How do you be a friend?

I don’t mean to get emotional, but I can’t help it. Things are going on in my personal life, and I don’t know how to deal. Friends are going through tough times, some more than others. I don’t know the answers, but all I can offer is what I know is right in my life, and my prayers.

What do you do when a close friend seems to have pushed you away? You’ve known them for such a long time, but when life gets difficult for them, and they don’t talk to you, how are you supposed to help? Is it because maybe they don’t want to burden you with problems they think are trivial, when they really aren’t? How can you show them how much you worry about them, at times more than yourself?

I know people change. However, I don’t think I could accept that my long-time friend won’t open up to me anymore. What would really bust my bubble is to find out that my friend is talking to anybody and everybody except me. But, would I have the right to be mad? I don’t think so, and I can’t help but feel really guilty for feeling that way.

So many concerns, and yet I’m so very vague. I’m sorry I can’t spill everything – I have to maintain some privacy. *sigh*

Published by

Bryan Villarin

Bryan is a Community Guardian at Automattic. He's also a photographer, card magician, and cat whisperer. (Thanks to my friend and colleague Steve Blythe for the sweet photo!)

6 thoughts on “How do you be a friend?”

  1. My experience tells me that all you can do is try to be there for them when they need you, but you can’t make them talk to you -to try to would just cause grief.

    I was once in a situation with a very close friend who was having problems, and wouldn’t talk to me about them -though it seemed as though she was talking to everyone else.

    I tried too hard to find out what was going on, and we ended up falling out. I regret that deeply, as -in time- we talked and it turned out they’re was far more going on then I could’ve known. Stuff she hadn’t told anyone else. She didn’t want to talk to me, because we were so close and was scared that her problems would push me away. But it took her a while to realise that her being secretive and edgy with me was pushing me away anyway.

    I only wish I had been more patient than I was, instead of losing my rag as I did in the end. Maybe there wouldn’t have been a dark cloud between us, as there was for a while.

    However you might be pleased to know that all was forgiven, and sorted out-and we are once again the best of friends.

    But I think we both learnt a lot from the experience though. Me to be patient, and her to have more faith in those who really care about her.

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  2. It is tricky isn’t it? Maybe if you can just find the opportunity just to say that you care and you will be there for them, whatever happens along the way. You don’t need to push, just to offer reassurance if you can.

    Good luck.

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  3. Bryan, i know how you feel as I’ve gone thru the same thing, seems like every time i have a friendship that starts to go really well for a long period of time.

    Honestly, I’ve gotten angry when that person won’t talk to or even explain what’s going on. It’s hard to get the shut out all of a sudden when you’ve been able to pretty much do whatever for a period of time. For a while i’d try and try and try and try to be nice and stuff and just carry on a normal conversation, finally it got to the point where reality hit me and i realized that people do change, and though i may have not done anything wrong in the world to that person, i just had to let go and just sit back and wait.

    Sometimes you just have to leave the friendship and let it go, but if you have to, my advice would be to leave it with them knowing you’re still in good standing so that when something comes up and everyone else has turned tail and moved on etc. they feel deep inside that they can come back to you for help.
    I have yet for this to happen, but I continually hope that one of these days, some of those friendships will rekindle themselves.

    Don’t tear yourself apart, like i said, you more than likely haven’t done anything wrong to the person. They just have hit a stage where they have changed a bit, but that doesn’t mean that you have to change your status with them. Leave the door open. In my case however I believe it to have been the person got big in himself, but i’m hoping one of these days he’ll mature and realize the people that he has around him.

    Plant the seed now if you have to let a friendship go, because in time, it may very well grow into something more than what it was now.

    just my .02cents.

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