Waiting isn’t fatal, but it is a disappearing skill set…
Sometimes I feel bad because I see my friends on Facebook and know they didn’t get back to me yet…
Because it makes me wonder if we are still friends.
But today I got a message from my friend, it wasn’t the first time they got to Facebook that they responded, but when the response came it was beautiful and meaningful, just like the handwritten letter I have from them, just like I want to believe our in person friendship was as well.
Things for me to remember, just because they are on Facebook, doesn’t mean they are on Facebook, sometimes the system says they are because there is an extra window left open, sometimes they are on Facebook, but they are at work (saving lives – my friends work in the medical field) or having a fight with their significant other (probably, I’m imagining that).
Also I’m the guiltiest of not responding, I only check Facebook every few months, once a very good friend had disclosed they are having their first child and I didn’t respond for months since I wasn’t even on there, since I don’t find I can motivate myself to be that social. So I don’t know why as the one who looses phones, doesn’t respond to texts while struggling with my kids and goes on Facebook only every season I take it personally when people don’t get back to me.
It’s kind of hard because the social dictates didn’t exist when I was growing up, the technology didn’t exist… so we all do our best to live by the “normal standard” but we all want different things.
One thing I think we all want is not to have to respond in our hectic life ASAP, not to have one more thing to rush about.
Yet ironically, I think we all want to know if our friendships are real or imagined, if connection exists or is fantasy?
My own sister didn’t get back to me for years at a time when she was in college, she wasn’t mad at me, just busy with her life.
So why not trust my friends that they are really my friends, that they don’t hate me, that I’m not the worst person to talk to… instead of worrying if I’m being a fool to think I have friends.
Why not look at the evidence.
I have three male and two female good friends, all but one are parents or expectant parents, so it’s super easy to imagine all of them being too busy.
I washed my phone on accident, lost my number, lost many of my friend’s numbers again and again, but we always reconnected. I shouldn’t over look that. If any of them wanted to be rid of me, they could have ghosted me. The fact that they reply when they choose should let me stop wondering if they care.
They may be busy, but they do care or they wouldn’t ever get back to me, and the one who was the least responsive was me.
The one friend who doesn’t have kids was dealing with the loss of her mother, who we both loved, and getting engaged and married during the time we were out of touch.
Sometimes when your low, you don’t want to complain and you just don’t have anything else to say…
Sometimes when you are busy you can’t spare the mental energy to think of the right reply even if you have hours of time and a phone or computer.
Sometimes it’s not easy to say the right thing, sometimes you have no comment about the last thing that was said, it’s so much more often an innocent silence than a malicious one or a huge betrayal (I think).
Perhaps we just aren’t comfortable with silence?
My most religousy belief as an agnostic is that God (if there is one) gives you your friends. I got most of my friends when I was neither a good friend nor a particularly nice person. I’ve noticed mean and nice people both have friends, some people with no friends are quite interesting and nice and some people with the most friends are horrible behind closed doors… so that there is no rhyme or reason I’ve found to how people make friends at all.
I’m agnostic, but I have an atheist, christian, Buddhist, Daoist friends. I think if I lived near Catholics, polytheists or Islamic people I would have those friends too, but I just don’t run into them in my area much, in college I did and we were friends. My friends run the entire political spectrum with absolutely no repeats, I’m the dead center as an independent, we all know each other’s views and as individual have no problem tolerating each other and being civil, so it’s interesting that the nation doesn’t do so on a larger scale. I value my friends so very much, but find it impossible to know how we matched up, it wasn’t by similar gender, similar personality, similar back ground, similar religion, nor similar interests, nor similar politics.
What it was I can’t define, but I’m grateful to have friends.
Tech Use 2: I Use Technology to Keep Track of My Real Friends
I use Instagram for one friend who like to post there (a runner).
I use Facebook for three friends who are already there (I took forever to finally start using Facebook).
I use email for family since I hate phones.
