Wednesday, September 16, 2009

(Toxic) Friends, how many of us have them?

The other day I came across an article on Shine titled "9 signs your friend is toxic." I saw a couple of points that were interesting and described the situations that have made me recently re-evaluate my relationship with some of my friends/acquaintances, such as "friends" not being there for you or not having the give-and-take that a friendship should have.

Now, the main thing that has made me look at all the people in my phonebook, FB friend list, etc. is this: What do we have in common? What do we talk about? Do we see things the same, or are we able to have intelligent discussion about the things we view differently?

this is kinda addressed in the article:

5) You don’t share the same values or the same world view: It’s a red flag
that this isn’t the right friend for you if you don’t respect her for who she is.

I've come to realize out of the few people I actually associate with on a regular basis, very few of them share my interests or outlook. and if they do, they keep it under wraps well, because there is never any in-depth discourse about anything of substance. Things such as politics, the treatment of minorities & the poor in this country, education, etc. are passed up in favor of music, shopping, and relationships. Not to say I don't enjoy those things; I do and I talk about them a lot. But where there should be balance in what we share, IMO there is not. Instead, I turn to e-buddies that I've made. These people are definitely dependable when I need a laugh, style recommendations or healthy debate. Maybe it's just because we have a forum to be so random and varied in our conversations, but it definitely makes me wonder "Why aren't my folks here this diverse?" I know there could be any number of reasons, so there's no point in trying to pick out the why of it all.

So what is there to do? As I stated before, I already don't associate with that many people. Do I adhere to the Girl Scout song and make new friends while keeping the old, because "one is silver and the other's gold"? (BTW, I never got which one was supposed to be silver & gold. And is one supposed to be better than the other? And since I like silver over gold would even care that much about the "gold" friends? I digress.) Should the commonality of being in BGLOs or having grown up together be enough to hold on, or is it okay to say "Our time has passed, it was fun while it lasted" and move on? I think we (especially women) are taught to hold on to friends as "friends" even when we've outgrown them or don't have much interaction with them. After all, that would make us "funny-acting" or mean that we weren't a true friend in the first place.

I'm not sure, but hopefully through reflection I'll figure out what directions these various relationship will take. After all, the people you associate with should be a reflection of who you are. I'm not seeing anything in the mirror at this point.

No comments: