February 2018
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the age-old 'old friends vs. new lover' clash


Many... rather, all of my friends (except Kristy and Kaylene) have told me at some point that I withdrew from them because of Ben -- either when I first got with him or when I got married... and while Rebecca is just plain wrong (we had mutually withdrawn for six months before Ben and I got together) the others have reason to say so, as the changes were nearly simultaneous.

Yet... I believe the reasons have been mistaken. I think it is assumed that I pulled away because I just got caught up with Ben, or because I felt like I didn't need my friends, or because I lost interest -- and none of those are the real reasons.

At the point of Ben and I getting together/engaged (we went from acquaintance to fiance in 19 days), I had been living several states away from everyone for six months. During this time, I wasn't really in contact with any of them (except elya, to whom I am so grateful -- she pulled me through the worst period of my life) and emotional distance grows with physical distance, of course. But the initial reasons aren't really important anymore.

Nowadays, my from-before-Ben friends still feel like I've dropped them, and in a way, I have. I have changed so incredibly much over the past two years... and I'm looking for different things in my relationships now. I don't feel comfortable impressing my new restrictions on old friends who are used to my easygoing ways. See, nowadays I require my friendships (the ones that count) to be open and honest, and to share with me more than the superficial stuff they'd be most comfortable sharing. And I require them to allow me to be perfectly honest, and if they are offended/hurt, I require them to tell me what I did wrong and how it hurt them and how I might improve. I believe this is the only way to have a deep, lasting friendship, and I don't want to waste time on a relationship that won't last.

Another way I have changed: I've grown more confident, more secure, due to Ben's constant love. I no longer cling to anyone that I think might give me a few drops of love. I used to do this; I also used to pour myself out for other people who did not give back even half. And that is not a healthy relationship -- healthy is equal, not one giver and one receiver. I was happy with that though, and I don't resent any of my past friends for giving only what they knew to give. But I will not go back into that pattern,
and unfortunately,
I am only capable of loving on two levels:
1. neutral / smile at and give small talk
2. you have my heart, my love, my life, there is nothing I wouldn't delightedly do for you

I used to love all my old friends on level 2, and now I don't (for some of them), because they can't give that back. I can fake the same level that they want to give, but that is too damn painful and I refuse to do it, because what's really going on is me loving more. Some of the old friends were really used to me chasing them, and when I stopped, they thought I was pulling away -- nope, it's your turn to reach out.

And dammit, we need to have something in common. If all we have in common is a relationship with God, that might be enough, but I doubt it. If we don't share taste in music, reading material, activities, arts... what's there to build a relationship on?

--------

So I avoid some of them, because I'm just plain scared that I'll end up falling in love with them, and they won't be open or love back, and I'll have to laborously make the excruciating climb out again.... or they'll leave me wondering, like Kaylene and Kristy.

That's why I avoid the friends I have and hope desperately to meet someone who is already on my level, has some common interests, has the same views on relationships, and lives in the same damn state. I fucking hate you, Florida, for stealing my Del and Kristy.


Some of you LJ friends I really wish I could befriend in real life, but some of you I feel like I'm too 'vanilla' for and some of you just live so far away! I wonder what you would think, but I don't have the eggs to ask right now.

feelings: uncomfortable
sounds: the hum of the computer

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Comments
wallbrat ══╣╠══
From what I've seen I like the person you are now. *smiles* As for the friends who don't understand, it's not your problem. We all change and grow as time goes on. If they can't accept that then they aren't friends.

belenen ══╣garrulous╠══
well thank you. ;-)
wallbrat ══╣╠══
jedibubbles ══╣╠══
*huggles* I still love you! And you're welcome to call anytime after work--even if we can only talk for a few minutes, it's something, right?
belenen ══╣bel hearts del╠══
but what's your schedule, lovely? I'm not working every single day, and when I'm off I want to know when to call (when you won't be in class or sommat).
writer_lilies ══╣╠══
I agree. I'm sick of waiting for my "friends" to decide when they want to talk to me or hang with me. If they're gonna act like that, they might as well not talk to me at all or at least stop expecting me to tell them things.
belenen ══╣garrulous╠══
*nod* relationships that aren't balanced slowly destroy both parties.
writer_lilies ══╣╠══
synisterchyck ══╣╠══
I have been lucky I guess, quite a few of my close friends, we have been friends for years and years. But many have fallen by the wayside. It is important to have things in common, even if it is just a shared zest for life.

