Garfieldhug's Blog

This & That Including What Ails

How To Be A Friend?

on December 30, 2014

Simple question – how to be a friend?

It is rather difficult really to be a friend. Let me explain…

If friendships involve loaning monies, I do not call this a friendship. If I have a friend in need, I would prefer to feed the friend and find a way for the friend to fish and continue to have food on the table.

Most people end up in need of funds to fuel a gambling habit that takes different forms – slot machines, lottery, investment properties, stocks etc. It all reeks of the word, “Gambling” to me.

Friendships via words is also not worthy. Again, let me explain. I had an acquaintance (downgraded from friendship) who sought me out when her father needed a job. Since I was in the position to hire and there was a vacancy at the place where I worked, I managed to help her.

This lady then pays great lip service. As I battled illness, she would text me in the wee hours of the morning when she is on night shift to communicate with me. I was silly then. I was the one who was ill and in a hospital but she would not show face to see how I was nor sit with me, but will only text me during her free time at work, when she had nothing else better to do.

I took stock for a long time of this person and decided after couple of years, that this lady was not one I can term a friend as she seemed selfish to me.

I may be wrong, but I felt she was selfish as she did not care about my needs in hospital to sleep but expected me to text her replies till she finished her shift at 6am. Sigh!

So, back to my question again…how to be a friend?

When someone I knew, whose parent was at end stage cancer and in need of hospice care, the least I could do was to hook her up to a personal contact such that her parent was best taken care of, with extra tender loving care. I felt happy. I felt rewarded as her parent passed peacefully amongst loved ones.

Another I knew sought me out for a huge sum of money. I could not count the zeroes and felt that this person would benefit better earning it. I pointed the person to a potential bid for a job that matched the money he required. I taught this person how to bid for it, helping with the guiding principles. He won it. He forgot me. Still, I felt I have achieved.

It is not easy to be a friend. When people who approach me for help and do not get it, they get angered and upset. I lose this friendship usually. Too bad, but it happens.

In life, if friendships depend on a need, then it is not real nor sincere friendship I feel.

Friendships are best made and kept during school days as these were made as peers and together, we kicked stones to play hop scotch and shared a meal.

Even in University days, I made cakes or cooked a meal and had friends over from different countries – it was wholesome and meaningful.

The love and friendship that my host parents shared with me are still nearest and dearest to me, though we live 24 hours flight time away in different ends of the earth. It must have been hard for them to open their homes and hearts to a foreign student they had no clue about.

I could have been Freddy Krueger with a an axe hidden somewhere?! Still they took me in, welcomed me to their home and the rest is history!

Unfortunately, I became a corporate woman that travelled so much that I have lost touch with my friends in school who largely did not progress to university as most felt it was better to marry and stay home, rear kids. Further, I battled illnesses and kept my corporate position, without sliding.

Some migrated to Australia, others became flight stewardesses and found pilot husbands.

Must friendships have expectations? Hard to say NO as humans tend to have expectations. I prefer not to have expectations of friendships because having expectations of friendships hurt terribly.

If I can afford it, I give and give from the heart. If I cannot afford to give, I don’t. If the so called friend then feels upset with me, then, I feel it was not the right friendship to begin with.

Friendships are not the easiest to make, retain and treasure in today’s world. Perhaps it is because of better education, the bad image of consters that make us all a tad more careful in opening our hearts, minds and home?

I think so.

19 responses to “How To Be A Friend?

  1. SaBiscuit says:

    Good afternoon, GH. I don’t think that your financial contribution is necessary for a friendship. I do not put up with that sort of thing so I am disliked by people who are fiscally irresponsible. I think it’s natural that friendships will change, fade or even strengthen over time. Our priorities change, and that means the people we need to have around us change too. When you’re ill, sometimes people don’t know how to comfort you, or even if you want them to draw closer, so that’s a two way street. If I were in hospital, I would probably ban any visitors as I love my quiet time. However, if no one offered to visit, I would be vexed. Sometimes it’s good to be stabbed in the back by people you’ve helped. That way, you can cross them off the list, and move on.

    • Garfield Hug says:

      Well put SB! Yes, I have had quite a few stabs in the back too. Thanks for the input and great insights and yes, these days, I do not wish for visitors to see and when people hunt me down or miss me, then these are genuine friends ❤

      • SaBiscuit says:

        When you get better, your world will look a lot different. “Only people who love me are allowed.” I have my own medical team, too, and being very delicate has taught me to be very watchful over my well being. That means zero tolerance for crap. I get the impression you’re there, too, but are much nicer about it. Hugs for GH!

  2. Fatina96 says:

    Love this!! *thumbsup*

  3. Well said Garfield! 🙂 I also don’t believe in having any expectations in a friendship. I feel like it will turn friendship into a material thing when there is expectation.

  4. Joseph Nebus says:

    I don’t know; I’ve had a rough year for friends, with a bunch of them dumping me because I needed their loyalty against someone who’d treated me badly, but was a new acquaintance to them. It set the year off to a lousy start it never really recovered from.

    • Garfield Hug says:

      Poor Joseph! Chin up and trust me you don’t need those nincompoops! If they want to align with the person who treats you badly and dumps you, they cannot be “friends” – they are not categorised as “friends” – better off without them.
      2015 will be better for all. Here’s wishing you a good 2015 ahead and a big Garfield Hug for you 😀

  5. Love, love this post – can relate to it completely.

    I think education and exposure to wider world helped, in my case that is. I struggle with who really is my friend for a long time… then I was ‘forced’ to set my own terms – this is difficult given my background but it worked. In the process I lost a dear college friend all bc of me not feeding her materialism greed. But I learnt a great lesson, a few will always love me just for me, and never for what I have to give them – those I make time for.

    Thank you for writing on this.

  6. Garfield Hug says:

    Thanks for your comments & sharing. To me, I have to discern as to whom makes a good friend. We all have to be careful I guess and most importantly, know whom to trust and whom not to trust. Have a happy new year 2015!

  7. After reading your post I try to think what made the people I considered friends, friends. They have in common that they give without asking for anything back. They enjoy my company and I enjoy theirs. My best friends were made during my university years. Strangely on occasion, I met people for the first time and felt like we’ve been friends. ( I don’t know why this is so, yet :))

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