spare a few minutes to bother replying! I’ve sent a couple of emails to my cousin asking him when a good time is for me to call him, because he works weird shifts – the first email he replied to, saying he was on holiday so it would have to be when he got home (fair enough), that was 3 weeks ago and still nothing, even though I sent another email yesterday! He’d only gone away for one week! I’m not even asking him to call me, I’m willing to be the one who makes the call!

    Very few people even bothered to send us a card when we got married, and they all knew the date. That sucked – I mean yeah, it would have been slightly more hassle for them to mail a card internationally than within the UK, but I’m not worth it? That’s the message it sends out.

    I’m not willing to cut off family, but I will gladly no longer concern myself with my so-called friends who can’t be bothered to keep in touch. I know I was the one who moved away, but it’s not as though I’ve moved on and forgotten about them – I’m making as much of an effort as I can, for nothing. I know there’s a time difference as well but that’s not an issue when you’re emailing someone, so that’s no excuse. Seems to me it’s “out of sight, out of mind”. I haven’t made any real friends here yet, so it’s not like I can really just forget about my “old” friends.

    I spent a lot of time writing Christmas cards and even getting some small gifts for some people “back home” and spent a small fortune mailing them – I made sure to mail them at the end of November so they’d definitely arrive before Christmas. I’ll be very interested to see how many cards we get, I’m guessing if our wedding is anything to go by it’ll be close to none. It’s quite hurtful when you make the effort and others don’t, but maybe you find out who your true friends are in situations like this…

    Any relationship should be two-sided, it should never be down to one person to make all the effort to keep in touch. I think I’ll do what others have said on here and not bother contacting people – let’s see how long it takes for them to notice and contact me!

    • doggiezen Says:

      It’s not at all good for our self-esteem when people are on Skype or Facebook and just ignore you. I think part of it is that people need a boost to THEIR self-esteem and have a need for others to contact them first.

      Personally, I find it easier to get a reply on this site than I did with my, now former, friends.

  51. Me'Shell Says:

    Glad that I found this site. I have enjoyed reading everyone’s posts. I certainly feel a lot better. Actually, I feel empowered to remove these “friends” from my cell phone! Friendships should be two sided, not one. I understand that people have work, school, etc.. but I feel that you can make time for a friend if it is really important to you. I think here in the US, a lot of people call acquaintances “friends”, when they aren’t friends at all. I know what a friend truly is.. the rest of these folks are acquaintances.

    • doggiezen Says:

      Hi Me’Shell, just read your post and think sometimes people we think of as our friends regard us as acquaintances. I’ve heard people say “I now have 300 Facebook friends!” and thought to myself that I would call that acquaintances, and would rather have one true friend.

  52. Melissa Says:

    These are great posts, I feel like I have hit a gold mine of information as I too have struggled with non-reciprocal friendships over the years.
    I, like so many of you, have also shall we call it “weeded out” those type of friendships and and had no luck with receiving the “return” phone calls for the most part. In my life this applicable to both friends and family.
    I lean in the direction of one of the first few posters who pointed out the possibility that maybe the relationship is how it was founded. That is to say if you were the one who initiated the contact, may that has come to be expected by the other parties involved. And while that seems plausible as an explanation, it doesn’t change that the whole process is extremely difficult to accept and then “weed” out.
    I too, began noticing that I did all of the calling(initiating) for the majority of my relationships, (less my other half) and after much thought I too decided I would not call and see how long it would be until those people Initiated contact.
    This includes most of my friendships I developed in childhood/high school, my brother(me,me,me),my mother(very self centered a me me me type), my grandmother…(again me me me).
    I too, am still waiting~on the upside since most of those people have dropped off my contact list I do not have much struggle in remembering the addresses/phone numbers of the people who are left.
    The remaining people on my contact list were friendships I developed after high school that were outside of my immediate circle and outside of my immediate family, quite a few are past work related friendships that seemed to have survive 10+ years outside of the workplace…what I would have considered the most unlikely long term relations.
    I,like many of you, just realized one day that I was in a string of one way relationships and that I was not getting anything in return for all my efforts. That did not strike me as a fulfilling part of my life. And any time I wasted on those friendships I cannot retrieve, however I enriched my self with the ability to see that these friendships were not working so I have now appreciation for the realization of the fact.
    In my opinion, the greatest thing about these realizations, even if you spend a small amount of time alone (without the girlfriends) is when we come out on the other side, we can see a one sided relationship from a mile away and avoid it, in doing so we give ourselves the opportunity to reel in a meaningful friendship that may really last.
    We all, everyone on this post, are also not alone in our quest and that is quite powerful…

  53. Nancy Says:

    I just had a situation today in which I planned a lunch date with a friend over a month ago. She couldnt make the original date this week so I offered 2 alternatives. She was supposed to come over today but called up with the excuse that her time is too valuable and she didn’t want to drive over to my house.
    I will not be wasting any valuable time in 2011 setting up lunches with her a month ahead of time only to have her not come because it is inconvenient for her. Onward to 2011!!!!

  54. LC Says:

    I can identify with this and what everyone has said. I was also the one who moved away but everyone acted like they wanted to keep in contact. One person who I thought was a close friend has never once contacted me to say hello and it’s been 3+ years. Sure, she invited me to her wedding where I traveled back to go to but still, it’s always me making contact. She forwards jokes to people on her mailing list so I guess she considers that keeping in touch. I don’t. :(

    Another friend, I emailed about 4 months ago and never received a reply. Yet, I can see she’s active on facebook. I mean, I’ve given her 4 months to reply to my email. Yet, she’s never bothered to email a reply or even email me on her own. I don’t get it. :(

    I feel like I’m starting the new year with like 1 or 2 friends and I’m not even really close to them. It really sucks. I’m in my late 30s and single so I don’t have anyone to talk to and spend most of my time outside of work alone.

    Trying to make new friends is tough, too. And I do feel like because of these experiences, I’m very cautious about friends, too and probably now hold back some. {Sigh}

    • doggiezen Says:

      I have the same experience as you with people not contacting me at all except to forward jokes.

      If you’re like me, you need a close friend, someone you can talk to.

      I think you are right to hold back a little – until you find a friend with the same values as you have. Good luck!

  55. Nancy Says:

    I have observed that people will drift away once you have less in common. It is sad but people don’t want to put in much effort beyond that. If you meet people at work and you change jobs, good luck keeping in touch with those people. Same with church. If you change, you will find your friends drifting away. Friendships take time and effort and the good ones stay throughout time regardless of circumstance. I just think in this culture, people dont want to put in the effort to cultivate them. The best thing to do sometimes is to get involved in a group with shared interests and just forget about those who dont have time with you anymore.

  56. Ariell Choy Says:

    A question for everyone who has contributed to this blog: do you think maybe some people wait for the other person to initiate the call because maybe that other person is intimidated?

  57. Emily Says:

    Ariell – why? That doesn’t really make sense. If someone has been trying to get in contact with a friend or family member and has left them messages or emailed them etc, why should the person being contacted feel intimidated by that?

  58. Ariell Choy Says:

    Hello Emily. I agree with you completely. I was simply trying to think of a reason, out of the blue, as to why people do this! I’m trying to put myself in the non-contacting person’s shoes. But I agree with everything everyone has stated. I can tell you for a fact, this has happened to me numerous times. A good example is when I befriended a student while studying at York U (whom I no longer keep in contact with) would always expect me to sit next to her every class, always call her first. She did have an air of self-importance now that I look back on the situation. But I had had enough and I ceased contacting her. I tell people all the time that if they needed to see or hear from me sooooo badly, and I’ve given them my contact information, then they could have contacted me. Some have used the excuse that I can be intimidating and so, they expect me to be the first to buzz. I say it’s laziness because when these people need something from me, they DON’T hesitate to call me EVER. Also, a lot of these so-called “friends” know me well enough to know I’m not an off-putting type of person and therefore have no reason to feel intimidated. I believe it is mostly egotism/self-importance and sheer laziness.

  59. Nancy Says:

    I recently found out what happened about a friend who “went away’ for 10 years. Her son was in trouble with the law for the first 5 of those years. I tried to call a couple of times to connect but she never called back. I recently ran into her family member at a store and gave that person my phone number.
    She called the next day and said she wasnt mad at me–that she was too busy with her son.
    Why didn’t she call me the last 5 years. Why didn’t she tell me something was going on so that I could have prayed for her.

    Ladies, most of the time, it is NOT you, it is THEM!

  60. Steph Says:

    I originally wrote #38. After my puzzlement with that person—I had done so many favors for her— I found out from mutual sources that she contacted THEM all the time speaking to some of them several times in the same day! But— never returned my calls and I would only hear from her if the call started with “I need a favor!”. OK, so I left her number in my cell phone and set it to “No Ring”. This way I will not accidentally pick up a call requesting a favor. She can go call the people she deems worth speaking to.

  61. Jadene Says:

    I wrote #42 back 6 months ago and recently several months ago I cut off my friend again and I don’t think she’ll care seeing that she basically put minimum effort. I left her a final last message that I am done with the calling and the games(I told her that the messenger at my old address told me she said she really misses me and she just said oh no we just wanted to know if you still lived there) and that I know I am never going to see her or hear from her and she called twice after that but I decided to just let her go and maybe she will get the hint hopefully that I no longer want to be bothered with someone that went to my old residence questioning about me as she did yet when it came to acting it after talking to her she didn’t. Strangely enough 2 months later she left me a message to have a happy birthday and again I didn’t return her call. All I can say is this..I feel I have closure. Let her think she was a good friend to me in the many years ago(which she wasn’t at my time of need), it would have been nice to see an old friend of ten yrs for a coffee or something but I am done. It isn’t like she doesn’t have time she doesn’t work and no kids.

    Nancy, I do agree with what you’re saying that it is them most of the time and that may be the case here.

  62. doggiezen Says:

    So many have written they are so happy, as I was, to find this site. I wrote about losing my friend of 30 years and finding a new friend. The balance in the old friendship shifted, sometimes a friendship only works if one friend always feels better, more lucky than the other and can console the other. When the other party gets a break in life, the friendship ends unfortunately.

    To everybody out there with friends who have no time to answer an e-mail or call you back (but have plenty of time to contact people on Facebook), let me tell you about my new friend of almost 4 years now. She is extremely busy with a full time job, two small children, one with special needs, old in-laws who need help etc. but always has time to answer me.

  63. doggiezen Says:

    Ariell Choy in 57 & 59, if I felt a person was intimidating, I would keep a distance and not tell them that because I felt intimidated I expected them to call me first. That’s pure nonsense and, as you said, some kind of an excuse to not call, and not a discussion between friends. Also, if I felt intimidated, I would not ask that person for a favor, of course.

    My guess is you are not intimidating at all and should put that notion out of your head. A true friend would not make you feel that way about yourself in the first place, don’t you agree?

  64. Ariell Says:

    Doggiezen, thank YOU! If a person truly was scary or intimidating, the right response would be to keep your distance from these people altogether. It prevents a real discussion between friends. I am working my best to put out all the notions people have put in my head to justify their ill treatment of me. Another person I have recently befriended (September of 2010) would consistently text or call me when she needed a favor or answers to a test. She never thought to call even once to say “hi”. In her mind, my behavior is considered “pushy” but in my mind, I refer to such people as “users”. It doesn’t make sense that she can call others on a daily basis but seek me when she needs a favor or whatnot and again, thank you doggiezen for helping me to feel better about myself. And yes, I dumped that friend!

  65. doggiezen Says:

    I think dumping this friend is something you will not regret, Ariell. Instead of this person, you will soon have a friend who doesn’t make you doubt yourself.

    I found this page when I lost a friend of 28 years. After so many years, with weekly calls and yearly visits, she would text back to me “Sorry! I’m busy!” each time I tried to call. We still went on our trip together, but she seemed like a different person to me, and was in a bad mood, difficult to deal with and accused me of “stalking” her with my messages. I decided to just dump my friend and felt bad about loosing her. Now, almost 3 years have gone by and I feel very good about my decision.

  66. Nancy Says:

    At the beginning of this year, I stopped calling a few friends and guess what, 2 stopped calling and 2 kept calling.
    You will find out who your true friends are when you let go of the reins and see what happens. Sometimes, people are only in our lives when we continue to do all of the work so that they don’t have to.
    You will find you are relieved when you find out who your true friends are. Life is too short to waste time on the ones who are not.

  67. she loves me/not Says:

    I am an older mom of 3 young kids. I met another mom my age at church and we hit it off, our kids became good friends, with the oldest two deciding, at age 5 and 6 that they were going to get married. This woman was effusive with her feelings about me. She told me often how much she appreciated our friendship and we became very close. We went on family trips together and shared a lot of great times.

    Over the last few months she has called less and less, and I noticed I was the one to set up playdates. I asked her about it, and she said nothing was wrong, just really busy as she is trying to build up her business. I told her I needed more from her, and she said she understood and she would try. We have always been honest with eachother and we tell eachother when something is straining the relationship. We have said how good it is to be able to work through things together and that it has made our bond stronger.

    But she continues to not contact me, and I feel so sad, she has been my closest friend in a long time. I feel so sad for my kids as well. They haven’t mentioned the long period of time since they saw their friends, but I know it’s going to come up soon, and I don’t know what I’m going to tell them. I wonder how her kids feel about the separation.

    I have no idea why this is happening, but I feel there is something more than she is busy. Despite our past honesty, there is something she’s not telling me. It hurts, it’s confusing, and I desperately want to ask her, but I am tired of chasing her. It’s breaking my heart. I don’t have any other close friends like her, and frankly I don’t think I want to try. It’s too painful. I am 46 years old and life is passing by at dizzying speed. I so want to have a close female friend to share it with. I do get some comfort from my more superficial connections, and even though it’s mostly my initiative, I will keep trying. If people stop replying, I will, too. But I have to keep trying. I wish someone could tell me why it’s so hard, though. What’s wrong with me?

    It’s good to have a place to post this.

    • Hazelgrl Says:

      I know how you feel..I was friends with a lady I had met from my church too..it seemed like we had lots in common and always had a good time together..than I noticed just out of the blue she does not call me anymore..what I found really strange was I called her leaving a message that I was having some family problems and she never returned my call..I just dont understand the mind games with some female friends..I would like to think that I am open with everyone if something bothers me..it was even more surprising to me that a church going friend would do that.

  68. Nancy Says:

    To the above poster:
    I cannot tell you the endless hours, days, weeks, months and years I have spent trying to figure out the last conversations I had with friends before they stop calling. I go over and over it in my mind. Did I say something offensive? Did I come across too needy?
    When I turned 40, I STOPPED the NONSENSE!! You have done everything you can do. Even if you did say something that offended them, it is THEIR responsibility as a friend to tell you that, NOT MAKE YOU READ THEIR MIND AND GUESS!!
    Because of Facebook, I have recently reconnected with old friends who just stop calling and I ask them why they stopped calling. They have no good answer but really want to be my Facebook friend.
    That is fine, but I will put up my radar if they try to get close again.
    I guess what I am trying to say is that 99 percent of the time, it is not about you!! Its them!!

  69. Susan Says:

    I have old friends who – once they got children and a family – stopped replying to calls, letters, emails, etc. At that point, I might contact them once in awhile just to say hi, stay in a little bit of touch. Or not. Depends on how much I care about trying to keep the friendship alive.

    The saddest, hardest thing for me has been my older sister, who does the same thing. She is only a year older than me, and we were always very close. Now, she never initiates contact and rarely returns my messages. When I do catch her, she is friendly and happy to talk, but I must always make the first move. It makes me very sad, but in this case, she is my sister, and I am not willing to let our friendship die . . . so I continue to make the effort. I know she cares about me; she is just not a good communicator on a personal level. I choose to accept her as she is and do what I can to maintain a connection. With a family member, it is much different than it is with a friend – doesn’t mean it doesn’t still hurt; it’s just different.

  70. Nancy Says:

    I have read in several instances on this forum that people just aren’t good communicators. Forget it!! People just have different priorities. They will communicate well when they want to. If you really care about someone, all they have to do is pick up the phone and call or email.
    My husband always says that his dad is “not a good communicator”. Therefore, he never touches base with his grandkids (who live 4 hours away). I do not buy it. If he wanted to communicate with them, he would find a way to do it. He just doesn’t care THAT much!!

  71. Paula Says:

    I’m very glad to have found this site. I’ve read all the comments and realize that I am not alone in feeling sad, depressed and rejected because of lost friendships – of so-called friends who only call when they want something or need a favour.

    I’m been in this city for 25 years moving here from a small town. People in small towns are quicker to call back and drop in. But once you move away, it’s out of sight out of mind. what is wrong with people?

    I go to a lot of events and meet quite a few people – I’ve even thought I had become “fast friends” with a few people. But as some of you pointed out in some of your posts, I’m the only one who has called. When I do call, these people comment that they are happy to hear from me and say they would like to get together, but they never call, never initiate anything.

    I stopped calling people, just to see what would happen. No one called back. No one even calls to see if I’m still alive. I can’t understand and I can’t explain the phenomenon.
    What does one do not to feel so alone,, not to feel so rejected.

  72. Nancy Says:

    Ladies, I have a question. What do you do when a friend stands you up? I have 2 friends in the last few months who I have made plans with to do something fun on a certain day. In both cases, they called me 2 hours before and said that they just “didn’t feel like going”. I told them that I was hurt and that I thought it was a lame excuse. I told them that we had planned this a month in advance and that to just decide they didn’t want to go was not very nice. I asked them how they would feel. In one case, the lady put it back at me saying I was too sensitive. In the other case, she just said “Sorry, I know it is wrong, but I dont want to go”. I am tired of making plans with people!!!

  73. Jadene Says:

    Nancy, my opinion is that if they had good excuses good true friends would schedule another date and be there. They would be happy to see you. Just my thought. “Just didn’t feel like going sounds to me like they don’t want to make an effort.” It’s them not you.

    My 87 yr old aunt says she has no friends at all that the ones she thought were are just for themselves only…very sad. I mention this cuz I told her I have had such a hard time with friends.

  74. Ariell Says:

    Nancy and Jadene, how very true! When a person gives such excuses it means that he or she never truly cared or even wanted to make the effort. For instance, I worked with a telemarketing company for approximately one year at York University in Canada. I was a model employee, always on time, the last to leave, worked well with others and improved on mistakes if and when I made them. My employer just kept making excuses after excuses, promising to train me further but his response: “I just don’t feel like re-training someone else, in this case you.” I wasn’t worth his time. And I was INCREDIBLY loyal to this company even, on one occasion, bringing home my work. If he never wanted to re-hire me for another year, then why did he do it. He says he’s too busy to find other work for me to do or train me further but he spread rumors about me, while at the company, spied on me, reading my emails and watching my computer activity (fortunately for me, I did nothing wrong nor would I. It’s not in my nature to do wrong intentionally). The same goes for friendship, a person should not be giving you such lame responses. It’s either live selfishly or stop pretending to be my friend. I also recently dumped another so-called friend because she would hound me persistently for test questions/answers or pop quiz answers knowing that I was in a period two class when she was in period four. She always wanted a heads-up! Her excuse was always, I’m too busy to study, I have rent to pay, a boyfriend to tend to, etc. Well, we ALL have those responsibilities. She is nothing special nor exceptional when it comes to paying rent or whatnot. As soon as the semester was over, she dropped me like a hat! Jadene, your 87 year-old aunt is right…people are solely for themselves. I guess it’s just a sign of the times we’re living in. And I fear, as far as human relations go, things can only get worse! It’s them and NOT you.

  75. Steph Says:

    Paula, et. al. I know exactly what you mean. I have discovered getting a lot of hobbies and having pets helps up to a point. However, it does not take the place of human interaction, especially if you live alone, as I do. I go to work and then come home and its just dead silence. I would be fine with that if I had friends— even just to touch bases in a phone conversation. I have one— but the person has schizophrenia and OCD and is very emotionally draining to talk to because of it. I keep the friendship up because I would feel as though I were rejecting her because of a disability. The other “friend” wasn’t one. There was only a connection while I was still “user-friendly”. When she does deign to return a call, she quickly hangs up on the pretext that she has “another call coming through”, so her calls last five minutes or less. THAT isn’t a connection!

  76. Ariell Says:

    To Steph, as far as your friendship with the individual with OCD, I would say that’s up to your discretion if you can handle having someone with that type of need around you. As for the other friend, she deserves to be dropped like a hat. I, too, thought I was like a sister to a cousin when it deigned on me that from the moment she picked up the phone (when I called), she always had another call to go to or somewhere to run off to! I realized there never was a connection. But she NEVER and I mean NEVER hesitated to dial the phone when she wanted information or needed a favor. Are we but servants to them? And it especially hurts when you don’t have a relationship (touching base) with the other party involved. We are not “Information Centres” that everyone can just call or write to when they need information – especially with the internet, anyone can get any information they need very quickly! As for another friend, she never communicated that I was, in her eyes, “needy”. A true friend would communicate and say “call less” or “let me initiate sometimes.” Real friends discuss what’s bothering them and go from there to build a stronger, better relationship. With regards to that girl, she was always very “needy” when she wanted school work from me. In fact, she would call/text every other day.

  77. Jo Bloggs Says:

    I’ve enjoyed reading all these comments, is it good to know i’m not alone in this predicament? Perhaps not.
    I just re-read what i had written a few months ago (see above Nov.11th) and little has changed. Friends still don’t call me for months on end, but i suppose i have just learnt to forgive them because i don’t want to lose them entirely, and the other thing is that with at least two of them, they are always happy to hear from me. It’s just that they don’t call during the times i would really want someone to talk to. Well, they don’t actually call at all. I mean, to go 3 or 4 months without anyone asking you how you are makes you feel quite unappreciated.
    Anyway, one person above asked the question “what can you do to not feel so alone?”. Well I THINK I HAVE AN ANSWER FOR THAT. If you are lucky enough to be in a city with a good live theatre scene, go and watch a play on stage. Actors always need an audience and i have found going to the theatre makes me feel that i have a connection with other people, and you can learn a lot from watching relationships played out between characters on stage. And sometimes you might meet people with a similar interest. Going to the theatre gives me a lot to think about other than my own situation. Perhaps it will work for you likewise?

  78. Steph Says:

    Thanks, Ariell. (Beautiful name, by the way!) I do keep the person with OCD and possible deeper problems at arm’s length. I have to… that sort of connection can be exhausting and I am not a professional in that area. The other friend who calls and probably fakes an incoming call I have dropped because I won’t continue to deal with this nonsense. It IS better to be by yourself than run into this sort of hurt. (She is in my cell phone with the “No Ring” option selected to prevent me from accidentally picking up, which is what might happen if I take her out of my phone entirely.) The irony behind this is that the person with oodles of problems actually has a better sense of friendship than she does!
    I agree with Jo that there is nothing quite like live theatre. It has a totally different and more highly personalized feel to it from, say, a movie. I am lucky to live near a university that has a great theatre department. I am enjoying the hobbies because I love to learn. Speaking of learning, I have taken several of those courses from http://www.teach12.com (“The Great Courses”). There are over a hundred college level courses and each one goes on sale at a greatly reduced price least once a year. I find hobbies, reading, and things like those courses fill my free time with enjoyment and expanding one’s interests can actually be important in sparking friendship. (Unfortunately it cannot make the right people readily available.) However, with or withour friends, I am having a ball learning knew stuff: artisan bread baking, gardening, using my dehydrator(I am making beef jerky with Pindar Sweet Sarlet Wine in it right now!)and knitting, which I learned from a DVD by Nici McNally.

  79. Ariell Says:

    I know I have contributed far too much to this website but this topic is very dear to me as I too have suffered from a lack of compassion and friendship. I completely agree with Jo Bloggs. I have found that although hobbies and animals do not compensate for a lack of human companionship, it does help to pass the time. I, too, have found that going to live theatre really helps to ease the pain. I’ve also learned that – as with the “friend” who hounded me relentlessly for answers to quizzes and tests – the entire time she was not pleased when I attempted to talk to her. She was never into making friends. She simply wanted to use me because it was convenient for her. I noticed that she used the word “pressure” and “nice” in the same sentence when describing me. Often times, a person who puts pressure on others is seen as abusive, obnoxious or relentless. So when was it not “pressure” to speak to her – when I never spoke to her AT ALL. However, whenever she needed something it wasn’t “pressure” to hound me every other day and yet she sees herself as nice. If she wasn’t interested in being my friend, she had to step up and say so. I’ve learned from her actions that there are people out there who sincerely care about building healthy relationships with others and then, there are those that don’t care at all. I had a friend who would email me back EVERY SINGLE DAY and respond to my messages. I would do the same for her because we both expressed a desire to remain in contact…she never felt pressured at all because she revelled in my companionship. When I asked her if I could call her, she was truthful and said “I don’t like phones but I’ll accept emails.” That’s what REAL people do, they communicate, at all times, how they feel and are honest with each other from the get-go. In any event, I was always initiating the get-togethers and the phone calls/emails. She wasn’t doing anything and when she agreed to spend time with me, I would always be met with “oh, I only did it because you pressured me” as if to imply, I physically forced her! There are those people that communicate because they care that much and appreciate the people in their lives. There are those that see others as a means to fulfill their goals. It really isn’t US, it is THEM that have the issue. For those of us that have been rejected, always try to remember that these other people simply do NOT care! Often times, the most caring of individuals receive the least amount of care in return! These people are selfish and stuck up, intimidated/jealous, lazy or thoughtless! There are those individuals out there that care a lot and respect the institution of friendship. I gave such an example with my “I email you everyday friend and my friend emails me back”! Finding them is hard but they exist.

  80. Helena Says:

    It is so comforting to know other people can relate to the heartbreaks and confusion in friendships I have experienced. I realized many years ago that my childhood with a very emotionally distant mother was what I subconsciously was trying to rectify as I stubbornly held on to and sought approval from these unsatisfying female friendships.

    I have a wonderful husband, but that does not take the place of female friends, of course.
    I have also tried the not contacting test and spent a lot of time waiting for calls that never came.

