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It's really hard to find people that are good for you and that make your life better when you choose to hang out with toxic people. A measure of character is who you choose to have in your life, other people pay attention to that. And toxic relationships seep into your own psyche and reduce your ability to recognize and find better situations.

It's always good to learn how to be alone with yourself.
 

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Tbh I'm not sure if Im the bad friend who's better left alone

Sometimes i think people are opportunistic and liers by nature. Sometimes I think I'm doing smth wrong if most people who have been my friends of the past barely reach me out at all. I guess they are having their life's. And I guess also people start new lives way to often. It's kinda the same vibe I get when I think am I a genius or a retard. Probably a bit of both.
 

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ive enjoyed lurking this thread, some extremely good answers in there.

from my own experience ive long since come to the conclusion its better to be alone than surrounded by people who dont understand/appreciate/help you. having "placeholder" humans in your life straight up wastes the slots that truly valuable ones should be in, and while i certainly cant speak for others, i know my slots are limited.

i was never made to have "groups" of friends. long before social media even became a thing, the concept of "hundreds of friends" sickened me. my grandfather used to say if you have enough real and true friends that you can count on one hand, in your entire life you should consider yourself extremely fortunate. and i believe that to this day.

the truth is i dont even want more than a certain number of acquaintances. its too messy. and i find it a bit self centered or irresponsible to have a lot of vague relations with people because there's always a blurred line of "who is this person, really?" that nobody seems to want to address. the term "friend" is grossly misused and under/over simplified. half the time people refer to someone as a friend, they themselves dont even know "what kind" of friend they've designated that person as. its icky to me.

i think OP kinda nailed it when you stated "
At this point, I'm not sure should I still keep these friendships to satisfy my basic social needs or just completely ditch them until I find new friends
"

because it shows you've recognized your needs vs your wants. they're not always one and the same. tend to your needs first and your wants second and i feel you'll always come out on top for yourself and those around you. it establishes a standard. it has always felt to me like, big unnecessary social groups are a bunch of people with little direction trying to fill that massive void hole that is a "want" and everyone involved just cant be made happy like that. take care of and establish what you need in any case be it friendships or relationships. draw those lines and stick to them. yes, of course that automatically means you'll have "fewer" and "less" friends but just imagine that transition of having a qualitative boost in your social circle rather than a quantitative one. :blushed:
 

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Discussion Starter #44
Hmmmm. I used to think like this. It made me deeply uncomfortable, once I was honest with myself about it. I came to the conclusion that sometimes it is more honest and compassionate to go ahead and burn the bridge. Bridges are infrastructure. They require maintenance. If you keep a bridge in poor repair around just in case you'd like to use it again someday, you're setting both people, as well as anyone else who might be involved, up for a nasty fall.

Am I sad that I couldn't figure out a good way to keep certain relationships afloat? Sure. Am I embarrassed, perhaps even kind of ashamed? Sure.

But people and friendships are living entities, not things which can be kept in a broom closet or storage facility until you have need of them.
I get where you're coming from but I disagree. I am not coming from a place of "uh they're disposable so fuck them" but from a place of "maybe I'm being overly dramatic and we can make it work." I won't make permanent decisions based on feelings that might be temporary. And even if I cut them off, it will be in the spirit of "you know, I had a lot of fun times with you and I want only the best for you, but I don't want to hang out as much anymore because I am moving on with my life" not "You're toxic and I want you out."

My friends aren't toxic, they just don't give me as much love and affection as I feel I deserve. And I have to acknowledge the best possible solution might not be to cut them out, but to just spend less time with them and learn that I can't rely on them for certain things like emotional support.
 

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For a long time now, I've been disappointed with my friends and I started to become increasingly independent/capable of spending time alone. For example, I trained myself to not share certain things with them when I know they won't even bother convincingly feigning interest (though I brought up this issue to them and always give them attention, love and support they need me).

At this point, I'm not sure should I still keep these friendships to satisfy my basic social needs or just completely ditch them until I find new friends (and we all know that forming new friendships is not easy).

So, in essence, I'm asking you this:
Is it better to have at least someone in your life that you can talk to, even if the conversatons are meh, or to be proud and fly solo?
So, you are in a permanent quandary. You MUST evolve, or you will stagnate with either choice.

You are not specific here and I could at least try to help you if you were. I mean here you are, on an anonymous (if you choose it to be) or at least indirect platform for discussion and you do not say precisely WHY your friends are disappointing you. If that one example you gave is it then I will turn it back on you.

Friends can sense when you are 'keeping it real' with them. They often give in balance with what they get. If you open up to them, trust them, that allows for the possibility of them trusting you. If you fall for this social game, this pretense of holding back some of yourself, they will sense it and they will rightly think of YOU as disingenuous. How can they then be blamed for holding back or not caring?

