Ecclesiastes 3:1-8

"There is an appointed time for everything. And there is a time for every event under heaven. A time to give birth and a time to die; A time to plant and a time to uproot what is planted. A time to kill and a time to heal; A time to tear down and a time to build up. A time to weep and a time to laugh; A time to mourn and a time to dance. A time to throw stones and a time to gather stones; A time to embrace and a time to shun embracing. A time to search and a time to give up as lost; A time to keep and a time to throw away. A time to tear apart and a time to sew together; A time to be silent and a time to speak. A time to love and a time to hate; A time for war and a time for peace." Ecclesiastes 3:1-8

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Friend vs. Acquaintance

SO, last year someone told me "you are a fake friend. you don't mean to be. you just are right now and you can't help it."
I had thought I was a real friend. I had hardly any sleep, struggling to figure out how to be a mom and survive on my 45min-2hr chunks of sleep and was trying to be a friend to my friends when I so desperately needed someone to just hug me and tell me everything would be ok.

Instead... this was the profound, painful thing told to me. Its haunted me for a year.
This person often rubbed me the wrong way, but I knew God put her in my life to help me be a better person. To humble me. To show me where I need to grow. So I constantly was trying to "be a good friend" to her.  Not that I fully went out of my way. Or tried REALLY hard.  just... thought I was. I wasn't doing anything less "friend-like" toward her than any other friends.
I had never ever been told this.

So hearing this from her, hurt.
A lot.

True, what she said wasn't really something a "good friend" would say, but then again, wouldn't a "good friend" tell you the stuff that hurts? The difference is they they would say it IN love and would love you and help you become a better friend, right?

This last year I have really struggled with reaching out to people, as I didn't feel like they didn't have time for me, since they never reached out to me. As I was craving for someone to just call me up and say "hey wanna go to coffee?" or "can I come over and chat" a few times that happened... but nothing like it used to when I had a lot of friends before I had a child. Or was married...
This month I have really decided to take action against what my "friend" had told me about being a fake friend.
I have been struggling to come to terms that maybe I really am not a good friend. Or maybe I used to be, and just because of my post-partum depression, I really just suck at it right now. Which is very likely in either case.

But the more I think of it, I KNOW I have reached out to people asking how they are doing. Invited them over. Texted them. And many of them, I have not received any type of that back. Like they might come hang out with me once in a while, but they aren't going to invite me to do anything.

So thinking more on this, I have decided that maybe what the issue is, is that they aren't friends. Maybe that's what a "good acquaintance" is. I have decided that my view on friends vs. acquaintances is this - your friends will MAKE time for you & anything special pertaining to you. They reach out to YOU as well.
And good acquaintances are just nice to you. You can chat, and they might come hang out, but they don't reach back out to you. They don't text you out of the blue. They don't invite you over.

This month turning 30 - I'm taking a look at all I know, and realize I have A LOT of good acquaintances. Quite a few of the people I called friends, but I think too often that is used, when they aren't really.  Or maybe they were and just life has changed and they have moved on.

So I think for me to be NOT a "fake friend" I need to stop trying to be friends with those who aren't trying to be friends back to me. I'm not "getting rid" of anyone, just not going to put energy into relationships that are 1-sided anymore.
That way I can be a "REAL friend", and put energy into people who are interested in being a "real friend" back to me.

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