Tag Archives: relationships

The idea of being sociable seems so foreign to me

November 26, 2010

I’ve never been big on making friends. It’s not that I don’t want to, I’m just really inept at it. When I’m in a social situation it is quite normal for me to sit quietly in a corner somewhere as everything else revolves around me. Occasionally I will pluck up the courage to talk, but quite often I will peer into my phone and pretend I’m doing something important. This implies that I’m not available and you don’t have to worry about me. Yet I’d love you to worry about me.

This situation mostly happens when I’m around people I don’t know very well, or if there are a couple of big personalities and I can’t find my voice in the group. I assume I seem disinterested or bored. People often ask me if I’m OK, and I am. I’m just not sure what to say or what I can add to the conversation. I often feel like they are talking about things I don’t understand or I’ve never felt apart of. Life general everyday things.

I’m much better with smaller groups of people. If I am left with another person I don’t know I will attempt small talk. If it is a group of three, often I can just sit back and nod in the appropriate places. I’m very much introverted and this has become more pronounced over the last few years.

Yet part of me yearns to be sociable. Part of me wants to hang with people who get me and take me as I am. I want to do things like go to karaoke, or go out for dinner or drinks or trivia, or just sit around a campfire/bonfire/hot coals and talk about life with a few drinks. Part of me wants to feel comfortable around people and not feel like I should censor what I say in case I offend someone. Not because I’m generally offensive; I just figure something I like or do will be considered incorrect or not be liked by others. Maybe that is why I hide away and don’t speak.

When I do speak up my mind, I sometimes scare away people. I grew up with a few close friends and since moving to Brisbane have had a few other close friends. Even today I feel like I don’t have many people that are my friends. They are often people I have met through Natalie, and even though I consider them my friends, it’s different, you know?

People have suggested I do hobbies or find groups to join but I’m either too scared to do so or can’t find the types of things to do. It would require a bit step out of my comfort zone and the times I have tried I have only felt pain when it backfires.

Even these days my close mates have drifted away. There are greater differences between us and we all have our own lives going on. But then I think about my father and his inability to make friendships and wonder if it’s like father like son?

I should probably come to terms with the fact that I will never be part of the ‘in’ crowd. I don’t even know if I want to be. I guess I want to be part of a group of people that I can hang out with once or twice a month and have fun times with.But lets not dwell on that.

I guess for now I just have to accept that I’m me and this is how I am. I can’t force it. I just have to accept me and go from there…

Friendship has so many different meanings

November 21, 2010

I was talking to Natalie the other night about friendship. Everyone has their own view on what friendship is. I’m no different and I think it is interesting to see the different forms of friendship that exist in the world. I thought I should explore this further, even if it is just for my own benefit.

What is friendship to me? I think there are different levels of friendship depending on how long I’ve known someone, how I became friends and there are different reasons why I am friends with them. That doesn’t mean the friendship is any less important but it does mean that what I might expect from them is different.

I’m not one to have a lot of friends, so when I do make new friends I come to look at them as being very important. I prefer quality friends over having many of them.

I’m not one of these people that hangs out with their friends every week or every month even for some. That doesn’t mean they are any less important to me. We all have our own lives and our own interests and that is what makes it cool. Sometimes we’ll catch up at a party or just talk over the net but if they needed a shoulder to lean on or someone to talk to I’d be there in a flash.

Not hanging out isn’t because I don’t care. It is to do with the fact that I’m a home body and an introvert. I don’t socialise a lot and when I do it takes a lot of energy. Some of my friends are quite sociable which is great, because it means I can attend things and enjoy myself without having to be Mr Out There 2010. It can lead to issues though if they are feeling neglected because I don’t go to things often because staying at home is quite often the most soothing thing for my soul.

As an example, I have a group of friends that I’ve known since high school. By and large I spent my formative years as a young adult with them having awesome times and really letting my hair down. They live in another city which is about an hour away, so they aren’t too far away to visit but I don’t see them every weekend with them any more.

These guys are the guys that I know I could depend on if all hell broke loose and I didn’t know where to turn to. My pride might get in the way but I know I could rely on them no matter what. It doesn’t matter how often we chat or how long it is between catch ups, and even if you have a few weird moments here or there. At the end of the day, they are my friends, or really my “mates”, and if anything life shattering happened I’d be there for them in a second. I know they would for me too.

Some of those people I went to school with. Some I met later on and have kept in touch with. I know that it is very hard to get rid of these people from my life, and I’m very grateful for that.

Some friends I have I won’t see for a while until we are at the same event. Busy lives cause us to be like ships in the night and pass by often without realising it. Doesn’t reduce the importance of the friendship for me. Like a friend of ours that we see probably once a year or even less. It doesn’t make them any less of a friend and we’ve be there in a minute if there was a call for help.

I can understand that some people might think that friendships like that aren’t really good friendships. I guess that is because they have a different understanding of what friendship is. That becomes a problem if a friend of mine does have a different idea to me and then we have to work through it. Sometimes that doesn’t work and you lose them. That’s life.

What is interesting is that there are so many different ways in which friendships form and how many different ways people see friendship. Some people want their friends on call at all times and must see or talk to them regularly. I’ve never been like that, even with family. We all care about each other but we have our own things on and we talk when we can.

Natalie and I get on so well because we are quite similar in this. We both love our own space to do our things, but still enjoy hanging out with each other when we want to. I think it is the same with my friendships with other people.

I’m sure some of my friends and ex-friends from over the years have found this difficult. I am who I am and I don’t want to change who I am so I guess it is a balance of finding people who can work with what I can offer. I think that’s much like any relationship.

I wonder what you think. What does friendship mean to you? What do you expect from your friends? Do you need them to be in constant contact or do you prefer to just catch up occasionally, or a mixture of the two? Let me know in the comments as I’d love to see what other people think on this.

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