So the thing is, what you are is your enemy. What you need to grow in maturity and wisdom is to become more of what you are not. So this YOU you care about that you think they do not, is a dead past you. You should treat it marginally like they do, or like you think they do or will. It takes ANGER and spine to stand to indifference. You be you, and learn the discipline not to care what they think. Further, you learn the discipline to call them out on their indifference, to challenge them, with anger, at their immoral choice to ignore you, their supposed friend. Once you do that, you will have confirmation one way or another if they will help or pay attention. If you do not speak up in anger and show yourself, present you, you are confirming to them that they should consider you no more worthy than you yourself consider yourself. Anger is presence. Anger is BEING. Anger is now. You need more anger.

And be advised you are not good with anger yet. When you try it at fist it will be clumsy. Learn to catch that clumsiness and apologize. Keep saying things and correcting yourself until you get it right. Make it humorous or try to include joy in that process.

And here is another take on this: Remember - NO ONE IS TOXIC TO THE WISE. A person with real wisdom can find the value in anyone and help to bring that value forward in their behavior. Further, all values are linked in a precise relationship. Learn that relationship (the Enneagram) and you can use the one value someone does exhibit to relate it to the other values and then you have a map to getting them to a more whole presentation. For example, someone could be allowing their social settings to overwhelm them because they exhibit a lack of confidence and anger in presentation. You would then need to challenge that person to get angry and demand their slice of the pie. Whatever emotion a person is weak in they will be clumsy with it. Remember to caution them on that point. And then give an example of how this process might work so they have a path to follow.

Regardless, good luck!
 

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I get where you're coming from but I disagree. I am not coming from a place of "uh they're disposable so fuck them" but from a place of "maybe I'm being overly dramatic and we can make it work." I won't make permanent decisions based on feelings that might be temporary. And even if I cut them off, it will be in the spirit of "you know, I had a lot of fun times with you and I want only the best for you, but I don't want to hang out as much anymore because I am moving on with my life" not "You're toxic and I want you out."

My friends aren't toxic, they just don't give me as much love and affection as I feel I deserve. And I have to acknowledge the best possible solution might not be to cut them out, but to just spend less time with them and learn that I can't rely on them for certain things like emotional support.
Your situation is the same as mine was. The friends and family members with whom I "burned bridges" weren't toxic people at all. All are very lovely and all of them really care about me. BUT. They expected things from me I couldn't give (too much social interaction) and I expected things from them they couldn't give (too much emotional validation). Any time they would come looking to me for social interaction, we'd end up with me trying to get emotional validation. Any time I went to them looking for emotional validation, they would automatically assume that meant we were going to kick the socializing into high gear. Very frustrating for both parties, in each instance.

I decided the bridge burn was more respectful of both people. Which is not to say that if we find another bridge, or perhaps a way around the gorge that separates us, I wouldn't seize that opportunity. But THAT particular bridge I'm describing was an awful one to be on. We'd both just get stuck out there in the middle with nothing but rotten wood supporting us.
 

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Discussion Starter #47
Your situation is the same as mine was. The friends and family members with whom I "burned bridges" weren't toxic people at all. All are very lovely and all of them really care about me. BUT. They expected things from me I couldn't give (too much social interaction) and I expected things from them they couldn't give (too much emotional validation). Any time they would come looking to me for social interaction, we'd end up with me trying to get emotional validation. Any time I went to them looking for emotional validation, they would automatically assume that meant we were going to kick the socializing into high gear. Very frustrating for both parties, in each instance.

I decided the bridge burn was more respectful of both people. Which is not to say that if we find another bridge, or perhaps a way around the gorge that separates us, I wouldn't seize that opportunity. But THAT particular bridge I'm describing was an awful one to be on. We'd both just get stuck out there in the middle with nothing but rotten wood supporting us.
I'm so charmed by how far you're taking the bridge metaphor. Never change haha :hug: I'm not sure how similar our situations are but I'm very grateful for your insight irregardless ;)

I had a talk with my two most valuable friends today and I can confidently say thatl I got what I needed out of this thread, but if you guys wanna keep discussing this and replying - feel free.
 

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I'm so charmed by how far you're taking the bridge metaphor.
:laughing::laughing::laughing:

Oh, God bless you, Intuition! When I saw you'd post quoted me, I knew you were going to say something about the tired bridge metaphor. And BAM!

Yeah, I milk my metaphors until their teats hurt.
 
