Building a friendship

Being a positive person can be a bad thing sometimes. Expecting the best out of every situation also has to come with a spoonful of reality. Not everyone is the best they can be, not everyone wants to be the best they can be. This also applies to relationships specially friendships.

One of the hardest things about growing up was realizing that not everyone had the same values as me and it was actually quite complicated. As kids we have this tunnel vision that is comprised of our family, our neighborhood and our school. I had some really close friends that now I realize were just takers, and at times I was even one of them. The first kid around me to have a Nintendo was quite popular until other kids around got one and we went to play at our “real friends” house.

During high school it was also just as hard to find true friendship. One of my best friends during high school and I have not spoken in years even though once in a while I do talk to his family. We both had a similar built, and had light eyes. A lot of people actually thought we were related. Our lives went two different directions after school, I went to college and he kind of jumped around community colleges eventually getting a job at a warehouse. He actually dated a girl we both really like for years to the point that I thought they would be married by now. I found out through his parents that he cheated on the girl with some other woman that he was now dating. I used to spend hours playing basketball with this kid and now my only updates came from his parents.

I also had a similar experience during college. I became close with a lot of people that I now don’t even talk to. However, there I met some of the people that I now call some of my true friends. I started to learn true friends are the ones that you can pick back up as soon as life gives you a chance and with them time feels like it has not stopped.

I have to admit that I was lot older than I should have been when I realized that people have agendas. Some people will do anything to get ahead, some others see relationships as transactions. Even though I did not think that way, I had to get used to that some others do. I also had to learn that building friendships takes work and I like reciprocal relationships. I cannot sustain a one sided relationship because I invest myself too much emotionally.

Since moving to KC I have built some excellent relationships. Some of them if not most are going to be relationships that will hopefully last for the rest of my life. Also recently I came to realize that one of my best friends I have never even shaken hands with. Daniel and I have known each other through our blogs for years now, and we talk and interact more than some of that I do with some of my local friends. I trust and value his opinion and he has already been there for me in some tough moments.

Recently I have started several new friendships. They are all growing at their own pace. I enjoy getting to know people and finding things in common with them. I like my friends to eventually become like my family, relationships are what makes this ride called life worth it… its not about the ride but who you have around you when you take it.

12 Responses to Building a friendship

  1. The hard part about friendships is that they change over time. My closest friends were probably roomates from college but as we all moved away and now have families of our own , those friendships aren’t as close anymore. I still keep in touch with them but many are at a “how are you” level and that is it. Sad, but I wonder if that is just how life progresses.

  2. I think that the older you get, the smaller your friend circle becomes. I’ve been fortunate enough to have a group of friends I’ve had since about kindergarten that I still hang with. Makes things pretty awesome.

  3. I love meeting as many people as I can. You never know who might end up being a friend.

  4. I unfortunately have a history of loosing touch with my best friends as we leave geographic proximity. Of course that was pre-internet. Nowadays I talk to people all over the country at least several times a year just to touch base (if not more).

    I also find that I am better at staying in touch with the friends I have made in the last few years. Again I thank technology, because e-mail and IM are among the ways we talked when we lived close, so we are already comfy with that when one moves away.

    As for those that I have lost touch with, lets say I certainly have regrets.

    You are a good guy Logtar, and I suspect a great and true friend (as well as a pretty good husband from the looks of it). :-)

  5. As we get older, I think it becomes harder to let new people in and become friends.

    Eric and I are really glad that we know you and Bea. You are both positive and fun people who we really enjoy being around :)

  6. Screw friends- what you want is like 1000 buddies… that way they can come and go but who really cares?? Perfect.

  7. To Mark: relationships do change over time. Priorities shift, and sometimes it’s hard to make room for your friends when you have a family and other obligations.

    However, if you can find the time to nurture those friendships, you’ll be glad you did when you’re facing the empty-nest syndrome. You can’t give and let others take; they have to meet you on your level too, or else you face burnout like Logtar mentioned and invest too much emotionally for nothing. I found that by being upfront with those friends whose lives went down different roads and letting them know that I still wanted them in my life and wanted to be in theirs, we reach out to each other just a bit more often. Maybe your friends just want to know you care.

