Do you feel like your the friend that doesnt matter as much?

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tangomike
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30 Dec 2010, 7:17 pm

Throughout my years Ive had friends and still have about 4 friends who I see regularly and consider close. With my past friends and even these 4 people, I am considered their friend but I get the feeling like they dont feel quite as close to me as I do to them. Its probably because they have so many other friends in their lives that I dont matter as much, dont get me wrong I matter....just not as much as some of their other ones because Im not as spontaneous, loud, funny or good looking as the other friends.

Basically I feel like to me these 4 are my #1 friends but in their eyes I might be say friend #5 or even #10 because they have so many more buddies and gals they also associate with outside our friendship. I get so sad thinking about it but I realize it could all be a matter of perception.



Chickenbird
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30 Dec 2010, 7:37 pm

tangomike wrote:
Throughout my years Ive had friends and still have about 4 friends who I see regularly and consider close. With my past friends and even these 4 people, I am considered their friend but I get the feeling like they dont feel quite as close to me as I do to them. Its probably because they have so many other friends in their lives that I dont matter as much, dont get me wrong I matter....just not as much as some of their other ones because Im not as spontaneous, loud, funny or good looking as the other friends.

Basically I feel like to me these 4 are my #1 friends but in their eyes I might be say friend #5 or even #10 because they have so many more buddies and gals they also associate with outside our friendship. I get so sad thinking about it but I realize it could all be a matter of perception.


That does sound sad. I don't know if this will make you feel better, but as they say, "I wish I had your problems". But I too could be worse off, I have a husband who puts up with me.

I have wondered about what you say here too. What if you were trapped in a cave, and your only visitor was someoe who saw hundreds of people every day? Then he would be very important to you, but you wouldn't be at all important to him. There would be a real imbalance there. All I can hope that we make up for our deficiencies (eg being stuck in a cave) by our appreciation of our one visitor - something that their other contacts may not show.

Your friends obviously have reasons of their own for being friends with you, and maybe they don't even know themselves what the attraction is. But I am certain that you offer something they value or they wouldn't hang around :)

I guess the big thing to check is, is that thing that you offer sustainable for you. If it comes from "trying really hard" it probably wouldn't be.

I had a friend one time who complained a bit that she was always the one who did all the contacting and arranging with her friends.
I said to her that she might do all the work of arranging, but her friends might do all the work of, for example, listening. (She was quite a demanding person to be around). That kind of cheered her up. I'm not sure if my reaction would have been the same though.

Sorry, rambling :)

Final observation: I bet what you offer is stability and loyalty. Amusing people aren't always super reliable or honest. Isn't that our forte? :)



Chickenbird
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30 Dec 2010, 7:38 pm

Sorry duplicate post :?



Last edited by Chickenbird on 30 Dec 2010, 8:14 pm, edited 1 time in total.

CockneyRebel
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30 Dec 2010, 7:40 pm

That was really close to my reality when I was working at the factory in the 90s.


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30 Dec 2010, 10:49 pm

Well stated Chickenbird.

I'd like to add that your friends likely understand the imbalance and value it. Whatever it is that you offer that is of value to them is likely something you do naturally and easily. Play to your strengths and develop them to help bond to this group.

NTs bond by teasing. They test limits and probe the depths of each other with it. It allows them to 'get to know one another' better. NTs routinely juggle each other's emotions. It is bonding for them to give and to receive. Teasing helps them understand and set another's limits in the group. It also helps to establish the group order. Most teasing between NTs is not considered cruel by the NTs involved.

I assume these friends are friends because they do not bully or tease you. It is good that these people are willing to respect your limits. The cost is that they cannot get to know you as well or as quickly as they can other NTs. Most NTs are put off by this. It makes us seem arrogant to them.

I find that by being really good at a few things gives me the opportunity to establish safe learning environments in which I may experience many different NTs at my discretion. It gives me a value in their group structure that offsets the lack of social currency. Some will hate me. Some will always only tolerate me. Some will have patience and will accept me for who I really am.

Once in a while a relationship opportunity will happen that makes it all worthwhile. Just like saving money, it takes a safe environment, trust, time, sacrifice and patience but in my experience, the results are worth the effort.

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Musicprophets
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30 Dec 2010, 11:53 pm

yes i have felt like this since my mid teens. i had a group of people i hanged out with but 2 of the 3 i related more to and the other one we rarely spoke. it occurred to me that me and person 3would never hang out alone together, but if 1 and 2 were together it was fine. then it came clear to me that i was really just the 3rd wheel to those 2 and thats how the friendship lasted for the 2-3 years it did. i got back in touch with them after about 5 years and it just wasnt the same. they were still really good friends and here i was with nothing to really say for myself in the friendship department. my friends in college all had many established friendships so i experienced the same thing as in high school and my "friends" changed every year. today, i have one friend who was a freshman in high school when i had just graduated and since i had a gf still in high school we knew of eachother at that time and that was it.
but not until we worked together for almost 2 years did we have any type of friendship. and that took at least a year or so before it was ever mentioned about hanging out. now we still talk maybe once a month if that and we have hung out maybe 6 times this entire year. recently, he told me that he is friends with everyone and which i can easily see him being. i get the feeling that our friendship is not that important to him and just for random hangouts. i wish i could find those so called good close available real friends everyone talks about. it sucks. i have come to believe that most male friendships are going to be completely useless and pointless. i dont like it and i dont want it to be that way. but how the hell to change it for the better? i have no idea.



astaut
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31 Dec 2010, 1:23 am

I've kind of felt like that my whole life. I have just recently become friends with a couple people where I don't feel so much like that...I moved out of the state where I've lived my whole life to go to school, and meeting new people has been really great.