  81. Dave Says:

    Well, I have a friend I met a bout 5 years ago. He was a sales guy from an outside company. He would take the dept out for drinks and dinner and what not. Well we clicked pretty good and had a lot of things in common. We were both new fathers approaching 40. We started hanging out outside of work taking our kids to the parks, going to concerts and what not. Then out of the blue he does not return my calls. I call once a week, like I do to my other friends, and leave a message. He never calls back. I forward email jokes, comments, suggestions on events and he never returns my calls or emails. when I have managed to get a hold of him the conversation is under a minute long. I don’t want him to think I am stalking ot gay on him(I am not). So I try not to press the issue. I also know people are busy but this is the information age. He tells me about his new house, grill, deck but have never been invited over. I am really starting to think I was just a mark. Since I held an important position in the company he was just using me to get in, now that I am no longer with the company I am of no real use. I am not sure what to do. I do feel pathetic that I pine to do stuff with him. I was also considering the route so many have you taken with the delete from phone and wait. I do have other friends but I thought I had a new best friend something I have not had in a very long time. I am not sure what to do

    • Ariell Says:

      Dave – it sounds like he was using you. Is there any other logical explanation for his sudden change in behavior? And why brag about the new grill, deck and house and NOT invite you over. It sounds more like he is rubbing it in your face that he “moved” up in the company thanks to your help! He should be greatful to you that he can even own those things. I’m certain your position has everything to do with this. I once knew of a woman who had another woman, write her a letter and try to befriend her. Once this woman got close enough, she stole the other woman’s business partners/intellectuals for her own gain. Your friend sounds like he only got close to you to gain something but was never really a friend. This happens to me all the time! I think when someone offers their phone number or email address that they want my companionship/friendship. It turns out that the other person was only interested in using me for favors and whatnot! Shame on them for being users! Good for us for being true to who we are although it hurts and like you, I pine for the days when I could just “hang out” with these individuals. Dave, you are better off without this guy. The best analogy I can think off, when it comes to this issue, is the Steve Urkel syndrome. A simple, down-to-earth guy, who, for the most part is a straight shooter, but no one really wants around them. But people are always willing to take advantage of his intelligence, his diligence, his hard work, his eagerness to lend his shoulder when someone wants to cry but his goodness is never returned in the form of friendship. He is always being used. The best way to deal with this is to take your time getting to know people and un-dumb ourselves down by being so gullible all the time. As soon as a person uses me – JUST ONCE – I tell them the frienship is over. I let them know my intentions straight away. Like Urkel, we all need love and friendship!

      • Craig Says:

        I’m sorry you had to go through that, Dave. Ariell, that is true and insightful. I have had to make a decision to make people earn my trust, and not give it out right away. I had to learn a very emotionally and financially costly lesson a few times before it sunk in.

        I had found through a top notch builder friend some roofers who were excellent, and they replaced my roof and did an incredible job- snapped chalk lines for the architectural shingles- I have several very long sections of roof that are visible from inside upper levels, so it’s important, as well as for their function. Well, I had a bad storm and needed another roof and this time the insurance was going to pay for it. I had the same excellent company in mind to do my roof again, but I needed some siding, too, which they did not do. So I found someone on line. He was talking like he was my best friend from the very get go. He would listen to me say things like ” no, I have never been to Colorado, because I have no one to go with.” His replies were so enthusiastic- ” we’re gonna go man!” He made SO many promises, and then he asked if our roof was being done. I told him we already had someone in mind, but he promised me that his company was the best in the state, and they would do a better job, blah blah blah…..the end of the story is he sent an untested crew of non-english speaking immigrants. They kept making holes, applying torn ice and water….by the time it was done my roof leaked like a seive, destroying lots of sheathing under the siding and several ceilings, and who knows what else and none of the rows line up- they look like complete crap, like drunk guys staggered onto the roof to apply them. Getting this guy to come back out was a nightmare, but when he DID call, WOW, we were just BEST friends and we were gonna go to Colorado that summer hiking, and do all kinds of stuff together. What a liar he is. I honestly have no idea how anyone can lie so much and use people and prey on their trust and desire for friendship/ companionship. 4 years later, I have yet to go on one single trip with this chump. But he makes a point to call and let me know how awesome his last trip was, or to call me from his trip to let me know what a fun time he is having and how we are gonna do that next year- what a DOUCHE- no- calling him that is an insult to douches. And like an earlier poster also said, I felt stupid and ashamed for even trusting him and thinking he was a great friend when he was just a user- it was humiliating. If I had been able to step back emotionally and think rationally, I could have avoided all of that pain, expense and sorrow.

        BTW Dave, that user guy is gonna end up packing up his foreclosed home when everything comes undone and I hope he figures out that gaining dishonestly in any way will not last.

  82. Julie Says:

    Really appreciate this blog and the comments. Has helped me a lot. Maybe we need a “Let’s keep in touch” blog. Thank you very much for keeping this blog active. Not sure we’ll ever know why people don’t keep in touch and do the way they do. Trying to find the answer why doesn’t seem to go anywhere. Letting go of the wondering and not trying to contact them anymore is the best way I have found to deal with the disappointment and sadness that I have felt. It’s their loss really.

  83. Ariell Says:

    Yes Julie. It is ALWAYS the other person’s loss.
    I hope these pointers help others as it has somewhat helped me.
    1 – The Narcissist or Self-Centered Being. I have come across too many people that insisted, if not mildly demanded, that I be the one to keep in contact with them. Some people have such low self-esteem that they boast about the attention (calls, letters, etc) they get from others. For example, I befriended a student at the Adult Centre and when he left his phone at work accidentally, and he finally picked up his phone from work the following Monday, he boasted: “woah, check me out, look at all the calls I got while I was away! Cool!” He never bothered returning the calls. He just wanted the attention. Some people truly enjoy the power struggle and want others to feed into their egos. They don’t want calls to know if the other party is sincerely concerned about them…they just feed off of the energy like vampires!
    2 – You may have possibly offended the person. It is the person’s responsibility to tell you that you have unintentionally or intentionally offended them. If the friendship is worth saving, and if the person is a good friend, he or she would “step up” and tell you how he or she feels. Just remember, if a person is unwilling to do this, then that individual is self-righteous, and self-centered. While I agree that sometimes, people may do things that are truly unworthy of forgiveness…the truth is, we often fight over petty things; foolish things! Real honest people take responsibility for their actions and how they feel. I recently broke up with a friend over something petty and yet she hurts other people all the time but lo and behold, she is a hypocrite – when people do wrong to her, she becomes self-righteous. When she wrongs others, she is right! These people are not even worthy of friendship and don’t make good friends. Period.
    3 – Lazy/Incompetent – some people are sincerely lazy. They don’t know any better. It’s highly likely if the person is lazy with you, then he or she is lazy with everyone else! I have been lazy at times (though it’s rarely my nature) and sometimes I just needed time to myself. But a person who is always lazy is lazy in all facets of life. They too, are not worthy, of your attention.
    4 – The person is a PSYCHIC VAMPIRE. These people are hard to detect. They feed off of the energy of others, often causing severe depression, anxiety, or mental anguish and fatigue in the others around them. Some people have said to me: “where were you?” “I need you”. What these selfish bastards don’t realize that I can’t allow them to use of my time, energy or even advice 24 hours a day. I need space for myself. Again, they are OVERLY needy. It’s always “stay around me all the time!” They need you like they need marijuana to feel to “high”. It never occurs to them that you need to be called at times or have them around you to satisfy your companionship needs. They are thinking only of the attention you give but never the attention they should give back. So therefore, they never initiate contact, of any kind! Again, like the narcissist, though not self-important by nature, the psychic vampire cares only that their emotional needs are met.

    4 -

    • Julie Says:

      Ariell: Excellent points and I especially like what you said about PSYCHIC VAMPIRES. Very good way to put it and very true. Thanks.

  84. Ariell Choy Says:

    Con’t
    5 – Never forget to look at oneself. This is truly the hardest thing anyone can do. But in all fairness and if we want to truly be sincere, are we over-reaching? It’s best to limit how many times you text, call, write/email someone. Often times (having learned this from experience), some people strongly dislike those that contact them often. It’s always best to check the amount of times in a day, a week and even month, you contact someone. This is NOT stalking or putting “pressure” as some people claim. (Those acts would imply violence). Again, if a true friend says “I would like the contact limited to such and such amount” – then you have an individual who is being honest. If the person refuses to discuss the issue, then the individual was never a friend! Keep in mind, that if you discover that the person in question is contacting others OFTEN within the same day but is, indeed, ignoring you, then it’s highly suspect that you are being “screwed over”. You may simply be that individual seen as a “rock” being used for favors. You must ask yourself and in this case, take it personally, why does this person ignore me SOLELY but not his or her other friends??? If you’re being used, then step away.
    6 – Some of us on this board, I believe, are genuinely nice people. If this is the case, then, it’s unfortunate but true, the truly nice, caring, “deep” individuals receive the least amount of love and concern in return! It’s often said that those that love hardest receive no sympathy! If you find yourself in this position, then take it upon yourself to take charge and say “enough is enough. I’ve given you my time and energy. I make all the effort but what am I gaining in return”. This is justice and balance. Two things every person needs. Being sympathetic or empathic does not give anyone the right to take and walk away. If anything, you need more concern and love. I strongly suggest everyone take the time to research the following topics: do you find yourself constantly being “singled out”, bullied, do you feel the pain of others easily, have you always been picked on as a child? etc…It’s quite possible you may be an empath or the like! Generally these types of people are not recognized for the effort they put out in relationships. If you find that you are in this category of “people”, advertise this about yourself to others (I don’t mean boast). Make it very clear. I’ve had to send several emails, to make sure this other individual understands, I AM NOT HIS PERSONAL CONFIDANTE/BEST FRIEND/HEALER. He is emotionally draining. I only just met the guy! People often distance themselves from empaths and will be ignored but not because they are “awful” people but the energy being drained out of them is never replenished. This “negative” energy is felt by everyone else around them and is off-putting.
    In other words – LEARN MORE ABOUT YOURSELF to understand why you attract the people you do!

    I sincerely hope this helps!

    And trust me….it took me many years to figure this out.

  85. Nancy Says:

    Ariell, I enjoyed reading.
    One of the friends I stopped calling was in the #1 category. She would constantly say things like “I have 25 people who want to get together with me this month” or “I change my friends every 5 years” Who says that???
    I started watching instead of just listening. She recently got married and her son graduated from high school. Other than relatives, only 4 FRIENDS showed up to both of the events (including me) and they were the same friends. She has a lot of aquaintances, not true friends.

    On point #2, I think people have a responsibility as a friend to let us know if we have offended them. If they don’t tell us and hold offense against us, they are in the wrong for not talking to us.

    In the past couple of years, I have started to realize that some of the friends I have selected in the last decade were not good matches in the first place and that letting them go was a freeing thing (after I went through the loss and grief). I have learned to give myself the companionship I need from God and from myself. I am open to healthy friendships, but I am not going to do 90 percent of the work just to say I have friends.

    • Julie Says:

      Nancy: I totally agree with your comment on point #2. If they are a real friend and respect our friendship they will tell us if we have done something to offend them.

      And Amen! to: “I am not going to do 90 percent of the work just to say I have friends”

  86. Nancy Says:

    Ariell,
    I agree with searching inside yourself. We can all better ourselves. I was indeed very bullied in school and had no friends or friends for a couple of weeks here and there.
    There is a part of me where because I was lacking friendships as a child, I long for that and therefore, I choose friends who are not good friends at all.
    I am stopping that cycle and I will not settle for people who will use me or do everything based on just their time and interests. I know how to be a good friend and I am kind to everyone I see. When God chooses to place new friends into my life, I will be ready.


    • I know what its like to choose friends that are not good at all. I have done this out of insecurity. I have often ended up looking like an idiot where my trust was betrayed. As a result, I am not sure if I have ever had any true friends. There is something about me that people soon tire of. i just dont know what. i feel right now that i am the lonliest person in the world.

      • Ariell Choy Says:

        Lindsay Pickett, I too have chosen terrible friends and even boyfriends out of insecurity and as a symptom of bad parenting. Learn from your mistakes and move on. Those that have wounded you will suffer for it in the long run!!

      • Julie Says:

        “I have often ended up looking like an idiot where my trust was betrayed” Lindsay, the ones who betrayed your trust are the ones who look like the idiots, not you.

  87. Ariell Choy Says:

    I remember I tried befriending a girl who turned out to be the most self-righteous person I had ever met. She would boast about the fact that she didn’t drive a car – stating that driving a car raises your chances of getting hit by a car and is simply another means of “killing yourself”.
    She then boasted that she never took the chance of giving out her phone number or email address because often times when I do people end up misusing me (often using me to do favors). She then stated that she never bothered calling anyone because she feared bothering other people; however she expected all of her friends to call her. She felt doing homework was the school’s way of pressuring students into doing assignments they shouldn’t have to do and that teaching young people what having a schedule meant was denying them their right to be “free”, so she decided to leave school. For every thing that one can do in life, she never did – all because she had to be self-righteous and prove how holier than thou she was! After really observing her for a while, I noticed that the person who does nothing, lives for nothing. Did she really think that living in a box was going to save her from outside “dangers” and that by doing ABSOLUTELY nothing with herself, she could achieve perfection. Every chance she got, she would say “you see, that’s why I’m perfect, I didn’t do what you just did.” It was her mild way of bullying me and forcing her views of how one should behave down my throat! She had to always prove she was perfect. I condemned her hypocrisy and pointed it out to her. For four years, I have stopped being her friend and it feels good.

    By the way, she never called or wrote or took the time to listen to my struggles but she would BRAG about how great a “healer” she was when she listened to the struggles of others and yet come to me for help whenever dealing with the struggles of others.

    To re-iterate my point: some of these “so-called” friends who never make any effort in the relationship – Please EVALUATE whom it is you are speaking to. Ask yourself if this person has the same goals/values as you? If not, then move on. This girl was so self-righteous about everything that she sickened me and yet had the nerve to wonder why she was always in arguments with people and why her past friends DUMPED her!

    Sometimes people: It’s not you. It really is THEM.

    Ask yourself: why do I attract the people I do!!! Why are they attracted to me???

    Sometimes being too nice has a LOT of disadvantages.

    • Craig Says:

      Wow, great insight Ariell. Great posts! I wish I had found this blog when all these posts were actually being made, but oh well, I am here now:) I am feeling much better after reading these; I am not alone:) Your last post made me wonder what it would be like to be a clam, where people who really wanted to get to know me would have to work at it to find the pearl- and then never give the pearl to pigs, but only to good people. It would be ok, since they would eventually learn that I am a loving and generous friend, and not just a shallow individual trying to act mysterious. Even a shallow individual trying to act mysterious could benefit from this by finding some good quality friends, and learning how to be. I wonder sometimes if I valued myself so lowly that I was willing to be a great friend to anyone who would give me some attention. Heal the feeling and feel the healing!!

  88. Nancy Says:

    I am finding out surprising things from Facebook too. I work with a several ladies and one of them talks to me frequently throughout the day. I thought we had a semi-working friendship. I noticed that she friended some of my other co-workers on FB. I put in a friend request to her. After several days, I just mentioned that I friended her and she said that she saw that and she would get around to it. It didn’t take her anytime to friend our other co-workers. I removed the friend request today. People are funny. It is obvious she doesn’t hold me in that high of regard so I am not going to waste my time listening to her problems at work anymore either.

    • unbrokenspirit Says:

      Some people are just cruel and insensitive and they just don’t care if they hurt other people’s feelings. Of course she doesn’t have to accept you on Facebook, but when you work together and she accepts the others it’s nothing short of mean, especially since it’s so obvious. Personally I would not want to be friends with someone who operates like that. Consider the source and know that you are a better person for not treating others like she does. Who needs that in their life.

      • Ariell Choy Says:

        Agreed. Similar to my example, the girl would use my TIME to talk about her struggles/problems and those of her other friends but never mine! The one time I asked her to show up for an event of mine, she said very coldly: “oh yeah that, I forgot and anyways, I have things to do!” Some friend eh?! Why even give her the benefit of your ear (by listening to her problems) and thinking she’s a friend you could add on Facebook, only to find you’ve given so much of your time to her needs! Like unbrokenspirit says: who needs that in their life!

        True friends are RARE indeed!

  89. Emily Says:

    I feel for everyone who’s posted here, but it’s nice to know there are other people in the same position.

    Nothing’s really changed since I last posted, apart from my expectations of people. Basically, as far as I’m concerned the people who never bothered to keep in touch don’t matter anymore. I know that I made enough of an effort, in fact way more than “enough”, and I won’t be losing any sleep over them!

    I agree with some of the other posters here who suggested leaving it up to the other person / people to get in touch, and see how long it takes. It’s just taken my own Dad 5 whole weeks to contact me, which is something of a record even for him! Now of course it’s my fault, as it always is with him, because I was meant to contact him. I guess after all the times he’s left me hanging for weeks on end, I just figured I’d give him a taste of his own medicine! Plus, I was actually really busy with people visiting and I told him that the last time I spoke to him, so it’s not like there was no reason for me to not get in touch.

    I guess what I’m getting at is that a lot of the people we’re all posting about can’t handle it when they get the same treatment they dish out – they have such double standards and there’s not really any point trying to argue about it with them, because they’ll never, ever admit that they’re in the wrong. I guess some people will never change.

    The people who expect you to drop everything for them, and yet won’t do the same for you, are really not worth knowing. They’re users and they don’t deserve your friendship.

    I hope you’re all feeling better about your situations. I still have my good days and bad days, sometimes it’s harder to deal with than others. On the whole though it’s getting easier, and on the plus side the fact that so many people have let me down since I moved to the USA means I don’t feel any need to visit the UK because as far as I’m concerned if they can’t make the effort to reply to an email every so often, I won’t be making the effort (and spending the money) to travel over 5,000 miles to see them!

    • Ariell Choy Says:

      Amen Emily! Amen. People are USERS. I think this is the case 90% of the time! The girl I continuously reference (about doing homework) put an ENORMOUS AMOUNT OF PRESSURE on me to get a heads-up on homework and tests – texting every other day if not everyday and yet when I wanted to talk every other day, I was exerting a huge amount of “pressure” on her. It is a double standard! And when they get a taste of their own medicine, woe is me they cry! Another example I had with an ex-friend was when we were, at the time, working on a music project, she would say (with self-importance) come over to my house anytime at all. Suddenly when I discovered, she turned out to be dishonest, she quickly changed her tune and said “oh I’m busy. If you want your project, pick it up yourself”. After I was kind enough to mail it to her to send to the professor (because she knew him personally, while I didn’t). Whenever she wanted something, I had to drop by personally. When I wanted something, she wouldn’t drop by my place…I would still have to go to hers.

      Emily – thanks for pointing out that people are selfish users! I should have added that to my points!

      • unbrokenspirit Says:

        One of my favorite quotes “Never let someone become your priority while allowing yourself to be his or her option.” Mark Twain

  90. Steph Says:

    Let me depart from the topic of this thread to say I find reading all of you fascinating. Little did I know that when I Googled this glum topic over a year ago that I would run into a blog I would enjoy and follow frequently and even put in my “Favorites”! It is obvious to me that all the above people have higher than average intelligence and also express themselves beautifully.

  91. Ariell Choy Says:

    FOR EVERYONE WHO HAS PARTICIPATED ON THIS BLOG:
    1) Notice how some people only call when they need and/or want something. They are selfish and/or you are a convenience for these people. USERS!!!!!!!!!
    2) Notice how some people demand that OTHERS call them (i.e intimidation, laziness, self-importance, jealousy/envy, power/control). All of the examples are still excuses and not ALLOWING for a serious discussion between so-called friends.
    3) Notice how some people only contact others when they are depressed (never to give consolation in return from those they take). There is nothing wrong with being “there” for someone but there is definitely something wrong with friends that are only needed when THE OTHER PERSON feels depressed!
    4) Notice how some people expect you to be the one to maintain the contact first simply because the relationship began that way (this is NOT a good excuse in my opinion). This shows a lack of self-awareness and a lack of consideration for the other party’s feelings. These people are concerned only for their well-being (the attention they get from robbing the companionship of others while ignoring the loneliness of those from whom they TAKE).
    5) Notice how people are self-righteous and/or overly concerned about how they appear to others OR tell others how to behave. Again, these people are just concerned about how “perfect” they appear vs. caring about the feelings of others.
    6) Some feel it makes them superior to be invited or to be initiated. Again, there is nothing wrong with taking the first step but should you always??? Again, the feeling of being “wanted” is all these people care about. But so should you! After all, EVERYONE wants that feeling now and again! It’s just finding those that RECIPROCATE that is difficult.

    FOR THE FOLLOWING: I quote this article.
    Please read this link, everyone who has shared their views/stories on this site will love you! I guarantee it!
    http://thereasoner.com/articles/5-signs-of-narrow-minded-selfish-friends-that-can-hurt-you
    7) Friends who come close only when you agree with them
    8) Friends who go away when you pinpoint issues (again, they don’t want to admit their faults but you should always admit yours).
    9) Friends who hate you unethically and they let that affect their interaction with you. To hate someone unethically means to hate someone for a superficial reason (i.e. your job, your background, your education, your capabilities/talents, etc).

  92. Ariell Choy Says:

    I think the last thing that needs to be mentioned is that there are MORE mean people out there than there are genuinely nice. I tried befriending a girl (just recently) and looking back now, I should have realized, that a person who starts off every conversation with every person that has ever wronged her, was a disaster waiting to happen! Lo and behold, once I did something “wrong”, she went on and on about how badly I wronged her. She is never at fault! I tried befriending another girl who was the most self-righteous person I ever met and around her I felt pressured to be “perfect” lest I get criticized. Some people are very insecure and use your moments of weakness to hurt you. Some people like to “play games” with others to get some kind of “satisfaction” out of you! The list goes on and on. Some people are emotionally dependent on you and want you to serve their needs 24 hours a day and 7 days a week. Some people want companionship but don’t want to give it back in return. I have met only 2 people in my life that return my calls/emails in a timely fashion and enjoy having conversation with me. I think the problem, for all of us who have contributed to this board, is that we focus A LOT on the people who have hurt us and we forget that there were 2 or 3 people in the midst that were genuinely kind to us. Try to remember…you may have come across these “angels” and not even realize it! Cling to those individuals. It is very easy to remember those that hurt you. It’s like a wound you keep festering and you continue to chip at the scab. But now, when I stop to think about it, there were a few people in my life that did respond to my messages (even when busy), and did enjoy my company/my way of thinking! Every one of us will encounter one or two human angels in our lifetime. They are close at hand…you just have to look harder!

    • unbrokenspirit Says:

      I think there is some passive aggressive behavior in those people too. You never win with them. That’s why, for me anyway, I realized after making an effort a few times then no more. It just feeds their ego and I’m not going to be a part of that.

  93. Ariell Choy Says:

    Great job everyone, as always! Yes, a lot of people play this game called “egocentrism: how long will you chase me?” And some people give you the “you’re putting too much pressure on me?” as though they are four year-olds and can’t control their actions. And yet, THOSE very people will put pressure on you when they need someone “there” or better yet when they need something. (My example of the relentless pursuit of homework and test answers from another student). For these types of people, they don’t deserve to have friends anyway. And in fact, these types of people (I’ve noticed) generally treat their friends badly, by talking about them behind their back! They should live alone and be without comfort EVER!!! And some people only respond when you call and/or text/email but do they ever initiate…NOPE!!!! These people aren’t even interested in a serious relationship of any kind. I have but two friends…the rest can…you know what!!!

    At least, we, the people of this board, can share in the joy of having the power of discernment.

  94. Ariell Choy Says:

    I actually tried explaining this to a fifteen year-old! And when I said, I have pretty much given up on “making” friends (most of which abuse my kindness), he said that I wanted answers to make me “happy”. I’m NOT that much older than him but I do have more life experience and I told him for a fact that there are people as old as 87 who have contributed to this board who can’t make friends because people DON’T want to make friends. The times we live in are very very trying.

    • unbrokenspirit Says:

      The hard part for me has always been wondering why. And trying to figure it out takes a lot of energy and gets me no where but wondering more and feeling bad. FINALLY…I’ve decided that it’s just not worth it anymore and am not going to feel bad about it anymore. For whatever reason it is what it is with them. And really if they want to treat others like that, then do I really need that in my life or even want to try to be friends with someone who treats another like that? Nope, I don’t. I know I tried, and that’s all I can do, so it’s time to get on with my life and forget about those people. Real friends don’t treat others like that, so really haven’t lost a friend. Just thought I did. Real friendship is not one-sided. It really is a relief to not worry about it anymore and to let it go. Life is too short to keep trying to connect with someone who doesn’t want to. They certainly have that right and I’ll respect that and choose to spend my time with more worthwhile things.

  95. Nancy Says:

    From what I have noticed, people make the best friends before the age of 18 and after the age of 65. In between 20s and early 60s, people are so consumed with family, work and activities. I am finding it almost impossible to find people who want to take the time to build friendships (they DO take time) so I just hang out with my family, a couple of close friends who DO make the time and spend the rest of my time enjoying activities that “I” like. If others want to enjoy them with me, then great!

  96. Chris Says:

    Thank you to all those who have posted. I googled this topic and it has helped to listen to your stories and ideas. I liked the basic ideas present in many posts, voiced in various ways, of forgiveness, release and hope. In my life I have known some periods of popularity when others chased me down to be my friend (grade school and sort of in college), but mostly, I have been in the boat of the people writing above, even a complete social outcast (high school and sort of now). At present, I also know that sometimes people don’t call because there are shunning you. This happened to me, for when I was 33, I “came out of the closet,” and this lost me nearly every friend I had, including all of my many “Christian” friends and the love of most of my relatives (all are evangelical Christians). I am now 48 and not one of these persons has come around, even my relatives still shun me.

    Yet, I am at a loss to explain why people that are not shunning me don’t make more of an effort to initiate acts of friendship. I have worked to find new friends, but I no longer seem to be any good at making good friends. The friends I have found seem to want me to fill out their party lists (e.g., holiday parties; 50th birthdays, etc.), or to help them paint or move, but there’s no one I can go to see a movie with, etc. I finally bought a dog and I watch movies at home. Currently, I am afraid to confront the “friends” that I have, for I don’t believe any would stay around. I am too weak to want to have absolutely no friends again. I have ordered some books on Amazon about making friends, but I have felt too pathetic to read them. It shouldn’t be this hard. I really don’t understand how someone can seem to have a great time when I am with him or her, but not take at least some of the initiative to help develop the friendship. Most of my friends will eventually return calls, but why do they need days or weeks? So I am about to make some calls, again, to line up a few summer get togethers with my “friends.” I like my friends when I am with them, and I think they really do like me, but I don’t like the feeling of being so unimportant to them. So, at present, I am choosing to forgive and hope, but I am unable to release them.