  8. @ Melinda:

    Yeah, at first I was thinking I was a total dirtbag for letting my friendships from college become “non-active”. But you are right, things do change over time and I’m not the only guilty one in the relationships. I have reached out from time to time and I don’t always get a whole lot back, so that means we are probably at the same point in our lives.

    Speaking of empty-nest, I don’t know how many of if you have kids, but I only have a step-daughter who is now off to college. So, empty-nest is hitting home. My wife and I joke about not having any friends except each other. We both do have many friends but again, they aren’t the kind of friends that I see other people have. The kind that are always in touch and go on vacations together, etc. We have more casual types of friends and right now, I guess that is OK. =)

  9. Friends will come and go so just have fun and make the most of it when you do hangout. Friendships do take effort and work and I think some are worth it and some are just casual…meh….I’ve always preferred a smaller circle of friends.

  10. Indeed it’s not always easy to make or retain friendships. This is especially true after one is out of college and in the working world (friendships with co-workers tend toward the superficial).

    While of course there are exceptions, in my experience women make friends more easily than men.

  11. Mark M-
  12. I think you are right, things do change over time, I also have a hard time adjusting to the fact that people, relationships and situation change. However, I still believe that we have some control over that change and what that change means. As we get older or move away it takes effort to stay in contact. I could e-mail our Kung Fu master and keep in touch, but I know that you say hi to him once in a while for me. You comment here more than Mark L, but I know he reads and still chats me up when he gets a chance. You are probably the only two people that I really keep in contact with from back in Michigan besides a couple of my gaming friends, and Mike P (who you met at my birthday party) but besides you two I have to start all communication. Mike P is one of the examples of someone that I enjoyed spending time with inmensely even though we only had the chance to get lunch about once a month, and now we talk even less but I met with him in Chicago and it was like time has never passed. I like being able to do that with the people I call my friends.

  13. Shane-
  14. I have to admit to a little jelousy here. Once in a while I still pop into facebook the name of my earliest childhood friend who’s name is Edgar, but I have no idea where he is now or what he is doing. Moving as much as I have has made it hard to keep childhood friendships, but thanks to facebook I have found about 14 people I went to highschool with back in Colombia. I wish I could say I still have a friend from back in gradeschool, reality I don’t and the people I am still in contact with I am not really close to… I care for them, but I would not be able to tell you what their view is on any topic I deem important or how much their sense of humor has changed. Those things are important to me.

  15. Nuke-
  16. I am lucky, like you thanks to the internet 90% of the people that I want to keep in contact with I have been able to. Those other people in the 10% are people that I had a relationship with but for some reasons they did not work out… some still puzzle me to this day. Thankfully I have made plenty of friends that have brought tons of good things to my life. The only thing I regret is not knowing why a relationship truly ends and that has happened a couple of times.

  17. Michelle-
  18. You and Eric are becoming part of our really close friends. You had the chance to meet some of the people I am the closest to here in town. I look forward to future gatherings and tons of fun in the future.

  19. Melinda-
  20. I look forward to some day meeting you and John in person.

  21. Wookie-
  22. I also think that quality is better thank quantity in most situations. I also think that getting to know people as they become your friends is very important. A lot of the reflexions that I have done with friendship lately have a lot to do with you actually. Some people you click with immediatly and can feel like you have known forever… I have in the past thought I had that with people, but until now it has not been as cool as it has been with meeting you. I have seldom found the level of honesty that you approach situations with, and I truly appreciate that in a person… specially one that I call a friend.

  • One of the hardest things for me to realize is that sometimes life gets in the way of friendships. And that makes me sad. I feel guilty for putting too much focus on one person and not having enough time for everybody else that is close to me. And for what? It’s never good enough. I miss my friends. Friends are there no matter what. I haven’t been. That doesn’t make me a very good friend, now does it?

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