Now you see me…..now you don’t!

I'm not listening to you

 

by Kenneth Justice

~Don’t you just love those friends who ignore you for months….maybe even years….and then when they are feeling especially bored they give you a call?

Or maybe they are all of a sudden going through some kind of emotional situation and they know that if they call you…..you’ll be sure to forgive their conspicuous 8 month absence and offer them a shoulder to cry on?

These types of friends are like David Copperfield – with the touch of their magical fingers they type in your cell phone number when they need you.

For the most part…..I’m a pretty laid back person

And even though it annoys me when friends treat me this way; my response is to always be forgiving…..right?

Do other cultures practice this kind of disappear – reappear friend routine‘?

If only I could figure out how to do this magic-trick when it came to paying my bills!

I’m not going to lie to you….. I have quite a few friends….I’m very thankful for them….

But, just because I have a lot of friends doesn’t mean I don’t get annoyed by the disappear – reappear friend routine’

Oddly enough….today’s post isn’t about friendship…but rather; consistency

Fact: a high percentage of us struggle with;

–) loneliness

–) depression

–) addiction

–) feelings of isolation

–) feeling that we don’t know where we are headed in life

–) feeling that we have grown too old

–) feeling that our life is slipping away

–) feeling that we don’t have a lot of friends

–) feeling that we want to change our job situation but don’t know how

….and that’s just to name a few!

I’ve pointed out many of these cultural conditions in previous posts but I don’t always offer solutions…..

(mainly because I don’t have a lot of solutions!  and Hey, I’m only a lowly Masters Level Psychologist…….I’m not Sigmund Freud!)

However, consistency can be one way we can begin to get our life out of idle and move forward

One element of consistency are traditions which I discussed yesterday

Another element of consistency is……..being consistent!

Instead of being the David Copperfield friend…..we can be more consistent in our friendships

Instead of living a haphazard life….

we can seek to find a consistent rhythm;

–) go for a walk at the same time each evening (or the gym)

–) end each day with a night-cap (or a decaf coffee like me!) and reflect on the things you are thankful for

Essentially; Create New Traditions

Right?

When I worked as a substance abuse counselor I became increasingly aware of how attached my clients were to the ‘tradition’ of getting wasted

They found a sense of comfort in the familiar taste of Jack Daniels or the feeling of the needle puncturing their vein

My chore was to challenge them to find new traditions….new levels of consistency that were more positive snorting a line of cocaine or getting plastered with their friends all weekend long

But……our culture isn’t too keen on consistency….is it?

Turn on a television and you’ll see commercials that tell you that you’re unhappy;

“Buy this NEW shampoo that will make you feel sexier”

“Buy this NEW car so you’ll be happier”

“SALE at the Macy’s! Buy NEW clothes so you’ll be more content”

Western Culture is all about throwing away the old for something new……

Sometimes this is okay…..right?

But when it becomes a way of life……..you might soon find yourself staring in the mirror at David Copperfield

In the spirit of consistency I believe it is time for another cup of coffee,

Kenneth

 

 



Categories: Culture & Society

Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

37 replies

  1. **takes out milk crate** **hops up** **applauds wildly** **shouts “Amen & Woot Woot** **hops down** **leaves quietly** 🙂

  2. How can you drink decaf. That’s not real coffee!
    As for the friend thing, been there plenty of times. And yes, I can be one of those friends too. Fr years. Ad been telling hubby about a certain couple who would only see us when they wanted something.
    Many years on, and a least a 10 year gap on seeing/talking to them and he finally realised what I had been saying. There are others too. Want you to make the effort, but they can’t be bothered. That is at least what they are consistent with, 😉

    • Jennifer….

      Okay…we agree on that: Decaf is NOT real coffee….

      But….If I drink regular past 8PM It will keep me up all night…..

      and I’m not a huge wine drinker…only occasionally

      so a decaf is the best i can do

      as to your friends….I KNOW a lot of people like that…get’s old!

