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Alpha Echo
01-05-2010, 09:53 PM
One of my goals this year is "No more bullshit." Not from friends, not from family, not from co-workers. I want none of it.

It's only January 5, but all ready, I'm doing well with my goal and wanted to share.

The lease on my apartment is up on January 31st, but for the past 6 months, I've been living with my SO. All my clothes and shoes (the important stuff!) has been moved into his house, but we are still working on the rest.

The week of Thanksgiving, my friend told me she had boxes I could use to move. She got out of work early Wednesday (she normally doesn't get home until 7pm - I get out at 3:30 - I'm not waiting around), so we decided to meet then. I ended up getting out earlier and didn't want to wait for her, and since she lives an hour from me, I didn't really want to go home only to turn back around. So I suggested Black Friday thinking while I was out shopping with the Little One, we could meet up. Well of course my friend didn't want to meet me, and I wasn't going to take a 5 year old for an hour ride to get boxes. My friend started an attitude telling me her husband wants to get rid of them. I told her go ahead b/c I just don't know when it'd be practical for me to get them.

Still, she wanted me to get them, so I told her maybe that Saturday if we went to my apartment to move another load of stuff, but I really didn't know what we were doing (it was the Monday after Thanksgiving). Thursday, she asks if I'm still coming to get the boxes b/c if not she was getting rid of them. I told her GO AHEAD! Geez. I'm sorry I can't make plans, but I just don't know what I'm going to be doing! We had tentative plans to go to my SO's sister's, and we wanted some time alone, but I had no idea what we'd be doing, where we'd be. She went off about how I didn't have to bring my SO and never do anything w/o him (not true) and how it was only an hour. But an hour out of my way when I might have other plans..for BOXES?

Finally, she said they'd give them to a friend.

The following Friday she saw my Facebook about playing poker and sent me a nasty sarcastic text saying "I'm glad you found time for THAT." or some such bs.

Haven't heard from her since but decided give our friendship one more shot. This was not, BTW, the first time I'd experienced something this petty with her. It seems like she's always looking for something to be upset about, and she's very negative. When my life was shit, she was a great friend. Now that things are good, she has to go looking for problems. So I emailed her:



How are you? How was your Christmas and New Year? How's the baby? I don't know how you feel about me, but I'm really hoping we can move past the box incident and be friends again.

Regardless, I hope all is well. I hope you and the baby are both happy and healthy.

Take care.

Today, I got this:


We are all doing well. Thanks for asking. As far as the friendship goes we will have to see what happens.

I wrote back this:



I am glad you're doing well, but Kristin, if you're going to have that kind of attitude, I think this is where we part ways. This is ridiculous, and I don't have the time, energy, or desire to deal with a friendship conditional on how I live my life. I don't have to justify anything to you, including how I spend my time.

I hope one day you're able to live a more positive life instead of always looking for the negative. Life is difficult enough without looking for and creating problems where there really aren't any.

I wish the best for you and your family. I hope your baby is healthy and happy and beautiful. Take care.

Anyone else have a story about getting rid of the bullshit? Snuffing out the toxins and negativity in your life?

Kitty Pryde
01-05-2010, 10:11 PM
My partner and I have been going back and forth about ending a friendship with somebody she has known for 20 years. It's hard because the friend's behavior has been awful, but she doesn't have other good friends or good family. She also has a baby and a kindergartner, and the kindergartner has a really good relationship with my partner and I. I really love these kids like they were family.

But we have repeatedly extended ourselves to this woman, and it got to the point that we didn't feel appreciated at all for it. (There are many anecdotes, but the most recent was four months ago: we drove 400 miles to take her out for her birthday at a nice restaurant, where she complained they didn't serve lobster thermidor, ate her steak frowning at us, complained that her present wasn't a 'real' present, complained that her card didn't have any money in it, and didn't smile, say thanks, or even act like she was glad we were there at any time.) Our friendship seemed to boil down to her trying to get us to buy her stuff, doing things like demanding we pay for meals at restaurants for her and her husband (who makes more money than my partner and I put together!).

My partner put up with this and general bad behavior for a long time because the friend had a typical tragic upbringing, and clung to that as a sort of excuse to be mean and abrasive. But since the last time we saw her, my partner had a long talk with her about all her objectionable behavior and this friend shouted at us and said everything was my fault. In the intervening months I've been telling my partner to try to make up with her. And this 'friend' has been trying (fruitlessly) to make things out to be my fault and get my partner to side with her. After a nasty text message at New Year's, we decided we're done. I'm sad about losing contact with the little ones, but unless their mom can come to her senses, we can't keep them in our lives.

