Snowflake friends

English: Snowflake 300um LTSEM, 13368, Rime fr...

English: Snowflake 300um LTSEM, 13368, Rime frost on both ends of a “capped column” snowflake. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

by Madeline Laughs

I received a comment recently on one of my posts that gave me a moment to pause and think about what I was writing. The comment was simply put and to the point, and while I suspected a bit of apathy on the part of the observer, I did hear what they were saying.

“Hard to tell. It’s not her fault that she didn’t live up to your expectations. She operates in her own way, you do too. It just took you longer than you’d expected to realize that you two do not really click. It’s normal.”

As I bulldoze through my own dogma regarding friends and boundaries, I would be remiss not to make the most important of all observations and that is that friends are not all the same. There are so many nuances and differences among your group of friends that to expect each of them to fit a certain mold would be an overwhelming battle of wits.

However my posts are not about making everyone the same. They are about avoiding the ones that can potentially hurt and disappoint you.

I am sure that in the case of my fair weather friend that when I asked a favor of her that she was not willing to fulfill, she most likely felt I had crossed one of her own personal boundaries. When this is apparent, you have to realize the truth, which was the point of the comment made above. The two of us did not click on some level, therefore we were not a good fit as friends. I was weary of always being the person that was giving my time and attention and she was not willing to back me up by discontinuing to validate a personal attack on Facebook. It was an impasse and rather than continue to give energy in a direction that made me uncomfortable, I ended the connection.

If I were to categorize all of the friends that make me happy, the lists and categories would be endless. There are so many different ones! Friends that I work with, ones that work with my husband, friends we have over for dinner, friends that are on Facebook, friends that are on the West Coast, friends in other countries, friends I confide in and friends I mentor, ones that mentor me, etc. Endless!

Not every friend will fit into an exact mold, but everyone will have the same quality. That quality is what is important to me. None of my friends will purposely be hurtful, judgmental or mean. That’s not asking much, but it is the most important quality a friend can possess.

If you can gently roll through the friend list in your mind and they bring a smile to your face, then you are doing well. If at any time one brings a crease to your brow, or a twinge in your gut, then you have some soul searching to do about continuing that friend connection, or not. You can shove it aside until another day, or wait until it comes to a head with a confrontation if you want to, but why would you want to? Unless this is someone you feel you can’t live without, or someone that’s been in your life for years, there’s no need to harbor this kind of resentment or discomfort.

I know the argument here is varied. You can see this person as a challenge for growth. You can use this to learn some valuable lessons in compromise. People are not disposable. These are all true and valid arguments and if this is something you feel you need to do, then by all means, pursue it. There are no hard and fast rules when it comes to dealing with the people we have in our lives, but there are hard and fast rules about how to keep them from causing us future pain.

While life will have it’s hardships and tribulations, friendships should not be one of them. Figure out what your personal boundaries are and enforce them for your own happiness. After all, it’s your life and you are the only person that can control how it plays out.

Friends are like snowflakes. Each one is unique in their style and their appearance and each one brings something new to the mix. There are literally millions of people waiting to be your friend. Don’t spend your time playing in the dirty, yellow snow when the drifts of pure and untouched snow are so huge and too numerous to count.

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About Madeline Scribes

A writer with a sense of humor. If anyone can laugh at life, it's me.
This entry was posted in All kinds of Advice, Facebook Advice, Personal Boundaries Primer and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

8 Responses to Snowflake friends

  1. OneHotMess says:

    Here is that link I promised you the other day: http://onehotmessage.wordpress.com/2012/08/20/love-attachment-detachment-and-letting-go/. People ARE like snowflakes. Everyone has different boundaries, wants, and needs. Some will fit with you well, some—not so much no matter how much you love them. This is a huge lesson on the road to authenticity! I love that you are doing it! Xoxoxo

    Like

    • Thank you so much for the validation that my process is out there and making sense. I am also thankful that you shared your link. I loved your words and they also gave me a new perspective and something to consider. It has been a journey here and I am excited to be reaching my destination.

      Like

  2. Regyna Longlank says:

    Years ago when we started this blog I think we had a more radically inclusive approach to friends. Ironically time and experience have brought us here. Feeling excluded and powerless motivated us to create a place to talk about how it felt to be left out. Now we are the leavers, and for our own very good reasons.

    How does it feel to be pushed to the point where you have to cut ties? To say this is not redeemable. This one can’t be saved. Its broke and now we gotta shoot it in the head. I mean I get it, we do. It has to go, I’m not arguing with you there.But what happened to the love man, can’t we all just get along?

    No. No we can’t. Because some people are just assholes. Maybe they like it that way, I don’t know. They are certainly committed if nothing else. I will talk myself blue but eventually even this sucker will quit.

    Like

    • I have come to the conclusion that we all *can* get along by realizing that we all don’t have to force a relationship or friendship that just isn’t going to work for us
      .
      For years I have held onto people that constantly make me unhappy. I had my reasons. Some of them I felt obligated to keep because of history or because they were family, and some I truly didn’t think I could live without. What I realized was that continuing to allow them to hurt me wasn’t their fault. They are who they are and that’s the way they choose to treat me. The hurting was my fault and for whatever reasons I kept going back and getting hurt over and over again because of my own stupidity. It was never them, it was me.

      Evidently they possessed some lesson I needed to learn, or some wisdom I needed to acquire, in order for me to feel like a whole human being. Once I finally felt whole on my own, I knew I could let them go because not only did I no longer need them, I didn’t want to be around them anymore.

      Seeing your comments this morning really made my day. You are a friend I will keep til the end of my days because you make me happy. I never feel incomplete with you as my friend. I just feel happy. Love you Longlank!!!

      Like

      • Regyna Longlank says:

        I guess you are right, that is a form of getting along. It is hard for me to see it that way, but it is true. You have a good attitude. Even if it’s not true that it was you and not them the only thing you have control over, the only thing you can change, is you. So if it’s them, you still have to change you 😀 but sometimes it really is them. and not you. just sayin.

        I love you too. It means a lot to me to have an outlet where I can share my thoughts. Just this morning I was telling myself that I’m dreaming, I’m not a writer, and I need to stop thinking that I am. Then I got a note from a reader about a post I did a while back and I didn’t even recognize the name. I went back and read it and I have to say I think maybe I am a writer. I seem to be saying something, maybe it’s something that needs to be said. Maybe not, but I know I need to say it, and maybe that is enough.

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  3. Pingback: crossing the line of healthy boundaries | Spread Information

  4. Pingback: crossing the line of healthy boundaries | Madeline Scribes

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