We all have a friend who is always in need of something? Or maybe it’s just me.
You know that person you feel connected to, by some years of friendship, stuff you’ve done together and experiences lived together? Yes, that’s how most people define friendship. But I want to get more specific than that.
I am not sure how to call this relationship because friendship is not a good label anymore.
We used to do fun stuff together, talk about out fail romantic encounters and give advice to each other. Talk on the phone for hours, trying to figure it out why that date didn’t work out.
It took me years of this toxic relationship to light out that bulb. It all started the moment one of our conversations reached the question: “Why is my friend Z not returning my calls?”
For the sake of anonymity, I’m going to call my friend X in this post.
When X explained the interaction with that friend Z, who was no returning his calls, I couldn’t find a flaw in that relationship. Everything was politely done and nobody could have been offended. Then later in the same conversation, we ended up talking about a bunch of friends who were not returning his calls. It was a complete mystery. For us.
Another episode was when one morning I woke up to read a text from X, asking me to set up accounts on different online social platforms, to help with some reviews and engagement. (Everyone on the internet is struggling with that, most people pay money to overcome this.)
I said “Firstly, Goog morning!” and then asked if my page would benefit from a share to X’s Facebook page. The answer was “You know I don’t post anything outside my area of interest on my page”. Me *straight-face*.
X’s birthday party
At home, a cosy party, with a few friends, or better said, acquaintances. I couldn’t help but say out loud “What happened to all your other friends? You argued with them all and now you have a new set of friends?” Because I didn’t know anyone there, only new faces at the party. And I tend to make bad jokes – inspired from reality- sometimes.
I got no answer, only an angry face. And a 30 min talk on the phone the next day, in which I was lectured about my inappropriate remark.
Fast-forwarding a couple of months, although other ambiguous episodes have happened. Today I send X some photos.
X immediately called me and expressed the coincidence of thought, X was just about to call me when I send the pics. The polite “How are you?” happened, with no real interest in my answer nor my activities. I couldn’t finish my answer and ask back “And how are you?” because the answer was already being verbalised.
X was in need of a friend to help to carry a big heavy thing home. Although I had things to do, I said I could help, but I would need money for gas. “That’s why I called my friends, so I didn’t need to take a taxi.” Well, “I also need to buy gas, and that means I need money”. X just called me to be his Uber, for free. (Not the first time) A new definition for the perfect friend has just been discovered: Time, money and a car.
X didn’t stop here with the arguments. “You’ve recently been in Russia and spent money and now you don’t have money for gas?” Now, this was what really pissed me off.
You, reading this, right now: Whatever you do with your time and money shouldn’t be anyone else’s concern. Or reason of judgement. Ever!
This is my passion, my work, my time, my money and my life!
The last two paragraphs were things I’ve told X on the phone. X’s reaction was to shut it off, close the conversation. “We’ll talk some other time”. And it’s not the first time I hear this line.
And X hung up.
I was not the first friend X has called today. The story may sound harsh from my side, but during the last months, it was the only type of interaction.
And I’m the only one to notice. X, I really want to help you, but I don’t know how. That’s why I hope you read this.
People can change, if the change comes from within. You can change, but You have to make an effort. And if you’re still wondering why your friends are not answering your calls anymore, read this anytime you need to remember yourself.
We all might be someone’s X. Let’s just try not to. Be the person you want to be friends with!
Because a friend in need is not a friend I need!