James81
01-05-2010, 10:15 PM
I've got a lot of stories like this. Mostly in the past like, 3 years. Mainly just recognizing things that in my past were toxic to me and removing myself from them before they could do the damage that they had in the past.

One of the best moments in my life was when I decided that I was going to be selfish about my interactions and realize that if something is draining me, I needed to remove it from my life.

It's worked well for me thus far.

In fact, I spent new years weekend with a girl from out of town, and my main goal was to show who exactly who I am without the bullshit and the frills. As such, we had an amazing time together and I believe she really appreciated that about me. I don't think I could've done this if I hadn't made the decision to cut out the BS so that I could heal.

Alpha Echo
01-05-2010, 10:18 PM
I'm sorry to hear about that Kitty. It's so sad. I don't understand people. I'm glad for you and your partner that you did get her out of your lives. You don't deserve to be treated that way. It's a waste of energy and emotion and time.

I was friends with this girl for a good three years. She's always been negative, always complaining about something. If it wasn't her boyfriend (now husband), it was her job. If it wasn't her job, it was her brother. If it wasn't her brother, it was her boyfriend.

She was amazing when I was going through my divorce. She was the one I called at 3am, crying hysterically. I could have called others, but she was the one.

Then as soon as I started dating again and life was good for me, she got upset. Telling me she'd be the one there for me when he f-ed things up like the last one did.

Well, he never did f-things up. We're getting married this year. He and his daughter are my family now, they come first. That doesn't mean I put off my friends, but it does mean that picking up fucking boxes are not on my list of priorities, and nothing comes before my family.

Alpha Echo
01-05-2010, 10:23 PM
In fact, I spent new years weekend with a girl from out of town, and my main goal was to show who exactly who I am without the bullshit and the frills. As such, we had an amazing time together and I believe she really appreciated that about me. I don't think I could've done this if I hadn't made the decision to cut out the BS so that I could heal.

I'm so glad to hear that it went well! :)

I think a lot of the calmness I feel lately comes from my SO. He's jokes around all the time. He takes very little seriously, and it takes a LOT to piss him off. He says what we hear all the time - life is too short to take seriously and to sweat the small stuff. Cliche, but true.

Learning not to accept BS in my life is I think part of what helped me learn how to be me. Otherwise, you're changing yourself to accomodate and coddle petty situations that deserve no attention whatsoever.

semilargeintestine
01-05-2010, 10:27 PM
I try to do the same every day. I try my hardest not to BS people or take it from them. But I can really only control the amount I give, so I do my best to not say I will do something unless I know absolutely for sure that I can do it in the time frame I gave. Sometimes I am sure, but things happen, and I feel really bad when I say I'll do something and then can't, even if the situation is beyond my control.

bettielee
01-05-2010, 10:33 PM
I gotta tell you. I don't put up with bullshit, anyway. I have enough from my family to last a lifetime. If you are a butthead, I don't need you in my life. I truly believe you "allow" people to treat you the way they do. If you put up with crappy behavior, there is no reason for that person to treat you any other way.

I assure you, I put up with a lot of crap for a lot of years, and I applaud you, AE, for taking this step. Sometimes, if you are honest with people, they will drop the bs. Sometimes they don't. I spent less time with those who don't.

backslashbaby
01-05-2010, 10:34 PM
I think my background growing up (stupid arguments that were horribly overblown) and my MaryMaryContrary Ex finally cured me of this. I don't mean to be rude, but I will not argue about boxes. I can't tell you how many times I say things like, "I'm not spending more energy on X" where X=some triviality. I'll spend a bit of time or thought, sure, but I'm not listening to someone bitch for an hour about how I should have closed the door quicker.

The thing is, make sure to move on yourself. Don't hold any anger about it; just forget that it happened. If it continues to be a sore point, then yeah, you've gotta do what you did (or similar).

Good Luck! Not everybody is into petty grievances; I promise :) Some of us hate the Drama.

Alpha Echo
01-05-2010, 10:35 PM
I try to do the same every day. I try my hardest not to BS people or take it from them. But I can really only control the amount I give, so I do my best to not say I will do something unless I know absolutely for sure that I can do it in the time frame I gave. Sometimes I am sure, but things happen, and I feel really bad when I say I'll do something and then can't, even if the situation is beyond my control.

You know, I asked myself several times if I'd mislead her. And maybe at first, I did. But then that's why I told her to just get rid of them! I don't want them!

But that's a very good policy you have. I try to do that too. Life does get in the way sometimes, but I do feel badly when I have to cancel.