    • Craig Says:

      Hi Chris. I found this blog yesterday and am still working through digesting the fascinating posts. After I read your post I sincerely wished I had seen this a year ago. My heart goes out to you. You deserve love and respect. You are loveable. I don’t know you, but I do know that you are definitely the only you in this whole world of people and you matter, always. If your Christian friends and relatives were getting it right, they would have been the ones to love you the MOST and to show you the most kindness. I am truly sorry that you experienced that. My mom used to make me memorize Bible verses every day when I was a kid, and one came to mind when I read your post ; “can a woman forget her nursing child, and have no compassion on the child of her own womb? I tell you, even these may forget, but I will never forget you. See, I have tatooed your name on the very palms of my hands( an old jewish tradition of mothers who wanted to remember and pray for continually their beloved child who was off at war or away on a dangerous journey). You are always in my thoughts and in front of me in my mind. Your destroyers will run away from you, and your builders will run to you; you will surely bind them on like jewels.”
      I know that there is a very best friend for you, and that you will meet them- that person is out there somewhere, and maybe even closer than you realize. Never give up Chris!!! Never ever. I have seen that when I feel at my worst is exactly when the answer is the closest, even though it feels the farthest away. I realize you may never see this, but who knows? :)

  97. Ariell Choy Says:

    Yes, people outright shun others! And yes, some people are extremely passive aggressive. I’ve seen people, on the one hand, complain over and over again about people calling them up and them not feeling like talking only to complain a little later on that no one calls them to show that they care! I appreciate the calls…it makes me feel wanted and appreciated. And yes, if you are overweight, have “come out of the closet”, are of a certain ethnic background, are of a certain level of education, or some people are envious/jealous of something you are, have or own, etc, then YES! you will be shunned! Another great point I should have added to my list! Thanks Chris!

  98. Ariell Choy Says:

    Like the rest of you, I am still waiting for my phone call and/or texts and/or emails!!! None have arrived yet!

  99. Steph Says:

    Chris, Ariell- Don’t feel too badly. I actually have come out of the closet- twice! The second time I “came out” was right after,(at the ripe old age of 59) I realized I was borderline for Asperger’s Syndrome. I am a fairly educated person, and have beyond a Master’s Degree in Biology. This has nothing to do with being a “retard”. It is a a very mild form of Autism, and in my case I probably only have a few traits, I am gainfully employed and live a life that is perfectly satisfying to me. I don’t feel disabled at all and now realize that I was pretty adept at working around the aspects of AS that created problems for me long before I had any idea I “had something”. AS does create difficulties in forming relationships and I always was poor with social cueing and probably so absorbed in my special interest that I had little idea what was considered cool. I was grateful to find this out, as it answered so many questions about why I am the way I am and why I was the sort of child I was. I am not upset by having it, but feel proud that I did such a great job adapting— I was more upset that I knew so woefully little about Autism Spectrum Disorders!

    To address the point Chris brought up— yes, a revelation like that can get you rejected very quickly, even though you have been the quintessential “good friend”. That is exactly what happened to me. I was dumped as “declasse” instead of being retained as the person I had always been. Somehow I became “somebody different” when I spoke the truth.

  100. Anthony Says:

    As we grow older, and situations change, friendships change !
    and also time for friendships change. You can’t spend all the time in the world for talking about the stuff over and over.. people need theyre space, and its up to the friends to gauge when uts appropriate to call or when ur being a pest! For example, if u had a buddy in College that test/ calls u allthe time, but now ur married with kids, u cant expect the same comunication. People get burned out on electroninic communication nowaddays, with all the email. facebook.
    testing. calls. etc. Who has the time?

    • Ariell Choy Says:

      Anthony, you are missing the point…in fact, many people on this site have said that friendships change over time. And there is nothing wrong with that. In fact, there are a LOT of people with whom I no longer contact that I still love dearly but as the times change, our friendships changed too but if I happen to see these people again, we would pick up right where we left off.

      About online communication – I had a friend whom I contacted online ONLY through MSN. I got burned out VERY quickly by this and our friendship changed and we no longer contact each other.
      When I asked him if he would stop using online communication only and start hanging out in person, he refused! I told him flat out I’m burned out by online communication and so the friendship died!

      And finally, you make it sound as if people on this blog don’t know that friendships die naturally (over time) and people pick up right where they left off if encountered again the future. We are referring to the fact that some people despite how busy or not busy they may be promise to maintain a healthy amount of contact (for some people, it’s once a week, for others it’s once a month, for others it’s once a year). Let’s face it relationships take work.

      Some people genuinely are busy and do make the effort. Others are not. Some are USERS and only call people when they want something and once they are done, they disappear!

      And even if people want to talk about something over and over it’s their right!

      It’s the people that say “we’ll do something once a year” but then never keep their word without justification or good reason.

      There is a difference between natural erosion of friendships and people who LIE about the true nature of their wanting to be near you.

  101. Nancy Says:

    I agree Ariel. I do however, find it confusing when you spend lots of time with a certain friend and then all of a sudden, she doesn’t return your calls. It makes you wonder: did she get really busy or did I say something offensive the last time we got together? Sometimes you may never know. It makes you feel like you are not important enough to be explained to.
    I think all of us long to be needed, long to be called and invitied out to do things. The truth is that outside of immediate family, there are few friendships like that anymore (especially when you are in the 25-60 age range).
    Since I am middle age, I have learned to not believe things people say until I see them in action. I am SURPRISED when someone actually does what they say they are going to do.

  102. Ariell C. Says:

    Nancy you are right! People don’t do what they say. They don’t even attempt to get around to doing what they say, at a later time. You are right – everyone on this board: don’t take people at face value or trust their word nor believe anything they say. A person who does not practice what they preach as humanly possible is never to be taken seriously! And you are right, Nancy. Most people start off being your friend and then up and disappear without an explanation. And trust me – most of the time, it is NOT because you said or did something offensive. People are solely concerned with their emotions/feelings only and don’t care how they affect others. This is something I have had to get used to. Human nature is selfish by nature! (or until God decides otherwise). Again, the stories were most helpful. And yes, doing hobbies helps but sometimes the only thing to solve the pain of loneliness is human companionship and human companionship alone!

    • Craig Says:

      O my word, that is my biggest frustration; when people don’t do what they say they are going to do. In business mgmt. classes we learned a technique for keeping people accountable when they agree on something, and that is to ask “do I have your word on that?” Well, nowdays that no longer works even. I have even asked people to PROMISE specific things we agreed on- not demands., for example, one friend offered my family to go on the lake with them in their boat. Of course we wanted to, and we said sure, definitely…. this is a friend who I have given a lot of help to and a lot of money to over the years, and who never has time to help me with my projects. So summer came and went, with them going several times and never including us. They asked again the next summer, same scenario, and the third summer and I reminded them that it was not cool to be invited and then brushed off- so I asked them if they would promise that we would actually follow through, to which they enthusiastically promised, with emphasis….guess what happened? Yes, we had a wonderful day on the lake….just kidding, OF COURSE we didn’t because they told a big fat lie, with a promise attached. It may sound harsh, but a wise man once said ” your value is the degree to which you keep your word; a worthless man will not keep his word.” I do think that insincerity, dishonesty, for whatever reason, causes more pain in the long run than the truth does. But for many people their version of the truth, like why they won’t follow through, or keep in touch when they said they would, may be far removed from the real reason. When I make a mistake I want to make it clean, and just say ” I’m sorry, that was inconsiderate.” No lame excuses, or well crafted ones either. But what I have mostly heard from people is something like ” Oh, I thought you didn’t want me to call back.” or “Hmm, I tried calling (yeah, right- I guess the phone was just too heavy and they couldn’t muster up enough strength to push the buttons)- those are really just insincere apologies. I posted earlier that I want to like who I am, and I like that I am honest. I do it in as nice a way as possible though. But when a friend invited me to a football game, I thanked him for the invitation, and just admitted I hate football, and the traffic at the Metrodome, but would definitely like to do something else if it comes up. No wondering on his part where we stand as friends. I wish everyone were more sincere, and simple. Even blunt would seem better than dishonest.

  103. RobS Says:

    Guys, I have been down this road so many times that now I just do not bother anymore. It’s been this way for me both in friendships and in the few experiences I have had in love/lust.

    Nowadays, I do not try as much as I used to and I just have one or two people that I can call “friends”. I am still cautious when using the friend word however.

    I have weeded out so many people in my life and harbor some resentment towards myself. I should have put the time and effort on me and not on the so called “friends”.
    I try to see it as a learning experience though.

    I truly understand what everybody on this board has shared.

    • Ariell C. Says:

      It’s interesting Rob that you say you’ve had this experience with friendships as WELL as love and lust. I, too, have had this experience in the romance department. It seems I either love someone very dearly and it is not returned or another person loves me very dearly and I cannot return their love OR in some cases, even though I don’t love the person, I make an effort to love the person AND offer that individual marriage and they outright refuse (although still claiming to love me, which makes me suspect their true intentions). But one thing you say is that you see it as a learning experience…how much more longer do we need to learn?

      • RobS Says:

        See, this is where I think we are going about it all wrong.
        We try too hard. That is, trying hard to be a good friend or a good lover when we do not feel the same way about the other person. I have noticed I have this trying to hard problem. It should come naturally. Shouldn’t it? Nowadays, I just do not bother trying so hard and it’s funny. A few weeks ago I was thinking of one of the friends that I keep in touch with and thought I should give him a call
        as I had not spoken to him for a while. Then I thought “Robert, here you are doing it again.” so I did not bother calling. The strange thing, he called me that very same day.

  104. Ariell C. Says:

    I totally agree with u Rob. This past year I decided to stop the nonsense. I agree with u. As I too made a friend this past year who is exactly how you describe (in fact, it’s the one common trait we both have in common which initially was the reason why we were attracted to each other) and then I decided to cease contact with him. Fortunately, for you, this person decided to give you a call back! That’s excellent – he has proven he is a true friend! I met one gentleman this past year who INSISTED I be the one to contact him and that was a HUGE red flag. No one has the right to tell someone: “so you should keep in contact with me, right?” It’s like “no, you have fingers too, you are free to call me when you see fit!” So, some people are more obvious while with others, you have to watch them in what they do not do to decipher their behavior. But yeah…I am more or less like you. I now stop myself when I feel like I’m about to call. Thanks for being my inspiration!

    • RobS Says:

      No worries. It is lonely though. I mean I am human and I enjoy company but at what price is the question. My self- worth, my integrity. NO, I say. I feel more free this way.
      Warren Buffet says something along the lines “The best investment one can make is to invest in oneself” I agree with this. I should not waste time on others but use that time on myself. It takes work though to make that change and I am still trying

  105. unbrokenspirit1 Says:

    Friendship takes some effort…it’s a two way street and I sure don’t want to spend my time on someone who doesn’t care enough to take even a little time. Then they really aren’t a friend. It may indeed be lonely but I would rather be that then allow myself to be treated in such a way. I’d rather keep my self respect and find other ways to spend my time.

    As for the past…I don’t try to contact friends/people who I knew years ago anymore. Times change and people move on and for the most part they just aren’t interested. That’s what I’ve found anyway. And I’m relieved not to be trying anymore. I don’t wonder why anymore.

    One side note. The last year have come down with some debilitating illnesses. I thought a friend was a friend through the good and bad but my experience has shown me different. And I’m talking about even just a phone call or note to ask how one is. Nothing really surprises me anymore I guess. We live and learn.

    The comments here have all been helpful and insightful.

  106. Emily Says:

    I completely agree unbrokenspirit, friendship should be a two way street and if only one person is making any effort then it’s not worth it. I myself have stopped contacting people who never bother to get in touch with me, and I feel so much better for it. Those people aren’t worth my time or energy, so I just don’t contact them at all. Funnily enough, some of the people who were being very bad at keeping in touch have kind of redeemed themselves by initiating contact themselves at long last! I feel as though I know who my true friends are now and although it’s sad when relationships fall apart, there’s only so much one person can do to keep them going.

    At the end of the day, we should think of it as their loss, not ours!

    • unbrokenspirit1 Says:

      “there’s only so much one person can do to keep them going.”

      “At the end of the day, we should think of it as their loss, not ours!”

      Well said Emily. It’s helped to know that others feel the same way and it just wasn’t me who had these experiences. Not that I’m glad that others have had these experiences, but rather that others understand. Maybe there is a lot more of us than we think. Friendship has always been something that I have cherished and felt a real loyalty about. Maybe that’s why it’s been painful. I’ve always felt once a friend always a friend but I just don’t see friendship held in that light anymore. Maybe someday things will come full circle and friendships will be regarded as they once were. Not to speak for others or to say they aren’t for some. Just speaking from my experiences.

  107. Ariell C. Says:

    Yes, Emily is right! I think it boils down to people NOT respecting the institution of friendship and as Rob S. said, the concept of love as well! I’ve been in numerous positions where the minute I said or did something wrong (whether it was intentional or unintentional), I was dropped like a hat but these friends never supported me through anything and furthermore, I overlooked all the horrible things they said and did to me because I wanted to be the bigger person. All they did was take, take, take and they only went along with the friendship so long as I was making all the plans and decisions. It seemed to me they either weren’t interested but were too shy to say “no, I don’t want to hang out with you” and so forced themselves to go along or don’t want to have to be adults and make decisions (after all, that is what being an adult is). At the end of the day, folks, even if you are “interesting” (and it depends on how you define the word interesting), a friend should still just love you as you are. I wouldn’t want someone around me just because I appeared interesting because the minute you lose the element that makes you interesting, you lose a so-called friend (and that to me is superficial, anyway). Friendship is about building relationships, and making lasting bonds and wanting to share your joys and sadness with another person. Will I admit to being irrational at times when it came to friendships/love, yes? But who hasn’t? Have I learned a great deal over time – absolutely. Live and learn.

  108. russell Says:

    I think the worst type of “friends” are those that are all friendly in person, appearing eager to keep in touch but never do. A month later I might send ta message via facebook… no reply. A couple of months after that a text – see how I space it out in case I look too ‘needy’ – suggesting something *they* had originally suggested…only to get some obviously bogus excuse about why they cannot… then you never see or hear from them again. Unsettling. I can handle rejection, but not that kind of dishonesty

    The next worst are those whom you have just met who are friendly and in your face – only for them to randomly stop talking without explanation, like one girl at work. It wasn’t genuine, they were not their ‘true selves’ – it was about quickly working out whether you are worthy of their time, and when you don’t meet the standards or aren’t cool enough or whatever, it’s over.

    Then there are the obvious users from my past who only wanted help with their study, or with work, only to have them stonewall you once you had served your purpose.

    Emotional energy is spent on these fakes, but all they leave you with is bitterness and self-doubt.

    Someone not replying to a message within a few days IS probably purposely ignoring you. We know this. If it happens again cut off contact and don’t spend another moment thinking about them. Life is short, why waste time on the aloof, thoughtless and superficial.

  109. RobS Says:

    See, the problem is that I do not see it changing anytime soon.
    I feel as I will always have to be super cautious in love and friendship. Like I need to keep some guard up always and test people and people will just eventually fail me as they have done before.

    How can one get over this feeling and believe and if my destiny is to end up alone to be able to accept that.

    Yes, I know I know I am being very pessimistic….

    • Ariell C. Says:

      Precisely Rob: you want to know whether you should stop altogether seeking friends and just accept that you should lead your life alone. It’s not necessarily pessimistic, it’s just confronting reality. It’s like telling a very terrible singer that they shouldn’t pursue a singing career. It’s not necessarily about crushing that person’s dream but it’s letting the person know – you are not on the right path and to continue forth with it is to destroy whatever good life you should lead (funny enough, I know a woman like this who has zero talent as an actress but swears she is good!) I, too, am coming to terms with this and realize that friendship is a two-way street and whether someone is envious of you, does not find you interesting, or whatever the case may be, you should not put in any time and effort for someone that doesn’t want to do the same for you. Most of my connections to people are with other professionals (work relations). But as far as making friends outside the realm of work, it’s VERY difficult. As far as trying to show you are not needy, I, too, will minimize my calls and see who will call back and lo and behold, none of them have. And yes, I’ve been used for study notes and/or work. I think it boils down to this: as a sign that the times are getting worse, more and more people are outright selfish. Things like compassion, empathy, honesty, integrity, etc have all gone out the window. No one respects Friendship. Jealousy toward you: if this is the case, you will KNOW eventually, as their behavior will give themselves away. This person gets a “high” off of “playing mind games” (I’ve been through this) – they may hurt you for awhile, but in the future, they will suffer for what they’ve done (so leave ‘em be!) If they have to derive their confidence by playing games with others than THAT alone speaks volumes about their character. And then lastly, the emotionally draining people: as long as they get your companionship/time, don’t expect to be given it in return! When there’s anything that has to do with you, it’s always: “oh sorry, I gotta go! I’m real busy!” Me, Me, Me.

      I think what I’ve learned throughout the years about this issue is to – and I know this is hard – to find someone like you. The friend should have a high regard for friendship like you do.

      • RobS Says:

        Yeah, you are very much hammer on the nail head. I wish I could take the small amount of hope I have left for love and friendship out back and shoot it. :)

        I need to become one of those me, me, people but in a sense be a better one and not use and abuse.

        Thanks for listening.

        Rob

  110. Ariell C. Says:

    No problem Rob! In this life, you can only love and care about yourself first and put everyone and everything else second. By that, I do not mean to treat everyone else around you as a convenience, means to an end or inferior. I simply mean to love yourself first and know your strengths and weaknesses before you venture into a friendship. And yes, don’t use and/or abuse people because that can only come back to haunt you later on. And don’t worry, as this is a growing problem (which only seems to worsen with time)! When I observe people, I’ve noticed that MOST friendships are one-sided. I’ve seen certain people trail after their friends (literally), obeying their every whim, being the ones to always call or visit but never receive the same care in return. The difference between them and individuals like you and me is that we are AWARE that this is unacceptable and we try to modify our behavior or change our surroundings. Best of luck to you, Rob!

  111. Sidney Says:

    I was looking for anwsers , solutions, how to make my friends be better freinds to me!

    I am well peeved off with freinds now!

    I am dissapointed with this blog, yes relived too. Relieved that I dont only feel like this there are others out there too.

    I genuinely value freindship – always have. I love it, respect it. I believe in the saying friends are the family you choose. Im learning now that its not for life, that for some reason people think it is ok to blantantly ignore you.

    ITS NOT OKAY, its bang out of order. I have ceased calling everyone to see who calls. 1 out of 7 close freinds came back ? whats that about.

    Like a guy said earlier – i dont want to drop them – let go – insecure – there will be no 1 left. I DONT want to look like the ‘sad’ one without freinds infront of family but I HAVE TO FACE IT FREINDS ARE not there – they see me every few months , when at one time we were every few weeks.

    I REFUSE TO LET ME USE THIS EXPERINCE AND say – right im am not making anymore freinds – in the new people i meet. I think I am going to use it to pick better freinds – genuine people who look beyond money, images and moaning . IT CAN BE DONE – WHY DO I KNOW THIS – BECause look at us all here – we all here genuine value the concept of freindship and have been living it – onesided admittedly. BUT THERE are other people out there that feel the same – we all do. If we were freinds – we would be really good freinds.

    As for me – i was looking for solutions to make my freinds treat me better – i know there are none , unless they feel like doing so. I will not drop them – insecurity , also when it was good it was good, when we are together it is a laugh. BUT im managing the relationship differenly – i will keep them , drop in time to time – when i need it. BUT AM no longer wasting lots of regular time trying to hook my friends to turn up, meet me etc bull.it peeves me of. i will not use my energy on being mad, or telling myself to forgive them etc. I have to rethink this all – freinds i dont want to let go cos then i have nothing but family left and they ok – but familyis family and friends are friends.

    I need freinds, yet i am happy in my own company too . Then again there are so many areas of my life i need to put right – career, money, fat loss, etch maybe i have magnified the need of friends or made a bigger deal of how they behave. They act blazay like so and so did not return my call but i met them and had a good catch up – we are freinds. Maybe i am too much of a deal about it. And should take it easy. use the energy i use to fret over them on other areas of my life.

    YES I WILL DO THAT. I WILL NO LONGER FRET – BUT USE THE ENERGY OR SPENDING time with new people, using my experince to better other areas of my life.

    I M SICK OF waiting , waiting for freind to get ther act togehter, and some family memebers to. I will get on . BUT I CANT help it , some of these freinds were recently in touch to meet up – ignored the text and tho8 yes lets see how u like it – its not fun when we all dont turn up, or reply, its frustrating. Gave them there own medicine and then rang these freinds to say sorry i was on a retreat , no contact that week end.

    Oh boy – friend s – we all deserve better – but i am very glad to hear from everyone here – because we have one thing in common we respect good freindship.

    people who dont – well use them, like they use u, dont lett it make u bitter. use your frustration to try new thing and meet people who value good freindship.x

  112. Jadene Says:

    I have moved on from the old ex-friend that went to my old residence looking for me after 8 yrs of not seeing me as I came to the realization that all she wanted was to know where my life took me and about my life and then she was done talking to me after our first call. I have no regrets of not returning her 2 calls after telling her on cell message that I was done calling her and that I was sick of her games of saying she’d call and then wouldn’t. Those are the only circumstances that she would call me. This is an old friend that told me I was like a sister to her and that she always thought about me and how she knew I was close to my Dad(yet she didn’t support me when he died and her excuse was well you were dealing with your Dad and I met my boyfriend). So that shows where her priorities were. I know now that we were really just acquaintances. Actions speak louder than words. And if I ever run into her which I find amazing that in all these 10 yrs I haven’t run into her(as she said she always wondered why we never ran into eachother during the 8 yrs)….I plan on just walking right by her. The Lord knows what he is doing…probably the reason I never ran into her is cuz she has not changed and is not a friend.

    • Ariell C. Says:

      Dear Jadene, your attitude is most correct! I think what upsets people, on this board, is that people make false promises that they never intend to keep and this is why we seem frustrated and annoyed by others’ behavior. It’s when a person says: “oh we’ll do this and let’s do that” or “let’s chat sometime” and never actually fulfill their obligations is when things hurt! Walk past her Jadene. She’s not worth your glance! And guess what? I decided to re-kindle a friendship with a former boss and we’ve started chatting on the phone and he’s invited me over. I only wish I had kept in contact with him more often! He even welcomed my calling him every night!
      So to everyone out there – the best thing is to observe people’s behavior and make friends with those that – not necessarily think exactly like you – but value friendship as MUCH as you do! He loves inviting people over, talking on the phone, and being just plain being a friend! There are people out there but weeding out the bad from the good is the biggest struggle. Good luck in your search Jadene.

  113. Nancy Says:

    Jadene, Rob, Ariell: I have enjoyed reading these posts.

    When I posted earlier in the year, I had confrontations with 3 friends and finally had the courage in my life to tell them that standing a friend up at the last minute when they have invited you to something, is cruel. Especially when your excuse is that you want to read a book or “you don’t feel like it”. 9 months later, I am RELIEVED that those frendships have cooled. 2 of them have contacted me to see how I am and that is fine. However, after having time to think I have realized that so much about the friendship was 1 sided and it was a GOOD thing they ended.

    Rob, I totally get what you mean about being angry with yourself about spending so much time and energy in friendships that didn’t work. Just remember that you had to go through those things to be who you are today. You have learned and are much wiser.

  114. Nancy Says:

    Good friends are very difficult to come by, especially if you don’t live with them. I agree that we don’t need to be “interesting” or put on a show to be someone we are not, but we need to love ourselves. Not to the point of arrogrance but to love who we are. It is true that people don’t like to hang around defeated, negative people all the time and I had to learn that the hard way.

    I was a total nerd and outcast growing up so I had no friends who hung around for very long. As an adult, I thought that would change and I desperately wanted friends that I didn’t have as a child. As I have stepped back (turning 40 does that) and looked at the friends I have allowed myself to have, I found that I have accepted people who are totally 1 sided and people who are very critical of me and people who continuously cancel plans. I NOW KNOW that I do not have to accept those behaviors to have “friends”. My numbers of friends have gone down but my standards have been raised :)

    • unbrokenspirit Says:

      Nancy: Great comment and right on attitude. Good for you! I’ll remember this.” I NOW KNOW that I do not have to accept those behaviors to have “friends”. My numbers of friends have gone down but my standards have been raised :)”

  115. Nancy Says:

    A wise person once told me that I should take all potential friendships slowly. Has anyone ever met someone at a party of gathering and they hit it off with someone? You exchange numbers, you call and then NOTHING!!! That is a person who I would not spend anymore time contacting. If a person does call back and you get together, maybe a few weeks later try again and see what happens. I have learned to not spend much time chasing people anymore.

    Also, don’t spend lots of time on what I call “Energy Suckers”. I had 2 friends in the past, both of whom would talk my ear off for 3-4 hours about their problems, how much they hated their husband, job….. I always felt drained and lost sleep when I was around them. NO MORE!!! It took me 10 years to cool those friendships down but boy, does it feel good.

  116. RobS Says:

    Guys, I wrote a lengthy reply but then thought I am trying to hard as always. I just wish I could shake the bitter feeling and internal resentment. How can this be one? Any tips I would appreciate.

    • Ariell C. Says:

      Maybe Rob, the answer lies in loving ourselves a little bit more. Maybe we want so much to give of ourselves to another and we rely heavily on the notion that to find someone like yourself is to be complete. Notice how the people we are dealing with are selfish. They love themselves – albeit in a selfish way – to only call others when they want or need something; never to see how you are doing. However, I don’t advocate this type of behavior. Just raise your standards and if a person uses you just once, ditch them soon thereafter! These people probably see you as a “rock”, “shoulder to cry on”, “got your act together” type of person and maybe that’s why they constantly use you – forgetting that you are human too. Try relating less to people and changing aspects about your personality you dislike or would like improved!

      • RobS Says:

        Thanks Ariell. I am working on it.

        As to not steer this blog of topic I would like to give some more advice. From my own experience when you get a bad feeling or vibe about someone (that gut feeling thing) most of the time it is right. I have had that feeling with “friends” or love before but I chose not to listen to it.
        Tip to self listen to gut more often.

  117. Ariell C. Says:

    Yep Rob! That’s right. Can’t tell you how many times my gut said one thing and I did the opposite. I knew what I was getting myself into but still ignored my intuition! Also, when people show you who they are, ACCEPT THAT. Accept people as they present themselves, don’t make excuses and say “they’ll change for me” or “he/she was just joking around”. NOPE! Don’t look for something in a person that isn’t there…SEE them for what they are.

  118. Steph Says:

    Rob, Ariel: these last few posts have been very helpful to me. I learned as a child that I often “misread” people so I ignored/made excuses for mean snarky behavior. What happened is that I felt I was “too hypersensitive” and I put up with a lot of hurtful nonsense that should have made me drop the social connection. Instead, I foolishly kept “trying” in direct opposition to the fact that I distrusted the person’s behavior towards me. My deficit here was not so much an inability to read behavior but the fact that I really didn’t trust my gut reactions. Age improves these things and I now know if a connection doesn’t “feel nice”, you can just bet that it isn’t. I think that there are a lot of people, especially in the present economic conditions, that don’t feel good about themselves because of the very materialistic “one-upmanship” tendancies of this society. I have noticed that people who seem less oriented towards appearing “well-to-do” are more likely to make “non-toxic” friends, and that describes the two that I have now.

