Part 2 of this series on friends and friendship. For a little background, check out Part 1, or the inspiration for this series of questions. In short, instead of rattling off things in my own head about friends and friendship, I asked you and your answers did not disappoint!
Question 2: Do you think friendship is hard? Why or why not?
In general, no. I think true friendship is like breathing; it’s just there (and when you stop breathing, or stop friending something catastrophic will happen).
Sometimes it is hard, self-less, sacrificial investment and sometimes it is as easy as breathing – just something that you do naturally.
Commitment to staying in touch takes effort but worth it.
Obviously I can only speak for myself, but I don’t think friendship itself is hard. I do have a difficult time finding friends (i.e. people who want the same things I want from friendship and who are willing to work to make friendship a priority).
When I develop a close friendship, I go into fear mode because I’m afraid I will lose it. There’s a lot of fear in my friendships now that I think about it, and I don’t know what that means but it’s kind of sad.
That is not to say that friendship is not work; it needs effort and care and to be a good friend you have to know how to put other people ahead of you when appropriate.
I think maintaining long distance friendships can be “hard” because both sides have to make an effort. I don’t think friendship is hard when you are work friends or they are part of your daily/weekly social circle.
I am not always a good friend to others because I also struggle with my own insecurities about opening up to other people, being hurt, rejected, etc. Sometimes I get these random fears that my friends actually all hate me and think I’m pathetic and wish I would go away, but again, that’s my own garbage.
Depending on the person some are easy and some are difficult but usually you can determine and take it from there.
If I find a friendship consistently difficult, one where I feel myself afraid to be who I really am or find myself sacrificing all the time, I re-evaluate if there is a really a friendship going on, or more a ministry.
Yes, especially as it grows. You move passed the “courtships” to the “marriage” where you begin to see each other’s faults. You know that you care for them enough and vice versa that you are willing to ride the waves of petty differences and hardships because you value who they are, and you are in it for the long hall.
It can also be hard because conflict is inevitable. Both must be willing to be humble enough to own their own “stuff,” make it right, and love enough to let go and move on.
Sometimes when I’m afraid I’ll go dark on them because I figure that if they can’t find me or they’re not thinking about me, then they won’t leave.
I will work hard, through conflict, distance and silence for friends I know value me.
You know that you care for them enough and vice versa that you are willing to ride the waves of petty differences and hardships because you value who they are, and you are in it for the long hall.
It can be hard. I have to choose to see my friends—being with my friends doesn’t just happen. Decoding another’s secret protocols is tricky.
On to question 3. Thank you for taking this journey with us.