Alpha Echo
01-05-2010, 10:38 PM
I gotta tell you. I don't put up with bullshit, anyway. I have enough from my family to last a lifetime. If you are a butthead, I don't need you in my life. I truly believe you "allow" people to treat you the way they do. If you put up with crappy behavior, there is no reason for that person to treat you any other way.

I assure you, I put up with a lot of crap for a lot of years, and I applaud you, AE, for taking this step. Sometimes, all it takes is a little honesty for someone to change their tune and drop the bs.

Thank you. I haven't always been like this. In fact, for YEARS I let "friends" walk all over me.

I think that when I found out about my ex-husband's affair, something in me clicked. I stood up for myself in a way I never have before. I don't want that to change because it is such an amazing feeling to get rid of that kind of stress!

James81
01-05-2010, 10:39 PM
You know, I asked myself several times if I'd mislead her. And maybe at first, I did. But then that's why I told her to just get rid of them! I don't want them!

I'm not defending her actions/anger because at face value it looks like she sort of wigged out on you there.

But looking at the other side of the coin, perhaps you aren't fighting/arguing about the boxes themselves. Maybe she's flipping out because she feels you slipping away and she misses your time together (after all, you said things were fine when you weren't with your current SO).

Don't underestimate the reactions of the people who are around you. They tell you a lot about yourself and/or who you are.

semilargeintestine
01-05-2010, 10:43 PM
You know, I asked myself several times if I'd mislead her. And maybe at first, I did. But then that's why I told her to just get rid of them! I don't want them!

But that's a very good policy you have. I try to do that too. Life does get in the way sometimes, but I do feel badly when I have to cancel.

JFTR, I wasn't insinuating anything about your situation. I just wanted to agree with you.

Fran
01-05-2010, 10:46 PM
I don't put up with much, which is why I have very few friends and am incapable of a successful relationship. ;)

Seriously, though, I'm 32 now, and I know who's worth having in my life. I tend to see most toxic people coming a mile off and the few friends I do have I love dearly and would do anything for, because I know they'd do anything for me. Nasty, toxic people poison everything and everyone around them, and I've encountered people who revel in other's misfortune but, like you said AE, take NO pleasure in their friends' accomplishments or successes. I've never given people like that any time to get near me, because I do tend to take things on and be empathetic to the point where I drive myself mad worrying, even though there's nothing I can do. But my friends do that for me too. No one has the right to interfere in or try to undermine anyone else's happiness, especially not when you know your misery would make them feel better.

ETA: This is a general comment, and not directed at your specific situation, AE. :)

Alpha Echo
01-05-2010, 10:51 PM
I'm not defending her actions/anger because at face value it looks like she sort of wigged out on you there.

But looking at the other side of the coin, perhaps you aren't fighting/arguing about the boxes themselves. Maybe she's flipping out because she feels you slipping away and she misses your time together (after all, you said things were fine when you weren't with your current SO).

Don't underestimate the reactions of the people who are around you. They tell you a lot about yourself and/or who you are.

Eh, I see what you're saying. But this wasn't the same situation. As soon as I started healing, before I met my SO, we had some other ridiculous issues. Like I said, when life was rough for me, she was in her element and happy.

But you're right in your last sentence. I do agree totally.


JFTR, I wasn't insinuating anything about your situation. I just wanted to agree with you.

I know. Thank you. :)


I don't put up with much, which is why I have very few friends and am incapable of a successful relationship. ;)

Seriously, though, I'm 32 now, and I know who's worth having in my life. I tend to see most toxic people coming a mile off and the few friends I do have I love dearly and would do anything for, because I know they'd do anything for me. Nasty, toxic people poison everything and everyone around them, and I've encountered people who revel in other's misfortune but, like you said AE, take NO pleasure in their friends' accomplishments or successes. I've never given people like that any time to get near me, because I do tend to take things on and be empathetic to the point where I drive myself mad worrying, even though there's nothing I can do. But my friends do that for me too. No one has the right to interfere in or try to undermine anyone else's happiness, especially not when you know your misery would make them feel better.

ETA: This is a general comment, and not directed at your specific situation, AE. :)

You do sound a lot like me, Fran. I do that with my friends problems to the point of feeling sick to my stomach if they're upset - or breathless if things are exciting for them! And they do the same for me.

I also have very few friends. I lot of internet friends...but only a few real live close friends. But they are the good kind. :)

bettielee
01-05-2010, 10:51 PM
But looking at the other side of the coin, perhaps you aren't fighting/arguing about the boxes themselves. Maybe she's flipping out because she feels you slipping away and she misses your time together (after all, you said things were fine when you weren't with your current SO).
.

Exactly. This is what I thought - but being mean to people when they are slipping away is just so kindergarten. It has to do with a lack of maturity (and I know - I have perpetrated the box incident upon others). There is also a levy of pettiness there. Petty people are no fun.

