“Friendship” Frustrations

I think I am doing something wrong.  I am getting so tired of “giving” everything in a friendship and not getting anything back.  If it was just one or two friends I would not worry about it so much but I can name at least 4 “friends” in the last couple of years that never or very rarely return any kind of giving.  And I am not talking about gifts … just simply giving time, love, basic caring.  I am tired of unanswered emails, ignored cards and letters, text messages that are never replied to.

What am I doing wrong?  Do I just have the talent of picking all the “worst” people?  These are people I have cared about and thought cared about me but they sure don’t show it.  I understand getting busy but… I have one friend in the past year I have seen ONCE for about 15 minutes.  This was after she used to visit weekly.  Another friend has health issue, I understand that… but is typing an email with “I’m doing ok” so time-consuming?  Another friend who I have sent letters to three times now and not even a quick phone call to say she got them.

Do I just misunderstand friendship?  I have always thought when you care you give of yourself in the relationship.  Is that the wrong kind of thinking?  I really even like to give.  Sending a card or letter when I know someone is down, or just out of the blue for a little bit of a break from the bills in the mail.  A text just to say I love you in the middle of the day.  An offer of a listening ear when there are problems going on.  But I have been left alone and wondering too many times.

So I must be doing it wrong.  I should only reply to half of what I receive.  I should stop with the random sentiments.  And never take the time to write an actual letter to someone to send with a card that is not in digital form.  I need to harden my heart and be a part-time “friend” so I match up with what others are doing.  Or am I just picking the wrong people to trust and love?  Do you share and give or yourself with your friends?  Or as a society have we just all become self sufficient?

I may ramble here, but I know I wont change and I will continue to get to a point when it piles up and I think I am the only one who gives once again.  I like to do things that make people smile.  But just once I would like the kindness to be returned.  Is that too much to ask?

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