We all have one common type of friend: The friend you make when you discover you both have common interests. From there you either build your friendship into a deep-rooted relationship or just a frail one that breaks when one of you has a slight inconvenience. In my exprience I have had the latter kind of friends for the most part of my life. In this post, I explain why this is and also why friendship doesn't just happen to everyone. And ever more difficult if you keep moving to different places often.
Most of the time, the childhood friendships are built when you meet other kids in the park, playground or just at school. If your parents did the right job of socializing you from a very young age, you will make friends soon and find a group to hangout with everyday. Luckily as a child, my social skills were good enough to make sufficient amount of friends to have good fun. Growing up at school, these friendships were becoming strong, but then I sadly had to leave and move to another city; it was harsh, but I couldn't do anything about it as my father's job demands he move every 3 or 5 years.
I was 12 when we moved to the city we still live in. I still remeber how incredibly hard it was to get used to the new place. I hated it with all my life, I did not like the new place, it looked rather cold and dirty. But soon enough I made friends with a couple people and then the rest of the class. I also found a good bunch of people who played badminton at the local playground. We became great friends and over the years won medals at different tournaments; it was a good 3 year period of my life. And soon, I had to leave middle school to attend high school.
When I left middle school, I saw a lot of people weeping and hugging their classmates, I thought this was funny and felt no emotion whatsoever. I laughed it off and moved on. Then the Highschool was just a labour camp that worked us to death only to attain good grades. This period of life had no friends.
At the end of High School, looking back, I have made no friends with whom I have shared anything close to my heart— an emotional connection. It was always either about badminton or just random talk. I had absolutely no contact with anyone after this point in life. If at all we met, it was only a class reunion we have every couple of years for a couple of hours and that's it. I still did not know what friendship really meant at this point in time. I went on with the belief that they were all my friends and I have nothing to worry about.
A ray of hope
Being on the internet for the most part of my life, I have discovered from other people's experience of what a friendship is like. So, when I started my bachelors' degree I began to implement the ideas I took from the internet. I have realized that I had to be more open, and help friends in dire need to form good bond. And so I did it, I spend the 3 years of my B.Sc life making— what I thought— the greatest connection ever in my life. From the day 1 till the last day, I was a good friend with 3 people. We spent every minute of our college days together. Whenever I could spare anything: phone, books, you name it; I would just give them to my friends who were in need. All of this wasn't in anticipation of a similar response, but I did this whole-heartedly. As I trusted the quote: "A Friend in need is a Friend indeed". I took them to another city, we hung out, when they couldn't pay for the accomodation, I took care of it. Because, that's what friends do. I took it so far, that I believed that they were more like my brothers than friends.
It has been 2 years since we graduated, and we haven't met more than once since then. My whole belief system has come crashing down. None of them could text me once, NOT ONCE! and yet, I did invite them to lot of events of our mutual friends. But, they denied, giving lame excuses. It was only during the Covid-19 lockdown in 2020, I understood how much of a fool I have been all along. The lonely days allowed me look deeper into myself and question why I am alone. That is when I discovered that they aren't really my friends, but just were there to pass time and move on. Imagine getting a text from one of these people saying: "Hey, its been so long! Have you forgotten me?! Haven't heard from you since forever". Yes, it is horrible to read a message like this. After all you've done to keep a friendship together, you get blamed for not keeping in contact with them, for not doing anything to keep it afloat. People really are something. I do not understand how they come to this conclusion.
A repeating mistake
In both of my efforts to make proper friends, I have failed at one thing: establishing a deeper connection with them. I shouldn't have selflessly given them stuff thinking they'd realize what my intentions are. I should have rather explored why they were in a problem. Maybe I enabled their behaviour to ignore me, giving them no reason to talk to me once they are satiated with their needs.
Do I take all the blame?
Hell no, fuck them. If you do not realize that I am helping you as a friend with something that is hard for you to solve by yourself, it is alone indicative of how much I respect you and how far I am willing to go.
People are not inherently empathetic; mostly egocentric. Though not very obvious, its latent in their nature. So, the only way to make good friends is you should be either very lucky or spend time with people and understand their nature before you call them a friend.