I know.

I was one.

ad_lucem
01-05-2010, 11:15 PM
Anyone else have a story about getting rid of the bullshit? Snuffing out the toxins and negativity in your life?

A long list, actually, but I still haven't managed to eliminate the bullshit. It seems to find me where ever I go. Or maybe, bullshit tends to congregate where ever human interactions take place be it a family get-together, a humanitarian aid meeting, the Roman Catholic Church, a meeting of the local Unitarian Universalist group, the school PTA, or an environmental education outreach group.

If you study political science, philosophy, psychology or anthropology you will soon find that bullshit is a beloved and universal human pastime.

As the Chesire Cat said to Alice when she remarked that she didn't want to go among mad people: "Oh, you can't help that. We're all mad here. I'm mad. You're mad."

There are only two solutions to avoiding bullshit:

1. Ignore as much of it as you can.
2. Live as a hermit.

I'm trying option #1...although there are days when option #2 looks particularly appealing. But then, as a hermit, I would be left in my solitude to put up with my own bullshit. Which, I'm not so sure I could actually do.

:)

But, for what it's worth, I completely understand what you're saying and know where you are coming from.

regdog
01-06-2010, 12:43 AM
I made the no BS decision years ago and catapulted myself to top of the
"Most Disliked Family Member List" haven't heard from 3/4 of my family since.

Apparently people liked me better as a doormat. Problem was, I didn't like me as a doormat.

Best decision I ever made.

Silver King
01-06-2010, 04:56 AM
I made the no BS decision years ago and catapulted myself to top of the
"Most Disliked Family Member List" haven't heard from 3/4 of my family since.

Apparently people liked me better as a doormat. Problem was, I didn't like me as a doormat.

Best decision I ever made.
I did the same thing with my family over twenty years ago. Not sure if they dislike me as much as they hate the fact that I'm onto their ways and won't put up with their crap, and in fact took great pleasure in shoving it back in their faces. I'm estranged from even my oldest boy for much the same reason.

Can't say that I've ever had the same problem with any friends I've known, since they wouldn't have gotten close to me in the first place if they'd acted like jerks.

writeronfire
01-06-2010, 05:28 AM
I'm not sure if this is the same type of thing or not, but oh well, here goes.

I was friends with a girl in high school. The only thing we had in common is, well, we were in the same homeroom. And, I guess another thing, we had another girlfriend in common. But she and the other girl had more in common than she and I.

So, to make a long story short, she has always tried to stay in touch with me through the years. (she lives in a different state; visits maybe once a year) I did that for a while, mostly to be nice. But over the years I've seen that she and I really are quite different. We don't look at things the same way. She's religious; I'm not. She's Republican, I'm a Democrat. Stuff like that.

She's also a little strange, has some weird personality traits. So I've tried to figure out ways to end this "friendship." But it's hard. She has never seemed to pick up on the cues. I've wiggled my way out of get-togethers. I'm busy, I'm sick, etc.

It's not really about bullshit, just how do you end a friendship without hurting someone's feelings?

brainstorm77
01-06-2010, 05:42 AM
Maybe she's just dumping you.

Silver King
01-06-2010, 05:49 AM
...how do you end a friendship without hurting someone's feelings?
You can't. Eventually you'll have to decide if your best interests are more important than any hurt feelings she may experience.

Cassiopeia
01-06-2010, 06:20 AM
I have found it's just so much easier to not have any expectations of people. I make no promises either.

It's a lot easier for me to tolerate people's bullshit by keeping quiet and going my own way than to have a confrontation with them. They want to act like a complete idiot, forget who I am to them, okay. *shrug* I can't spend my life worrying if someone is doing their part in a relationship or has expectations of me that have nothing to do with me.

writeronfire
01-06-2010, 06:21 AM
You can't. Eventually you'll have to decide if your best interests are more important than any hurt feelings she may experience.

Yes, but how do you tell the person you don't want to be friends? If she can't figure out from my avoidance of her that I don't want to be friends, how blunt do I have to be?

I think most people can pick up on these things. The thinking would go like this-- Every time I'm in town, WoF can't get together with me. I leave her phone messages and she doesn't call me back. If she really wanted to see me/talk to me, she would. I guess she doesn't want to see me.

So what words would you use to end it, Silver King? I'm curious.

Cassiopeia
01-06-2010, 06:43 AM
Yes, but how do you tell the person you don't want to be friends? If she can't figure out from my avoidance of her that I don't want to be friends, how blunt do I have to be?