    • Ariell Says:

      Steph….there is NO SUCH THING as being “hypersensitive”. It is not a bad thing despite what society says. It’s empathy working in your favor! It’s better to be hypersensitive than not be sensitive at all. I used to ignore my gut but NOT anymore. And I’m starting to both love and appreciate the new me. Don’t make excuses…if you feel something is “wrong” from the get-go…GET OUT!!! Because things do worsen over time and that’s when both parties will be left feeling awkward. If ever you have to encounter that person again, in the future, old wounds will be re-hashed. It isn’t a pleasant feeling. By working on yourself, you learn to trust your gut more and more. Wisdom/life experience and faith always win over “plain knowledge”. Knowledge, in itself, is just that: information but without wisdom, faith and life experience, you have nothing to guide you.

  119. RobS Says:

    Steph: I liked the way you explained this. I have been doing this most of my life and I am actually trying to change it. For me I think it has to be more mind over heart, as my heart wants to believe in someone but I should use my mind to make that logical choice. It’s funny how we can trick ourselves into making bad choices when our own intuition is telling us the complete opposite.

  120. Nancy Says:

    I had to laugh a the Hyper Sensitive comment. I have heard that about myself many times. The person who stood me up at the last minute because she didn’t feel like it (plans that were made 2 months in advance and required advanced preparation on my part), also said I was TOO SENSITIVE. No, dear, you have no sensitivity!! I was not going to allow her inability to follow through on her commitments to be thrown back on me. She knows she did a crappy thing, but she doesn’t want to say it. It is better to call me sensitive than to call what she did wrong.

  121. Nancy Says:

    Since the beginning of 2011, I made a decision that I wasn’t going to spend all of my time trying to set up get togethers with other people. I do pretty much everything with my family and by myself.

    I know this is going to sound terrible, but I feel so much better. I don’t have to call people and not get a call back. I don’t have to wonder if people are going to show up. I don’t have hurt feelings. It is a huge relief and when I let go of 3 of my so called friends this year, it stung for a couple of months but then I felt so free. I felt good about myself and realized that I don’t have to settle for people in my life who do not make me a priority at all.

    • unbrokenspirit Says:

      Nancy…once again…Well said. Doesn’t sound terrible at all. Your attitude is healthy and glad you got to this place. Wasn’t easy for sure, but good for you. You’re not letting them get you down and that’s worth a lot. It’s great when we get to a place that we don’t allow others to treat us as less than we are nor to be “taken off the shelf” at their convenience.

  122. gouda Says:

    Has anyone here looked at adult attachment theory and how different types do relationships? I found the info really helpful in understanding why some “avoidant” types were frustrating me by not reciprocating efforts. If you start looking at people as anxious, secure, and avoidant, you start noticing patterns…that can help with expectations. The book I read was a fun read, and it gave me some peace in letting avoidant folks go when things get unbalanced.

    • Nancy Says:

      I am sure there are many good books out there to read about relationships but when someone stands you up at the last minute when you have purchased food for a special breakfast/lunch just because they would rather do something else, they are self centered. They are narcissistic. I call them what they truly are. My expectations were not too high when this person said they wanted to get together, made plans with me, had a better offer and stood me up at the last minute.

      Part of being a person of character is as much as possible, doing what you say you are going to do (unless you have a real good reason not to).

      Also, when people say “Lets get together soon” when they know DARN well they don’t want to are….. liars!

      There, I said it.

  123. gouda Says:

    You could still learn something from reading some good books without giving up your concept of courtesy. The two are not mutually exclusive. I’ve seen avoidant people behave in very self-centered and unproductive ways, and no one’s excusing it. Something to consider.

  124. Kathleen Says:

    I read down through this blog about friendships. My brothers family ignores me. I send invites with rsvp’s and do not get answers but they show up. I leave voice mail messages and dont get a return call. The other day I left messages on facebook for my brothers wife, and their three adult children about an upcoming get together. Its been four days and not a single one has even acknowledged me. I keep asking myself why I bother. Are they just ill mannered and rude? I feel like an outcast. However I have always been the one to plan family gatherings and they seem to have fun when they come. I feel used and abused.

    • AChoy Says:

      Kathleen, you are right to feel the way you do. I recently cut things off with a “friend” because I not only booked a day off to see him if he should drop by my city (while travelling) but I also studied biology in depth to write his “condition” for his “book” (which never materialized due to his not fulfilling his end of the bargain!) I made all the calls and he never called me once or made an effort to see me in my city when he happened to stop by. I do feel used and abused as well. The best thing is to cut things off before things get worse. I often why I bother to? Because it seems no one wants to make an effort for me! I was just reading another website on this issue and I agree wholeheartedly with what the commenters have said: “screw everyone…even if those people are family members/in-laws”. If people can’t invite you out occasionally, call and/or email and/or text you or just simply take an interest in you…then it’s not worth your time. All these people do is leech from you. This ex-friend of mine enjoyed me the way one would feel comfort in the light of God. I was the “one person who really understood” him but I’m tired right now of being used even as a confidante/therapist and not have the favor returned!

      A real friend makes an effort.

  125. AChoy Says:

    I think people should learn to be outright HONEST and simply say: “it’s not that you are not an interesting person and it’s not that you are not nice. It’s just that I don’t like you and it’s nothing personal. I just don’t feel a connection.” I think if people were blunt – though it would hurt – it would be fair to everyone involved. Sometimes, you honestly, cannot be in the mood to make friends and that’s fine. I’m beginning to believe what some in the psychic realm have told me – that some humans were born and meant to be alone in their lifetime. I think it’s a lesson we all have to learn at some point in our karmic cycle. Some people are just not interested in making connections with others and keeping them alive. Some people are quite content using and abusing others and they don’t care how their actions affect others in the least. Some people treasure emotional bonds and connections. Some people are just plain confused and jump from one way of life to the other constantly. Some people don’t know what they are about PERIOD.

    And yes, it hurts especially when you think you’ve found someone you have sooooooooooo much in common with and is very similar to you on a karmic level!!! When those bonds break, it is truly heartbreaking.

    I speak to those that are genuinely nice and my conclusion in all of this (while thinking about this this morning having recently cut off a friendship two weeks ago) is that the genuinely kind-hearted, nice, sincere, and compassionate cannot make relations. Irregardless of whether you are beautiful [woman] or handsome [man], educated, intelligent, wise, kind, respectful of others, etc. I am starting to see a pattern that the GOOD of our society are taken advantage of, neglected, uncared for, and trampled all over simply because they are good. If you look to those who are beautiful and handsome but have horrid personalities, they often get the respect they don’t deserve and make bonds with lots of people.

    I think what people don’t want but should desire in their lives with respect to all types of relationships are decent, GOOD people. My theory is: the nicer you are (and I mean GENUINELY TRULY NICE), the less likely people will want you around them as a friend, lover or anything else. I am beginning to see why I get rejected so often from people and I think for many of you on this board, it’s the same case. It’s not that we are “ugly” and I will assume, most of us, posting messages on this board are what society would call “average-looking” or at the very least, we are in the “cute” category. I can tell a lot of people who have shared their stories here are intelligent, wise, educated and self-aware! I can tell many of you have jobs, and have a strong work ethic, and generally have a decent background altogether.

    Our problem is that we are nice. People don’t know what to do with “nice”. So we “use” these people as unpaid therapists, doormats, assistants, shoulders to cry on, a convenience, etc. Nice is considered weak, boring, naive or dumb. Nice is not “exciting” or “interesting” enough. Nice cannot be “real” in a world so harsh and cold. Nice exists to be used, abused, betrayed, feared [some think you have an ulterior motive], mistrusted, or a way of others to think you are being “fake”. People take and take because they are selfish and cold-hearted. The “nice” really do suffer for the world.

    This may be one reason why some of us, on this board, cannot make or keep the connections we make.

    Share your thoughts.

    I hope this has helped everyone. I’ve read your stories and I’m moved and hurt by what some of you have had to suffer through.

    All the best

    • unbrokenspirit Says:

      Wow! This hit me like a bolt of lightening.This makes total sense to me and strikes a real cord with me and I have to agree. Yes it hurt to read maybe they just don’t like me but heck it probably IS true. I can accept that and I can live with that much better than the ignoring and wondering. I really like this and I Thank You!

    • Rusty Says:

      ‘Nice’ can also be considered needy, and sometimes it’s true – I have been ‘nice’ simply because I wanted others to be nice to me, and people sense it. It means you will say what you think the other wants to hear, act submissive, moulding your personality around theirs rather than being your own person.

      This is frustrating for others because they feel that there is no point in knowing you (there is nothing to know) and that is the reason for rejection rather than malice or a desire to use. Lonely people need to first be happy with themselves before they be anything to anyone else. Unfortunately for me, I just can’t seem to manage it..

  126. RobS Says:

    AChoy: See I know this. I know exactly what you mean. What does this mean then in reality? That we are destined to be alone, for the better, to not get used and abused. Or that we try to change ourselves and be exactly the same way back towards others? This life of niceness and being treated poorly back has made me bitter. I drop people now very easily but the bitterness and loneliness remains.

    • AChoy Says:

      Yes, RobS, to an extent it does mean we have to find solace and meaning in loneliness. I do believe the wisest people understand how to shape loneliness to their will and make it their master. Small people fear loneliness while grand people use it to their benefit. We are pre-programmed/conditioned to believe that having LOADS of people around you bring you happiness. And while humans were designed to adhere to this principle of living, it all depends on the company you keep. It’s like going to work and dreading your boss!!! You’d rather not show up to work at all because you know the bad day that is going to unfold. And unfortunately, everyone has a different definition of what a “relationship” is; hence the reason why everyone exists on a different karmic level. The key is to find someone similar to you (as narcissistic as that sounds). How you find these people depends on how well you know yourself in order to better gauge how others are in contrast to you. And just getting to know yourself can take a lifetime (that’s why maturing is never-ending). Then you have to add luck/serendipity into the mix, free will, etc.

      I’ll just leave you with the ultimate sentence of wisdom based upon Buddhist teachings:
      To be without a reference point is the ultimate loneliness. It is also called enlightenment. Think of the wisdom you and I have gained, just by swapping stories online and sharing thoughts. I think that’s the spiritual “food” most speak of attaining but never gain.

      And like you RobS, I drop people like a hat. If you are going to be with anyone, your feelings should be reciprocated. But MOST people surround others around them to compensate for their miseries and insecurities or because no one else wants to be their “best friend”. With respect to those that want me to be their “best friend”, I will repeat what I just wrote: they must reciprocate the favor I am blessing them with.

      • RobS Says:

        AChoy: This is what I have turned into now, but what I still have trouble accepting is this destiny hence the loneliness and bitterness. I unlike others do not need many people around me. Just one or two good friends is fine, but even that seems not to be in the cards for me. So they way I take it now is: “All this free time I have I can use to better myself and be more the man I would like to be.”

        It has been said before but it is nice that their are others out
        there that think like I do.

      • Achoy Says:

        There is one other thought I’d like to share with everyone on this board and that is that people have a habit of repeating the cliché: “go out there and meet people” or “get a hobby”. Hobbies are ideal only if you are trulypassionate about what it is you are doing and stepping out in the real world to meet people can be enjoyable depending on the type of people you surround yourself with and WHERE it is that you go. And sometimes, that’s not enough. Just because you go out and meet people doesn’t guarantee that you will stay in contact with them forever and a day nor does it mean you will “hit things off instantly.” Sometimes, people just don’t match! Sometimes, you end up going somewhere where the people there are already good friends and they don’t want you in their clique! I know I can be funny and be interesting if I want but even that doesn’t guarantee anything!

        I do think some people just have to make-do with the fact that they are destined to be alone.

        As for being popular, I think most of us on this board will agree that that’s not for everyone. I have met some “popular” people and most are uninteresting and “phony” to the bone!

        Funnily enough, I can’t tell you how many people have come up to me stating that I am their only true friend who understands them in the whole world only to not have my compassion returned and yet these very people brag that they have so many friends, hang out a lot, but still complain that their friends aren’t “true”. The difference between myself and those types of people is that I admit that most of the people who surround me are phony, uncaring, users and abusers.

        I think it’s time we all just admit that MOST of our “friends” are phony and that when we are lucky enough to meet someone who wants to be a true friend – we take that person for granted!!

      • RobS Says:

        AChoy: Yes, some people will have to make-do with that fact. I totally agree with those words, of course not what I want this for such people but that is just how it seems to be.

        See, I am sure I have taken “true” people for granted. Then that means I am not better the the people that I drop?

    • Achoy Says:

      Take also into consideration RobS that yes, you may have unintentionally or intentionally dropped one or two good friends in your lifetime only to maybe be somewhat like those we describe but even then, it’s past and maybe for the best. I think true friends come later in life as well. I don’t put too much faith or stock in people you meet in your youth!

      What I wanted to add also was: some people appear and re-appear in your life depending on your social standing. If one day you become rich, or poor, or your social standing changes in any way, shape or form, then suddenly people want to be your “friends”.

      That makes it all the easier to see who your real friends are.

      I know I’ve been and still am in that position which is sad because people are drawn to your position.

      I just know the best thing you can do for yourself is stay true to who and what you are and love yourself better in better knowing who you are to attract the types of people you desire in your life.

      • RobS Says:

        I have many times wondered about your last paragraph. If I work on myself for the better will I naturally attract or draw the kind of people I want and deserve to meet in this life time?

        I met and older man a few weeks ago while on vacation and he said “Good meets good” I think he meant “Good attracts to good”. It stuck with me and maybe is somehow correlated to this whole thread.

    • AChoy Says:

      RobS: keep in mind also that generally, good attracts good and bad attracts bad but we live in a world where a lot of men, for instance, want the horrid woman and a lot of women, though they should know better, want the horrid man! I met only one person in my entire lifetime (thus far) that did not care about being popular and saw in me, a kindred spirit (another person who did not care about being popular). He considered himself an “outsider” and he saw me as a fellow “outsider”. He didn’t chase down the beautiful woman with the horrid personality and I wasn’t the type of person to chase down the beautiful man who the horrid personality! Some people recognize their fellow kindred spirit. And not recognizing a like-person could be the reason friendships fail. So, in the end, good does attract good but where you look for those people counts too! Beware of your surroundings.

      We often cast aside those people that are truly good to us as best friends, assistants, teachers, healers or guides. In other words, those that belong to the realm of the “surreal” and not belonging truly to the world. They are of the world but not a part of it. I remember an old Native Canadian woman telling me this. This is the reason why some people truly do feel “outside” the world. You, Rob, might very well be this type of person. I don’t know because I haven’t met you personally but it’s something to consider. And it’s not that you aren’t interesting. Everyone has a different definition of what “interesting” is but it could very well be that some people are genuine eccentrics or outsiders. After all, we need different types of people to make the world go round (we can’t all be entertainers now, could we?)

      I recently met two girls that were very nice to me and one of them offered to “hang out” with me! So the good are out there but “snuffing” them out is really really hard sometimes.

      • RobS Says:

        It’s a bit cliche isn’t it, all this we are discussing here. I knew a women once years ago also that said that people come in and out of our lives. So I believe as you mentioned, good friends that have been lost in life might very well reaper in the future. I like that. Same goes for love I figure with that saying to let some one go…

    • AChoy Says:

      RobS: a great example is the Twilight franchise. I am NOT a fan of the franchise but notice how Bella treats Jacob as merely a “friend”, “confidante”, “shoulder to cry on” and Jacob has strong emotional feelings for her and yet she chooses Edward, who is abusive. Jacob is smart, funny, very good-looking, interesting (he is a werewolf, after all!), and yet he is tossed aside like luncheon meat! His love is the kind that starts off as friendship but then slowly grows into love. His love is the lasting kind! (And at least with Jacob, Bella would not have to give up her humanity and become a vampire!) Also note: in Jacob’s case, he can’t argue that he’s ugly or “nerdy” and therefore can’t attract girls. He is more or less perfect and is still treated as a “side dish”.

      Pop culture reflects back to us who we really are as humans.

      People ALWAYS SAY: all I want is a good friend, someone I can really talk to about anything, someone who is there for me, someone who loves me unconditionally and yet when people are blessed with these types of friends – they are rejected or deemed “uninteresting” or the person in question just ends up being used. Being nice, by the way, does not mean being submissive or bending to that other person’s will. For me, it means simply respecting the other person, comprimising when there is an argument, showing appreciation and thanks, being considerate. Submissive people are boring – that is true but my definition of being “good” or “nice” is entirely different!

      I hope for you, that a few good people in your past do show up unexpectedly – that would cheer you up! But the moral in all of this is: the good are marginalized, ostracized and outcast while the “average” and bad are put on a pedestal and respected far more than they deserve. Your sexuality, gender, race or ethnicity, education, wealth or family background have nothing to do with anything, but rather your personality and inner core determine how you will relate to the world.

      Another pop culture example is the, what I call, Steve Urkel syndrome. He is more or less a straight-up, stand-up guy, rarely ever hypocritical, sincere, helpful, outgoing, funny (in his own way) and smart, but how many people actually wanted him for a friend?!?! No one ever befriended him. He was a very decent and GOOD person. His “nerdiness” played only a small role in his being “outcast” from society but he was always on the straight and narrow path of goodness. That TV show is a great critique on how society rejects the “good”.

      • unbrokenspirit Says:

        AChoy…do you have a blog with your writings or any publications. I would be very interested in reading your writings. Thanks.

  127. AChoy Says:

    RobS: you got it. The beauty of the internet is that it is more likely to find someone that thinks like you online than in person. It does connect people in that way but the internet also distances people not to mention all the ills people generally use it for. In any event, yes I keep learning about myself too everyday and growing. Better to have led a strong life near the end than a great life in the beginning only to end up in shambles near the end! I sense this might be the case for you. Cheers!

  128. AChoy Says:

    Nice and GOOD is not considered appealing in our world! Unless of course, you LIE about who you are to yourself and others, are mean, bad, condescending, conceited, hypocritical, backstabbing, rich, wealthy, a “star”, etc.

    It seems the only way to fit in – anywhere – is to not be good and not be yourself.

    North America does not practice what it preaches!

  129. AChoy Says:

    I HAVE FOUND THE ANSWER:

    Like a bolt of lightning, this hit me today!

    I have a friend (though she lives in a different province than my own) who is in the exact same predicament as myself. And the one thing I’ve come to notice about her is that she, too, is a very NICE, kind-hearted, good person. I really DO believe, in my heart of hearts, that the good suffer for the bad and the world at large as well. I used to think that because she was skinnier than me and blonde that she’d have more success in love and friendship. Boy! was I wrong! She was more, if not less, an outcast than even I! But she is super sweet, hard-working, kind and extremely giving. Like me, MOST, if not all of her relationships (of any kind) always end up failing. I do believe some people are magnets for mean-spirited people.

    But in my ignorance, I realized that simply assuming her life would be easier because she looked better than me (and that’s my opinion), that things would be easier for her.

    My point is: regardless of your physical appearance, or background, some people are more so destined to go through life’s obstacles and life in general alone.

    But unlike other people I’ve met, she wasn’t backstabbing, pretentious, hypocritical, envious, vindictive. She was an all-round decent human being.

    In conclusion, and this may not apply to all the members of this board – I really think if you are “good” (I don’t mean perfect) that people will naturally have an aversion to that. This works in our favor and is beneficial to us! That explains why I have always ALWAYS LIKED this girl and still, to this day, consider her a true friend. While others used me as a platform to exercise their jealousy by spewing their insecurities or were in competition with me to show they were more pious, religious, spiritual, better-looking, etc, this particular girl NEVER treated me this way. We had matching personalities and similar life obstacles and we were BOTH very giving of heart. She was and still is beautiful “on the inside” to me.

    So – find those like yourself and keep them close to you and make no apologies for being beautiful “on the inside” or simply good.

    It’s the world’s LOSS!!!! We should feel “special” and proud to be so!

  130. AChoy Says:

    Let me share with you all, a story: there are those people that do not take interest in being in relationships with others PERIOD. Once you discover a person is that way, it is in your best interest to leave him or her immediately. I realize now that the fault is not mine and I have a terrible habit of always blaming myself. This weakness is what draws “bad” people to me. For instance, when I befriended a classmate only to be dumped at the end of the semester, only to have helped her with tests and quizzes, I realize now looking back in hindsight that she only reluctantly agreed to do things with me when I asked. The moment we had a disagreement (a tiny squabble over money and five dollars would you believe), she was all too ready to say “I don’t want to keep in contact with you anymore”. Real friends stick things out and don’t walk away from minor disagreements. That being said, when you HAVE to initiate contact all the time, you are NOT in a relationship or friendship of any kind – the other party must do some, if not all, of the contacting themselves. I remember only having met no more than a total of five people who contacted me (in my lifetime thus far) on a regular basis. She only said “yes” when I invited her out because she either wasn’t truly interested in me but needed an excuse to go out and thus was all too happy to have someone else do all the work (in this case, initiating) or was too shy to speak up OR a combination of both. Either way, she wasn’t worth keeping as a friend. She has a habit of “dumping” people quickly when they don’t suit her standards because she is miserable in life. In fact, when I look back, she always walked around with a miserable look on her face, she was very anti-social and would NOT stop talking about who had done her wrong in her past.

    This is an example of how not to take things personally. It helps a LOT in dealing with people.

    Going back to this particular individual: whenever we did have conversations all she would do is bring up her past and who had done what to her ALL THE TIME. That being said: she abused my kindness and my compassion. She complained of how badly past friends were to her and yet, here I was, a good friend to her and all she did was use my goodness to her advantage to simply complain about her past.

    My point is: sometimes good people are standing right in front of you and I enjoyed the same things she did but she wasn’t wise enough to see a potential best friend was before her eyes. Instead, she squandered what she had!

    That being said – it’s quite possible, we may have had a few good people in our lives and we let them slip through our fingers and with time, we learn to better decipher who is true and who is not. But the moral is: people who don’t initiate don’t feel the need to be in relationships and feel relationships aren’t worth their time (for various reasons i.e. selfishness)!

  131. AChoy Says:

    Overall points to take away from this:

    1) Some people DO want others to always call them. They don’t believe in making any effort of any kind. They care more about how their feelings are stroked than they do about how other people feel. They don’t think: “maybe the other person would like to be called up or invited out every now and again.”

    2) Some only contact others when they want something. These people don’t care about you: they just know you are “dependable” and can service them. They know you can be counted on. They have zero interest in you.

    3) I’m guilty of doing this myself: once there is a slight disagreement, the person ups and disappears. We think we are “special” and as soon as the person does something to irritate us, we feel overly “wronged”. The fact is: everyone has been wronged by someone else and we all have wronged others. That is a two-way street. I have learned, somewhat, to put things in perspective and realize that a LOT of people who do you wrong for no reason are just insecure, vain, selfish, hypocritical, and immature people.

    4) Accept this: some people just won’t take an interest in you, no matter how interesting you may seem to think you are or others may think you are.

    5) I do agree with this: if you over-contact someone, others may find that annoying and yes, we should take care to minimize how much we contact each other. However, if you notice the person is always in contact with other people and not you: something is up! Usually it is some form of “hate”, mixed with envy toward you (if you know, for a fact, you did nothing malicious to the person). I’m proud to say I am a “loner” but not a “loser”. I resent the word “loser” very strongly. A loser is a failure at life (i.e. does drugs, is overly lazy, no ambition, no job, abuses their partner, etc). I haven’t failed at life and no one who has contributed to this board has. If anything, we’ve gained emotional strength through all of this. However, if you call to arrange a get-together and the person does not acknowledge you back, then these people are not worth your time.

    Let’s face the music: some people think relationships are fun and some don’t.

    • Rusty Says:

      Have you ever considered telling the user ‘friends’ to drop dead next time? Just straight up “you only call when you want something – fuck you , don’t contact me again” They need to hear it and it would be liberating for you.

      • seeareess Says:

        Why not just “sorry, can’t talk right now, can’t do anything for you”? That should be equally effective without the FU component. Also, won’t burn bridges if it turns out there’s been a misunderstanding.

  132. seeareess Says:

    Lots of sad, touching, and wise posts here. Nice to know I’m not the only one who feels that my best friends have their own best friends!

  133. AChoy Says:

    Hey RobS, you should email me sometime and we can chat about this. You are definitely on the right train of thought. Contact me via glopender45@hotmail.com. At which point, I will send you my real email address. I really do like and appreciate the way you think!

  134. Kathleen Says:

    I APPRECIATE ALL YOUR THOUGHTS ON THE ABOVE SUBJECT.
    Is it ok to change the topic?

    I would like to talk about how to get adult children to move out of your home. I have a 45 year old that has lived with my husband and I for the last two years. He works 4 days a week and is off 3 days.
    He has made some bad financial decisions and has never managed him money so is always in debt. He lives here for free.
    The reason he moved here this last time is because he had several eye surgeries. In the past he rented an apartment from me and didnt pay well there either. I have just read the book Setting BoundariesWith Your Adult Children
    I would like to see some discussion on this.

    • Emily Says:

      I don’t think we can really help you with that…

    • Emily Says:

      You could have a look at a different site, called Dealing with the In-laws and Family of Origin – they can probably help you with setting boundaries with your son. Here’s the link:

      http://community.babycenter.com/groups/a4725/dealing_with_the_inlaws_and_foo_family_of_origin

      Good luck!

    • AChoy Says:

      Yes Kathleen, this is not the appropriate site to address the issue of setting boundaries with your adult children. And I prefer to keep my mouth shut on the issue because I have no children of my own, so giving advice on something that I have yet to go through would not be wise on my part.

      Keep searching sweetheart…but honestly, your son needs to take a money management course. I’m fairly good at managing my finances (by the way, I got a pay raise today so I’m happy!!!). I know the importance of paying off things that need to be paid off and spending leisurely on other things for myself!

      At his age, he should learn to curve his spending and budget his finances intelligently.

  135. Kathleen Says:

    Thanks all. I appreciate your responses.

