Tag Archives: friendship

Friendships you never doubt

They say true friends go long periods of time without speaking and never question the friendship.

It’s true, I think. But I only think, I don’t know, because for me, crippling anxiety surrounds most interactions I have with people, and friendship is one of the hardest things to feel confident about.

People scare me, because of what they might say or do a lot more than what they actually say and do. I’m forever fearing what I might do to offend or hurt people, and trying my best to avoid doing things wrong, and forever feeling that I fail.┬áThe reality of living with mental illness is that your interactions with other people just aren’t like those of ‘normal’ people. You interact differently – people with anxiety will identify with what I feel when I interact with people, the hopes and fears I have, much more than a typical person, who might feel passing rather than crushing anxieties.

In my purely logical mind, I know that there are people who are part of my life who would pick up where we left off as if we’d seen each other only yesterday. Meeting up with a person like that, though, is a morass of what my rational mind knows are baseless fears. Logic and rationality don’t protect me from a mind that wants to tell me that I’m a failure at interpersonal communication, and that people just don’t like me.

I have friends that I do see regularly, good friends. It’s not fair that I can’t shake the feeling that they don’t really care for me all that much. The things depressed and anxious brains tell us are cruel and untrue, but they’re so believable in the moment.

Depression has spent Sunday chewing on me, so things are a bit hazy and rambly at the moment. I feel the effects of it a lot more on weekends because theres no strict routine to keep me going, unlike weekdays. I worked for a chunk of Saturday, and that helped me engage the healthy part of my brain. My unhealthy brain took over for the rest of the weekend though, and it’s thrown me into a bit of a spin. I hope the weekday routine will pull me up.

RIP Scott Miller. I miss you.

I had just started blogging again in October last year, and things were going pretty well. Then, all of a sudden, radio silence, which continued until a couple of days ago. Well, it all stopped because a dear friend committed suicide. I had no idea how unwell he was, and it came as a total shock.

Scott was one of my very very few regular readers, and he would often get in touch and offer gentle critique, or check if I was ok, or whatever appropriate response there was to what I had written that day. It felt a bit special to have an actual regular reader. And now he’s gone.

I’m still processing the grief. At the time I reacted with a cool head and logic, and just helped keep everything moving. I didn’t cry a lot. I think it’s still all stored up inside me, waiting for an excuse to flood out, probably at a completely inopportune moment.

I miss him so much.

Depressed brains are jerks

So you see a post on social media, tagging a bunch of your friends but not you. It’s a group thing, but they’re not deliberately excluding you. You just weren’t around much, or weren’t there at the time, or whatever. It’s just a bunch of your friends having a group smile over something. You smile and scroll on.

Or, if you’re prone to depression, it weighs on you. They don’t want you around, your depressed brain says. You’re not really part of the group. It doesn’t matter how hard you try, you’re just not one of them. It doesn’t matter what they say, you can tell that it’s just words to cover up the fact that they just don’t like you that much.

Depressed brains are jerks. They lie to you, all the time. Even when you’re ‘well’, they taunt you with this kind of garbage. Even if you’re well enough to know that it’s not true, the thoughts come anyway, and you have to actively deal with them in various ways, to stop yourself sinking back into depression.

Depressed brains are jerks. They steal away your peace of mind in favour of whatever turmoil they can conjure up. They affect every part of your life – these kind of thoughts come up around work, home life, friendships and family relationships, anything and everything gets caught up. It gets exhausting actively fighting off these thoughts when they infect your entire world.

Depressed brains are jerks.

Love can be tough, but friendship lasts forever

I am afraid that I’m calling bullshit on half of this one. Yes, love is hard. Really hard sometimes. But friendship doesn’t always last forever.

The context I saw this in was a girl who had just broken up with her boyfriend, calling her best friend for help. Her best friend appears and comforts her. All in all a pretty average comic strip. It was captioned with the above title.

Friends, even best friends, don’t always last forever. People drift apart and together again, rifts form, both serious and silly, because life ebbs and flows like that. It’s just the way life works, and trying to cling on to a friend that’s moving in a different direction is silly.

The comic implies that love doesn’t last forever, that it can be tough, and that it sometimes doesn’t work out. Why would anyone think that friendship is any different? You have to work at it and put effort into it in order for it to work, and sometimes it doesn’t no matter how hard you try. Sometimes it breaks up for no reason and you’re left crying to your boyfriend that you just don’t know what went wrong.

Don’t be realistic about love and then paint a rosy view of friendship. They’re both forms of close relationships, and there are strong similarities between the two.