Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Friends Without Benefits

We've all heard the term, "friends with benefits." But what about the other kind, the ones without benefits, and I don't just mean in the bedroom, I mean anywhere. We get together with good intentions and leave feeling like we wasted our time. The older I get, the less I am able to tolerate those relationships.

Over the years I have enjoyed many friendships with people where the give and take was equal, sort of like riding a seesaw; sometimes you're up, sometimes you're down, but it's pretty evenly distributed and both of you are happy. But imagine a seesaw where you are always on the bottom, just sitting there, your butt in the dirt. Or else maybe you're the one stuck on top, legs dangling, unable to get off. Some friendships feel that way.

You know the kind: the other person is always talking about their problems, their happiness, their hopes and dreams, their family, their neuroses, or their whatever, while you sit there like an unpaid shrink, listening, always listening, and of course counseling, always counseling. Usually these friendships die a natural death. There's no funeral or memorial service, just a few unreturned phone calls or anemic texts about getting together "soon," but soon never comes.

I had one of those die recently. The result is that I eat out less since the only substantive benefit of a one-way friendship is that you get to go to lunch or dinner with someone. If I could just conquer my fear of eating in a restaurant alone, the world would be my oyster.

1 comment:

  1. I'll take you out. Lots of good places to eat, but my typically self-obsessed convo might be flushworthy