  136. Rene Says:

    Hi! I am new to this blog and it truly IS my friend until I find some and can keep them!! What a life, world and community we live in where we struggle so much to have friends who WANT and make the effort to be a part of our world. Christmas is a tough time for folks like us. I know they are not that realistic, but watching the holiday commercials is especially difficult. These people gather together and they seem to have an endless list of Christmas parties to go to, friends to invite over for hot buttered rums, big kitchen islands with all their old college friends gathered around eating these wonderful appetizers plus their other “really” close friends whom they talk about that they will meet up with in the summer at San Diego or something! Oh…and don’t forget the all girls outing to the local winery and trip to Canada for shopping!! Social networking is alive and well, we are older and supposedly wiser, so I am trying to look past my immediate sarcasm here and ask why.. WHY.. can’t I be myself and keep friends but rather have to personify the book “the secret” attracting people through my happy “vortex” to somehow be the “energy” they need to want to continue being my friend through thick and thin. In all honesty I have to look at myself and ask whether I have ever slowly abdicated a friendship when I realized their issues were more than I could resolve or be around anymore. The answer of course is yes. I could not handle my issues ( my son, marriage and job) on top of being there to hold up someone else. Listening endlessly while people work through issues which can take YEARS to move through…. my difficult marriage for example, can only happen with other people who truly understand what we are going through because they have gone through it themselves. My sister (who is one of those happy on face book all the time and in those commercials people), and other perhaps “together” people…or people who are at least trying to get it “together” eventually run out of steam for me. I am trying hard now to be totally private with my problems. (except for one person who finds it her mission to be a social contact for me due to her faith and personal experience like mine..thank GOD for her). We don’t ever get together socially though, it is just school related business. I am also trying to be a good friend and as far as those people who, for whatever reason, can’t give back to me with the same effort, I am carefully reading all of your advise on this blog. Nonetheless, the rejection is seriously getting old. Thanks so much for having this here for me to talk to someone today. Merry Christmas to all of you and especially those who are feeling totally lonely in their hearts and yet continue to put out the effort! You are hero’s.

    • AChoy Says:

      That, Renee, was the MOST beautiful prose I have ever read in a very long time (online or otherwise!) I completely agree. Though I put out MUCH effort to this day still, in trying to make new friends, my efforts continue to be taken advantage of (the girl who continuously runs favors for others) or ignored. And I’ve even been accused of “pressuring” others into talking with them (because that is what NORMAL friends should do). If they never liked my phone calls or emails, they should have never given out their contact info or do what I do when I personally don’t like someone – block the calls and emails. It’s really quite simple. Ironically, the accusation of putting pressure on others stems from selfishness. Those very people DEMAND that others fulfill their obligations or do favors for them. I pointed this out to a girl years ago and she apologized to me and even felt ASHAMED!!!!! Once I pointed out how wrong she was, she never spoke to me again! Putting this story aside, the holidays, weddings, celebrations even funerals….I want nothing to do with them!!! I never get invited out anywhere and I have only some close relatives…but that’s it. I despise those Christmas commercials too.

      Renee, your point about being the “happy vortex” to attract people. People have to love and like you as you are. I myself can tell you, through experience, that being the “happy vortex” means people feed off of your POSITIVITY and they use it to their advantage (usually in a negative way) and don’t return the favor. You should not be a human BATTERY of energy for others to feed off of. I’ve had people tell me this all the time and all it does is put an immense amount of pressure to not be human (meaning, get angry, threaten, scream, cry, get depressed, laugh out loud or maniacally, etc). You are NOT God and the source of all goodness. Everyone is responsible for making others feel good – not just YOU or certain individuals in all of society. We are not “rocks of burden” to carry the weight of others!!!! Furthermore, you are not being yourself when you behave this way. Even Jesus threw temper tantrums, cried at suffering, became enraged, etc. It’s actually godly and spiritual to show emotion. What we need to control is how MUCH or how LITTLE it affects us!!!! But you are not a human happy battery for others to feel good off of!

      I struggle with friends too….most are “phony”. Most are hypocrites. Most are especially SELFISH.

  137. Eytun o connor Says:

    Hello People

    Just discovered this site.

    It’s great to hear peoples thoughts on this subject.I’m 33, male and have always been a ‘popular’ ‘in cool crowd’ ‘good looking’ type etc..

    I use to have so many ‘friends’ till just a year ago i guess. I started noticing an unhealthy one way communication pattern that i kept subconsciously repressed and denied because of the fear of facing it and discovering that people who i’d considered brothers and sisters had a emotionally reptilian traits.They could drop me like a hat or use me for there own needs or like so many have mentioned here, not bother to maintain the F’ship unless it was me making 90% of the effort.(some over 12 years)

    I’d like to point out that alot of men have these freindship issues too.Some of them really deep eg Bromances.It’s nice to hear there’s guys on this blog as well as girls.because sometimes a large majority of western guys can come across as having the sensitivity of a log when dealing with these issues.(a bit like the reply from Anthony)Seen it many times.They deal with human connections like robots and also fail to see how others are affected.

    Believe me it’s not just a N American problem.I’m from the UK and it’s just as bad here!

    My mate of 12 years recently moved to Leeds to work,He’s originally from Liverpool.I would always make an effort to drive down 60 miles to see him, even though i was short of cash sometimes.He has now moved to Leeds, my home city, and it’s been 4 months since he asked me for a coffee.I asked him about it and he used that horrible cliche ‘ive been busy’.Yet when i looked on facebook, he had been meeting friends in B’ham,London and Glasgow regular!!However he was quick to call me a week later when he needed advice on his Gf split!I just ignored him. This made me evaluate my other close f’ships and i could see suddenly a similar pattern.

    So as from 2012, i decided to delete them all.phone.emails and facebook.It hurts bad. Society doesn’t pay homage to how deep the bonds of f’ships run.Sometimes deep as romantic bonds.

    It cuts me real bad.I always thought i’d have my big group of friends around me as i aged.It’s scary now, faced with this dilemma at 35, single and no kids.However, after some soul searching,i looked inwards and knew i could cope with anything alone and live a rich, vibrant life as a good person all alone.

    I really believe alot of it is about how you started these f’ships,also, the mates you kept letting off,..despite red flags..this gave them the message they could abuse you.

    Wish you all the best of luck.I’m sorry you have been hurt.

    Eytun o connor

    • AChoy Says:

      What your “friends” did to you, Eytun O’Connor, is just WRONG. I’m so glad you shared your story with us. I’ve had that happen to me a few times. I would find out, after the fact, that my so-called friends, would be hanging out or talking to others on the phone behind my back and not do the same for me. But they always made time for others. I learned, in the end, that if you are always making the plans or calling or visiting (60 miles…………woah! And your buddy never thought to make time out for you and drive past your house!), then you do not have a sincere friendship. You really don’t! I recently broke things off with another so-called “friend” who did show RED FLAGS from day one but I gave him the benefit of the doubt and he slandered me but I gave him the heave-ho! He has NOTHING on me! He also has a history of treating previous girlfriends (including me) very badly!! He is arrogant and lazy! And he refused to pay a male friend of his monetary due!

      I’m really proud of you that you have DELETED these losers, they lost a great friend in you!

      • Eytun Says:

        Thanks. It’s comforting(and sad at same time) to know that others have been through similar experiences.
        At least you know it’s not just you and that he’s like that as a person.Not paying someone is a HUGE red flag to me.(Mine have been more subtle).Good you got rid.It’s toxic.

        The friends i have pulled up about this type of behavior and confronted them assertively just play dumb or become defensive.

        P.S was meant to write at age 33 not 35.lol. don’t know how to edit that now.

  138. Kathy Neff Says:

    I have added to this forum before and have read many of the comments. This morning I want to share that I have found many good “real” friends. We belong to a wonderful church here in Bristol Indiana. What a wonderful bunch of people. We are not all the same or have all the same interests but we all love the Lord and there is a specialness about this connection between us. It is a spirtual connection. We love each other as brothers and sisters in Christ. I just had to share this morning that is you want to connect seek out good Christian friends.

  139. Eytun Says:

    erm i’m muslim and we’re talking about friendship problems.Not how to make friends with people from a specific religion.Thankyou.

  140. AChoy Says:

    I think she meant if you can find friends or make friends through a spiritual outlet, then you might be able to find “true” people in that sense. Sometimes, those people who are Muslim, Christian, Jewish, or whatever else their faith may be, often use their spiritual and religious gatherings as ways to build better communities and forge stronger relationships. For example, if you try to make friends by meeting people at clubs, or bars, you may not attract the types of people you want, you will only attract a “certain” type (who, for example, likes drinking) when you really don’t like it! So yes, going to a spiritual or religious gathering…might be one way to find “true” friends.

  141. sue Says:

    I’m glad I’m not alone in this kind of situation. In high school I met who was to become my beest friend. It lasted until she married and then it seems to have just stopped. I joined the military and for about 20 yrs we had vertually no contact. About 7 months ago i went home to visit my mom and called her to say that I would be in town. she seemed excited and said that she thinks of me often and talks about some of the thingswe used to do untileveryone was tired of hearing about it. I cant tell you how excited I was to see her. We got together and had a good time. I talked to her about our not staying in touch (when really it was her not returning calls ect) and we both agreed that we would try to do better. I called her every week for about 3 weeks and then stopped to see if she would call…she didn’t.I am retired from the military now and have been home again and we met
    again (she has 2 kids now also) but again she hasn’t called, emailed, written. So here I am hoping to get my best friend back but it seems Im just not very important to her.

    • Eytun Says:

      it’s so strange isn’t it? they talk about how much they miss you, but then fail to follow through.sorry to hear that though.

      • AChoy Says:

        I STRONGLY agree with you Eytun…WHY does a person keep saying: “I miss you so much … blah blah blah” and yet they don’t follow through or they insist that you should always call.

    • Rene Says:

      Sue, I am sorry to hear this. I do think your so called long time no see friend either has WAY too much on her plate or already has enough friends to satisfy her. So much energy we PUT IN!!!!
      For me, I am really trying hard to say, be, do and think the right things so I don’t “put off” anyone. It is exhausting. And, it seems the more I try to hold on to a friendship, the harder it is to keep them. But if I don’t do anything, then it can disappear also! So much of it is picking the right ones to have as friends, but I tend to get people reaching back to me who need me for something and that is OK, and I enjoy the friendship, except a lot of these types of people are living on the edge, financially,. emotionally. etc and it is hard to have a balance because I am a bit needy right now too. I think the best thing is to pay for counseling!!! that way I won’t be too “heavy” of a load. Also, my journal, and reminding myself that I need to project happiness to attract others. Life gets shorter though and we all want good friends,.NOW!!!! not in 5 years!!! not just a bunch of people we volunteer with. So to all of us writing here, HANG IN THERE!!!! KEEP OUR CHINS UP!!! KEEP KISSING A LOT OF FROGS!!! HUGS to all.

      • AChoy Says:

        Dear Renee…my mouth is funky and smells horrid from kissing a lot of frogs…there are only SO MANY frogs a sane person would want to kiss!!!

      • Rene Says:

        I agree with you on that one. I am really tired of it too. I actually sat down and drew a circle inside a circle and so forth, and put down the people I have tried to strike up a friendship with on the outside and the people who I thought were my closest friends and family closer to the center. I had a hard time writing anyone’s name closer to the center except a few family members.(and I don’t really even consider them close friends because I sat there way too long trying to figure out where to put my own family because I have grown apart from from my sister and my mom is 84!…not exactly the “go to the night club together” situation. Then I crossed out all the people that did not turn out to be anything at all, they actually sort of “circle around in the grocery store if they see me” people …and I ended up scratching out about 14 people! I live on an island with a population of about 6,000 people. It is really frustrating. The more you don’t solidify a friendship, in a small town, the more other people hear things and then sort of keep their distance. Now I feel rather paranoid about the whole stupid thing!!! I only feel totally comfortable …and really, the other person seems more at ease too.. when i meet them off island or in a totally different environment where they don’t know anything about me or have not seen me around everywhere. And.. I don’t have that much to feel THAT bad about, but obviously, I sense something is not right so there has to something. I have a few ideas about what people say about me (she is sort of scattered and has a bad marriage…she is different, she acts like a teenager when she is really in her 50′s, she seems needy.. like if i become her friend she will depend on the friendship too much, she is really cute and a bit flirty so I don’t my husband around her, she is not very mature-like, she laughs loud, she is really just “too much”, she talks too much, she shares too much about herself, etc) So now that i have these things stuck in my head, it is difficult to even reach out to get closer than the service club potluck once a month. They HAVE to be nice and strike up conversations there. They can’t go to the next grocery isle. SOOOO…yes, I totally understand the “don’t want to kiss anymore frogs!!” I just keep trying to be positive or I WILL be alone and old. I sometimes wonder what some of these people who have at least 4 or 5 friends, go out for girls night, their phone is ringing, face book always has comments, everyone remembers their birthdays, etc… would think if they read this. I know my son says I worry about it too much and if i just relaxed and was myself and cool about it, I would have friends before ya know it! Yah….sure..

  142. AChoy Says:

    Wow! Thank you so much for sharing your story Rene and boy am I glad you DID!!! Yes, worrying is a bad thing if done too much. But sometimes it’s essential. You see, while some people have said the same things about me (that you described about yourself), I’ve also heard the opposite that I’m caring, generous, [genuinely] nice, classy, confident, fun, smart, etc. So I often think to myself: okay … so what’s the problem? Why treat me like the “side dish” friend and give more attention to your “phony” friends and yet not want me as a true friend?

    Of course, I’m not relaxed ANYMORE. Because time is going and going and you realize and say to yourself: I am getting older. I have decided I either have to enjoy being alone and make peace with that (the way a dreamer dreams of being a millionaire but realizes it will never happen). And part of being realistic is accepting that what you want and/or desire, just won’t be or change ourselves (maybe for the better or the worse) and HOPE to make friends. Where lies the solution?

    Rene also brings up a good point: the so-called cliché responses of: “just have patience” or “your time will come” or “if you are relaxed, then all things will fall into place” or “you can’t go looking for love/friendship, it has to come to you.” They are entirely false!!! People say these things because truthfully, they don’t care about your “situation”, or simply want you to stop complaining and/or whining or expect you to stay “strong” through it all, so they can take advantage of your kindness or weakness. Being relaxed does not always work and waiting for love/friendship to come to you does not always work too! You either have to throw yourself “out there” and mingle and hope you “snag” someone in the process and strike a winning “lottery ticket” or see the advantages in having an abundance of alone-time!

    The motto of sitting and waiting for ALL things to come to you is not realistic. In fact, the universe, as far as I believe, does not reward those that wait for all people and things to approach them. You, and you alone, must put effort into all you do.

    I really think the answer lies in that some people are genuinely meant to see life through alone…I know that’s a morbid thing to write but I really feel that way.

  143. Steph Says:

    I think if we spend time trying to cultivate or maintain a friendship and it fails, we tend to think of it as an “investment” (of time) that bombed. I also think we tend to focus on “perfect” (aka. popular) people who have not responded well, or behave falsely with us, when we express our desire for friendship and treat as less important those people who may not be “perfect” but have expressed a desire for a closer connection. I have gone through this course of thinking and it produced a satisfying friendship. If you read way back to some of my original posts, you will see that I knew two people: one popular one and another flawed person who is actually very good hearted. (Her flaws in no way affect me. I am not recommending cultivating connections with freakazoids!) Well, I suddenly realized I was spending a lot of time grieving over the “perfect” one and marginalizing the not so perfect one! What a waste! I decided that I was making a mistake and actually worked at being friends with the second person. It has been very rewarding. For example: I love to cook but live in a very small cottage with no real space to entertain. She positively hates to cook but has more room. We planned a Thanksgiving Eve dinner to which we invited two other women. I did the cooking and brought it to her house and all four of us had a blast. I was invited to her parent’s home for Christmas, and for New Year’ Eve we had canapes and champagne with the same group as Thanksgiving Eve. We talk several times a week and have been friends now for over three years.

    Does the idea of the other “friendship”, also worked at for three years, still bother me? Of course it does. Probably it shouldn’t, but it does. I started to analyze why it still bothers me. I think we are in such a perfection-oriented culture that we see something like a failed friendship as OUR personal fault and tend to grieve over it as though there were something we could have done to make it “right”. Sometimes there just isn’t. You have to realize that friendship involves two people. If the other one is “full of it” and tells you they miss you, but does not follow through and return calls— remember “Actions speak louded than words”. Drop it– you could be throwing good after bad while blowing off someone whose friendship might be worthwhile.

    • Rene Says:

      Very true and great comments. More to think about and work towards.

      • AChoy Says:

        So true! We tend to go towards those that appear “perfect” or are “popular” rather than make friends with those that are – for lack of better words – in our league!!!!!!!!! This is also the reason why romantic relationships fail, you have the classic case of the woman going after the “thug” or “badboy” and the guy going after the “model” – BOTH are outside of their leagues. Someone flawed with a good heart is all you need.

  144. Alice in Wonderland Says:

    I wondered into this site puzzled and hurt.
    Since I was a child, I gave my soul to my friends. I cared for them, and not having a sister, I considered them my sisters.
    If someone needed help I would be the first to run, if they were sick I would call, if I wanted to go to a beautiful place, a museum, a blooming park, a concert I would call them.
    Since I was a child, I always embraced people.

    I find my self in a situation that more and more unless I call my friends they do not call.
    We are all the same age, late sixties, we have common interests in books, movies, aspirations, and we are all retired scientists.
    And yet… unless I call and say:”Would you like to go to lunch??” no one calls.
    If I do make a suggestion, whether a movie, lunch, or museum they quickly agree. We are all busy, VERY VERY busy but human contact is so precious, and since they are from my generation what is the problem? I am puzzled.
    I am starting to think that perhaps I saw them as friends and they see me as a pastime.

    I do not like emails even though I am a computer person and use my computer for writing, editing with Photoshop and exploring.

    When a good friend just sends emails ( AND NOT EVEN THAT LATELY) I start to sing Simon and Garfunkels song “ Hello darkness my old friend!!!” How could they get it so true??

    For those of you that do not know it, here it is

    The Sound of Silence

    Hello darkness, my old friend
    I’ve come to talk with you again
    Because a vision softly creeping
    Left its seeds while I was sleeping
    And the vision that was planted in my brain
    Still remains
    Within the sound of silence

    In restless dreams I walked alone
    Narrow streets of cobblestone
    ‘Neath the halo of a street lamp
    I turned my collar to the cold and damp
    When my eyes were stabbed by the flash of a neon light
    That split the night
    And touched the sound of silence

    And in the naked light I saw
    Ten thousand people, maybe more
    People talking without speaking
    People hearing without listening
    People writing songs that voices never share
    And no one dared
    Disturb the sound of silence

    “Fools”, said I, “You do not know
    Silence like a cancer grows
    Hear my words that I might teach you
    Take my arms that I might reach you”
    But my words, like silent raindrops fell
    And echoed
    In the wells of silence

    And the people bowed and prayed
    To the neon god they made
    And the sign flashed out its warning
    In the words that it was forming
    And the sign said, “The words of the prophets are written on the subway walls
    And tenement halls”
    And whispered in the sounds of silence

    • marie Says:

      Hello Alice in Wonderland. If you were around where I live… or if I lived where you live and we could hook up through this site..and I am a teacher..not science, but I am very interested in science..I would NOT I repeat NOT leave you like this… I would call… I would love to actually MEET a person like you and make regular dates to things like museums, etc.. I am a bit younger than you but hey!!! I totally feel your pain, and I have started to leave regular messages on this site now. It is like my friend. It would be really cool if a lot of us on this site could have a reunion (of our own instead of hearing about everyone else having a damn reunion.) I would put that out to everyone here…someone name the place and time…I’ll be there!!! Hang in there ok, I totally understand the isolation that you must feel. I too have listened to that song and thought..SHIT… OH…. but before I get off here, you have to look at Yahoo news TODAY.. there is an article about how facebook is actually making some people sadder and more depressed!!! YES that is what I have been thinking all along.. and now, finally a study to prove it. talk to you later! Hugs, Marie

      • AChoy Says:

        Facebook is NOT friendship…nor is JUST emailing, texting or talking on the phone. Without face-to-face contact, you can never really understand someone EVER. And yes, I am sick of hearing that such and such person has had a best friend for soooooooo many years or such and such person is going to a reunion! I absolutely loathe it.

      • seeareess Says:

        Hey, Alice, I hope you and Marie can put together an online friendship. I agree that FB and email are less than satisfying, but at the same time they are better than nothing. A regular email correspondence at least gives you a little something to look forward to every day. P.S. Sounds of Silence is one of Simon and Garfunkel’s best.

  145. Achoy Says:

    I agree that SOME emailing or texting might be okay but not if the other party REFUSES to meet with you on a daily basis and ONLY wants online communication. If the person emails you as much as you email them….then and only then is it okay.
    So, on that I will have to disagree with you seeareess. I’ve been put in positions where the other party ONLY wanted online communication and expected me to do ALL the contacting. This is wrong. That’s not friendship. That’s using aanother person and emotionally manipulating that person.

  146. seeareess Says:

    Of course it goes without saying that correspondence of any kind must be reciprocal. Otherwise, it’s talking to yourself…

  147. Londoner Says:

    I’ve read a lot of the stories on here and it saddens me to see people in this position. All of you are people who are good friends and those who value friendship! You should take pride in the fact that you have these values.

    I’ve also noticed that many are in their mid-thirties, which is probably the time when people really start to question things like this and/or notice that so-called “friends” are not returning calls.

    I have come to the same realisation as others on this thread, but also I think you need to exercise caution. I have done the same experiment – not call and see if they call me – started from the beginning of the year and no response as yet! I already think almost a month is very bad. Although I have met with two friends who I didn’t expect would contact me first. The closest friends meanwhile have not bothered to contact.

    The point I am trying to make is that this can be a dangerous strategy. Sometimes it’s best to bite the bullet and make the initiative to keep a friendship alive! Swallow your pride and make that phone call. The person on the other line will be glad you did.

    It seems many here have stuck to your principles – this shows what makes you good friends in the first place. You have a set of core values and you believe in them. However, you must remember people are not perfect – we are all human etc. It is a difficult balance and there may be extenuating factors you are not aware of.

    I remember a close friend of ours who did the same experiment a couple of years back. I was the only “friend” in the group to contact him when he had gone into hibernation, but that was not enough. He turned his back completely on the others, waiting for that elusive phonecall (they never called him). He is now estranged from the whole group of core friends. In their eyes, he isolated himself. In his eyes, he thought they were not reciprocating the friendship.

    All this stuff is very hurtful when you invest time in friendships. And sometimes it is best to cut your losses and move on. Think carefully about doing this though, because it seems most people end up with no friends following a form of principled retreat. Perhaps better not to have such high expectations of people and expect that many people are self-absorbed and do not really care about others as much as you do. It’s a bit of a catch-22 situation, because the whole point of friendship is that it is supposed to be reciprocal. Another theory is that this is what happens when you reach your 30s, you get rid of your friends!

    • Eyton O connor Says:

      I posted earlier in 2011 dec 27th about an issue i had with a close male friends.well, he hasn’t changed really and text me 3 weeks late saying happy new year and then after the prefix happy new year he had wrote ‘i’ve been missing my X.you ok to chat’!
      i know what you’re saying Londoner.I have thought of different angles to try and handle these situations and keep friends.But ultimately I’ve found that it starts to eat away at your self respect and esteem when they don’t call back, you always make the contact first, they ring you when they need therapy etc..it all starts to get a bit embarrassing.I agree, it,s catch 22.Keep them and try to accommodate there very bad habits or cut them of and suffer the loss of long histories gone.Histories that were built over years.For me i’ve realized alot of this was about LETTING them get away with it in my 20′s.So they now have the ingrained assumption that they can get away with it.I’m in the difficult process of trying to either accommodate or cut off one sided close f’ships.

  148. Eyton O connor Says:

    hmm trying to post but wont let me :(

    • AChoy Says:

      I agree Londoner and Eyton O’Connor…you either tolerate their unfairness (to the point where they assume, that’s just the way the friendship is suppose to be: you give and they take) OR you cut your losses and as both of you have pointed out, I am in my thirties as well! So yes, it seems the mid-twenties to mid-thirties is when you start putting all of this in perspective and realize who really is a friend. One question for Londoner: you used a great example when you said the guy isolated himself from the group, in the eyes of others, because he was waiting for the “elusive” phone call. Why was it hard for the others to reciprocate? Why do people always assume you are going into isolation…it sounds selfish to me. The expectation is that SOME people must always put out while the others just sit back and relax??? BTW, Eyton, it is VERY embarassing when I look back and realize all I was was the unpaid “therapist” for many of these people or the personal assistant or human punching bag. How can your “friend” just call you up when he broke up with a girl? Is that all you are worth to him? It’s fun when they have someone to lean on but you are INVISIBLE otherwise????

      • Eyton Says:

        well Achoy, he is meant to call this week and arrange for me to come down to his place,,60 miles away,..Again i had initiated the text after feeling like maybe i could see the f’ship with a different mindset, as Londoner suggested.He hasn’t called so far.If he doesn’t ring by end of this week, then it’s time to wave goodbye.This isn’t about low self esteem or nee dines, as some people sometimes seem to think,it’s more about knowing the value of long f’ships, caring for people and focusing on the good parts of people.Alot, of gentle,sensitive types get taken advantage of easier.I really am still convinced that this one sided pattern has established itself because you-we-i, let it at some point.I feel it’s very hard to cut the one sided f’ship off after years of this pattern because a bond has developed.These people aren’t bad, so you like aspects of them, which is why 4 or 10 years down the line it becomes difficult to cut them off fast!Any thoughts on why it carry’s on for so long and why they do it?

  149. AChoy Says:

    Yes Eyton…it is difficult to break the bond of so-called “friendship” when you have known the person for MANY years. My mother’s friends, she has known, since emigrating to North America and though they often treat her terribly and single her out as a means to deal with their insecurities and jealousy toward her. Their behavior toward her is subtle but I’ve noticed it for years. I personally have never liked them as individuals. But she continues forth with this “faux” friendship solely due to the fact she has known them for years. I think the answer lies in the fact that MOST of us, on this blog, actually do VALUE friendship and we treat others as we would want to be treated. Over the past five years, I have REALLY toned down how much I call and/or write to others. I do far less work than I used to and I still have the expectation that others should call and/or email me too. I’ve met just ONE person who does this for me on occasion and I’ve kept in close contact with her. She is also very apologetic when she says she will call or write but forgets too or ends up falling asleep when she gets home! She values friendship a lot and treats others with respect. She treats others as she would want to be treated!!! These people are super rare. There is no point though maintaining a friendship on the basis that you’ve known the person for a very long time. That is not sufficient criteria in my point of view…it’s how much they reciprocate and how much they show sincere care when you are in moments of hardship or doubt. It is NOT CALLING you up OR EMAILING YOU for therapy when they are “down”. Only calling someone up when you are down is emotionally debilitating and draining! The reality is this: some people PRIZE the people in their lives and take care to nurture their relationships. The reason why people stick out “faux” friendships is because of the human fear of isolation, abandonment and solitude. It’s that simple. But notice how those who are genuinely nice or sympathetic get taken advantage of the MOST and are treated as “side pieces” whilst most people cling to the “wrong” types of people to “fit in” or “belong somewhere”. I can’t tell you HOW many times, a person has told me: “you are my only true friend” and yet all they do is complain or use me as a doormat…they don’t actually want to spend time with me or doing anything fun or even “be there” for me! Humans, through lack of knowledge of oneself, low self-esteem, traumatic upbringing/childhood and unwillingness to be aware of one’s surrounding contribute to “clinging” to faux friendships.