I think most people can pick up on these things. The thinking would go like this-- Every time I'm in town, WoF can't get together with me. I leave her phone messages and she doesn't call me back. If she really wanted to see me/talk to me, she would. I guess she doesn't want to see me.

So what words would you use to end it, Silver King? I'm curious.I don't think you need to say a word. Just don't take her calls, or go see her. Unless she asks, and it's unlikely that she will, it will fade away.

To me, saying something would be more about you and your feelings than anything to do with her.

Silver King
01-06-2010, 07:23 AM
...So what words would you use to end it, Silver King? I'm curious.
Unless someone has tried to harm me, I'll let them down as easy as possible. I'm not good at beating around the bush, so a direct approach is usually the best way to divorce myself from so-called friends.

I'll share an example that might be helpful.

A while back an old buddy from college stopped by. We'd kept in touch sporadically through the years. Then he moved back to his home town, which is close to where I live. We got together a few times, and it was clear to me that we no longer had much in common, and what had drawn us close at one time no longer existed. But it was obvious the same wasn't true for him, as he delighted in our meetings.

It put me in a tough spot. I truly didn't want to spend more time with him, but I also didn't want to hurt his feelings, either. I avoided him for a while and refused his calls. But that just seemed to add more stress to a situation I should have diffused early on.

When I did agree to meet him for drinks, he thought I was mad at him. I explained that I wasn't angry at all, but that I felt put out that he was pressuring me to spend time with him when I had little to give at that moment to anyone else outside of my family and business. And that was the truth.

He said, "Will you get in touch with me when things settle down?"

I said, "Sure, " and paid for the drinks and left. I haven't called him, nor heard from him since, and that was over two years ago.

Darzian
01-06-2010, 07:37 AM
I've had some insane 'friends' in my life. I tolerate some BS (no one's perfect) but my level of tolerance is extremely low. Once, a friend texted me a random message,

"I hope you're happy now. You didn't have to lie."

To this day, I have no idea what on earth he was talking about. I most certainly did not lie to him. What did I do after getting the message? I ignored him and he did likewise. He was obviously very mistaken about something but I decided to end things because:

1) If he knew me at all, he'd know that I wouldn't lie anyway (and his message suggest a dramatic event)

2) I was starting to get annoyed with him anyways.

Alpha Echo
01-06-2010, 05:25 PM
I have found it's just so much easier to not have any expectations of people. I make no promises either.

It's a lot easier for me to tolerate people's bullshit by keeping quiet and going my own way than to have a confrontation with them. They want to act like a complete idiot, forget who I am to them, okay. *shrug* I can't spend my life worrying if someone is doing their part in a relationship or has expectations of me that have nothing to do with me.

I get that. That's how I used to be with my ex-husband. It's how my current SO was with his ex-wife. (We're both pisces, and I think that might have something to do with our matching personalities and doormat/hating confronational attitudes). It was always just easier to let my ex do whatever he wanted. I apologized all the time unnecessarily rather than state my opinion and fight. I did whatever he asked b/c if I didn't, I knew there'd be a fight, and he'd make me feel very,very small.

No more. Absolutely no more. Yes, part of that had to do with the fact that he was an asshole. But I've learned to stand up for myself, regardless of the topic.

Do I like confrontation? No, I still don't. But no more.

Alpha Echo
01-06-2010, 05:32 PM
I've had some insane 'friends' in my life. I tolerate some BS (no one's perfect)

Absolutely. No one is perfect. We all have our bad habits and bad days.


but my level of tolerance is extremely low. Once, a friend texted me a random message,

"I hope you're happy now. You didn't have to lie."

To this day, I have no idea what on earth he was talking about. I most certainly did not lie to him. What did I do after getting the message? I ignored him and he did likewise. He was obviously very mistaken about something but I decided to end things because:

1) If he knew me at all, he'd know that I wouldn't lie anyway (and his message suggest a dramatic event)

2) I was starting to get annoyed with him anyways.

That is strange. People are so weird sometimes. He sounds like he isn't worth the fuss.
_____________

In case anyone's wondering, my "friend" did have to have the last word. I received two emails:



It was not conditional at all, I have never asked you to justify how you spend your time. I was just saying lets see how it goes. We are both busy people with busy schedules that was all I was trying say.



That doesn't make sense at all. Everyone is busy. My very best friend lives 20 minutes from me, but we rarely see each other. But she is the best girlfriend I've ever had. Another very good friend lives in Texas (I'm NE). She and I hardly ever talk on the phone, send random emails to "catch-up," yet we are very good friends and there for each other no matter what. So, my "friend's" excuse doesn't work, IMO.

And the last response:



That is fine if we part ways. Have a good life.



