Life here in BGIM land has been crazy for the past several days; the agency I head is experiencing a deficit in the budget that threatens our summer program so I have been working overtime trying to keep all the balls in the air. Luckily the lights are bright at the end of the tunnel and I am hoping this latest crisis will be behind me soon enough. With everything going on, I haven’t had much time to post though for folks who follow me on twitter and Facebook, I have been sharing some of my early posts from 2008.
However tonight as I unwind after a great yoga session and this great glass of Chardonnay, I realized there is something that I have been wanting to blog about. I have sort of touched upon the issue of friendships in the past and this recent article in the New York Times, brought the issue back up in my mind.
I have few friends; part of it is my circle has always been small and most of the people I consider friends I met before my 20th birthday. I have a core group of people that when shit hits the fan, they are there for me. They are the folks that will hop on a plane or offer a ticket to deal with the big shit, but sadly none of them live anywhere near me.
For the longest time, I thought maybe it was me, but the piece in the Times which sparked a discussion among my real life pals online who are also living far away from home revealed we are all in the same sorry boat. So I am wondering are we either all maladjusted undesirables or is true friendship hard to come by?
Recently I have had a few situations with several people I thought were friends that frankly have me wondering what does it even mean to be a friend? No, I am serious. My closest friend is a 40 something year old bachelor for life, we share almost everything. Yet we don’t talk daily or even weekly, hell we have been known to go long stretches without talking. We are not Facebook pals, we don’t connect on any form of social media but he knows my deep dark secrets and I know his. Even when we disagree on an issue, it’s never been a reason to stop talking or end the relationship, by comparison almost all my new (last 12 years or less) relationships are more like frenemy situations and frankly I am tired of it.
While I come from the school of ride or die friendships, I realize that’s not everyone’s thing but having went through one childhood friendship that was dysfunctional as hell until my friend’s untimely death in her late 20’s. I tend to keep a wide swath between me and folks who want me to serve as their unofficial therapist. As open as I am and despite being married to a white man, friendships with white women are hard for me to navigate, I sometimes feel we speak very different languages. Generally the only white women I don’t have that experience with tend to be ones with exposure to us diverse folks. By the same token there are plenty of people of color that frankly I don’t want to be trapped in an elevator with much less call friends of mine.
So in this new fast paced world where we can have 2000 twitter followers and 800 Facebook friend but we can’t even find someone to celebrate our birthdays with, what is a friend? Does true friendship even exist or are we all really walking around in a state of frenemies? Do you have close friends? If so how did you meet them? BGIM wants to know all about your friendships because I am nosy like that!