I use Google Meeting for my writers meet up post covid.
I break down and use text messages for my last friend who as far as I know doesn’t use other means of communication.
I have Word Press and Coach.Me for meeting new people and sharing ideas.
I really wish everyone was on the same system, but since we aren’t it’s more important for me to chase those I care about than to have things be simple.
I have the most trouble with Facebook, it’s so cluttered to my mind, I just go in, direct message my friends and that’s it. It’s weird to me that I like publicly posting on Coach.Me or on WordPress or even Instagram (owned by Facebook) but I’ve never been so into Facebook. It’s hard to even check in every months or every few months, but since I have 60% of my friends in one place I do.
Only on Facebook do I face the issue of needing to make peace with seeing my friend there, but not yet ready to reply to me… I read a very in depth answer that helped me deal with it better ever before:
I have experienced an unnumbered of circumstance in life pertaining to communication: whether it’s a friend, relatives, colleagues or an impromptu conversation with a stranger, the vast knowledge of conversing develops and empowers me to transcend into a proficient communicator. As of present, there’s something I would like to share and I believe that the information imparted to you would be as of great assistance in becoming a better communicator!
1: Chat whenever it’s Necessary.
– First thing first, do not commence a conversation arbitrarily (As in being random without a specific narration) as the convo may end excessively quick since you failed to captivate (Capture) the person’s utmost attention. Having said that, the only thing you should do at this point in time would be to only converse when you had a specific narration in mind (It could be a discussion, a request, and etcetera). Nonetheless, the best way to start a casual conversation would be a greeting. A greeting allows you to form a startling yet warm relationship with the person as he/she knows that you’re deeply concerned with what they’re up to in life.
Therefore, after a series of greeting, you may then proceed forward to your very own theme gradually. In the event that the discussion is getting extremely awkward (Cumbersome), do not end it aggressively instead what you could do in this circumstance would be to fare a healthy Good-Bye and that it’s extremely pleasant in the recent catch-up. “Let’s have a fun and meaningful conversation again sometime or sooner rather than later, love you xoxo”.
2: Your friends are busy.
– On an eventful occasion, we’ve to be considerate as everyone’s else is living a life full of chores and activities. Nevertheless, it’s a consensus that your friends may possibly have had a huge amount of tasks/stuff to deal with in life. Be that as it may, it’s common for them to be not ready to answer your chat, and yet do allow some time for them to get back to you soon. Talk again after a day or two if you’re really interested in the conversation. If it’s a notice or a short note, leave it as intended and go on with your day without caring too much whether the message is seen or delivered. However, if it isn’t, prompt an apology for disturbing your friends and see if you could get a response from them.
3: You saw your friends actively engaging others but not YOU.
– Complementary to this, there are certain or you could say specific types of “friends/companions” that makes you feel less worthy. For some reason, I’m here to assure you that there’s no point stressing at this issue. In the event that you saw any of your friends doing this to you, for instance, conversing with others as opposed to answering your chats, know that it’s okay for them to do so because no one has an obligation to answer you 24/7.
Subsequently, do keep yourself reminded at all times about these mini tips here: Do not be frantic, worried, or to an extent admonish your friends. Yet, do not ask them about it too. Why? It’s very likely that your friends are not keen or a big fan of the ever-lasting conversation between you both, as there might possibly be other factors prior in which it could have influenced the relationship between you and him/her.
So, what to do next? Lay low and do nothing. If it stresses you to an extent where you need to reach out to your friend for an answer (Simply knowing that the conversation isn’t highly prioritized), you may proceed to delete the conversation and move forward. You don’t have to stare right at it, killing time sweating for a “well-mannered” response. To elaborate further, rather than causing another adversary by putting yourself in an inconvenient situation, be still, be quiet and be confident (Firm with your decisions) with your inner self.
4: Do the SAME to THEM.