I would love to meet you in person myself
belenen ══╣garrulous╠══
we'll have to do that sometime then. ;-)
ex_alariya46 ══╣╠══
...did you get your e-mail yet?
belenen ══╣garrulous╠══
yep, thinking over my response. ;-)
evileve ══╣╠══
too vanilla? hahahhaaaa!!!!
I've thought about meeting with you for coffee or something...I just don't have the time to do anything anymore. :(
As soon as we get DSL I will add all those icons...
belenen ══╣beautiful╠══
that makes me happy!
maybe when summer gets here and you aren't in school we can meet. ;-)
nikare ══╣Max Payne╠══
*Note: I'm aware and remember that you had your own vows and way of doing your wedding (which was very nice by the way), but I will bring up a traditional one that really applies to all marriages regardless of it being stated.

"Forsaking all others..."

It is not meant in an offensive way, nor does it mean that neither of you should have or maintain friends. It means that the two of you come first, before anyone else, to each other (of course, speaking of this mortal realm). You rely and depend on one another's strength and commitment. Friends, hopefully, should understand that with marriage comes a shift in a person's life. They are going to change. It is inevitable. They should strive to continue to be friends rather than lament any past personal preferences.
belenen ══╣garrulous╠══
mm-hmm, uh-huh, nod nod. I agree.
nikare ══╣╠══
belenen ══╣╠══
jedibubbles ══╣╠══
Reading this again (recovering from a trip to the gym...happily sore am I), I'm reminded of a late-night phone conversation we had in the months before your wedding. I told you point-blank that things were going to change with your friendly relationships, and I believe you decreed that you were quite sure that wouldn't happen, since "nothing's changing." I think my response was something along the lines of, "Well, maybe not for you and Ben, but to the rest of us it makes a difference." And--one year later--I'm still trying to mentally get comfortable with the fact that you're married and fully dedicated to someone else. I mean, if nothing else, y'all live together (that's very different from having roommies). Mostly, for me, I know y'all currently work opposing hours and don't get much time together, so I feel kinda bad for stealing you away from him.

This does not, of course, excuse my horribly negligent behavior in the slightest. ;_;
belenen ══╣bel hearts del╠══
pish, tush -- Ben would be offended if you stayed away for that reason. He honestly doesn't begrudge me any time and love spent on YOU, for sure, probably not on any of my other friends either. He likes me to be happy, and you make me happy!

And baby girl, believe me when I say that this was not pointed at you (or anyone really) at all, it was just me reflecting. And as far as your/my relationship, I think that you have overcome any offense I may have stupidly given, and I certainly don't hold any grudges against you. With you, I am all lookin-at-the-future, and it's shiny.
jedibubbles ══╣╠══
Wow, yeah, that was horribly inarticulate...I was trying to say that it's just different. But I'm getting used to it. They rest of 'em will, too.
darkpool ══╣╠══
I wish you (or I) lived nearer, I would love to have you as a real life friend.
belenen ══╣garrulous╠══
Yeah lady, move to GA. ;-)
aubkabob ══╣╠══
this made me think about life during the year after my rape: i was in a massively deep depression, so i didn't want to go out, or to do things that i had before. my friends drifted away. i do feel sad on one hand that i didn't reach back out, but slightly upset on another hand that they didn't reach deeper.

odd that during that time, people i hadn't considered my friends came out of hiding, and opened me to an entirely new world of closer, more wonderful friendship than i had had before, with trite greetings and lunches and such.

it always makes me sad to see friendships go away, for whatever reason. but maybe what we had to learn from them in life, or vice versa, was complete, and it was time to move on.

life in phoenix had been one where i felt like i had to scramble for a larger friends base. if my move back home did nothing else (and it has done a world of good...), it helped me to look at friendships in a better perspective: smile politely at those who you know aren't meant to be more to you, and open your heart and hug tightly with all you have those that will.

and to have the power to know the difference.
aubkabob ══╣╠══
and with your fantastic artistic ability and tastes in EV'RAYTHANG, you would fit in perfectly, says i, with the dynamic trio of aubkabob, faetal, and brosely.

rawk.
belenen ══╣╠══
aubkabob ══╣╠══
belenen ══╣╠══
aubkabob ══╣╠══
belenen ══╣╠══
aubkabob ══╣╠══
belenen ══╣╠══
aubkabob ══╣╠══
on communication, social justice, intimacy, consent, friendship & other relationships, spirituality, gender, queerness, & dreams. Expect to find curse words, nudity, (occasionally explicit) talk of sex, and angry ranting, but NEVER slurs or sexually violent language. I use TW when I am aware of the need and on request.
Expect to find curse words, nudity, (occasionally explicit) talk of sex, and angry ranting, but NEVER slurs or sexually violent language. I use TW when I am aware of the need and on request.