Being a Friend

No one wants to be alone ever. We have those times in our lives that we gain a larger ego and say that we don’t need anyone, but that really isn’t true. We are social creatures and we are meant to be around other people. If we are alone for too long then it creates issues and problems such as depression and loneliness. What is it that keeps us from reaching out when we need someone? Regardless of friendship or romantic relationship, we should allow people into our lives and try to help in the lives of those around us. Are we better off alone? Do we really need friends or love from those around us?

Often times we will shrug our shoulders and say I don’t need you, to someone else. What is it inside that makes us act this way? Is it our pride, ego, fear of being considered weak, that keeps us from those who would care about us? What is worse being alone or caring for someone and risking getting hurt? Everything that we do comes at a price and with a risk. Anytime that we reach for someone, there is the chance that they will not reach back. That we could need someone, tell them that we need a friend and they walk away or ignore us, and in the end who does that hurt more, us or them?

I have heard it asked before, is it harder to lose at love or to be incapable of loving? Are we worse off for hurting because we lost someone or are we worse for never taking the chance to love? All too often we hear it time again from people that, “people always leave” or “no one likes me”, but how much of that is us and how much is the other people around us?

In the 20th century, sociologist Robert Merton coined the term “self-fulfilling prophecy” which states, “in the beginning, a false definition of the situation evoking a new behavior which makes the original false conception come ‘true'”. (This quote comes from his book published in 1968 Social Theory and Social Structure). Basically, we create a false concept that people are bad or will leave and in the end when they do, we say see we knew it would happen all along. We end up alone, as we feared, but are we the ones that created that situation to begin with? How often do we let these fears and doubts cloud our mind that people are all bad and they always leave, just in the end to prove it to ourselves because they do? How much of them leaving is on us and how much is their responsibility?

We can create a world of fear for ourselves, where we protect ourselves from being hurt by those around us, only to hurt by our own doing. Often times, if we reached out, we would find people there who would help. So do we risk appearing weak to find comfort and possibly get better? All we can ever do, is try our best for ourselves and those around us. Not everyone will like you or respond to you, but by taking the chance you at least give yourself the option to be happy and find more. Don’t let your pride, ego or fear of being thought of as weak, keep you from a friendship that could save your life. We need people, so be a friend to someone and let others be a friend to you, before it is too late.

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