    • Haha. I’ve found that too lately. But I will not go near decaf. A milky drink is my choice then. And one, only at dinner on occasion.

      And absolutely it gets old. They are the friendships that are hard work which makes you cranky and then you have to let it go.

  3. Sometimes friends get nostalgic….hence the calls every two years 🙂

  4. (not being able to outdo thesanctuaryofmyheart who already gave my same reaction I will do what I consistently do and have another cup of tea in your honor because yes to everything you said!) 😉

    • Joanne…..

      I enjoy tea a lot also…..but it is like Ashley Simpson; Jessica’s attractive but slightly less cute little sister 😉

    • HA!!!! Perfect analogy!!! But I am a frustrated Anglophile weaned on tea,my Mom would send me off to school with a thermos of hot tea and I haven’t stopped since 😀

  5. I’m not sure I’d use the word “friend” for someone like you describe.

    • yourothermother,

      I probably lean heavily toward agreeing with you….

      in a previous <post> on the subject though…buried in the comments a lot of people didn’t like that I don’t refer to those kind of people as ‘friends’….and since i’m ambivalent on the subject I just went with it 🙂

    • It makes me wonder what kind of “friends” they must be.

  6. Suit up and show up. 9 years ago I thought, what the hell has that got to do with better thinking.Then I noticed that repeating daily healthy practices made self destructive urges quiet. Being places I had promised I would be as a member of my community quelled my self centeredness. In time checking up on that 80 year old lady was my pleasure. Consistency is accountability not boring. Growing Up is a Bitch. Coffee can’t stunt your growth anymore. Woo Hoo!

  7. Reblogged this on kellsexpressions and commented:
    Well written article on the growing trend of ” disappear-reappear friends ” . Had to reblog it for you .

  8. I’ve been holding back for quite some time, but now I just have to ask: What’s with all the pictures of rather weird-looking people seemingly unconnected to your articles? Is it just a hobbyhorse of yours to take pictures of ugly people like the two teenage hippos above?

    • Tongue….

      ha ha….all your comments so fit your name 🙂

    • Well, I do have a (mostly bad) reputation to uphold! Alas, you haven’t answered my question. What’s with those pictures?

    • Um … those are my sisters you’re referring to Tongue! Stick a slab of soap between those slices of bread if you can’t be nice MR. Talk about your dumbing of America … next thing you’ll be asking is why people who eat too much high-fructose corn syrup are allowed to post at all. What did you have for breakfast?

      Wait – please don’t answer that. 😀

  9. Friends are mostly BS especially if you have lots. It’s a selfish game. They only stick around if they benefit even if it is only to clear their conscious. They will come by just enough so they can keep the title of friend. There has to be some benefit or something in common if not then get prepare to say see ya. Cause no one is going to care about you just for you. That’s bs fantasy talk we were brought up to believe.

  10. Your posts really inspire me! Sometimes, I feel troubled when friends do not reciprocate. But, I always tell myself – take it easy..:)

  11. I hate when I DO THAT! 🙂 Yep, sometimes guilty of this very thing, at the same time……. WHILE my ‘friends’ I can count on 8 fingers and 2 thumbs, they are the types of friends that are around for the long haul! 🙂 BUT speaking of that peeve, my ex husband T. H. is my ‘friend; on FB. His ( not mine) daughter is too. She is always driving me nuts that way. She’ll come on chat, SEND my world into a spin with worry, and then when I respond, she OFF causing drama elsewhere. Then I won’t hear anything despite my questions OR urging her to call because she chats like she texts, and I am clueness as to what she is trying to convey most of the time. BUT then, she gets all miffed with me because she doesn’t get the response she wants or when she wants. Drives me silly! 🙂

  12. I understand how you feel and what you are going through about my disappear and appear friends. And learn something new in how you help the addict. 🙂

  13. I hear the complaint, and I can understand, but maybe you’re looking through a lens of addiction (or something. :))

    Friends don’t need to be on a leash. Sometimes people are just traveling on separate paths for a while.