I didn't respond. I honestly am not that upset with it. I think my SO was more upset than I was and even called her a few choice words. Just ridiculous, and honestly, my load feels lifted knowing I don't have to worry about her anymore. I always felt pressured to do and say the right things at the right times. I felt like maintaining that relationship was a chore.

Like romantic love, I don't think friendships should be a chore. If they are, there's a problem somewhere.

lucidzfl
01-06-2010, 06:38 PM
Absolutely. No one is perfect. We all have our bad habits and bad days.



That is strange. People are so weird sometimes. He sounds like he isn't worth the fuss.
_____________

In case anyone's wondering, my "friend" did have to have the last word. I received two emails:



That doesn't make sense at all. Everyone is busy. My very best friend lives 20 minutes from me, but we rarely see each other. But she is the best girlfriend I've ever had. Another very good friend lives in Texas (I'm NE). She and I hardly ever talk on the phone, send random emails to "catch-up," yet we are very good friends and there for each other no matter what. So, my "friend's" excuse doesn't work, IMO.

And the last response:



I didn't respond. I honestly am not that upset with it. I think my SO was more upset than I was and even called her a few choice words. Just ridiculous, and honestly, my load feels lifted knowing I don't have to worry about her anymore. I always felt pressured to do and say the right things at the right times. I felt like maintaining that relationship was a chore.

Like romantic love, I don't think friendships should be a chore. If they are, there's a problem somewhere.

Not a constant chore, for sure, but a chore sometimes is expected.

ad_lucem
01-06-2010, 07:20 PM
I have to say, right now, I have more acquaintances than in-person friendships. The last "friends" I had were primarily through church and, well, that didn't end well back at the beginning of 09'. Too many fundamental differences in our worldviews. Namely, I won't picket anyone for their lifestyle or personal choices. Ever. No exceptions.

Saying this out loud got me booted.

I kept one "friend" from the group. But, we had about as much in common as a porcupine and the owner of a balloon factory. Other than the fact we both had children and that's not, I've found, a good ground for a common bond.

Besides, all she ever did was call me for favors. I knew if I saw her number on the caller ID that she wanted something. Not to just chat or hang out. Which, a friend in need is a friend in deed is fine...but when this becomes your ONLY connection to another person it becomes a bit...well...annoying.

I've honestly found it next to impossible to make friends as a parent of young children staying at home. Really, the options are limited and you don't see other adults every day. Except, maybe, at the park.

I've tried to forge friendships with "mother groups" and the people I encounter at the park. Still, absolutely no basis for common interests and the building of a relationship.

It's like one other person up thread said about the person who just happened to be in the same home room and share a mutual friend. It's just NOT enough to make you want to expend the expend the energy to build a lasting "friendship".

Right now, my energies are focused on the kids, the house, volunteer work, and when time permits, my writing or art...not that school is finished for the time being.

Most of the people I meet through volunteering are retired people or single, late teen/early 20's college students. Not that this would prevent friendship, but we also have nothing in common. So, that's another nail in the coffin.

I haven't found my niche, yet, I guess. And I just don't have time for a lot of niche searching at the moment.

Most of the people I interact with for volunteer purposes or other parents at the PTO, etc, leave me feeling quite glad to return home and NOT talk to them for a while. I can grin and bear it for the time I have to... but I'm happy not to hear from them too often.

Not to be mean, but it's true. I can't picture myself going out of the way to meet with a single one socially.

Alpha Echo
01-06-2010, 10:57 PM
I have to say, right now, I have more acquaintances than in-person friendships. The last "friends" I had were primarily through church and, well, that didn't end well back at the beginning of 09'. Too many fundamental differences in our worldviews. Namely, I won't picket anyone for their lifestyle or personal choices. Ever. No exceptions.

Saying this out loud got me booted.

I kept one "friend" from the group. But, we had about as much in common as a porcupine and the owner of a balloon factory. Other than the fact we both had children and that's not, I've found, a good ground for a common bond.

Besides, all she ever did was call me for favors. I knew if I saw her number on the caller ID that she wanted something. Not to just chat or hang out. Which, a friend in need is a friend in deed is fine...but when this becomes your ONLY connection to another person it becomes a bit...well...annoying.

I've honestly found it next to impossible to make friends as a parent of young children staying at home. Really, the options are limited and you don't see other adults every day. Except, maybe, at the park.

I've tried to forge friendships with "mother groups" and the people I encounter at the park. Still, absolutely no basis for common interests and the building of a relationship.

It's like one other person up thread said about the person who just happened to be in the same home room and share a mutual friend. It's just NOT enough to make you want to expend the expend the energy to build a lasting "friendship".

Right now, my energies are focused on the kids, the house, volunteer work, and when time permits, my writing or art...not that school is finished for the time being.

