Saturday, August 28


One of the worst things about making friends is when they disappear. They're there... and then they're not, ripped away by circumstance, choice, or other change. They move. They take new jobs. They become engaged and stop talking to anyone else. And I feel left totally alone.

I also feel guilty, because I'm obviously not a real or true friend. I know that if I reach out to others, unconditionally and whether or not they respond, then I'm being a good friend. And I try to do that. I spend most of my day and much of my life trying to reach out and help others. But then I realize that, in all my giving to others, I've forgotten to ask for help. I've forgotten to help others see how they can be involved in my life... instead of me just being involved in theirs. And so the relationship becomes one-way... I'm a teacher, a mentor, a counselor. The biggest issue is that I love being all three of those things. Put me in front of a room of people and let me teach, and I'm in heaven. But sometimes I realize that all of my potential friends have become my students, and I'm stuck on a pedestal with no way to get down without shattering into a gazillion pieces. It leaves me with few people who are able to be friends.

And so sometimes I try to not be such a strong motivating force in relationships, just so that people are willing to be real friends with me. Sometimes it works. And then, just as I feel I'm finding a new friend, those relationships suddenly disappear. It's a shock, and then I slowly try to refill the void. What scares me most is the realization that I do the same thing. I move into a world, into relationships, and then suddenly circumstances change and I'm no longer able to do the same things I had previously envisioned. I disappear. People rely on me... and I'm afraid of disappearing from their lives without my knowing. It would be arrogant to assume that my disappearing would cause a global crisis... but callous to assume that no one would notice. What do you think? What would happen if you disappeared?


  1. I know what you mean about people disappearing. I feel the same way. People seem to come and go, but never stay.

    I also agree with feeling like I'm not a true friend. I don't think people necessarily put me on a pedestal, but I definitely give without letting people that I need help in return. It's my own fault, but it makes life lonely. I'm working on it.

  2. Erin:
    In the last few weeks I've been trying to make friends that won't disappear... and to stave off the eventual disappearance that so often comes with relationships. Since I'm looking at these relationships with a different eye (trying to build forever friendships), they feel different. And I don't think they will have to disappear.

    It's taken time, but I feel like I am becoming a better friend. I still have issues asking for help. But I'm getting better... and the Lord is helping me as I move along.

    May God be with you in your own pace in life. Thanks for commenting. Welcome.

  3. Hi. I saw your Pres. Packer blog on FB and read! Amazing...never read or heard anything like that before and never realized there was an uproar over that talk and I especially never realized there were so many in you same situation (So many people commented they could relate) Anyways, about making friends....true ones that don't turn their backs on you.... It's a problem for anyone. Especially me. If you met me you'd think I'm one of the most smiley, outgoing people you knew. And you'd be right, mostly. I'm also a terrible hermit and super focused on my family. (I'm a married mommy of two). Even though I have a fabulous husband and two beautiful babes, I feel rejected by my peers. New friends I've made have made friends with each other and have faded me out.....and old friends have dropped off the face of the earth when the day I got engaged, or the day I got married they didn't bother to show up. It sucks when it come to friends no matter what walk of life you are in. Too many people move on if they're not "getting anything out of the relationship" it seems. It's true you can't be Everyone's friend, but to find a true friend is hard. The best ones that are more obligated to stick around is family...close or extended. I've recently tried to build those relationships because the lack of relationships in this department are the ones I regret most. Looking at all you "followers", you clearly connect with people, so that obviously isn't a problem. It's just that "friends" have too many levels and one person might want to hang out and talk on the phone everyday and the other only wants to be your friend in social events when they pass you in the hall. It's hard not to take it personal. Anyways, I'm rambling. I just wanted you to know that you building others up is being an awesome friend. Hopefully others are doing the same for you! Good luck!

  4. Mormon Guy,

    That's the hardest thing, sometimes, isn't it? I often have that same problem. I also struggle with SSA. I think sometimes I set myself up as that person that people can talk to and be counseled by to prevent myself from getting hurt.

    But it's hard, because at the same time I want someone to confide in, and to be there. Just to be a /friend./ That I know I could call if I was in a crisis, to love and accept me for all of who I am.

    Thank you for writing this blog. It's nice to know there are others out there.

  5. OK, yes, I'm learning as I read along. Here is the answer to my first comment on an earlier post.

    I have learned to view my visiting teaching list as my own inspired and personal list of friends. Heavenly Father wants me to be friends with these specific women. I try to be there for them no matter what. I try to be the best friend according to their needs.

    I learned to do this after I spent the first three years in my first "family" ward (I am a convert who joined a student branch which met at the Institute of Religion across the street from the University of Hawaii) crying every Sunday. I was a Beehive Advisor in Young Women and the girls did not pay attention with the same respect that university students (sometimes those who had never heard of Jesus Christ) did. It seemed like everyone in the ward had been there forever or had extended family and no one really needed me to be their friend.

    And then I got assigned a new visiting teacher. That visiting teacher was assigned a visiting teacher that lived down the street from me. Both ladies were married with children and were new in the ward. We decided to meet for dinner with our families and then do a big visiting teaching lesson at the same time. We got together for dinner the following weekend and then regularly.

    Sundays were changed around completely for me. The Beehive girls still were teenage girls, but I learned to teach to their age group. I think I handled it better because I finally had friends, and I acknowledged the Lord's hand in answering my prayers. And really, with so many people praying over the visiting teaching program, how could it not come straight from the Lord?

    I could go on, but you're probably already yelling at me to get a publisher.

  6. hey , i know what you mean im from a big ward in england and i feel like sometimes im just like an old chair in the ward that no one really would miss me if i didn't show or didn't speak to anyone. i find it really hard with the ysa because i have a job that doesnt really really allow me to social late at night which is when the ysa socialise of course so i just dont feel like i fit in and the ysa sometimes just ignore me. i find myself crying sometimes because i feel so lonely and i cant even find words to express how i feel sometimes i just kneel there crying because i dont know what to do or say. sound stupid?


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