    This is the reason I feel I have failed in all my relationships, friendly, romantic or otherwise! I’m searching for something meaningful, and not superficial.

    • marie Says:

      Wow…thanks for your insight and wise words. I am struggling with all of what you said and currently, struggling with my 2nd marriage. he does what he wants, with little regard for my welfare or wishes. I beg, fight or pay for what I want even though i don’t make any money. I have so many changes I need to make in my life. One of them is like you said, I AM waiting for people to reach out first now…and I AM working harder on not answering the phone, or calling people when I know I am going to end up dumping my life on them.. But I live with such an asshole, my life is so up and down emotionally. I know I will not be able to work on solid healthy relationships with people until I get all of these other things: marriage, job, how I communicate, how I cope with my changes, etc.. Unfortunately, the resentment has taken its toll and I am not sure what to do. The yoga teacher says…let it go..the counselor says ..you can only change yourself… my mom says.. many men are just that way and even though he was ok during your courtship, they all change… my sister just looks at me and frustrated says “didn’t you see these things in him, why did you marry him”.. my friends who are still willing to listen say ”come on… when are you going to leave” my other friends who don’t connect with me much anymore (because I am sure they just down deep are afraid they have to hear and respond to my pain which seems to have gone on now too long) I feel like when I talk to any of my old friends who were there for me in my first divorce, all sort of side step any issues I may be having, It is impossible to have friends or work on a relationship when they can see through you and see your stress, see your turmoil, see your tension. You can’t fake it for too long. At work you can fake it a bit…but not with people who want to connect on a deeper level. Anyway, I am just blabbing on here, but you brought up many good points and after reading so many of people’s comments here now, I feel like it is really a complicated and varied tangle of circumstances that brings on the disconnect between friends and the reasons they don’t get back. I do strongly agree that people on this site seem to give more and have greater value put into their relationships and we therefore expect the same in return after a while because if we don’t get it then resentment really sets in. I watch people that seem to have a long standing base of friends that go back a long way and continue through life, and I have observed the interactions, reactions, communication styles, etc of these people. One thing I always notice is that they keep things on a quite happy note MOST of the time. They support each other in times of stress but it is not overwhelming. Its not like they have to continue on being their counselor or support for years. It is situational rather than trying to help someone with their whole life! I look at my mom and it is the same thing as with your mom and the “faux” friends. Part of that with my mom is that she has a lot of issues (maybe not so with your mom) but there is no way normal happy contented people would connect with her. My goal now like I said in earlier posts, is to find other avenues to “unload” and to be the person that might even begin to attract people to me. Then I can work on keeping these friends. I feel sad that my old friends (like many of us speaking here have noted) have slowly faded away. It seems the rarity however, for people to really stay closely connected to old friends. Thanks for anyone who read this! sorry it was so long!
      Good luck to all of us in our continued quest for meaningful and reciprocal relationships.

    • Eyton Says:

      Sorry to hear about your mothers predicament.Sounds hard.I would never allow people who i call friends to make any patronizing,rude or demeaning comments or try to intentionally hurt me in any way for e.g cheat with my partner, steal, talk behind my back etc.I would get rid of them in an instant.No, pondering or wondering this and that!The latter mentioned signs are easy to pick up and make it easy to draw a line and cut off the so called friend.It’s when the signs are softly softly subtle For e.g friends who started off as good close mates, but gradually the f’ship shifted subtly to a one sided f’ship, so it was very hard to see what was going on. But as the behaviour got more consistent, so the alarm bells got louder. So, these friends had many moments of trueness ‘once upon a time’ through the years and (that’s why i mentioned the length of time.)Imagine a stem of grass, strong and thick at the base(the start of our years of friendship) and it gets weaker and thinner towards the tip(the end months of the f’ship)
      The main issue for me is(WAS) the whole having to consistently initiate and with one particular friend, the habit of ringing with a problem attached. He never use to be like this. I really think you just get taken for granted the more they get to know you. So what I’m saying is it’s not black and white. I’m very comfortable with myself and being on my own as i have many interests and I’m outgoing enough to meet new people. However it hurts because of deep sensitivity and emotional makeup, when friendships start to show disrespect, when you suddenly get replaced after helping someone for years or friends stop talking because they have a new gf or bf. What REALLY pisses me off is how they swan in and out of your life when you’re trying to distance yourself! My brothers for e.g are not what I’d call sensitive and just drop friends and move on. They don’t really value them as much. I think society is in agreement with this model at the moment. Everyone’s different
      I have learnt so much this past year about f’ships and what healthy and unhealthy f;ships look like. The expectations we can have. Attachments that we let develop too quickly and yes, how low self esteem can become a ticket for ‘friends’ to practice their darker side on you. I never use to understand what people meant when they said a true friend is like gold dust, even finding one mean you’re blessed etc.I do now!! One thing i would say to you all is don’t close yourself off from future f’ships. It’s easy to do, to avoid the pain.
      I also think words and terms(alot of this is perpetuated by so called professionals on the art of friendships and r’ships) like needy, toxic, emotional vampires, outgrowing your friends for growth, ‘she/he always has drama in her life’, ‘it’s normal to have a new set of friends with new life changes and leave old friendships’ etc… are sometimes selfish ways that people exit out off f’ships when it’s convenient for them. Why bother listening to someone when you can just focus on your own selfish life and esp if your lifes going great. It’s better to just label that oh so inconvenient friend as ‘needy’ or ‘energy draining’. Of course when shit hits the fan and it’s the other way around, suddenly it’s ok for them to be ‘needy’ and a ‘energy drainer’! There are genuine cases of people being too needy, energy draining etc..but alot of people in todays fast paced society lack empathy, kindness, understanding and compassion. It’s hard to find true friends because maintaining a true f’ship like a true r’ship, takes immense effort and work. It’s always easier to just go and get a bran new shiney set of ‘friends’.

      • AChoy Says:

        Oh! I misunderstood what you said Eyton! I understand that when someone actually shows signs of being disrespectful, there is no need to really think things through – you just walk but you are referring to those friendships that SEEM to show promise AT THE BEGINNING of the r’ship and then suddenly, you find the tip of the flower – as you put it – thinning! I grasp your concept now! I think I may have encountered such people once, twice … maybe thrice! With respect to those types of people, all I can say is: you just have to jump in and take the risk. It’s more or less like a lottery, you might potentially have a winning ticket in your hand! Unless you specialize in the art of “reading” people, you can’t tell who will be a good mate or not (I use the term to mean “friend”). Thank you SO MUCH for bringing up such terms as “needy”, “toxic”, a “downer”, “emotional vampirism”, a “drainer”, she or he has “drama” like a soap opera, etc. Yes, these are terms used to label people and as you said, an excuse to “drop” such individuals when said person’s life is going great and YET when they need support, you suddenly are of relevance to them! Now, I understand what you mean! Life is drama, in essence. After all, isn’t that why some people read tabloid magazines?! (I don’t) but it’s their way of filling their “boring” lives with drama. But you hit the nail on the head: these types of people also, suddenly, show up in your life when things are going great for you – which means – it boils down to selfishness, lack of empathy, genuine concern and/or kindness for others. I agree – these so-called experts need to stop speaking as though they are self-anointed gurus on the how-to-be-a-”normal”-friend strategem!

  150. seeareess Says:

    Good luck, Marie, with all you are going through. You are a bright, thoughtful and articulate person.

  151. AChoy Says:

    Yes, friendships need to be “happy” most of the time but sometimes life does get you down. I have noticed that those friendships that are happy most of the time are just that BUT also very superficial. As I’ve stated before and will state again: they are happy because they are superficial (i.e. looks-based relationship, the gaining of attention through materialism, fame, wealth, prestige, or education, knowing the “right” people, having the “right” connections, slender vs. overweight, etc). Real relationships require hard work and to a degree “putting up” with the idiosyncracies of others.

    LET’S LOOK AT THIS LOGICALLY: If life was meant to always be happy, wouldn’t we all be in paradise right now? Unfortunately, we don’t live in a version of reality where “all’s right with the world”.

    A co-worker and I had this very discussion: true friends are suppose to stick by you when you are not your best but they seldom do. As a society, we are trained that those that whine, complain, etc are weak and should be “weeded” out of society.

    I am usually the one who has to counsel EVERYONE and that is my primary reason for leaving many friends behind. They always expect me to “put out” first but never give anything in return. So, in some cases, you are the “rock” of the group which is very depressing in itself and they don’t realize they are continuously taking and other times you might be the “downer”. I generally just complain about people that annoy me but everyone does this occasionally (for example, complain about a co-worker, a family member that irritates the heck out of you, the friend who promised to give back your notes but lost them, etc). I have tried changing my social circle and I have met some new and different people. But even if, Marie, you seem to be a “downer”, it’s not entirely your fault…after all, does the world take responsibility for its actions and what it does to you? Never. But yet, we are expected to take responsibility for our misfortunes. Life is complex. We all affect one another be it in a positive or negative way. And our insecurities stem from the actions of others most of the time. You do not exist in a vacuum where your actions alone affect you. I know exactly where my insecurities stem from and I can write them out if I had to and many of them started from childhood!! I say this not to blast my personal life on the web but rather to show that we are all connected to each other and those responsible for your problems and your insecurities are not and will not take responsibility for shaping you into the woman you’ve turned out to be. I’ve had friends like yours that say those very same things…they don’t realize that because ALL is RIGHT with them, that it is their arrogance that presumes YOU must be doing something WRONG to attract negativity. Some people suffer and others don’t. Some folks are lucky and others aren’t. One of my favorite musicians is from the Sahara desert and his life story is one of ‘hard knocks’. It just seems like one tragic event after another keeps happening to him through no fault of his own and a lot of people (his bandmates too sometimes) stay clear of him because he emanates a negative “vibe” to those around him but really it is the suffering he has endured that has made his character so. So, your friends should take that into consideration. Some people suffer immensely as it is their destiny. Marie, this may simply be your case and based on your writings, and how insightful you are, I will assume it is!

  152. AChoy Says:

    The verdict is IN:
    The nicer you are, the worse off you will be in making and maintaining friends. I have made two new friends, I am pleased to announce and have discovered one factor and one factor alone: if you find someone LIKE you, the chances of spawning a successful relationship will be highly likely! I have noticed that my new circle of friends treat me the way I want to be treated. They respond to me the way I deserve to be responded to. I think the key lies in knowing WHO YOU ARE: and working your best to decipher the personalities of others around you and THEN choosing from those people who best suit your personality and only when you KNOW who you are emotionally and spiritually can you start attracting similar people to you. I really believe, as Eyton, has said numerous times, that when you are genuinely nice (this does not apply to those people who THINK they are nice), do you get taken advantage of. I had a long discussion with a new friend of mine, and she said, because you are nice, giving, always willing to be understanding, sensitive, and very very shy…people assume you give off this “mature” type of attitude. A lot of the time, people will make assumptions of you based on the way you carry yourself. Being shy is no excuse for people to think you should be taken advantage of but unfortunately, people use your personality against you! At the end of the day: when you are “weak” (I use the term loosely), you are more likely to be taken advantage of. We don’t appreciate such people and think they are “cool” enough to “hang out” with; they are just “there” to listen to your rants/secrets/burdens and should be marginalized as such. We are the “best friends”, the “shoulders to cry on”. As Eyton pointed out, when you are nice, you will encounter this difficulty with many MANY people!!! I realize that being nice is as much a curse as it is a blessing.

    Now that I’ve found people who like being nice in return for others as others are for them (in this case, me), I am no longer judged in any way, shape or form. And they actually want to spend time with me.

    This I have learned: those people that think the “kind-hearted” are “losers” and should only be used when it is convenient are the ones missing out on decent and respectful friends. They can pander to their user friends that abuse and mistreat them just to “fit in” but meanwhile they are losing out on the life they should be living: a life worth living only for themselves!!

    Best of luck to you all finding true friends!

  153. AChoy Says:

    Eyton raises an EXCELLENT point: what of those “friendships” that seemingly begin WELL and you find yourself discovering many things in common with the other person involved? And then poof! The friendship just dissolves for no good reason!

    Well, I’ve exhausted MANY possibilities for this and I have but one more possible reason:

    What of curses? Do any of you believe in curses? Do you believe in generational curses? Do you believe some people are just ‘damned’?

    I know this might sound crazy but I am seriously trying to exhaust EVERY possible reason on the planet!!!

    For those of you who are religious (whether you are Christian, Muslim, Jewish, etc), what does your faith say about curses?

    • marie Says:

      Hi AChoy, You made my day, that was funny ….but a bit true, i must admit. Curses can take many shapes..like your family way of communicating with people, your birth order and its affects on you and how you come across to people. Personally, I know I am still coming across needy and sort of weird right now due to all the stress that has me knotted up. I have now, I am pretty sure exhausted even the last friend..well not quite. I have some connections that are newer and not in my town (someone I met on vacation and talked to once and she wants to facebook) Cant really call that friends, i know. But it is something. Some days I just do think it is a curse. I think I am fun. Why is this such a f… problem to keep friends. As I keep saying in here, I will keep trying. The problem is finding the true friend. Not just these hi in the grocery store people. Maybe i do have a curse. I know some people that would like me to have one. One thing for sure that i have learned is that i have got to stop whining so much about the friend thing. I have got to stop trying to get peoples friendship based on me trying to get them to sort of feel sorry for me, like i have it tough in life..etc.. because they start disappearing when they see something really cool happen to me. Like my vacation to the Caribbean. I did not pay for any of it, but people see this and think oh sh… she can’t complain! I have a very mixed up life and not too settled and stable so my friends i guess are going to be in that category and I am not exactly attracted to those people because i need support. But …God, who needs support when they go to the Caribbean. My curse is not having a socioeconomic group that fits where I am at. My second marriage, he has all the money and I try to make ends meet to keep my kids and myself going in this economy and situation. So I need to work harder at finding a group i fit into. Why do some people (like me) spend our whole stupid lives looking for a group we naturally fit into. HELP i have read a lot of posts here. I like one a while ago saying that we need to lower our standards for friends and try people that we may not see as “our friends” UGH
      please …anyone… more advise. I refuse to get used again though!!!!!! Its hard, it goes against my super kind and generous character. I have to STOP. I have noticed that its NOT the super nice people that have this close group of friends. ..

      • AChoy Says:

        Thank you Marie! It is NOT the uber-super nice people that have the close group of friends. Mother always taught me to serve is godliness and the fact of the matter is, THAT remains true. I believe when you are a true friend, true lover, true teacher, true preacher and you are existing of and for the things of the heart…people DON’T want that and yet these VERY same people will COMPLAIN over and over again that their friends abuse them, misuse them or their partners/boyfriends/girlfriends/husbands/wives treat them poorly. These same people RUN to the “nice” folk to get a shoulder to cry on or confide a secret in. We exist merely to SERVE; of life but never actually a part of it. I am fortunate, that for now, I have met some people that you would consider as “outsiders” who unite and relish each other’s company because we know that our being different together makes us strong. We accept that we are “different” and “outside” of society’s norms and instead of seeking solace with the “in-crowds”, we instead turn to each other for strength. At least, we are LOSERS together!!!!!!!!!!!!!! And we aren’t “losers”, we don’t miss out on any of the superficial trappings of false friendships/lovers. We actually enjoy each other’s time and have “each other’s backs”.

        Marie brings up a great point, we are striving to find friends that suit our current socioeconomic “situation”. However, those people you refer to that want to CURSE you or disappear when blessings fall upon you were NEVER your friend to begin with. I have a LOT of…surprinsingly…close family friends that DO wish me harm and don’t want me to succeed…oooooooh! jealousy! However, this speaks VOLUMES about their character and NOT yours!

        Also….I hope you had LOADS of fun in the Caribbean.

    • eyton Says:

      im not sure if this post will post.This site randomly posts what i write and then sometimes refuses!!
      hmm..my religion(islam) does believe in lots of curses and so does my culture.I really try to not pay any notice, because if you do, your subconscious will try to make it come true!!!
      Well my friend who i was having the dilemma with didn’t change his ways, so i cut the 12 year f’ship off.He simply refused point blank to meet half way!me doing all the chasing was a luxery he loved.So, once i changed the rules, his selfish nature came to the surface after all these years!Do you not think that f’ship is not as valued anymore now though?It’s seen as something easily discard able?where as romantic and family connections get taken very seriously in comparison?thoughts

      • AChoy Says:

        Precisely! I emphasized this very point in one of my earlier posts. If you are too ‘clingy’ – simply change your ways HOWEVER in most cases, other people WANT to be chased because THEY are insecure. It is a form of manipulation by making us appear to be the chasers when in fact, THEY need the attention. They just don’t want to bother calling and/or writing at all. And in reality, they are merely feeding their egos when they expect you to do all the chasing. What they are in love with is themselves! So yes, even though they are insecure and most likely have too high an esteem of themselves, it’s ONLY fair that they do THEIR share of the work in the relationship. Your friend Eyton, should call you leisurely (not just when he needs “advice”/wants something) and make plans with you as he does with his other friends. Most people THRIVE on feeding their egotistical needs (satisfying the lower chakras), so Marie is correct when she states: it’s normally NOT the nice people that have a close group of friends. HOWEVER, just because someone DOES NOT want to appear “needy” or lonely, it does NOT give them the RIGHT to manipulate others into appearing to be that way! In any healthy relationship, BOTH sides make an effort.
        So both sides are giving and taking equally.

        Divorce rates are rising and there are more and more dysfunctional families out there; so in all honesty Eyton, I think friendships, romantic partnerships as well as family ties are NOT taken seriously PERIOD. Society is disintegrating as a whole.

        About curses: let’s think of them like genetic deficiencies – you may be genetically predisposed to be a certain way (physically, emotionally, mentally) but with healthy habits, you can combat them as well. Curses must be fed into psychologically for them to take hold (referring to spiritual curses).

  154. AChoy Says:

    As Marie said: the truly NICE do not have loads of friends. This is not a myth. It is truth. Some people are kind enough to relate to those perceived as “outsiders” as those people are in search of others like themselves. Whilst some people considered “outsiders” pretend to be something they are not and befriend the “popular” kind realizing not that their “kind” is right beneath their nose!

    Hold steadfast. I have finally found GOOD friends (in my late twenties/early thirties) who treat me RIGHT and support me in my time of need! To all of you, stay true to yourselves. Let others “fake” who they are, pride will be their downfall!

    • eaton Says:

      hmmm..well since my last post..my on going saga with my friend.Ian..who I’ve known for 12 years..came to a sad halt yesterday.I was reluctant to let go because he has so many great qualities. However, as my self esteem and self worth have become stronger, I’ve come to dislike strongly traits of the one way friendship.Even semi one way friendships.So, anyway, i tried to distance myself from him since dec 2011 after various let downs by him.One of his issues was that he would never initiate contact, it was always me, and if he did it was sometimes because he was feeling down.Anyway, last week he contacted me first and gave me lots of notice.I thought great, maybe he sensed the f’ship was on going to die if he didn’t change some.He still asked me to come down to his 50 plus miles away, even though he works in my town!I only went because i thought maybe this was the turning point.When i got therein the evening, he told me he had to work the next day and he thought i knew he did.Which meant i had driven down in rush hour after finishing work at 5 pm, wasted 20 pounds in petrol to just spend 4 hours with him and get up at 7am in the morning because he had to go to work.I felt really let down again.He could have just asked me to meet him in my town after work for coffee!He got really defensive as usual and turned it around and said i should have said i wanted to stay the next day.Anyway, it’s hard to express through writing. I don’t think people like that actually change.They don’t think what they’re doing is wrong.Also, instead of having an open discussion they will get defensive and start playing the lawyer and bringing up dates,facts etc to try and win the argument and prove themselves right, instead of looking for a healthy solution.You lose trust in that person and withdraw, because how do you know they will not do something like that again in the future?The only way these type of f’ships function is if you play the doormat.Having said all of the above, it is very hard to let go, esp if you take f’ships seriously and invest in them over many years.I suspect you try to grow apart gradually or you cut it off for good.Really sad process when the other friend thinks everything’s fine and genuinely doesn’t understand what’s going wrong, because it hurts them too.

      • AChoy Says:

        Say what?!? He WORKS in the town you live in and couldn’t spare time during his lunch hour or after work for a coffee with you??!?! That would have made so much more sense! How selfish of him! I would NOT want to drive 50 miles or more just to see a friend. I would have to wait until holidays or family get-togethers to see them and make arrangements ONLY then! Why drive THAT far and spend only 20 minutes with the person to suddenly hear him/her say: “oh yeah, btw, I have to go to work tomorrow.” HE should have said that to begin with. It was not his place to ASSUME you already knew! No one should ever make assumptions about anything. It was not for you to say: “oh I wanna spend the entire evening with you.” In fact, if I were in your ex-friend’s place, I would have set aside an entire day to invite you over and spend the whole day with you. I would have re-arranged my schedule because I feel you should always be considerate of others.

        As soon as someone starts laying down “facts” and plays the “lawyer” card, they are in the fault. In a strange and somewhat disturbing way, THIS is how you know you are in the right. The more the person tries to hurt you, the more you realize how MUCH you are in the right because if you weren’t, then they wouldn’t have to try so hard by playing “lawyer”. They are “jerking” your chains!! I know, I’ve had that done to me and believe me you must be in God’s favor if they are trying THAT hard!!

        For instance, when family friends dropped by to visit myself and my family, they should have had the courtesy of saying: two people out of the group MUST go back to work Monday instead, at the last minute they told us and one of the them “dropped” their 40 year-old daughter with us at the last minute and we were forced to host her (and she was a pain to deal with, even damaging our washing machine temporarily and not saying a word about it…had that been me doing that in their homes, I NEVER would have heard the end of it). I digress…my family and I could have used that week productively and enjoyed ourselves instead they dump this good-for-nothing woman on us and we have to take care of her. She gets royal treatment from my family, and me, their daughter, gets dirt! Believe you me I was not a happy camper!

        Your friend was the one who should have STATED how long he was off work and when he would go back. He NEVER should have said; “oh I thought you knew”. This is more than inconsiderate. It’s plain rude; deplorable. He invited you over to make it seem like he cared but really 20 minutes is not worth a dime! He wasn’t inviting you over because he truly wanted to and longed for your friendship.

        For this same reason, I broke contact with a former co-worker (at a previous job) because he would always insist on ME calling HIM or him inviting me over to his place and then would draw up some pathetic excuse and not go through with his plans! He pretended to care but really he is a bitter, selfish, angry man who wants to be alone! So let him be! After 2 months of that nonsense, I broke things off. And to prove he really was bitter, at his job, he often responds to customers with such attitude as: “don’t ask me for information, do I look like a telephone company to you”. I never talk to customers in that rude tone because that potentially gets you fired.

        So yes, I do hear where you are coming from. We believe in friendships and take them seriously. Drop this friend to preserve your self-worth and sanity!

      • eaton Says:

        Thanks for the reply Achoy
        Yes, i agree. I would have done the same thing and scheduled out a reasonable and respectful block of time to spend with my friend. He really took me for granted and took advantage of my good nature. I’m not even sure he knew he was doing it. Maybe that’s me just making subliminal excuses for him! Anyway, I now naturally, after all this time of trying to make the f’ship into a 50/50 and failing, because it does takes two to make it healthy, feel cold& distant towards him .He’s been converted into an acquaintance. The same level as someone who I might have known a few months. It’s interesting how the process happens. It’s as if your mental, emotional and physical system can’t take it anymore, so it creates a defensive barrier to protect you. It’s almost like ‘Whoa, this isn’t right anymore and needs to stop now. I wonder if this system kicks in earlier for people who can spot red flags earlier.
        It was a tough ride this understanding friendship maze, but at the end of it I’m proud to say I’ve learnt so much. My friend that I’ve mentioned here, was the last one of a long list of ‘nice people, but liked it on their terms’ type of friends. From now on it’s only healthy, positive, self esteem enhancing friendships. I have some great internal guidelines and pit stops on the friendship map now.
        When someone whose meant to be a close friend and plays the ‘lawyer’ and tries to catch you out, just so that they can prove that they’re in the right at all costs, it signifies a major major red flag and time to revaluate the f’ship.
        I would never make that mistake again of me doing most of the initiating. This was one of the ‘issues’. People just take advantage of it and become lazy selfish bastards. I just didn’t understand how people couldn’t be reciprocal if they didn’t have major issues in their lives. To me being reciprocal is natural and common sense. I have to admit one thing i am really strict on is if some stands me up or doesn’t go through with plans without a VERY good reason, then I dump them and never look back. Someone being rude to others is already a big no no for me.
        I do miss my ‘nice friends X friends but not there…… ‘I’m upset can I call, but when your upset don’t call me please’, ‘you must come to see me 90% of time, ut i can’t be bothered to come over to you’, ‘sorry I’ve been soo busy after 4 months of no contact, even though it says I’ve been meeting others on my facebook’, ‘I’m lonely/bored/or my preferred friends stood me up, so y’ll do for now’ and so forth. I’m excited about developing healthy positive strong f’ships and making room for them.:)

  155. Jadene Says:

    I haven’t posted here in about 6 months or so and I did mention in other replies that I chose not to return my exfriend’s last two calls which were a yr ago. I wanted to say I am happy that I chose to do that and I have no regrets and left it the same way it was left 11 yrs ago as I didn’t call her back then and she didn’t try hard at all to try to work things out..yet when her new boyfriend was going to dump her back then she had no problem or trouble running over there to work things out with him and I knew and was friends with her for ten yrs, not that she owed me anything but you can understand what I mean I am sure. I think things are easier to see and know when we are away from the person and not always around them. And the wisdom that comes with age helps too.