Most of the people I meet through volunteering are retired people or single, late teen/early 20's college students. Not that this would prevent friendship, but we also have nothing in common. So, that's another nail in the coffin.

I haven't found my niche, yet, I guess. And I just don't have time for a lot of niche searching at the moment.

Most of the people I interact with for volunteer purposes or other parents at the PTO, etc, leave me feeling quite glad to return home and NOT talk to them for a while. I can grin and bear it for the time I have to... but I'm happy not to hear from them too often.

Not to be mean, but it's true. I can't picture myself going out of the way to meet with a single one socially.

I totally get what you're saying. The friends I have...well, one is from work whom I would never have met if it weren't for work. The other two are people I met online - one happened to live close to me, the other didn't. For some reason we clicked.

My SO has a few friends, all guys he's known since high school.

Neither one of us wants to go out and meet other people. We're happy with the focus of our lives on our family.

I did have to go out of my way to meet my SO. But I'm glad I did. :D

ad_lucem
01-06-2010, 11:41 PM
I totally get what you're saying. The friends I have...well, one is from work whom I would never have met if it weren't for work. The other two are people I met online - one happened to live close to me, the other didn't. For some reason we clicked.

My SO has a few friends, all guys he's known since high school.

Neither one of us wants to go out and meet other people. We're happy with the focus of our lives on our family.

I did have to go out of my way to meet my SO. But I'm glad I did. :D

I haven't met anyone from on-line from my state that I've clicked with...so far, anyway. I tried meeting some moms from an message board called "punky moms". I thought, well, maybe they're "alternative" in a good way and therefore interested/capable of thinking outside of the box and having a good time. Nope, turns out, they were just in a different sort of box than most, but a box nonetheless.

How can people whose kids have mohawks be so thoroughly banal and boring?

Not that I'm a big fan of mohawks, personally. Or giving little boys earrings to wear at age 2. At age 13 they're branching out and finding their own style. At age 2 they're at the mercy of whatever horrific thing the parent wants to dress them as--be it Sid Vicious or Lord Fauntleroy.

I thought I'd be in for a lively afternoon of conversation with women interested in current events, the arts, activism, work, outreach, science...anything.

Nope, I just won myself an afternoon discussing cloth diapers and organic vegan cookie-baking rather than disposeables and evil-egg-requiring-cookie-creations with all sorts of dreaded additives and gluten (tongue in cheek here, I don't really give a flying @#$@# about any of it one way or the other).

I do *want* to meet other people. Because, though my husband is very much my best friend, it's good to have an outlet. I fear it places too much pressure on our adult interactions...if that makes sense. You can't be everything and then some to a DH or an SO all the time--or vice versa.

It's just that the "potential friend" applicant pool is a bit shallow at the moment.

I'm hoping...no...praying...that in a few years, when I can take up a career in earnest, I will find my niche. Because, right now, I'm so isolated I'm about to go batty.

I've been trying to use volunteering as a way to alleviate some of the isolation of at-home parenting... but the BS of the people (one person in particular) constantly trying to one-up each other in the category of saintly-volunteer-of-the-year is making the experience a negative one.

Lots of BS to be had in the world of volunteers. Some people really are saints, but they're the quiet nice ones not there to show the world how wonderful they are and how no other volunteer can possibly match them in dedication (also find this on the PTO...which is a scary place).

Ideally, I think we all need at least one or two friends beyond our SO's or DH's and family to keep perspective and get some release. You know, like a girl's (or guy's) night out or whatnot.

It's good for the mental health. :)

Just hoping to find it someday...and hoping not to go completely insane while I'm waiting.

Alpha Echo
01-06-2010, 11:47 PM
I agree. I understand what you're saying about the added pressure. My SO of course is my best friend. He's the one I go to first about everything. But I think I'd die without my girl time. We don't have it often, but even a phone call or an email or a short lunch can be exactly what I need.

semilargeintestine
01-07-2010, 12:00 AM
I don't get the whole "my SO is my best friend" thing. My girlfriend and I spend 5-6 days (and nights) a week together, and I wouldn't have it any other way. But, we're not best friends. I have a best friend, and so does she. That's fine, because I don't want to be her friend, I want to be her SO. And, I like her best friend. I don't want to push him out.

ad_lucem
01-07-2010, 12:22 AM
I don't get the whole "my SO is my best friend" thing. My girlfriend and I spend 5-6 days (and nights) a week together, and I wouldn't have it any other way. But, we're not best friends. I have a best friend, and so does she. That's fine, because I don't want to be her friend, I want to be her SO. And, I like her best friend. I don't want to push him out.

