I’m a firm believer that your circle of friends changes when you change. They either get replaced with new ones, or the old ones change and evolve with you. Kind of like cells in the body… with time, your cells die off and get replaced; cycles range between 2 days, 3 weeks and some as long as 10 years. There are some cells that last a lifetime like the majority of the neurons in your brain. [Like] a friend of mine who I’ve known since pre-school days; There’s literally nothing in life that I couldn’t share with her. Similar to family but not quite. Similar in a sense of the love I have for her. But different because there’s certain things that I could tell her that I wouldn’t feel comfortable talking to family about. We hardly ever see eye to eye lol but there’s a mutual respect and deep bond that I do not take for granted.
We went on a hiatus for about 10 years but when we linked up again, it was like no time had passed. We definitely changed over time, but at our core, we were the same.
There is a myth that people change every 7 years based off of the theory that because most of the cells in the body renew every 7-10 years, we essentially become a new person. I’m only 75ish% sold on this. It’s a neat concept when you think about it. Didn’t you feel completely different between ages, 7, 14, 21 and 28?
At 7, anyone who said hi to me was my friend.
14 was scary because all I wanted was to fit it, and I never did.
21 was a hot mess, too many friends and extremely distracted.
28 showed me that the current friends in my life were solid af; they’re respectful of boundaries and allow space for growth.
Do you agree that we expect too much from our friends??
And people in general?
On the surface, your friends, [especially since you choose them] should be nice, good, uplifting individuals in your life. Once it turns into something different; there’s nothing wrong with backing away.
This is something I had to learn with two friendships. One I speak to occasionally and the other, maybe once or twice a year. A disconnect in lifestyle preferences created much needed distance on both ends. No love was lost, it’s just that the friendship lacked purpose. I still cheer for them from a far and wish them nothing but the best even though our friendship is basically over.
Having high expectations of your friends is not good or bad in my opinion; it just depends on how you move. If a friend is acting in a way that you don’t expect them to, what you do next will speak more to your character than theirs. This is a great time to look within and decide how to move forward. Some friends expect you to jump when they say jump, to drop everything to be at their beckon call and to assume certain responsibilities that are unfair and unrealistic. Then you have other friends who only expect, love, respect and loyalty. I’m only interested in the latter at this point in my life.
Now, I’m very intentional with my selection of friends. My best friend and I bonded over mutual interest and interestingly different personalities. We’re something like night and day. And like my childhood friend, we don’t always see eye to eye but we have that mutual respect for one another. The things I love the most is that she inspires me and accepts me and does not have unreasonable expectations in our friendship.
The reality is… you can always learn something from people who don’t think the same as you. Let that sink in.
[[[ Yea, you should have some things in common; but a good quality friend is one who has a different perspective than you; a friendship should be composed of people who can learn from one another, care for each other and embody a vibe that encourages individual growth. ]]]
Sometimes with women, the friendships with our girlfriends end up being more damaging than our romantic relationships. A once meaningful, loving relationship between two women could turn into a super destructive idea that you should have ownership of the other person’s life choices. A healthy friendship or romantic relationship should not be that way.
The reality is that friends will disappoint you. They will hurt your feelings. They will not always do what you want them to do. They’ll have different opinions based off of their experiences. They have different goals and dreams. Sometimes a person you don’t necessarily like could turn out to be a friend. LOL let me explain. I had a “friend” a fellow Sagittarius who I felt like didn’t really like me. I didn’t care for her either. I kept her close because I knew she would always call me out on my BS… but I secretly hated it because I felt like her delivery was always so fucked up. Buuuuttt, a part of me wanted someone around who would always be brutally honest with me and not just be a “yes” friend.
“Yes” friends are bad. Beware. My opinion. Moving on…
Even though I didn’t really like her demeanor, I had and still have mad love for her and considered her a really close friend. But I’m relieved that we don’t speak anymore hahaha. We knew that with time we’d probably end up saying things that we could never come back from. It’s the sag in us. So, we both backed away gracefully.
I said all that to say, we have to be careful with our expectations of our friendships and how we react to what the reality is. The best thing to do is to take a look inward and decide how YOU want to move forward. Some friends are only meant to be around for season of your life and that’s okay. And if you’re lucky, you’ll have at least 1 or 2 that will hold you down for a lifetime. Just like the cells in our bodies, they’re here for a certain amount of time depending on the type of cell and the stage of life you’re in. Now, I’m clearly aware that we have less emotional attachment to the cells in our body because we can’t see each one with the natural eye, but they literally make up who we are. They come and go just like our friends, family and each relationship we encounter. They all contribute to who we are, and in the end, renew us and make us better people.
What are your thoughts on friendships??
I really really NEEDED to read this. I have been so down in the dumps about the type of friendships I have to the point where I’ve been trying to navigate how I move forward with them. Like I really have been trying to check myself and make sure I’m being the type of friend that I myself would like to have. But this… this gave me exactly what I needed.
Good, I’m happy to hear that! And that’s a great idea, be the type of friend that you would like to have! I like that.
This was a great read! And I absolutely agree. My philosophy is there are people in my life for certain areas of my life. I try to keep my attachment and expectations low, but always remain kind and compassionate. I am happy to say my boyfriend, sister, and girlfriend of over a decade are my closest and best friends!
Yes that’s so true, compartmentalizing your circle is a really good thing, it minimizes confusion. Thank you for reading!
This was an amazing article and enlightening take on friendship. This was exactly what I needed to hear/read in this moment as I am reevaluating the friendships in my life that have been and are becoming toxic. Thank you for this post!
Yes, Sis. Reevaluate and move forward. There’s nothing wrong with backing away and loving from afar. Thank you for reading!
Great read. Definitely recycled friends over the years. It seems the older I get the fewer my “true” friends become and everyone else just becomes close acquaintances. Finding people to truly share your heart with isn’t easy at all!
Agreed! Thanks for reading!
Amazing article. A fresh take on friendship I must say. Keep up the good work 🙂
Thank you for reading 🙂