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Discussion Starter #49
:laughing::laughing::laughing:

Oh, God bless you, Intuition! When I saw you'd post quoted me, I knew you were going to say something about the tired bridge metaphor. And BAM!

Yeah, I milk my metaphors until their teats hurt.
You have a very solid bridge connecting you, your intuition and your metaphors :laughing::laughing::laughing:
 

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You have a very solid bridge connecting you, your intuition and your metaphors :laughing::laughing::laughing:
Look! It even has the same dance moves as me!

giphy.gif
 

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Alone. I can't believe that I used to care so much about having friends. I do have friends, but I'm very much a middle aged adult in that they aren't a big deal in my life. I find people to be an enormous drain unless we're compatible. I largely find that I get along with other vegans or vegetarians, people who have some sort of life sciences or earth science background, and a couple of people I knew in my early 20s.

Of course I have increasingly developed an intense hatred for mankind in the past decade or so. Especially in the last two or three years. I just can't be bothered. I'm like....sooooo....okay....you care more about your Netflix binge than the future of our planet....the more I know the less people I'm able to relate to on any real or serious level. It's pure comedy I was once a garden variety liberal.

I do think it is important to have someone to talk to and care about though, even if it's some acquaintances you keep at an arm's length, or neighbors. I think isolating yourself from other people completely can be harmful, and isn't natural.
 
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I rather be alone than have bad friends in my life. Before I used to be friends with horrible people and not speak up for myself, because I wasn't confident with myself. So much time has gone by now and I've been learning a lot from my lessons in life and not caring what people think of me. In the end, I got rid of those horrible friends and I don't keep in contact with them anymore. I honestly couldn't be any happier and I realized that's where all my stress was coming from. They would always use me or take advantage of me, I never once stood up for myself because I wanted friends so desperately.

Now I rather connect with someone on a more personal and intellectual level. It's good to have friends, but it's better to be picky on who you allow into your life. If your friends with someone and they stress you out all the time, their extremely toxic. I've learned to stand up for myself and that it's okay to say, "No"
 

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*good words*
actually warmed my lil rabid heart to hear... well, read this. i always wondered about it. like everything you said, i figured out in my early youth so it was never an issue to me. but i always talked to or met people who were like..visibly suffering, from their choice of "friends" and it always confused me why.

another issue was calling them out for it like.. "your friends suck" is offensive "you shouldnt be so desperate for social connections" was offensive "stop being afraid of yourself - being alone isnt a bad thing" sounded like i was insane to people. and i always wondered if, some point later in life they'd realize it themselves or ..i dunno it feels like something's gotta give. maybe people do need to just get older to get wiser but i see a lot of ppl older than me who still behave as if they're highschoolers trying to hang in cliques and gossiping and rabble rabble rabble.

yea, i always wondered..

in any case glad you 'made it' :laughing: i wish you the fulfilling social interactions you always deserved, but just didnt know it then.
 

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Hello to all. I would say this - friends will always be there! A true friend understands you and requires nothing in return. If this is not, then it's just your friend. Do not worry, everything will be fine! Good luck!
 

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So, in essence, I'm asking you this:
Is it better to have at least someone in your life that you can talk to, even if the conversatons are meh, or to be proud and fly solo?
Depends on if you're introverted or extroverted. But my money is avoid the "proud and fly solo" idea like the plague. You need your social needs met, you'll be off-kilter if you don't. Even if it's not the best, it's at least something, and that something carries the possibility of being improved upon. Flying solo is cool for a while, but it gets tiring quickly. I've spent a significant time alone on my journeys, and it sucks. There's always a yearning for stability, something to come back to, and someone you can turn to and share your day with.

In short - if you're planning on going solo for an extended period of time, you're gonna have a bad time. I 100% do not recommend it, not even rice can make it better. Speaking from experience here.
 

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It's always better to be alone than to stay with friends who hurt you. This is situational though, it's not better to be alone in all situations. Trying to have healthy relationships is a risk and it's an immense amount of effort. It's also a good learning experience. I always rejected friends before they could reject me but pushing myself past that has improved my confidence even though I still haven't made friends with whom I feel a close bond with (outside of my childhood friend who lives in a different state).

Most people will be boring sometimes, myself included. People are multi-faceted and it's wise to give them time to open up and share the interesting parts of themselves. Interesting is also a matter a perspective. I'd rather have a loyal friend than an entertaining one. I can entertain myself just fine, but feeling companionship is something I can't do on my own.
 

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I learned long ago that most people are phony. One minute you're besties and the next, they're tearing you down for their own gain.

I choose alone over bad friendships any and every day.

Were I to make real friends again IRL, I'd find INTJs and mayyybe INFJs. As superficial acquaintances, I am open.
 
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