What is this thing called friendship?

This past week, I’ve been reflecting about the meaning of friendship. I recently had someone whom I considered a close friend give me that proverbial boot, and I find myself wondering if the friendship was real, imagined, or somewhere in between. Mining the internet, I found these three definitions of friendship:

– Situational friends. You see each other regularly, have fun together, even share occasional disappointments. When you move or something changes, you don’t stay in touch. Ex. : activity and location based – work, gym, clubs, etc.
Casual friends. Meet each other once in a while, go out for lunch and dinner, catch up on the news/gossip. You like each other, appreciate the company. But are are not best friends.
– Close friends. They understand the real you, help when you’re in trouble and are people you can rely on. They will not betray you, they let you in their lives and care about you deeply. Such people don’t come along often and such relationships are to be cherished.

In my life, I’ve had (and continue to have) many casual and situational friends. I have only had a small handful of what I would consider as “close” friends. The problem I have run into is that nearly all of them have ultimately betrayed me in one way or another. This last experience makes me want to give up on the idea of allowing anyone except my husband to be close enough to me to ever hurt me as deeply again.

As I write this, I happen to be listening to the movie Crocodile Dundee. There was a line that just floated by my awareness that said, “Guess we could all use more mates.” I think I’m on the right track in writing this post– at least for me — because of the synchronicity of that simple occurrence. When something this coincidental happens, I know that the Universe is telling me that I am in precisely the right place at the right time and doing exactly what I should be doing.

So everyone should have more friends, huh? I just want to know why it seems that I have such poor judgment that the last two women whom I allowed to be close friends with me ultimately broke my heart. It’s not a slight against women in general, just as I allow them to be my close friends. Is it my poor judgment or something else? If so, what is that “something else”? Perhaps it’s that I naturally trust people, don’t pry into their business unless invited in, and have a deep need for the acceptance and joy that comes from close friendship. Whatever it is, I don’t think it’s me.

I think, instead,it’s an ulterior motive that I don’t read well because I don’t do it myself. I am the type of person who wears her heart on her sleeve. I don’t play relationship games because I despise them. I guess that makes me different than some of the people whom I have called friend. In both of the previous upsetting friendships, the ulterior motives became clear after the relationship ended and I felt used and foolish. But who is truly the fool? Me, for having loved another person or them for using a loving and trusting soul?

I know it will take time, but I’m sure I will someday let someone in enough to be considered a “close” friend. Maybe.

 

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