I’m Saying Goodbye To Fair Weather Friends

I’ve been popular. I’ve been not-so-much. I’ve had an insanely complicated amount of friends. I’ve had three or four truly close friends.

Sitting here, in my forties, I’ve looked back at my friendolution with wonder and awe.

Elementary School – A plethora of friends. Popular among the girls because I wasn’t afraid of the boys. Popular with the boys because I was a crazy tomboy. Snakes wrapped around my wrists, climbing trees, playing kickball and racing bikes – all wearing a dress (with shorts underneath, of course.)

Middle School – Down to a few close friends. An awkward, yucky phase in my life. It suddenly wasn’t cool to like school and I still liked it. I loved it. It was my escape. So, I closed myself off and hid in the library whenever I could. Books became my true friends. Books and Stacy, Jill, Sharon and Rita, that is.

High School – Back to tons of friends again. I was on the swim team, involved in student government, sang in the choir and the select ensemble and tried out for school plays. I loved sports, so I hung with the jocks and the cheerleaders, too. I had friends in every stratosphere of high school. Being an intellectual was swinging back to cool at my school. Especially if you could help your friends with their homework.

College – The pendulum swings back to a choice few friends. But then, I was a bit obsessed with my boyfriend by this time and overwhelmed with the freedom of young adulthood and college life. My choice few friends were all I could handle.

Young adulthood and beyond – Sometimes lots of friends. Sometimes not. But I’m still not good at allowing friends to drift in and out of my life. I wonder. I obsess. What did I do wrong? Why doesn’t Lori call anymore? Why am I always the one who has to contact Drew? Why is it always tit-for-tat with Grace?

There are some friends that have drifted out that I am relieved to be rid of. Doesn’t that sound harsh? But it’s true. The psychic vampire friends. The ones who were exhausting to be around in the first place. Or the ones whose expectations I could never meet.

Then there are the friends, just a couple, that I still wonder about. Still pine for. Why did our friendship have to end? Was it something I said or did? What happened that I missed?

But through my friendolution, one truth remains the same. I have no use for the fair weather friends. To be my friend you must stick with me through thick and thin. Loyalty is paramount. Kindness is crucial. Compassion is a must. Patience and understanding will take us far. I make mistakes but I own them. I’m not afraid to apologize.

The friends who have dumped me because: I divorced. I wouldn’t gossip with you in the teacher’s lounge. I changed jobs. I moved 10 miles away. I got re-married. I had kids. I didn’t have kids. I moved out-of-state. I might as well have moved out-of-state. I wouldn’t stay at your teeny, tiny condo. I got sick and you thought I was faking it. (Seriously? What did I see in you?) I went to college. I chose to be a stay-at-home mom.

All of you?

Good riddance.

I don’t need any fair weather friends.

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12 Comments

Filed under Deep Thoughts, friends

12 responses to “I’m Saying Goodbye To Fair Weather Friends

  1. I’m turning 40 next year and have had my share of fair weather friends too.
    Good for you for identifying this and deciding enough is enough. I enjoyed
    this post. :)

  2. I’m still dealing with the sudden “break up” I went through when my single friends stopped wanting to hang out after I became a mom. I cared for a minute, but then I realized my one-year-old is pretty fun to talk to.

  3. Good for you! In the past few years, I’ve done the same, and I don’t regret it for a minute.

  4. I think I have broken up with my best friend from high school. She even stopped sending Christmas cards. Her life is too complicated and busy for me. This past year I tried writing her a letter and she called, but we played phone tag for awhile and then I gave up. The one time we did actually speak to each other we were both too busy to talk. I’m sad. But not that sad.

  5. I think for me it’s the ones that I always have to contact that I’ve let go. I’m just not secure enough to keep telling myself that it’s not me. Knowing which friends are worth fighting for and which are not is a very important skill.

  6. I’ve always taken the attitude that not all friends can be “everything” to you. I have friends I wouldn’t confide a single thing to. I have friends that are kid related but probably won’t last past my son’s high school. I have friends I’ve known since I am 12 but wouldn’t bother telling my child rearing things to. I get what you are saying though…some just serve no positive purpose at all and it probably is best to just let them go….

  7. Good for you Jane. My barometer for friendship – if I feel drained after spending time with a person, I know it is time to walk away. I was so afraid of doing this when I was younger, but now, I realize time is finite. Why wouldn’t I want to spend it with someone who elevates me to be a better person?

  8. Seems we all grow and sometimes grow apart. When I see some of the “old” friends, I wonder what we ever had in common.

  9. Divorce wipes out about half the fair weather friends. Financial dramas (unemployment) takes out the rest.

    Sometimes we find ourselves with an extremely small circle of friends – as in count on one hand with fingers to spare. But they’re worth everything.

    Quality over quantity – especially in those close to our hearts.

  10. I learnt that friends come and go. I try not to get too close to any, then they can’t hurt me when things go wrong. My partner is my best friend. :)

  11. you know…I’ve been dealing with some of the same thoughts lately. I have one friend, with whom I thought we were really close, that just stopped being my friend. No words, no notice and recently when I saw her at another friends party, every time I tried to engage in conversation..she just walked away. Really? That’s how it is? But it still hurt…because I don’t know what it is that happened.

    Thank you for your post. I know that I haven’t been ‘around’ much. I’m now a fair weather bloggy friend, but your post, as always…touches a nerve. :-)

    But I’m down with the fair weather friend idea.
    So true. WHY bother?

  12. Yes, but with facebook we can stalk (I mean reconnect with) all those friends we’ve been successfully avoiding at those high school reunions! Isn’t it grand?

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