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Learning friendship

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Until the last few years of my life, I never really 'got the hang" of how to be a friend. I always had companions as a child, but felt vulnerable to them and could not really trust people.

I grew up in an emotionally abusive household, and watched my mom churn through "friends" at a pretty rapid pace. Things would start out fast and fun for her, but eventually they would tire of her (and her super-negative attitude) and stop calling. She had a habit of telling me a lot of their adult secrets (and made me promise not to tell anyone, like any of my middle school peers cared about the middle-aged ladies in the neighborhood). Even as a kid, this felt distasteful to me, and I was confused as to why you would talk behind someone's back who you claim is your friend. Naive, I know. She did have some long-term friends, but they were always the ones that moved far away and she would telephone every month or so. Too much of her was too much to take, for all of us.

In my adulthood, I got so focused on raising my family that I let many friendships go, for one reason or another. I regret a few of these decisions, but not most. At that point in my life, I seemed to attract people who were not good for me. Negative, needy, racist and unhealthy is not good for me in that amount. I was not in a place where I could help these people (or watch them self-destruct), so I cut ties, for my own mental health, which I do not regret.

Now, as an "empty-nester", I have come upon a group of women who are teaching me how to be a good friend, and have healthy relationships, with support and compassion and laughter. I walked with two of these fine folks yesterday and they reminded me again of how to treat people that is loving and healthy and nourishing. I feel so blessed this week, to have people who are willing to offer this to me. I wish the same for you!
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    emoticon emoticon
    1615 days ago
    What a wonderful thing to share! When I was younger I thought that adults were static, never growing or changing. I'm so glad that I was wrong.

    Have fun with your friends! emoticon
    1618 days ago
    You have done very well in growing up with a good, level head. I am very happy that you have found nurturing friends now and are enjoying life. I had a very sweet, kind mother and am impressed that you have done so well for yourself.

    emoticon emoticon emoticon
    1618 days ago

    Comment edited on: 10/15/2013 8:39:39 PM
    emoticon Congratulations on finding True Friendship and being Willing to Embrace It!!
    1618 days ago
    A true friend is a great blessing....and it. Is never too late to make a true friend or BE a true friend...
    1618 days ago
    emoticon emoticon
    1618 days ago
  • LETHA_
    I enjoy reading your very insightful blogs. Thanks for sharing.
    1618 days ago
    So glad you have good friends, and that you overcame your mom's bad habits!
    1619 days ago
  • TINAJ15
    That's wonderful! I have been blessed to have some great friends in my life but I have also experienced those like what you have described. The key is to hold the great friends close and weed out those that bring you down.
    1619 days ago
    Proud of you! I was blessed to have my parents as role models of how to maintain long-term, healthy relationships. Not everyone is so blessed! I am glad for you that you have found this in your life. IT is healing and uplifting.

    1619 days ago
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