– Few are uncommon and not many are rare. I’m not reinstating the fact that you should be ignoring your friends when they ignored you initially. I’m simply asking you to respect yourself. Knowing and coming to an understanding that your friends “SHOULD” be treating you as a true friend and not a “puppet in need”. Rather than helping them whenever a request “ding”, let them do it by themselves. For that reason, do not lay out a perfect blueprint or handing yourself out in exchange for “timely attention”. Respect yourself, know who you are to him/her, know what you must do and can’t do in certain situations. You’re not a PUPPET, you’re a FRIEND.
5: Seen Message/Ignored Texts.
– Prior to this, whether your message is seen or disregarded, bold yourselves and converse with them once more. Do not allow or empower your friends to slaughter you psychologically (Your confidence) as this is your life, not theirs to begin with. Many would question themselves off the chart with unrelated worries. However, I’ll like you to sit quietly and ask yourself deeply these sets of questions: (Are the messages seen/delivered worth your worries? Is the seen messages a huge/major concern? Are they “present” at times when you needed them the most? Are you behaving like a friend or selling yourself out as a puppet in exchange for attention? Who and what did you prioritize more, a message or a relationship?).
Now, after a series of light therapy. Talk to them again like there’s nothing occurred in the first place.
6: Do not make an enemy.
– Conventionally, some friends may overlook (Ignored) you for a couple of reasons. These kind of shrouded information are recognizable when someone (A mutual friend or an unknown third party) had it discussed and share it with you. IF your FRIENDS are constantly talking shit of you behind your back, and are not truthful with you at present, CUT TIES with them ASAP. Nonetheless, ensured that your pruning session goes lightly and not out of touch (Too hardcore – bringing in newsworthy rumor in a campus/office/workplace, cut them off by setting up an invisible barrier not known to this “friend of yours”. How? Create a distance between you and him/her invisibly. For instance, not texting – avoiding going out with them – and the most important of it all? >>> As opposed to making them a potential threat aka a new adversary, smile, act and move ON with life as if it doesn’t occur initially.<<<
Trust me, it helps so much. Instead of making an enemy, putting in the effort to fight back, channeling dramas. It’s the best for you to ignored or cut ties with them. They are attention-seeking acquaintance, and not a friend to begin with. Real friends, talk about your problems in front of you, and not behind your back by spreading inaccurate pieces of information that could defame your reputation in the long haul. Rumors are the worst I get it, but what’s worst? Pulling yourself low to “prove” that they “are wrong” which in turn??? Validates the ??? RUMORS. So, why bother ensnaring yourself in the prison cage they created? It kills you internally and externally (Psychologically & Mentally = Taxes you Emotionally). Remember, mental above emotions at all times.
7: Improved yourselves.
– Control the “Comments” you see. How? You have got a brain and when you started thinking, it leads to? Perception. When I was younger, my dad used to taught me how to “differentiate the good versus the bad”. So, do your own version. Don’t listen to the ?? Whiners, Naysayers, and Losers as their sole existence are to ??? Bring you down.
Nonetheless, do keep in mind that genuine friends are elusive these days as genuine friends don’t come around your circle too often. Knowing that “It’s okay” having a quality circle of friends than a quantity amount of unknown anonymous who would take you for granted.
However, if you are in need of a friend to talk to, I’m here to listen (Not hear).
Good Luck and Cheers to you!– Xavier Tan (Reply from Quora)
I post that reply, though not mine, because it was so helpful to me to curb my e-codependance a bit and I thought it might be for others too.
Especially step 4, do the same to them (but not in a bad spirit) was helpful for me. After reading that reply hearing my text messages beep didn’t make me stop what I was doing with my kids, I thought “I’ll get to it, in the right time for me” and I was in peace, no longer worrying about hurting their feelings by taking however long was the right amount for me to take.
Any thoughts? Are your friends scattered around like mine? Or is everyone else in the world on Facebook? Has it been a benefit or a curse in your life having social media replace the in person hang out that we used to know?