30 December 2008

Forced Friends

There are, I believe, two kinds of friends. "Forced" friends and "natural" friends.

Now, I know what you're doing. You're staring at your computer screen, scratching your head/chin/nethers, wondering...

WTF are "forced" and "natural" friends? Sounds like Heather nipped a bit too much 'nog over the holiday.

Actually, I didn't overdo the 'nog. But I did get a well-needed slap to the face.

"Forced" friends are those friends you make through church or sorority/fraternity or some other organization you may belong to. And your only mutual connection to one another is said organization. You don't go out for coffee or dinner outside of said organizational meetings or gatherings. You are cordial to one another, but you don't talk about how you met your respective spouses or why Steel Magnolias makes you cry every. fracking. time you watch it. If you were to meet outside of the mutual organization membership, you probably wouldn't ever click or socialize with one another.

On the other hand, "natural" friends are the friends you make because once you meet them, you find out you are like-minded individuals and you just click. You get together because you enjoy talking, sharing stories and experiences and opinions. And you can be in each others company and never be uncomfortable with the silences. Whether you belong to an organization together or not, you don't need meetings or set gatherings to make an excuse to get together. You talk and spend time together as much as possible.

The older I get, the more I keep the "forced" friends at arm's length. When I was younger, I would open my arms and heart to these people and I have always paid the price and learned many lessons from these encounters. And it was just this past Saturday that I decided the last of these "forced" friends needed to finally exit stage left.

OK, fine. I'll just put it out there and quit being vague. Is it just me or when someone you look up to, someone you care about, someone you had stupidly opened your heart to, your sorority big sister*, cheats on her husband with one of your friends and then treats you like shit? For the next 12 years? Shouldn't you have dumped said person years ago? Regardless of sorority ties and "sisterhood?" When all this happened? Rather than hang on to the assumption for 12 years that maybe, just maybe, she would see the light, and treat you like a human being? Some day? And you finally realized, just two short days ago, that said day of being treated like a human being, when you never did anything wrong, will never happen? Because said person is a completely selfish tool - a friend who was forced on you by sorority dues, a cheesy mascot, and a pin - and she will never. Ever. Get it.

Yeah, I thought so, too.

Thanks for letting me purge.

*If you weren't in a sorority, don't ask. It's so... collegiate.


Unknown said...

Yeah, the friend thing.

I find that the older I get, the less time I have for anything else than "natural" friends.

Twelve years is a long time to keep hanging on to something that might not even be there. It normally takes me twelve seconds to make my mind up... ;-)

Liz Hill said...

I'm with Mike---kick her to the curb.

I do have work colleagues I consider 'frenemies' cause I must deal with them and it's better to appear civil when possible;-)

Anonymous said...

Awesome. I get the sorority thing, sadly, I do.

Good job kicking her to the curb. Sounds like you needed to get that out of your system long ago.

Feel better??

Anonymous said...

*Bitch* (her not you)

Anonymous said...

I'd kick her to the curb...and then run over her with my car.

Not Afraid to Use It said...

It's hard to break those old habits, of kicking those kinds of friends to the curb. When you are so used to putting up with that kind of shit, it can be hard to see it from a healthier perspective. Good for you for finally seeing it. I'm sorry it hurts so much.

Coal Miner's Granddaughter said...

LeSombre - Yeah. I wish I only took 12 seconds. I'm a bit of a door mat.

Turnbaby - UGH! Frenemies are the worst!

MommyCosm - Yes, I feel much better. Thanks! :)

MetalMom - Total!

Giggle Pixie - Oooo, I knew I liked you for some reason!

NATUI - But you know? It doesn't even really hurt anymore. It's just sad to me that she's so clueless. Because I'm loyal to a fault and would have put up with her shit if she had just shown one ounce of humanity. But, alas, she's toast. Her loss and my gain. :)

Faiqa said...

I'm catching up on your blog and right now I'm just floored. I had an hour long discussion w/my husband about this issue last night... I used the same exact terms "forced" and "natural." In my case, though, I was talking about friendships that are "forced" because kids/spouses are involved. I've decided that life is too short to be close to people I don't really like.

Coal Miner's Granddaughter said...

Faiqa - You are so right. That's why I just decided this particular forced friend of mine was no longer worth it. I have natural friends that deserve my attention more. :)

namaste said...

i've been reading thru your blog and i like it a lot! i was especially moved by this post about friends. i couldn't agree with you more on this!


Gypsy said...

I definitely know what you mean about it being forced. Being back in my hometown, it's rampant.