According to various studies, a good friendship is one that is honest, supportive, and displays mutual respect. It is also said that a healthy friendship produces great benefits such as boost happiness, improve self-confidence and help cope with trauma. I agree that a good friendship can improve your overall health. Granted, I do not have a lot of friends, but I do keep a close handful and there is a reason for that.
I am an introvert. I find it challenging to connect, make small talk and create spontaneous friends. I am comfortable and happy with my handful, and if I happen to meet someone that I connect with and vibe, I am thankful for it. But I am not a seeker of friends. I do not go out of my way to meet people. I am more of an organic meetup kind of gal and I love my group. However, I feel like I am lacking in some way. I do not believe I lack honesty. I am blunt, a great listener and I respect my friends opinions and overall self. Where I feel I lack is perhaps in the communication part of it? It is difficult to explain and I hope you understand. I am not saying I don’t offer my support. I do. I check in and try to be there for them whether virtually or personally if we live closer. But somehow I can’t help but feel distant to them. As if a wall of unspoken things are between us. A veil of secrets, personal secrets and everyday things that are not even suppose to be secrets but somehow are. It’s not them putting up that wall—— at least I don’t think—– but me and I can’t figure out why? I love these people.
To give you an example, I recently moved out of state and I did not tell any of them until a couple of weeks prior to my move. I didn’t tell them not because I was keeping a secret or because I didn’t want to tell them, I simply didn’t until I felt it was time. When I did tell them, they were the first to know. I took each and every one to lunch and hang out and talk about the move. Some of my friends were cool about it and understood me completely. It wasn’t a big deal to them, to others not so much. They were in complete shocked and appalled that I did this and not informed them with enough time. They were upset that I didn’t share my plans to move, my thoughts, and decisions in advance etc…
At first I did not understand why? I tried to see it it in their perspective and comprehend their thought process, but I couldn’t. I did not believe I had done wrong. Some even called me a terrible friend. So I started thinking, and thinking—- because that is why I do—– so, I decided to talk to one of them privately and discuss further why she felt this way, and give some sense of it. Her response was that she felt I was hiding. She felt disconnected and made her question our friendship. It made her think that we were not as close as she thought we were. This is coming from the girl I felt the closes too!
I felt horrible. I felt like the biggest jerk. It got me thinking about my friendships from the past. People I have lost communication and were no longer friends with but acquaintances. I went over our relationship from the start to barely knowing each other and then it hit me…
I never really truly opened up to anyone. Not even in the slightest. I began to see where past friendships went downhill, where I failed. I was disappointed… It’s not that I don’t want to open up, I don’t know how. I don’t know how to take down this veil. I do not know how to open up my inner world and share it with those close to me.
This will be my biggest project yet. Take down that veil (wall)…..
Any tips or ideas where to start? Does this really make me a terrible friend? What’s your take?