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Re: The Mysterious Rules of the Friendship Game

Re: The Mysterious Rules of the Friendship Game2012-03-10T15:05:52+00:00

The Forums Forums Emotional Journey I Don't Get People The Mysterious Rules of the Friendship Game Re: The Mysterious Rules of the Friendship Game


Post count: 140

Abby, I read every word. You express yourself and describe the situation SO well… so effectively, in fact, that I feel like I’m in your shoes with you and can only reflect and wait for someone else to post The Answer.

Close, long-term friendships DO take work. Every once in a while we need to save the relationship by professing that something didn’t settle well with us, and hope it can be talked out without further hurt to our feelings.

Unfortunately, opening up this discussion means we have to be ready to hear about some shortcoming of our own that we weren’t aware of. We need to be ready to swallow our hurt and promise that we’ll work on it, instead of acting on defensiveness and saying something like, for instance, “Well it’s not easy being friends with YOU, you know! You’re really hard to take sometimes!!”

PEOPLE are hard to take, for Pete’s sake. You BOTH make accommodations for each other in order to be close friends. You need an opportunity to point this out to her (*without* examples!) and to ask her to agree that you’ll both continue to do so.

And I absolutely get your words: “I’m good at the extremes- all the time or none of the time- but can’t wrap my brain around intermittent!!”

I’ve gone so far as to add “keeping in touch with people” to my weekly To-Do lists (e.g., send quick “hello” email to so-and-so). But that, of course, just swells my already-overwhelming list and makes me feel more pressured.

I’ve mentioned to two friends lately that taking regular initiative to be in contact is a pitfall of mine that I’m working hard on, that it has to do with issues around dealing with what’s in the moment and feeling overwhelmed, and that I dearly appreciate every call and email they make.

I don’t think they really understood. But I know they appreciated hearing it—at least for that moment, until the next time I go too long without being in touch.