    I guess that gets into defining terms. Perhaps “friend” means different things to different people. At different times.

    All that lost/confusion/hopelessness outlined above, that we all feel, can certainly isolate and remove us from even dear friends.

    If we’re all in this thing together, whatever it is, it probably doesn’t hurt to try to be accepting of the silence, when silence is happening.

  14. I forget you on a daily basis
    Accept it ,that you are not it 😉
    but when I get lonely and frustrated
    no one answers my call
    and get rude
    I suddenly remember ..you
    the cool dude..something about being with you
    sort of makes me feel better too
    No..I never thought about you
    but just right now
    I DO NEED YOU 🙂
    sounds pathetic
    I told you..I am the sky above you
    I only touch earth when my ends can be seen
    otherwise..Iam far ..away from you..
    I am consistently inconsistent
    unlike you..but I do like you

  15. LOL, I’ve had friends who call me when they are bored and well, I am kinda like that too. Although, i don’t call my friends when I need emotional support. I just bottle it up until it becomes toxic. My friends are busy and living their lives, so it feels awkward to call them.

  16. But WILL that new shampoo make me sexier?

  17. If one is waiting and not contacting those kind friends then who is the ‘disappear/appear’ friend?

  18. You hit the nail on the head again 😉 consistency is the best way to make “traditions” and being consistent is the only way to change the things we’re unhappy about. The old adage comes to mind “If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again.” If you’re tired of your job, go back to school, and if you work consistently at it, in several years you’ll be able to change it, instead of being trapped doing something you hate for the next 10 years. If you’re unhappy in your relationship, both people have to be consistent at working on it, putting as much in as they want to get out of it.I myself have been feeling a little down lately, but what keeps me from being completely discouraged is that I am being consistent in making plans and following through with them and taking the steps to get enrolled in school, get financial aid, register for classes; these things take time, they can’t happen over-night. But consistency is the key! You can never change anything if you don’t do something about it!

    • So true. You have to just start and take the small steps, keep it moving and not get discouraged. Something will happen sooner or later if you keep at it. Not always with people though.

  19. After my dad passed away three years ago I became the most inconsistent friend in the universe and it left me feeling so lonely. When I finally started to work on my grief, I began to rekindle friendships and now understand that they need to be nurtured and cared for with consistency. All relationships do. I think I really needed to read this piece tonight too to remind me of some of the negative feelings many of us experience in life and that I’m not the only one who has these feelings. And also to help me take “old” unhealthy traditions and replace them with healthy ones. Great advice. Thank you for writing this 🙂

  20. Very well said. I have found that sadly, some individuals whom I felt were close friends, and who benefited from my overly generous nature, were actually friends of convenience either because we worked together or lived near each other or perhaps they were going through a tough time and needed a diversion. It amazes me still how individuals for whom I have carved out a place in my heart, how they can so easily and readily abandon friendship when a job or situation or dependence changes.

  21. I actually just called a friend of mine this morning after not talking to her for some months (she never gets online and lives over 4 hours away). I didn’t “want” anything though.. just realized I hadn’t spoken to her in forever and wanted to touch base 🙂 We have a habit of getting wrapped up in life and letting people slip through the cracks.

  22. Reblogged this on Le Little Fox and commented:
    consistency, huh? I’ll keep this in mind 🙂

  23. i do have some friends like that “disappear – reappear friend routine” but i just couldn’t hate them.

  24. What about the friends that you to be miserable with them? One acquaintance, I can call her that since she’s no longer a friend, has an annoying habit. We she greets you she asks, “And you’re do okay?” Ten minutes into the conversation she asks the same question. She wants to hear, no followed by a list of problems.

  25. Have you considered the idea that it might be a great honour that when your friends are in need, they come to you? People have busy lives and time can slip by. What a shame to be thinking “what are they after?” each time a long-lost friend gets in touch. Surely it’s a delight?

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