    • AChoy Says:

      Jadene, she doesn’t respect nor care about you. She’ll patch things up with her boyfriend but not you – that says a lot about her. I think I sorta had something like that happen to me. A girl, I met briefly was more than willing to patch things up with her ex-boyfriend (though she swears he is immature for his age, even wasting his hard-earned scholarship money on frivolous material things) and yet makes ZERO attempts to patch things up with me. She did not value your friendship and you were most likely, a convenience to her.

  156. Jadene Says:

    Thanks for the response AChoy! And I do totally agree with you. I know she doesn’t care now and that she didn’t care then her but when my sister-inlaw told me she told her she really misses me I thought she may have changed and of course I was wrong. Her loss. Her husband(then boyfriend) can have the pleasure of her drama. But towards the end of our friendship anyways I did notice changes in her becuz as my father was dying her exboyfriend dumped her and threw her out and she was with him 8 straight yrs and before she was even moved out she had her husband(then boyfriend) already ready and was dating…so she didn’t even really care about her exboyfriend. And then he started dating and she was very bothered by it and I was like you already have someone anyways. Yet when we talked 2 yrs ago she mentioned him like she still cares about him “oh he’ll always be a part of me” and I was like is your husband right there listening to you and she said “no, he’s in the other room.” Who knows she may not even care about her husband lol. So another words she pretends to care about those that she didn’t care about then.

  157. AChoy Says:

    Unfortunately, for most of us on this board, we are treated like “conveniences”. We are used to run chores, do errands, listen ONLY when our so-called “friends” have problems but never seem to be there for us. And like Jadene pointed out, some of these people even have the NERVE to befriend people they claim to dislike soooooooooo much but never make any effort for those that treat them respectably well!

    The key word is “use”. We are tossed out like a used-up napkin. We aren’t really valued as people nor loved. This is really disappointing as it seems you aren’t truly wanted. I’m even beginning to suspect that I will die alone. But hey, you win some you lose some, right?

  158. Achoy Says:

    E’ton summed it up correctly: it’s always “come to see me 90% of the time but I will NOT visit you”, “I’ll call you up or email you when something is wrong, but don’t you DARE call me up when things are horrible in your life.” And the classic: “sorry I’ve been busy for four months going out with my preferred friends, so for now you’ll do since my “preferred” gang has left me dry! This is the TRUTH and absolutely correct! The key point to remember is that those that CONTINUOUSLY stand you up and never follow through with plans are huge “no-nos”. I’ve had this happen to me recently with two different individuals and then I realized that they had their insecurities or were hiding things from me that they didn’t want me knowing about. They are “users” and “abusers”. Also, as E’ton pointed out, being consistently rude to other people is very bad. These people will eventually turn on you!

    Reciprocity should be natural as it is common sense. People only reciprocate when their lives are suddenly turned upside down. Suddenly, when they are under extreme stress or when something bad has happened, then and ONLY then, do these “friends” suddenly decide to show up!

    E’ton you have some amazing points!

  159. AChoy Says:

    Susan, you disrespected me BY responding to my reply which was a response to another member on this board. If anything, I am complaining…nothing more. I have a new set of friends that LOVE me dearly. Just because you read my comments and they “sound” bitter in your mind, doesn’t mean I am in fact bitter. You owe me a huge apology for misinterpreting the way you READ my comments. It’s also highly likely that because you THINK my comments are bitter, that you yourself are bitter.
    I will admit I whine and rant about the same topics, over and over and over again….but the real definition of “bitter” is to be JEALOUS of other people’s success. Susan, you are disgrace to even judge someone, myself, based on one comment. Maybe if you called me up on the phone and heard the tears in my voice and the many sleepless nights I’ve cried, you’d hear the pain and sadness I’ve suffered by having horrible friends who never took the time to care about me. When I stated that my family worked hard and I put in the effort into my friendships, all I meant was: it’s nice every now and again for other people (who claim to be my friend) to call me up, everyone once in a while. I would advise you to grow up Susan and read ALL OF the comments I posted on this site and then look to those people that took my advice. I gave several helpful pointers to other people and guess what…the other day, a TRUE friend did call.

    Susan, you are truly judgmental. I can only pray for a weak soul like yours.

    • In reply to Susan Says:

      I think perhaps I’m the one to whom Susan was originally responding, and I must say I agree with you 100%, Ariell!

      It’s around comment number 22, right?

      My original username here was “Emma’s an Idiot”.
      I was very peeved at the original Emma’s absolutist statement that “people from large families do not make good friends.” I did not take to it kindly, as you may have noticed.

      I don’t write comments very much on the Internet, and when I do, it’s usually because it’s something that affects me very deeply. So my responses are very emotional and to-the-point.

      As a matter of fact, your first reply always confused me, because I didn’t know if you were agreeing with the original “Emma”, or with me, “Emma’s An Idiot”.

      Anyways, after reading Susan’s reply, my first impression of her was exactly like your impression of her…that she is judgmental, and I told her so in no uncertain terms.

      Funnily, it’s only now, after reading the rest of the comments, that I saw your response to her, which is exactly how I feel. Thanks for putting it so eloquently.

      I just do not have the energy to respond to people like Susan eloquently. I get very blunt with ignorant people (as evidenced by my reply to her, lol).
      Susan is obviously a troll, looking to raise hackles.

      She obviously does not understand the deep feelings of hurt, sadness and yes, ANGER, that can happen when friendships end. She obviously does not want to face the complexity of human emotions in her own life, and just sees things in black and white, as in “if you’re not all sunshine and light, then you’re bitter”.

      We all know people like that, unfortunately. It’s like you can’t express even one feeling of hurt, sadness, anger or anything else without immediately being called “bitter” by them.
      They are very small-minded people.

      I guess we shouldn’t worry about people like Susan too much.
      Maybe the wise person that runs this site deleted Susan’s trolling comments.
      Let’s just be glad we don’t know her in real life…she’s most likely just like the abandoning, uncaring friends we’re talking about on this great website.

  160. AChoy Says:

    Furthermore, TRUE examples of “bitterness” would be the way Lisa Lampanelli treats Dayana Mendoza on The Celebrity Apprentice. Lisa harasses Dayana due to her jealousy and bitterness. Bitterness would be my former employee who YELLS at customers that he isn’t “a damn telephone book” when a customer politely asks him a question! Bitterness is when people made snide, crude remarks to others. I am proud of my comments on this board because I found the answer: that good people usually aren’t the ones to make good friends simply because they are good. Just because you READ my comments and they “appear” bitter to you is your problem Susan. Stop using me as a deflector of your bitterness and get out there and make some friends. I was blessed to find a woman (in my age group) who “gets” me and I “get” her. And even if I were bitter, it is due to the “nasty” people of society making me as such. If I were that bitter, I would not have thrown myself back out there in society and try to meet new people….I did and I found someone like me. She hugs me when she sees me and I support her 200%! Susan, you are a mean-spirited!

  161. AChoy Says:

    Lastly, Susan. The problem with emailing, texting, or writing is that people try to impose THEIR emotions on your words! I used to read emails and assume the person was angry when they weren’t or happy when they weren’t! It’s not just that you are judgmental but imposing your EMOTIONS on my words, which are extremely way off. I RANT and WHINE a lot, bitterness is entirely different. By sharing my stories with others, I relate better and in turn, want others to share their stories too. That’s a sign of healing and self-medicating. Bitterness is having a fat woman beat me up for being skinnier and then blaming me for their problems and accusing me of “stealing” their men because I am a little bit thinner.

    Bitterness means to take out or deflect your frustrations and/or insecurities onto others. It doesn’t mean to show HEALTHY pride in oneself, open up by sharing your stories or giving others advice. Look up Kola Boof online and THAT is the TRUE definition of bitterness. Unfortunately, for you Susan, you need to be educated and learn the proper definitions of words before you use them.

  162. AChoy Says:

    For the negative Susans out there:
    Why not Forgiving and Holding a Grudge is a Good Thing (In Some Cases)

    A short time ago, a close family member went behind my back and knowingly hurt me. After a period of animosity things with her eventually returned to normal, but I am still deeply hurt. I know you will encourage me to “forgive and forget,” but I’m having a hard time with that.—Michael

    Umm, nope. “Forgiveness” is considered a positive action (and according to the Judeo-Christian tradition, elementary school, and your mom, it’s necessary). But that’s only true when it serves you—like, if you need to get over something in order to get around it, or when you’re responding to an inevitable human failure that deserves kindness. It’s not necessarily right, though, to forgive an old, on-purpose act of malice. I don’t know why this is something we just do.

    Not to be a steely-eyed villain about it, but people will treat you the way you let them, and forgiving someone without a reason (and the only reason is that they’ve actually earned your forgiveness) will only invite them to do harm again.And just because X amount of time has passed doesn’t mean anything is better, or different. Apologies offered after a sentient adult is exposed for bad behaviour are not the equal and opposite reaction to purposefully inflicted pain. If she makes an effort to regain your trust, cool. Try therapy together; it will help. But don’t forgive just because you’re supposed to, or because it’s easier

    • Craig Says:

      I have always thought of forgiveness as pulling a knife out of my own heart that someone else has put there- maybe it’s more like just letting it die/ dissolve, and not thinking about it anymore. I don’t know if that is helpful. But no, I would not allow an abusive person to just walk back into my life as if nothing had happened. I don’t consider that unfogiveness, but rather wisdom; If I looked at a friend and saw them about to do that, I would do everything in my power to get them to reconsider, to STOP, and wait until there was real trust earned again…..so why would I choose to be a doormat myself? I think that helps me to be objective about situations, when I picture myself outside of the picture, looking in as clearly as possible.

      Well, after reading these posts I have been even more clear in my decisions; I have done some weeding out and I think the sorrow is more for what could have been, as opposed to how things really were, you know what I mean? Why else would I be sad to lose a fake friend who was never honest with me, and only used me for help and convenience?

  163. eaton Says:

    Hello.i was looking at a sire about ‘friends not calling back’ and these people seem to have a totally different view on what f’ship is.so for e.g they don’t need to talk or communicate for years and still seem to be friends.They also don’t have any issues with friends contacting after months or just suddenly moving on etc..It strikes me that these are the kind of people that would be quick to use the ‘needy’label? Here’s the link.
    http://www.stevepavlina.com/forums/emotional-mastery/39556-friends-who-don-t-call.html
    p.snot use what Susan said to upset you, but sorry.

  164. Russell Says:

    At almost 33 I have come to the same conclusion as many of ‘participants’ here ; I have maybe one or two genuine friends and the rest were merely acquaintances who weren’t willing to make any effort. The problem is that making friends at this age is so incredibly hard – everyone seems unavailable, busy with work and/or family. No wonder we would rather cling to unhealthy past friendships even if it means constantly eating humble pie and accepting that they will *never* care enough to initiate anything, unless they need something from you. It leaves a sick feeling in the pit of my stomach and time is running out, yet I must “be strong” and not act needy or resentful…

    One such person I worked near and knew from University since 2005. We talked in tea breaks at work sometimes..she would act bored and stopped turning up… so I stopped bothering too. That’s when she suddenly wanted to rekindle the relationship – now I see that her ego had been pricked in a “how dare this person snub me” kind of way. She was from Hong Kong and all her real friends were also… a red flag there maybe? A lot of HK immigrants have an.. er.. hierachical view of humanity it seems (*cough*racist) and don’t really mingle. Not all but some.
    We went to lunch a couple of times before her contract was up and she kept saying “we’ll always be friends” and “call me whenever you want”..and so on… all very nice except that when I did message her (after months) I’d get some lazy two word response… until her own family troubles reached a tipping point and she needed a shoulder… and there I was, shoulder at the ready… stupid douchbag me. After about 8 months we arranged to meet up for lunch during the week but on the day she texted me saying she would rather come on my 10 minute tea break. She wanted to do some shopping in town instead for the rest of the day. Unbelievable… it should have ended then. The only time this person ever initiated anything after that was when she had left her bag at home and needed cash for parking.

    Another ‘mate’ of mine I worked with 10 years ago would have me on his send (spam) list, and occasionally complained that I didn’t e-mail him enough (because his responses were always turse, he never seemed open to any real conversation). The last time he e-mailed me was to ask for a mutual past friends contact details. No enquiry as to how things were going…

    My mother passed away from cancer in January after a decline in her starting in September (selfish to complain about my problems I know) I took care of her at home during that time, while working. I’m an only child, there was no-one else. These, all well as some other faux friends/acquaintances knew about it. Did any of them bother to message me to during this time? Nope. I’m was not worth typing a sentence. So they aren’t worth any more thought. The only people who did are those ‘nice’ people at work I had taken for granted, something I will never do again.

  165. Jane Says:

    Its been really therapeutic reading these posts (whilst they also struck a chord and mad me cry). Sorry to hear so many people have this same problem, i can’t understand why friends are held in so little value these days.

    I have only three friends i consider close and few acquaintances. I am 32, I’m not on social networks and i’m single with no children.
    Two of my close friends i have known about 11yrs we all met at work though they no longer see each other i see them separately. One of them is married she is probably the better at staying in contact and showing genuine concern.
    The other of those two, (she’s married with two children, who i babysit) is the worst shes pure charm when you are with her and is supportive if i’m going through a drama but as we say goodbye she says “free next week?” if i don’t text her to follow that up i don’t hear anything. She rarely replies to my texts. Over the years she has suggested or agreed on plans and then not followed through or not commited because shes waiting to see what else comes up. I can go for weeks not hearing from her until she wants me to babysit then guarantee out of the blue she will text me.
    I’m no mug, she insists on paying me and though its awkward taking money from a ‘friend’ she doesn’t spend what i consider friend time with me so i’m going to take her money. Especially when she takes advantage and stay out until 2.30am.
    The third friend i have known since i was 10 we lost touch when we were 15 and got back in touch 2-3yrs ago shes separated and has 3 children. I still have to initiate with her but she makes the time when she can.

    I had a really down day today, maintaining friendships are a touchy subject and have been a running problem throughout my life. I put the effort in but it feels quite one sided. I haven’t heard from friends in any way since the 19th April. Thats just over a week ago which may not be that long but it feels long when you just want to be acknowledged. You can’t be too busy to check in with people that you are supposed to love. I was debating whether to contact them (you never know whats going on in their lives) or leave it and see what happens, i think i’ll wait.

    Is anyone here in the UK?
    (ps i used my middle name, you never know who might read these things)

    • Jane Says:

      also i had to friend/acquaintances who when i was on Fbk one left and one was inactive and i was her only friend. I now know that they are both back on and active users, this is enough to make someone like me with unrealiable friends paranoid. i.e are they now on their because i left!!

  166. Craig Says:

    The more I think about it, I keep going back to the old saying “actions speak louder than words.” It’s too easy to use words manipulatively and dishonestly. But actions do not lie; if a person wants to keep a friendship and if they value that friendship they will not only return calls but they will take the initiative sometimes. If a person really cares, they will reach out not just for favors or help, but for companionship.

  167. eaton Says:

    hello

    I ‘ve been going through the process of TRYING to shake of friends who have been close for years but with major one way type communication issues. It’s actually been very painful, esp with one friend who i wrote about in an earlier post. It can feel lonely and the loss overwhelming. So, I’ve actually managed to keep them at a distance but remain ‘friends’. I suppose you can call it a process off demoting them in ‘closeness’ status. It actually gives you so much control and objectivity when you realize THEY ARE NOT A CLOSE FRIEND..so don’t build that expectation in your head anymore. It also makes it easier to eventually let them loose and move on. and in the mean time if they start becoming more reciprocal then that’s fine.I have withdrawn there privileges of being a close friend , unless they abide by the rules.If they don’t then they will remain at a lower position or be released. I guess you just need to not care anymore about them..because they don’t deserve that amount of care and also, it simply entwines you with people who have unhealthy friendship models.

  168. Craig Says:

    I heard a quote recently; ” people are more afraid of offending than they are of pain.” It hit me pretty hard. Growing up being afraid of anger and abuse only made that all too true for me. Why would I go along with someone of obvious low character and put up with their horrid and disrespectful behaviour when it is causing me a great deal of pain? Why would I go along with that and not just say something about it? I have decided to love people, and isn’t being honest part of that- being the best for all of us?

    There seems to be this deep cultural expectation that we just don’t speak the truth, but ignore, be “nice”, don’t rock the boat, just “go with the flow.” Users count on that mindset. they will continue to take advantage of anyone who will not confront them.

    So I was contacted by someone I had written off, peacefully. We texted back and forth, and it was great to feel like this person was acting like a true friend, but I didn’t count on it. Especially after reading all these posts and replies, I took a more careful ‘ we’ll see’ attitude. I expected he would at least do what we had agreed on, but I didn’t let myself get all excited about the friendship, or our hiking/ mountain bike expedition that was coming up. He had valid reasons why it wouldn’t work that day, but asked how about Friday or for sure Saturday if Friday didn’t work? I agreed. Friday came, no surprise it didn’t happen. Saturday came, I set aside my other plans and was all ready to go late morning when I get a text from him, not asking if I was ready to go, but saying ” Have a great Saturday.” When I asked about our expedition we planned, he had a long list of chores he had to do, like cleaning, doing laundry, getting ready for the week- and offered maybe to stop by for a little bit if time allowed later that evening, nothing at all like we agreed on, which was to load up the bikes and go to a state park for a serious excursion. I was “expected” obviously to just let it go. But I don’t want lying people like that in my life- either we are real friends or we are not. No person treats a real friend like that. Period. If you care about someone, your actions will not hide it, they will prove it. So my reply was “Wow. Never mind”. He asked if I was crabby, and I replied that I was not, but surprised because I had misjudged him as someone who does what they say ( he talks a lot about his integrity and maturity, etc. ) Wow, I got an earful after that- a huge angry text about being busy, having to use some twins tickets that were sitting around, and I just expect too much and he can’t please everyone……was I wrong for expecting that we would do the plans that we had made? How abusive to blame the one who was disrespected and brushed aside- what a huge load of crap! Seriously, the world is way too full of people like this, who say one thing but do another. That person will never get another chance to have my help, my encouragement, my assistance, and he definitely was the loser. For everyone out there who cares about people and who offers your help to people, and who gives but rarely, if ever, receives, the world isn’t worthy of you. God sees everything. May you be blessed beyond measure and have great rewards from many sources, if not from the ungrateful you have served- and may you contiunue to love and not let your heart grow cold- it’s worth it, even though it is painful.

  169. Craig Says:

    I know I’m not the only person who has decided for the first time to write something publicly about their personal experience. I love the way this blog started out, with an honest question I have wondered about for a long time. Ignoring it and just trying to “get over it” for years and years doesn’t help. Indifference or preoccupation, or whatever it is, is about that person, not about us, the friends who care about people. People who act that way are probably like that with everyone. I know I am not the only person who has ever asked ” I wonder what I did wrong, or why am I unimportant?” The truth is, it’s painful do deal with this. It’s painful letting go of friends even if they are fake friends or frienemies. What are the other options though? Some healthy ways of dealing with it, without letting it continue and without becoming a rage monster? I was surprised recently after telling someone how their behaviour was hurtful, and they were genuinely sorry for it. My amazing daughter suggested it to me, to speak up and say something right away, before it has time to become painful… That was so cool, and I found out that I have a real friend who I had figured was probably not one.

    Thanks to everyone for posting your experiences and for being real. It has been SO encouraging to see I’m not the only person who thinks about these things. There’s nothing wrong with wondering, and caring about this issue shows we have a human side.

    • eaton Says:

      Yes i agree mate.It’s nice to hear these views from another man too. Also, friendships are not given the attention they deserve by society today in comparison to romance. When you break up with a lover you can openly bereave and be down and people really sympathies.However, if you break up with a close friend you do not get this luxury, you’re just expected to deal with it and we suffer in painful silence.I mentioned in my earlier post that i try to detach but#keep the friendship going’ to give me some space without completely cutting ties. Like you mentioned, sometimes it’s simply a misunderstanding.However i do really believe that if you let yourself become too available you can evoke a one way friendship and start to be taken for granted.

  170. PB Says:

    I have had many friendships, even close ones, which have ended, either through losing contact or simply because our commitments changed and we just drifted apart. I hold no grudges and have happily moved on, forging new friendships along the way. Sometimes I have crossed paths with old friends and contact is re-established. We know the friendship is in a very different place to what it once was but keep in contact now and again. It may be months or years but there are no demands placed on either party. We know if we need to reach one another that now we can. I know I have usually been the one to initiate contact, and in some circumstances that doesn’t bother me at all. I have a few best friends who I speak to on many occasions and we relish the time we spend together. Facebook is an interesting addition to the mix. I mainly use it to keep in contact with friends and work colleagues, many out of town who I wouldn’t be in contact with on a regular basis. I don’t consider culling ‘friends’ a bad thing to do once in a while. I have even done it to cousins I rarely speak to- we find other ways to keep in touch. Every so often I go through my list and decide if they are there for any other reason than to make up numbers. Many of these ‘friends’ are acquaintances at best. Do we talk? If neither of us have made much contact will we really begrudge one another for not being on Facebook? If I’m really so important why haven’t they contacted me?

    For the first time in my life I have deliberately cut ties with a close friend. I can only paraphrase what happened but I hope the following account gives you some insight into why I made those decisions:

    At the end of March of this year my house-mate of three and a half years moved into her own place. Over the time we have known each other we really bonded. We did a lot of things together, some activities exclusively our own. I considered her one of my closest friends. In February things moved up a notch, she made a move and I reciprocated. Here we were, two good friends exploring the possibility of a relationship. We decided to take it slow. Her decision being so as not to make it awkward for our other house-mate should it turn into a disaster. It never became sexual, that we agreed could wait until the move and any initial doubts I had were pushed aside as over the next 3-4 weeks my house-mate and I dated and made the most of each other’s company. I wasn’t pressuring her, that was clear, but for no reason she broke things off. She became emotionally cold (something I see in hindsight isn’t unusual for her). I was at a loss and confided in my best friends for help deciphering the reasons why. I realised that she was transferring her own guilt and insecurities on to me. Over the following weeks I tried reaching out, writing letters and opening up to her but she continued to distance herself even more. I felt there was no acknowledgement of what happened, no effort to empathise with what I might be feeling. I wasn’t a stranger, I as her house-mate, her friend, but she wouldn’t talk to me about it. I told her I cared about her, our friendship was what was important and even if she wasn’t going to ask I would still help her move as there was no one else to do it with her.

    As moving day approached we began to rebuild our friendship. She only has a day put aside so I helped pack away things from communal areas, bringing down heavy boxes from the attic and grouping everything in the hallway so we could spend as little time loading the van. All she had to think about were the important things, getting her bike checked, packing way her personal belongings. Everything went well and ahead of time we spent her last afternoon at the pub drinking together. Signals were mixed. I needed closure on our relationship status but that could wait most important was being there to help my friend move house.

    I really missed her. I had said I could visit at the weekend. The days came and went, I received no confirmation, I knew she would contact me when she had settled in. I texted at the end of the weekend and arranged to go a few days later. The day came and I was surprised to learn she’d had four or five of her closest friends over since I’d left, one being the friend who had helped move, another even returning for a second visit. We had a good time just talking, I was cherishing the moment and not about to raise any of my concerns. It was a chilly evening and she lent me a sweater. I didn’t refuse and left that evening puzzled even more by her actions.

    She was busy, not just with work but other social events, I knew she would contact me. Why wouldn’t she? I’d offered to do a few jobs at her place and now had a sweater she had lent me that needed returning. Days went by and I heard nothing. We had spent three and a half years together. She was under the assumption everything was back to normal I hoped for some affirmation our friendship was as strong as ever was. I initiated contact, texting her at first, to receive replies, one word at most. They rarely answered the questions I was asking, the social events I was arranging, the visits I was planning. I began to doubt if our friendship was more than one of convenience.

    Over Easter she went away, I wished her a safe trip and after several days, eventually being told by my house-mate she had been in touch, I called. She missed the call and texted back, surprised ‘Are you OK? What’s wrong?’ Really? Is that all she could say, it had been a week since I’d wished her well. Who returns a missed call with a text? I was reaching out, we hadn’t spoken properly for three weeks. Eventually I stopped texting. I made one final push to get some tools back and hopeful find out why she was being so distant, but in future she would have to start initiating if things were going to work out. How close were we? Did she not appreciate what I had done? Was I really out of sight out of mind? Was our friendship really one-sided. Had she just made the most of a man being around and I’d been taken for granted?

    Finally I succumbed to desire and finding something amusing on TV texted her. We had a conversation, no single word responses, we were talking again. It wasn’t my ideal conversation but we were talking. Obviously she had been dealing with something. Was this us re-engaging? I approached the subject of what had happened between us, that it was childish why we suddenly weren’t talking. It hit a nerve. I was told to grow up and deal with it. I thought we were friends and whatever had taken place needed a discussion. If there were problems then dragging them out wasn’t getting us anywhere. I wasn’t expecting to burden her with my troubles, just acknowledge me, acknowledge where we had come from. She took no accountability.

    I gave her an olive branch and let her know our friendship was important and she knew where I was. It was my last attempt. I wasn’t going to initiate any more contact. If our friendship was important she’d realise but I was prepared to accept the worst, maybe she didn’t really care about it.

    Four days passed and she replied. Not acknowledging my text but blaming me entirely. That she had a long list of things I had annoyed her by doing, how I’d violated her space before she’d moved, she hadn’t needed my help and would have asked for it. I was taken aback. It hurt me. I had tried to talk, for nearly two months I had tried. Now she was hiding behind texts, discussing an issue that was sensitive to her. Was she really afraid of a confrontation. Why hadn’t she said anything sooner? Why mention a list of grievances then not tell me what they were? I replied, I apologised she felt that way and surprised she had a list, but I want an honest relationship. I want my friends to be truthful and share feelings and hope she understood. She didn’t reply.
    Had I just accepted all responsibility for the past couple of months? A few days later she asked if we were on for the cinema? (She was replying to an early arrangement I’d initiated.) I was just as surprised she asked after our last conversation, but sitting in a dark room for 3 hours and not talking wasn’t going to help anything and a week later than we’d planned I’d already made other arrangements. She was still skirting the bigger issues. I said I didn’t know where we were any more. ‘No worries’, she replied. Did she take everything I said as a joke? I had been analysing and over analysing everything and could not pin point the shift. I was exhausted, I was an emotional wreck. She had dragged out a situation for over a month that could have been resolved in days and then acts as if nothing happened. I deleted her number from my phone. This was not a friendship I wanted.

    In a month me and my house-mate heard little from her, except asking for mail. We found out from our landlord her bike had been stolen (she would have told her friends about this I was sure). It was her pride and joy. She even accepted an invitation to my house-mate’s 30th, then didn’t show up. We received a final e-mail for money owed to her and that she’d see us both soon. Three months and in that time we have each only seen her once. Not once has she herself initiated any contact. It was a formal exchange of pleasantries. I replied, all but ending our contact. I hope she was going to finally reach out. She hasn’t.

