I just really don’t get it. How come some people are perfectly ok with taking people for granted and determining their friendships solely by their own needs and desires at any point in time?
I try not to take the people in my life for granted. My relationships don’t operate on on/off switches that I can ignore whenever I feel like it. Friendship, to me, means loving and supporting someone else; sharing in their joys and sorrows, and just being nice. Honestly, I don’t like having friendships with people who I feel leave me as their last resort. Like, “Oh, nobody else has asked me to hang out, so I guess she’ll do.” What the heck? That’s messed up if you ask me, especially when you’ve known someone almost your whole life.
Friendship, like any human relationship, is a two-way street. You don’t get to dictate every aspect of it based on your own desires. It’s not supposed to be a selfish thing. The whole thing about being in relationship with someone else is that you care about them enough to consider their needs and desires above your own– at least more often than not.
I feel like some of my friendships require a balance that is tricky to figure out sometimes. I want a person in my life, because they’ve always been there and mostly just because I love them, but I don’t want to be treated like the second-rate choice, or be taken for granted. Sometimes I feel like people are thinking, “Well, Maggie has always been here and I know she always will be, even if I treat her badly.” The thing is, I want to be grace-filled and I want to be that person who is supportive and there for the people in my life whenever they need me, but I don’t want them to think it’s ok to take that for granted– to take me for granted. Is this selfish?
I’ve had this conversation with myself and with other people in my life many times. I guess I always come to the conclusion that I cannot control other people’s actions or what they say, I can only control my own. Even though I may make it a priority not to treat someone the way I am sometimes treated, I can’t change the fact that others may not share my thought processes or opinions. It sucks sometimes, but I’d rather feel bad for a few minutes when one of my closest friends never returns my calls or texts or e-mails than resort to the kind of behavior that made me feel bad in the first place.
Sometimes being in relationship with people is hard. All I can do is be true to myself and know that I am treating people the way I want to be treated. It can be frustrating getting your feelings hurt and feeling like you have the short end of the stick, but I know it is worth it.