November 3, 2010

Hard time - a test for real friendships?

Friendship in Uzbekistan (Sigismund von Dobsch...Image via Wikipedia

I understand some time all of us got some tough time and may not share every detail of our personal difficulties with our friends, even the closed ones. And I understand most time we don't even want to share - we rather keep our troubles with ourselves in order to protect our personal pride. However, if I knew one of my dear friends were in serious trouble and need help, I would not leave her/him alone. I would stand side by side with her/him, or if I were busy with my life, I would still once a while send my comfort or encouragement, to let her/him know that I am there, etc.. because I understand, that when in serious troubles, all we need is hope, encouragement, and the belief that one day, we will get out of shadow.

Well, it appears to me that not all people thinking like this way. For years I happened to be the one in the trouble water and many of my friends - a few of them had friendship with me for decades - faded away from my life. The darkness that overwhelmed me was intense and long term, I understand many of them were just out of patience. So I let it go. But a few of them were really close to me and I used to devoted lot of emotion and energy to them. So it hurts.

Nevertheless I still believe what I believed - real friends would willing to share everything, light or dark, happiness and bitterness. However, when I shared this idea with some people, I was told that I required too much.

People say if you found that everybody is having problem with you, the problem is usually yours. But I don't think this saying can explain my case. I refused to think it was my problem for losing friendships, because I never ever tried to put my personal trouble to my friends' shoulders. All I did "wrong" was expecting some comfort or mental support, which I totally deserved. But of course, my expectation went in vain.

There is Chinese saying that your hard time is a real test for friendship. I found it was true. Sadly, many of my dear friends failed the test.

I move forward.
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  1. Friends drift apart for many reasons, some explicable, some not. I think, ultimately, we can't depend on other people or expect much from them, except what they're willing to give. Often it's surprising which friends end up being the most sympathetic when one falls on hard times. Also, I've found that new circumstances, creates the need for a new kind of friend, someone who shares one's present condition or has some understanding of it, and that such friends do exist and can be found.

  2. thanks np. your wisdom is always deeply appreciated.
    i realized now i was quite naive regarding friendship. part of this derived from lack of self esteem. also my situation of recent years has been extreme rare (i guess because i found many cfs sufferers have same experience). it is probably the biggest /toughest lesson in my life.

  3. Hi Yun Yi,
    As a Chinese descendants, my grandfather also ever told me that your hard times is a real test for friendship. I still recall it.

  4. People come and people go from my life. Proximity and the time to be with our friends are important factors and without them any relationship's survival is at risk. I have accepted the fact that some friends will pass through my life and be gone, and others will be my perennial friends. However, I am always available to those who are experiencing hard times. When I did have a friend that wasn't available during my darkest hours I came to understand and accept the fact that she wasn't a perennial friend -- she was just passing through.

  5. TT, that's right. we have to accept. it is the imbalance of devotions made by both sides that makes situation bitter.

  6. Sometimes when we go through hard times, our friends have a difficult time seeing the weakness they perceive in themselves and recognize that they cannot give what we might need. So they drift away. For some, it's not because they no longer love us. It's because they no longer love the part of themselves that prevents them from being the type of friend they know we now need. Just another persepctive.

  7. @photodiction,
    very interesting.
    "It's because they no longer love the part of themselves that prevents them from being the type of friend they know we now need."
    this sentence sounds complicated to me. but i seems to have a grasp of what you mean.