As far as blogs go, this is a hard one to publish when you realize and acknowledge it’s happening to you and what’s worse, you’ve allowed it to happen. And, no this has nothing to do with the passing of a loved one or friend.
This has to do with friendship (or so you thought) or an acquaintance who just isn’t good for you or your family life. We’ve all had them, and hopefully we aren’t one of them. I feel my BoomerGuy and I are pretty good people, we give, we share, but maybe too much.
This past year and a half I had someone who entered my life who I thought would be fun and turn into a healthy friendship/relationship. Instead, over the months, it became quite toxic and wearing on my life and that of my family.
When do you stop and say enough giving, enough is enough with all the giving and getting nothing in return. When do you put on the brakes to this kind of friendship?
I had some time over the month of December to step back from this “friendship” and evaluate what was happening. The light bulb moment came on brightly when Christmas and New Year’s came and went without even a card or call or text acknowledging a small thank you for the friendship and all the time my husband and I gave to help over this past year.
Then I took it step further and began to back off this month, just to see what would happen if I wasn’t around or willing to no longer reach out and give freely of myself. I suppose I shouldn’t have been surprised when I got a call about a week ago and it was all about that person’s problems, their needs and how could we help.
I found by stepping back and trying to be as analytical as I could that some people just aren’t that good at being a friend. We’ve all had the friendship that won’t step midway into giving back, caring or sharing, doing what they’ve promised, paying you back what they owe, returning borrowed items, and sometimes just listening to your issues instead of ranting on theirs.
It hurts. You keep up the good fight by thinking all your giving would eventually turn into giving in return. When it doesn’t, you need to stop because it will never change. You are the one left holding the bag, and frankly, life, especially for us Boomers and seniors is too short to put with painful things that we can change.
When do you say this simply isn’t healthy any longer for me, my home life and my happiness and tranquility. At what point do you realize there is more harmony and peace in not having this person in your life taking too much and not giving anything in return. The balance sheet has far too many liabilities than assets.
We all want friends and valuable friendships, and fortunately, I have both. The majority have been in my life for a very long time, a long number of years, and perhaps that’s the definition of a true friend—one that has true staying power by meeting you halfway. Unfortunately, there are times some of the people we think as friends need to be released. You can be civil, but the days of giving and getting nothing in return are over. Tough love.
It takes a lot of effort to be a real friend. A real friend needs to cross the road and meet you halfway. Not always on the take, but they need to return the “give.” Friendships are not one-sided. A bad friendship is as bad for your well-being as the most destructive anything in your life. Let go of the negative and toxic people in your life and make room for real friends. Just imagine how healthy that concept will be. Do it!!! Be happy and healthy—you deserve it.
To Have A Good Friend, You Need To Be A Good Friend