By Anonymous Guest Blogger, Man on the Fence
The subject of friends and friendship has been omnipresent in my mind lately. I have given a lot of thought as to what constitutes a “great friend.” We all have friends that we have accumulated over the years, some better than others, but still consider friends nonetheless. Over the last little while, I made the conscious decision, that since I considered myself such a good friend, I would no longer accept having simple friendships that were devoid of moral depth and values…
My meaning by this is as follows; our time is precious, friendship is precious and ought to be awarded the right respect to ensure fulfillment and happiness throughout our lives. Those friends that can’t accomplish this life’s mission simply have no place in my world. This doesn’t mean I don’t have friends that disagree with me or have an issue with certain character flaws I may have. It just means that at the core of humanity, you want to know with certainty, that the person you refer to and call a friend, is indeed just that. A friend should be someone that is always there to comfort you, console you and someone you share your most private thoughts with. Obviously, this would include our spouses or even our children when possible.
Over the years I have taken steps to relegate those friends that have crossed the line of friendship. That did things that hurt me. I don’t bad mouth them. When I see them, I am polite and never go out of my way to highlight the fact we are no longer friends. I accept this is simply where we have ended up in the circle of life. It is often difficult to rid ourselves of these “old” friends that are really no longer our friends. It requires a good sense of mutual respect for what once was, but is no longer. Do you have friends like this? Or perhaps you have friends that you grew up with, but have almost, “outgrown” or now have little in common with? There surely is an etiquette which is rarely used, when accomplishing such a task. Defriending old friends, shall we say.
I am proud to say in these last few years, I have only resorted to doing this once. It was unpleasant and deeply troubling for months. However, with a great amount of thought and consideration I knew in my heart I was doing the right thing for both of us. How could I be considered a good friend if I lied about my true feelings or allowed the values of our friendship to be violated?
What I find particularly incredible about each of my friends is how they all came into my life. Every one of them has a unique history and role they have played in my life. I have a couple of friends that are mentors, almost like my teacher. I have other friends that are content with simply being confidants that are always willing to listen and never pass judgment upon me. While I was going through my divorce, these friends were my saving grace. What is paramount here, is simply knowing how to be such a friend. I have witnessed countless occasions where people don’t know how be the best friend they are expected or needed to be. Even in the most challenging and difficult times, we ought to understand the role we play in someone else’s life. I realize that while I may consider someone to be my “best friend,” they may not feel the same way. However, this is where the true value of being a great friend comes into play.
I relish the fact that I have some friends I rarely see, and others I speak to infrequently, that still remain a part of my life to this day. The sign and test of true friendship is when fewer words need to be used to still get that sense of security and comfort we all cherish. We often speak of how many friends we have, but truth be told, we have very few true friends. After reading this, sit back and think of whom you surround yourself with. Determine with certainty that they add to your fulfillment and happiness in life. Accord yourself the right respect to know if these are really people you want to share more of your life with. When you finally pause for thought, I assure you a few things will happen; one is you will rid yourself of those that simply can’t meet your criteria for being a great friend, the other is you may allow yourself the joy and space of finding a new friend who can fulfill that role. And lastly, you will relish and value the friendships you already have.
Friendship should not require an untold amount of energy and effort to ensure success. Friendship should allow for positive growth and evolution over the course of time. When we look back in many years from today and speak of our “friends,” we ought to be able to laugh, love and smile at the thought of how lucky we were to find these special people to share our lives with.
And I’m not on the fence about any of this. 🙂
Finally, enjoy this about friendship:
Why Men Have Better Friends
Women’s Friends: A woman didn’t come home one night. The next day she told her husband that she had slept over at a friend’s house.
The husband called his wife’s 10 best friends. None of them knew what she was talking about.
Men’s Friends: A man didn’t come home one night. The next day he told his wife that he had slept over at a friend’s house.
The wife called her husband’s 10 best friends. Eight of them confirmed that he had slept over, and two claimed he was still there
I’d love to know, have you ever had to sever ties with a friend because they just didn’t fulfill the role they were meant to? How do you go about “defriending” someone who has been part of your life for many years? When do you know it’s time to throw the towel in on a friendship? Please share with our readers.