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ooOoOoOAnaOoOoOoo
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31 Dec 2010, 1:57 am

I feel like the one who does most of the giving whille "friends"do the taking. I have never felt like a first priority friend with anyone. Maybe that's why I have drifted toward a solitary lifestyle.



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31 Dec 2010, 6:36 am

YES!


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02 Jan 2011, 4:12 am

All the time! I don't know if I just keep getting bad friends or, well I don't really know. I'm usually a really good friend, I spend time on other people but it never seems to be recipricated. I get people birthday and christmas presents that took time and energy, they give me a card. :(



quesonrias
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02 Jan 2011, 4:21 am

I felt this very much when I was a teen, before I realized that I attached much more significance and emotion to my relationships with others than most people do. After finding this out as an adult, I learned to distance myself a bit from others so that I could match their intensity a bit better. It's still hard to do sometimes, but I also have learned how to become very picky about the people I have in my life as well. I am very careful to only get close to people that demonstrate that they truly want to know me on a deeply personal level (and can handle it), as this is how I relate to others best in relationships.

The process of getting to know these people is a bit complex, but I have come out of it with three very, very good friends that I feel "get" me most of the time, and that I know love me as much as I do them. I may not always be the #1 person in their life, but they have a great deal of love, compassion, and understanding for me - and to me that's what is important.


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Amik
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02 Jan 2011, 7:10 am

Yes, I feel like that. It has always been like that, but even more so in adulthood. I've had very few friends in adulthood and this is a big part of the reason. The few friendships that I have/had were very imbalanced. I considered them to be my best friend or a top 3 best friend, while they barely even remembered me at all when thinking of their friends. I gave and they took. I was always the one trying to keep the friendship going, while they were usually too busy with their other friends to take out time to meet me. I started having doubts about whether they really wanted to be my friends in the first place because they never made much effort or seemed to care much, so I stood back to see their reaction and whether they'd get in touch if I didn't, and they didn't even seem to notice that I was gone.

ooOoOoOAnaOoOoOoo wrote:
I have never felt like a first priority friend with anyone. Maybe that's why I have drifted toward a solitary lifestyle.

That describes it perfectly. I'm nobody's first priority friend or even family member. While I may only have one friend at a time and think of them as a priority, my friend usually has dozens of other friends and they always value their other friends more than me and I'm never even close to being a priority to them.

I'm the friend they come to when they need something or when they are going through a hard time and all their other friends have turned their back on them or been unsupportive, but I'm also the friend who gets forgotten about first when things are going well for them or when I need them.

I got very upset a couple of years ago when I met someone I considered to be my best friend. We had been friends since we were 5, but didn't meet that often anymore because we live far away from each other now. She was talking about some drama that had been in her life and how the people she had considered to be her friends had turned her back on her when she needed them the most etc. She talked about planning to see a psychic to try to find out whether she had any real friends at all that were worth keeping. I felt kind of insulted because I've always been there for her, through all those years. I've always shown that I care and I have stuck with her when she has gone through rough times. She didn't seem to even realize, remember or value that. She was constantly looking for friendship in people who had proven themselves to be selfish and to not care about her and those fake friends still ranked a lot higher on her friend list than I, who had always been a real friend to her, been there for her when she needed me and treated her like a priority.



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02 Jan 2011, 7:20 am

I've always felt that way. I think it's because I tend to get very attached to people I befriend or become acquainted with, probably because of my desire for companionship. At the same time, I always seem very emotionally distant to many people, and so some people might get bored with me because of that. Basically, I expect too much from people, and yet I have a hard time reciprocating the closeness that I expect from them.



tasbro
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02 Jan 2011, 8:08 am

I have felt like this since I was a teenager. Me and my brother are only one year apart in age so we tended to hang around the same crowd. It didn't take long before I realized that I was only hanging out with them. THEY were hanging out with my brother. When a friend would call they would ask for my brother. If he wasn't there they would sometimes make an attempt at small talk, but most of the times they would just say they'd call back. Some of them did seem like they genuinely wanted to be friends, but my awkward social behaviour would turn them off. They would attempt to make small talk, and I would sit there awkwardly trying to think of responses. Even to this day me and my brother share alot of friends, but they only seem to hang out with me when I happen to be hanging out with my brother.



Skinnyboy
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02 Jan 2011, 8:19 am

I'm like the Sith with friends, I've only really had one at a time in my life, but we are often great friends. I don't do nearly as well in groups, I need lots of one on one time to develop communications, if four friends get together I'm just swamped with too much activity.