Let's see, it's been about 11 years for my husband and I, now. We've known each other longer than anyone else outside of our own parents and other relatives. We've been to hell and back (not going to go there, but it was particularly difficult in the beginning) together. My husband still calls me about five times a day just to chat (which, depending on the day, occasionally drives me crazy as much as I find it endearing and would miss it if he didn't).

If we weren't best friends in addition to husband and wife...we would have killed each other years ago in an OK-corral-like-standoff. :)

Everyone needs time off from eachother, though. And we seriously need to find that balance. My husband, less so because he has his friends through work to spend time with at lunch or on the occasional evening or weekend.

Me, nada. This is not good for the mental health. Stay at home parenting has a lot of emotional costs. One of the biggies is isolation if you don't already have an established network of friends or belong to a religious community.

To sum it up, being an at-home mother (or dad) without already having friends is like being the new kid at an American middle-school...but not only that, being the new kid at an American middle school with a pronounced lisp, head-gear, coke-bottle-lensed glasses, and a mother who dresses you in Victorian era clothing each day.

It's a little on the difficult side.

ad_lucem
01-07-2010, 12:26 AM
I agree. I understand what you're saying about the added pressure. My SO of course is my best friend. He's the one I go to first about everything. But I think I'd die without my girl time. We don't have it often, but even a phone call or an email or a short lunch can be exactly what I need.

Ditto, my husband is first on everything. First I tell when something is wrong and first I tell when something is right.

All marriage and family and no girl time, though, makes Jill--not just a dull girl--but kind of a cranky bitch.

semilargeintestine
01-07-2010, 04:32 AM
Let's see, it's been about 11 years for my husband and I, now. We've known each other longer than anyone else outside of our own parents and other relatives. We've been to hell and back (not going to go there, but it was particularly difficult in the beginning) together. My husband still calls me about five times a day just to chat (which, depending on the day, occasionally drives me crazy as much as I find it endearing and would miss it if he didn't).


If we weren't best friends in addition to husband and wife...we would have killed each other years ago in an OK-corral-like-standoff. :)


My girlfriend and I spend every night together except one per week. When we're not together, it's because she's either at work, climbing, or with a friend. When she's at work, we talk all day on AIM. When she's climbing or with her friends, we text. We hardly ever go more than an hour without talking except when we're asleep.

She's still not my friend. She's my girlfriend, and iy''h she'll be my wife at some point in the near future. I guess I just make a distinction others don't.



Everyone needs time off from eachother, though. And we seriously need to find that balance. My husband, less so because he has his friends through work to spend time with at lunch or on the occasional evening or weekend.

Me, nada. This is not good for the mental health. Stay at home parenting has a lot of emotional costs. One of the biggies is isolation if you don't already have an established network of friends or belong to a religious community.

To sum it up, being an at-home mother (or dad) without already having friends is like being the new kid at an American middle-school...but not only that, being the new kid at an American middle school with a pronounced lisp, head-gear, coke-bottle-lensed glasses, and a mother who dresses you in Victorian era clothing each day.

It's a little on the difficult side.

I can imagine. That's exactly why I want Yaffe to have her own friends and support system. We're probably moving to NM next year, and she's going to move out there first so it's not just the two of us secluded from the world.

ad_lucem
01-07-2010, 04:54 AM
My girlfriend and I spend every night together except one per week. When we're not together, it's because she's either at work, climbing, or with a friend. When she's at work, we talk all day on AIM. When she's climbing or with her friends, we text. We hardly ever go more than an hour without talking except when we're asleep.

She's still not my friend. She's my girlfriend, and iy''h she'll be my wife at some point in the near future. I guess I just make a distinction others don't.



I can imagine. That's exactly why I want Yaffe to have her own friends and support system. We're probably moving to NM next year, and she's going to move out there first so it's not just the two of us secluded from the world.

I guess it's just a matter of the words used and how you view/define them. For me, friendship implies a level of trust, loyalty, companionship, camaraderie that goes beyond the more *ahem* biological nature/function of being a couple. Even if my husband and I weren't romantically attached, I can still easily see us as friends. In fact, we were friends before we ever ended up dating.

ETA: Good idea. Especially if a move is involved. You don't want to end up isolated. Community is very important for sanity in life. I'm a big believer in that. People need each other. We get squirrelly when that connection is missing. I'm living proof of that :D

semilargeintestine
01-07-2010, 06:40 AM
Yeah, I think it's a great idea. Hers of course. She's much smarter than I am. :D

But, I can see us being friends if we weren't dating. I don't want to be friends with her though, lol.

truelyana
01-10-2010, 06:20 PM
All the best to you in your path. :)