    I think about her ever day, the good company we shared, but in hindsight I should have seen the signs. She manipulated the whole situation. She has never valued the friendship, never cared for it as I wanted her to, she just needed to control it. I don’t even think I meant anything to her. Everything has been at her convenience. Making contact with either of us in the house out of an obligation rather than respect or concern. She uses people (not just me), taking advantage of their generosity instead of asking for help. To avoid them, when it doesn’t suit, she makes excuses to save face instead of being honest and upfront. I know because I was once an unwilling accomplice to those excuses. I don’t find it at all odd that now we are not living together she uses the same routine on me. Token gestures I’ve made were all discounted or failed to be acknowledged from what I recall. Her actions have been irresponsible and thoughtless. When it comes down to accepting faults she turns vindictive and spiteful, again, I know because I’ve seen it used on others. In all this time not once has she said sorry. I never assumed our friendship would hit that low. Ultimately I think she has her own insecurities and would rather hurt others than accept her own shortfalls. I only wish we could have attempted to resolve things sooner. My friends, my family are disappointed at the way she has acted, the way she treated a friendship I held so dear. I would have done anything for her and now realise that was my downfall.

    • lisa Says:

      well, you turned the friendship into a sexual thing. So, it wasn’t a friendship!How did you expect it to turn out?? You don’t mind initiating friendships even though they don’t contact you first time after time?? That sounds needy.

      • PB Says:

        Lisa,

        It never became sexual because I think deep down we were both very concious of the situation, although our reasons for not pursuing it were at the same time also very different. The underlying feeling I had was the fear of losing someone special. I wasn’t prepared for that fear to become a reality. I truly cared for my friend , for the closeness we had and I know the love I felt was sincere. She on the other hand was under pressure at work and with the impending move used me and my feelings towards her as a safety net, a distraction from all the stress she was under. Her work priorities soon changed- she withdrew. She wouldn’t talk about it. She was demeaning of my work and aspirations and questioned my character, calling me out as a ‘closed book’. To her they were perfectly valid excuses to end the relationship and reinforce reasons why we were so incompatible, in reality she was transferring her own insecurities onto me. We actually had a lot in common, which is why we bonded so well in all the time spent together. I was no longer required any more, she got what she needed from me, she was about to move out and cast me aside with complete disregard. In my closest friendships I will always invest a lot; physically, mentally, emotionally. As much as it pains me I can not be the one to initiate this time around. The moment I do I will be committing myself to the friendship 100%. I will not survive the heartache and turmoil of emotions if it is not reciprocated. Friendships aren’t perfect and we look past the flaws but at the risk of losing what we had and all the good times shared I really hoped she would have tried a little harder.

    • lisa Says:

      ..and you’ve just come on here to gloat about all yr amazing ‘friendships’ on a blog that’s clearly about people who struggle with friendships.You’re insecure really and the whole perfect friends is a facade. lol. p.s TIP: maybe don’t try to get into a ‘friends’ knickers next time.

      • PB Says:

        Lisa,

        I struggle, but on this particular occasion the friendship didn’t just drift apart. I could have accepted if that happened. The moment my friend left it felt to me a parting of waves. The final month leading up to the move there was no problems, we helped each other out and everything appeared fine on the surface. There were no arguments or disagreements to make me question that we weren’t still good friends and would remain so.

        I take issue with your TIP, as many relationships in my understanding, unless they are arranged, usually start out as friendships first. There is no reason why you can not remain friends if it is not a hostile break-up.

        I took a lot of people’s advice on board when my friend moved away. I tried initiating conversations, I tried calling, I stopped for days/for weeks in case she felt pressured, I tried arranging social activities (with no ulterior motive), making suggestions for things we could do in future. I was always waiting. When all else failed I told my friend I cared and she knew where I was. Her reaction was not to acknowledge that but instead START SHOUTING. It was a response completely out of the blue that warranted some kind of explanation but I wasn’t about to deal with something as serious as she was making out in a text message.

        The friendships, particularly the close ones which are the main focus of this blog, I want are honest. You trust they are strong enough to work themselves out. Instead my friend forced my hand. I took all accountability (for which my other house mate said I shouldn’t have done), and a sincere reply from me which required some acceptance or acknowledgement from her never came.

      • lisa Says:

        Ok. I understand it now.Sad in a way.Thanks

  171. PB Says:

    I knew trying to explain a situation in a few paragraphs wasn’t going to be easy. I could have left a post that wasn’t so detailed but writing about this experience is helping me to move on. I don’t know how I could have expressed the reasons this friendship faltered in any less. I have read all the posts and I was reluctant at first to post, maybe I shouldn’t have, but I lost faith in a friendship I really valued and thought I had found like minds to share my account with. My family and house-mate have seen how depressed I was, questioning everything I had done, everything I was doing, and how I had begun to isolate myself. Instead I should see it for all the positives, a release from a one-sided, convenient friendship and a chance to turn my life around and become more pro-active and make friends with people who really appreciate me.

    It really hurts to see someone disappear from our lives, see friendships drift apart that we have invested so much time and energy into them, without any explanation. To a degree many of us here are insecure. It is not always a bad trait, it just means we take friendships a lot more seriously and when someone doesn’t call we take it as a personal attack on our character. It knocks our self esteem, but as many have quite rightly said, the problem usually lies with the other person whether they are just lazy, use people or lack consideration. We need validation that those friendships we have held so dear mean as much to the other person as they do us. It has happened to me a lot and it always surprises me when those you think are the strongest don’t work out.

    I think something I said has been misconstrued though. I wasn’t gloating and I’m not needy. I moved away to a big city, away from family and friends. Some friendships are important to keep hold of. It’s only natural when returning home that I will sometimes be the one who has to make the first call. I know friendships aren’t perfect but I can try and remain positive about the ones that mean the most to me. I don’t have many friends and my phone book is largely dominated by work contacts so I make sure the ones which are ‘amazing’ really count. Believe me when I say I can count them on one hand.

    Having spoken with my sister I realise how, for someone like me, I took comfort in this one particular friendship. I fell headlong into her routine, instead of making my own, and it became a large part of my social life. I never thought about myself and the larger impact it was having. I wasn’t making new friends, I wasn’t finding new hobbies and interests. I am making a concious effort to change all that. I never knowingly put pressure on my friend (When she left she may have felt I was, but I honestly believed we were close and would make more time for each other). Yes, she was the one to make a move and together we took cautious steps forward. What threw me was in the aftermath learning how she really valued me as a person. If nothing happened, which nothing did, the friendship will still have stalled. It meant a lot to me and I did all I could to hold onto that. The excuses came later. She hasn’t contacted either of us in the house to make plans, aside from what was mentioned before. I can’t explain why a house-mate/friend who we would associate with most days would do that. I can only assume that she didn’t see the friendships as anything more than three people who lived together. We are no longer part of her routine. Maybe I didn’t know her as well as I thought.

    It is by no means an isolated incident but it is the first time I have accepted someone was taking advantage of my good nature and am doing something about it. I am stronger for it and I hope I will be able to see the signs in future so it doesn’t happen again.

  172. SURVIVOR Says:

    Sadly sometimes we expect the Unexpected. Literally, It hurts like hell. I’ve had my experience and still going thru it. I always initiate communication but when I stop, no one seems to give a damn or wonder about me.

    So here’s to all the douche bags, jerk, the ungrateful sons of B*67%# who ever passed through my life chapters.

    ” When you need me, I am there for you.
    When I need you, you could careless!
    From now on, EXPECT THE SAME FROM ME!”

    it really is a bunch of BS when someone “Friend” says there to busy and seriously when you say you will call back and 3 days past and still nothing. I does not fit in my mind how you honestly will not have 1 min or 5 min in 3 so called 24 hr days to make a phone call. I just can’t see it.

    and to all of you who do care all you communication initiators. I hope you all the best. A life full of peace and may God Bless you every action of trying to be that better person.

  173. PB Says:

    Lisa, I really appreciate your reply, thank you for your understanding.

    SURVIVOR, it always hurts, and I hope that one day those who have hurt us see the error of their ways. Hopefully they will understand our motivation for what we have had to do and we can move on together without bitterness or regret. Stay strong!

  174. PB Says:

    In May I told my then friend that I didn’t know where we were. I didn’t expect the response I got, There was no understanding. I regretfully accepted it was over. A week ago (July) I received a birthday card from her. It contained a short message, but only about the weather. Nothing I felt was truly sincere just the plain old pleasantries I’ve heard before (after 3 1/2 years and all she wanted to talk about was the weather), nothing that gave me a reason to want to reply. I find it is all too little, too late. Too much happened to just act as if it can be brushed aside.
    No honesty, no trust- That is not the foundations for a good friendship. I may never get the apology I seek, I may never get the kind of acknowledgements I wish for and that is something I must endure. In all honesty I am exhausted, I am tired of the whole affair. She upset me in a way I have not felt for a long time. Everyday for four months I’ve gone over in my head what I could have done differently. I tried repeatedly to see if she would engage and she never did until it was too late and then it just wasn’t enough. How did she think I would feel about our ‘friendship’, to receive a birthday card when she has remained silent with no communication for over a month? What was supposed to be a joyful occasion turned into one of bitterness and upset.

    Have I become the friend who doesn’t call back? I don’t think so. There is no reason to call!

  175. Mel Says:

    I can relate to this situation since my two closest friends no longer seem to be interested in my friendship. However, I strongly disagree with advice to stop contacting them in order to wait and see how long it takes for them to contact me. That is manipulative. It is testing a person. When people are looking for something bad they will find it. No wonder many of the people who have emplyed this strategy have never received a call.

    Now I do think it is ok for a person to stop contacting friends if they are able to accept the fact that this may kill the friendship and/or are ready to put this friendship behind you (at least until the issue is resolved). There will be consequences to this that need to be thought out beforehand though.

    The bottom line is that we need to put our pride behind us and forgive people regardless of whether or not we are currently in touch with them. Bitterness can kill a person.There is a reason Jesus died for our sins even though we didn’t deserve it. To show us an example of Godly compassion. Since He forgave us, we should be able forgive others.

    Matthew 18:21-22
    21 Then Peter came to Him and said, “Lord, how often shall my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? Up to seven times?”

    22 Jesus said to him, “I do not say to you, up to seven times, but up to seventy times seven.

    • PB Says:

      Hi Mel,

      I can agree in part with what you have said. I am a very forgiving person but we are all guilty of manipulation.

      When I found out I had hurt my house-mates pride by helping, being the good Samaritan whilst she was stressed with work and moving, I apologised. However she never really seemed to acknowledge her part in the whole situation that arose at that time. I was forced to take the blame and burden the entire responsibility. My current house-mate told me only this week that she hasn’t been in touch with her either after a text was sent back in June. There are indeed issues my former house-mate is unwilling to face up to. I tried to avoid any awkwardness by approaching the subject head on when it first arose, but by distancing herself is creating a bigger problem that is becoming harder and harder to rectify.

      My sister and a few close friends, including my house-mate know most of the details as to what happened both prior to and after the move. Whilst it is important to forgive it is also important to be honest and kind towards others. So far I have not seen that honesty from my former house-mate. She is reluctant to tell me what exactly what I have done that if I was to be around her again I wouldn’t know if what I was doing offended her or not. That immediately places tension on a relationship of any kind.

      I made sure those I told about this knew the whole story so as to give a fair account. My current house-mate who has indeed been the only one to see both sides first-hand believes I am not to blame. She is hurt herself that our house-mate chose to sever ties so blatantly. My sister too has given me very sound advice. My house-mate hurt my feelings, I began spiralling into a state of depression, drinking, not eating. It started long before the move, at a time when we were close and she outright told me I was a closed-book and in no uncertain terms pretty much made me doubt my work and value as a person. I took offence to the remark. I started to question everything I was doing, talking up my work when in conversation, considering if my career was worth pursuing, even how much I meant to friends and family. If I wasn’t of such sound mind it could have pushed me over the edge. I held on because the network of friends around me showed me what friendship really is.

      My brother in a short conversation rightly said that having been brought up in a Christian household, although my siblings and I are no longer practising, we learnt about compassion, honest and forgiveness. Often that kindness shown to others is taken for granted or people simply don’t know how to deal with it. I don’t know of a day that hasn’t passed by when I have not thought about my house-mate. I feel sorry that she casually dismissed my words each time I told her I cared, each time I told her how important our friendship was. There was a point when I could have forgiven everything if she had been honest with me. I can not get back the hours I have spent suffering the pain she inflicted, no matter how unintentional. Now I am only able to forgive the moment in her life which made her so spiteful and distrusting of others and hope that one day she will come understand why I can not go through it all again. I built my half of the bridge long ago but I can not tell her what she has to do to repair the hole in the middle. She must figure that out herself and there will always be a part of me that hopes she does.

      • Carmene Says:

        I agree. Real manipulation entails going about something with malice or evil intent. For example: if I purposely decide to not call someone just to see if the person will or will not call back so I have an excuse to say: “AAAAAAAH HA! That person is evil for not calling me back. I knew he/she was a horrible person.” Then yes, that is manipulative. For example, I had a job years ago where I was put in a position to fail because the employers needed an excuse to fire me. They knew by giving me no tasks AT ALL, that I would be bored with nothing to do at work. Even after asking multiple times, everyone brushed me aside…shortly thereafter, everyone boasted: “AH HA! I knew she was lazy.” When the reality was (and I am not boasting), I finished all of my work first and without any mistakes! My boss feared I would take over his position and he’d lose his job!

        If a person DOES MUCH TOO MUCH WORK in any type of relationship (this includes romantic relationships as well), the best solution is to LEAVE the person – don’t make excuses for him or her. Walk away and cut the person out of your life. You can only do so much work when building a bridge with someone…the other person must try and build the other half! Who, in their right mind, would want to build an ENTIRE bridge on one’s own?

  176. PB Says:

    Carmene,

    Thank you for your understanding. Sorry to hear about the job. It is unfortunate how some people can turn on others when they feel threatened. After close to seven months since moving out and 4 months since the last e-mail, the bridge is no closer to being built with my former house-mate (and as far as I am aware, my other house-mate is also in the dark). No doubt come December we’ll get a Christmas card like everything is fine again.

  177. Ms.V Says:

    Wow, my how one post has struck a nerve with people. And I thought I was the only one,lol…For me it started with my aunts and cousin. Who now, never call me. MY aunts used to call me when I first moved away to another state to ask for money for church,lol…Then when they stopped going to that church, they stopped calling me as often. Then it stopped all together. My cousin used to call me once in a blue moon but that has seemed to stop too. It had bothered me but now I just accept it and call my cousin who will call me back atleast. She does send me birthday cards too but she never calls me on my birthday. So her cards usually come late,lol. I guess it’s bettern than nothing. Now that I’ve been married for a 1 and 2 months, my friends (except for 1) don’t call me. I serioulsy noticed that 1 friend in particular hasn’t called me on her own since I’ve been married. If she called me, it was because I called her. Never she initiating since I’ve been married. My other friend was like to day when I called after talking to her for 7 mins “Call me this weekend”. I was thinking Dude I just called you,lol..call me sometimes. I don’t understand how someone can say “Call me” after you’ve called them. I thought common courtesy was to call the person the next, sort of like taking turns,lol… Anyway, I guess I’ve been bothered by this myself and it’s nice to know that I am not alone and that others feel or have felt the same way. It is good to write this afterall.

  178. PB Says:

    Mrs V,

    I think it differs for a lot of people. I was very hurt by what my friend did and how easily she felt able to sever ties after so long. Not only me, but my house-mate also. There has been no effort to reach out to either of us. She obviously had a problem acknowledging my friendship but my house-mate didn’t deserve to be cut off. We’ve both moved on though and realised we have people in our lives who are a lot more appreciative of our friendship than she.

    I think that when it comes to family it can be a very different kettle of fish. I can go for weeks, months or years without seeing relatives yet when we meet up conversation carries on as normal. There’s an understanding and no hard feelings that I am aware of. Our lives have moved on and we’re no longer children running around the back yard any more. Although I regularly go home, this experience also got me speaking with my siblings much more frequently too and that I am very thankful for.

    Sometimes we deserve to be treated better. Some friends I have accepted will never initiate without a little persuasion. It would be nice to imagine you are the first thing on their mind, but sadly that may never be the case.


  179. Hey! This is kind of off topic but I need some advice from an established blog.

    Is it very hard to set up your own blog? I’m not very techincal but I can figure things out pretty quick. I’m thinking about making my own but I’m not sure where to begin. Do you have any ideas or suggestions? Appreciate it

  180. kelvin Says:

    Hi

    Would really appreciate some empathetic light being shed on my situation at the moment with a long term friendship that I feel is fading.
    My friend James and I have known each other for about 5 years now. He’s in a r’ship, but it’s never affected our f’ship. His GF is cool. I’ve had gf’s on and off. We text and ring nearly every day(or at least use to). As off recent he has been kind off distant. He’s not texting as much, but what hurts more is that he’s simply not asking or keeping in touch about important personal topics that I’ve mentioned. For e.g. I’ve been going through a tough time as off late and could really have done with a mate to chat to. He just doesn’t ask anymore how have u been etc. All he does is send generic texts like ‘morning’ and’ its lovely day’. He knows that i’m going through a difficult time. Whenever h’s been through tough times I’ve always let him know I’m here and asked him ‘hope yr feeling better ‘etc. He’s not really a cold person or a ‘typical guy’, so I know it’s not a lack of communication skills or being shy to ask. Hs very confident socially. The other thing is he’s very judgemental sometimes about my relationships and kind off implies sometimes that I sleep around’. Which really hurts. He will say it out off the blue and i just get shocked. When I’ve bought this up he just says I’m being sensitive and he didn’t mean it ‘that way’. I could easily judge him on the r’ships and the many girls hs slept with, but I know not to and don’t see any need. All of the above has happened a few times in the past 4 years of our friendship. It comes in cycles. I have confronted him in past when he starts to get cold and he just says been busy, I’ve then tried to save the f’ship. Anyway, this time I’m going through particular hard time and I could’ve done with a mate to talk to. He just seems to want to be getting on with his holiday planning, texting me things like ‘it’s sunny today’ and all these light shallow things, when he knows times are tough for me. I feel hurt and don’t know how to react except pull away too to protect myself from getting hurt. I’m not a needy person, however .i do value f’ships , so I feel I’m at a crossroad with this f’ship..do i cut loose, downgrade it, go back and be the way we were etc ..confuse thanks guys and gals.

  181. PB Says:

    It’s really difficult when friends do this. Particularly through texts as they are often misinterpreted by the reader. Emotions can not be expressed this way but we become more accustomed, with the advancement of technology, to this way of communicating instead of talking directly.

    I don’t know how long this has been going on for but I suspect that over Christmas your mate wants to be spending more time with his girlfriend and family on top of the holiday planning. If you feel that you may be becoming too persistent with the texting, no matter how unintentional they seem, the chances are you are probably right. I’m sure you would just like your messages acknowledged but may I suggest you pull back a little. It’s not distancing if you decide not to talk for a few days and if the relationship is strong it should pick itself up. Maybe send a reply suggesting that you’d like to talk in the new year when things aren’t so busy as you’d really like his opinion about a few things. You shouldn’t be the one to initiate all the time although some people take it for granted that you will. In the mean time there’s no reason not to wish him a happy new year. I know it’s hard for you and you’d love to have his support. Is there no one else who might listen?

    My friend after 7 months of no contact wished me a merry Christmas. For me that’s too late. She has had ample chances ad not once apologised. She may have initiated but it has come too late for me to claw back any trust. I can’t just go ove and have a few drinks expecting to pick up as if the friendship doesn’t need talking about. I suspect this is stronger and just another cycle that you will both be able to move on from together.

    Have a happy new year.

  182. AC Says:

    I have given up on the notion of TRUE friendship. I just don’t bother any more. If someone is meant to come in my life, so be it. But I have stopped caring about this issue. I think sometimes, as painful as it is to be lonely, it’s best to be by yourself and just recharge. There’s nothing you can do to keep people in your life or even push them away if they want to stay with you. So…I recently dropped what I thought was a good friend for over a year due to her lack of interest in maintaining contact. She makes little to no effort me and I have done so much for her and participated in the things in her life that are of value to her. I just work and study. I do recommend contacting a person you know nothing about and take up penpal writing (i.e. inmates – PROCEED WITH CAUTION but it is worth it, soldiers fighting abroad, foster children, volunteering, etc) I think sometimes when a person you know nothing and you in turn, know nothing about, can speak to you and give you advice objectively. It is refreshing and a great way to recharge yourself.

    I think some of us just have to accept that we have to deal with life alone. God knows I despise it but there is nothing we can physically do to change our circumstance.

    But I do know that when I see happily married people, people with children, people with thriving careers, people with loving families that SUPPORT them, people with a group of strong friends…it is a slap on the face! It makes you wonder why you are unworthy of such joy and if you did anything to deserve it (and the answer is ‘no’ but still we ask!) It’s difficult and unfair. I don’t even personally take stock in the belief that “God has plans for the single men and women of the world”. For one – that would not apply to EVERY single single person out there and two, I think some of us were just meant to live bland lives.

    Life…it may not always be what you thought…sometimes, it’s just nothing.

    • kelvin Says:

      that’s really sad what you’ve written. I don;t feel it’s true for me personally.Hope you’re ok.

      • PB Says:

        How has the situation with your friend progressed since Christmas/New Year? Any good news?

    • KH Says:

      I am almost 60 and had years with good friends and years with no friends. I don’t understand why but I’ve learned not fight it. I know that if I want more I have to do more too – meaning joining activites, not so easy for an introvert. I don’t consider someone a friend until I see them to be considerate – only an acquaintance. This means my friend of 37 years who seldom returns my calls is now an acquaintance – by his actions. Yes, it was painful but it was so necessary for my peace of mind. I love this person, he would be there if I needed him (has been many times) and vice- versa, but I cannot count on him being in my life. He spreads himself much too thin. So he is my old acquaintance now. Friends are people who want to spend time with me. No one else qualifies.

  183. AChoy Says:

    Reann made excellent observations. Let’s not pull out the race card, ethnicity card, job card, education card, weight card, height card. At the end of the day, there are those of us that ENJOY relationships and WANT to befriend people and are open to allowing others to befriend us but for superficial reasons: the primary one being you aren’t “cool” enough, many people DON’T want to befriend us! There is nothing wrong with letting others come to you but at the end of the day, if you aren’t interested or you seem only to attract the “worst” types of people, then there is no point in letting others come to you. And that goes back to the initial argument that friendship is a full-time job and it should be a two-way street – why should you always befriend others AND why should others always befriend you? This brings me back to my original point: the genuine-hearted and the sincerely good-hearted are never befriended because people don’t find “nice” attractive. Good, honest, loyal, sincere, caring, people are at the bottom of the rung in society. It’s not just good guys who finish last, it’s also good girls too. People always want what they can’t have and what they can’t have is always: mean-spirited, arrogant, judgmental, shallow, materialistic, spoiled, vain, prejudiced, insensitive, bully-ish, etc. Our society thrives on being around the “worst” personality types. If you are “good”, you will have very few people. And that’s the reality of the truth. When I say “nice”, I don’t mean someone who FOLDS over to fit the molds of others but rather a person who is sincerely helpful and supportive (whilst being objective) – in other words, a REAL friend.

    Last year October, I was conned into writing a biography for someone (receiving no pay) – (but thankfully, I didn’t go through with the job, so the person in question could not take credit for my work) and this individual refused to meet me in person because he wanted to spent time with “loose” women who talk about dildos all day, a group of buddies, who used up all his money, and made him by them lunches, befriended an ex who wrote him a scathing letter about how ugly he was and how God should have not created him. In short, he WANTED to spend time with the people that treated him the worst because he wanted their APPROVAL. This means then that “nice” people are excluded from being allowed to make friends because our approval is never sought.

    Then there is the issue of jealousy, because I’ve accomplished so much with my life (largely in part due to having so few friends), people then hated me for being so successful. And I wanted to point out that being “nice” doesn’t mean you are “needy”. “Needy” can apply to anyone who always “needs” attention – being nice or evil is irrelevant.

    Lastly, the issue of social networking does make for our society to be more “lonely” BUT even on social networking sites, people can still ignore you and not respond to your queries. There are “popular” people online as well! And then there are people like me who can have a million social networking sites and NO ONE WILL RESPOND TO MY QUERIES!!!

    The point is: if no one responds to you online, via text message, letters, phone calls, emails, voicemail, etc within a reasonable time frame – then assume that person is a fairweather friend. If the person keeps in contact with you on a regular basis without always expecting you to contact them, then assume you can build a solid friendship with said person.


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      what the hell is this debt comment all about? Did anyone ask about or inquire about assistance in this area of their life, or are you assuming we have this problem and it relates to our issues with friendships?!!!!

  186. Midknight Says:

    I have noticed over the years some people have a tendency to over rationalize. A good example is for years you would always hear the obvious BS (to me) about how a bully suffers from a low self esteem and bullies others in an attempt to feel better about themselves. Now after years of studies and surveys lo and behold most bullies have a very high self esteem and just enjoy making those weaker suffer. It’s common sense to me the same way a person who never returns calls and you are always the one to call, if it looks like a duck……………… Regardless, there is something called common decency. If someone never responds to your messages or takes the initiative to call it’s not rocket science

    • AC Says:

      I think Midknight just said what we ALL already knew! The person is just plain selfish and doesn’t care. We have all over-rationalized. And btw, you are right, Midknight, about bullies. They just have too high an esteem (also add to that, most bullies don’t stop bullying you just because you ignore them. That’s a load of BS too!) These people are just NOT your friends – plain and simple! Move on…and don’t settle until you find someone that wants to spend time with you and call you regularly!

    • AC Says:

      Just curious Midknight, how did you come to the conclusion that it was BS that bullies suffer from low self-esteem?! Years of studies and surveys have confirmed what you already knew, but I’d like to know how you came to that conclusion BEFORE the years of studies? Also, FOR EVERYONE, please read The Narcissism Epidemic by Twenge and Cambell. It covers a lot what Midknight states and what people are selfish today. Very GOOD read!


  187. Write more, thats all I have to say. Literally, it seems as
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    • AChoy Says:

      Nobody has posted any VIDEOS of any kind on this site, you are sadly mistaken. I did recommend people READ THE BOOK: The Narcissism Epidemic by Twenge and Campbell in addition to everything I’ve written and also in addition to the advice other people have written. Please do not state anyone has posted any video because no such thing was done on this webpage. Thank You.

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