Random Blog A Musing Farf

Monday, January 15, 2007

IT'S NOT ME, IT'S YOU

So my girl date did not happen this weekend. This time N had to work, which was not awful because I was exhausted after spending the weekend at Mohegan Sun. It was a surprise party for Sister’s 30th birthday and a group of her best friends met us at the spa and hung out together Saturday night. I could not write about it before since Sister reads this blog daily. On the other hand, N and I spent over an hour on the phone and she suggested that we have dinner Friday night and invite our respective husbands so they could discuss football or some equally boring topic together. I think N’s husband and mine will get along well since they gave similar answers when N and I were on the phone making plans. Both essentially asked the same question, “There is a football game on. Why are you talking to me?” Like I said, they should get along fine.

I am really excited to make a new friend since it is so hard to do so as an adult, and lately, I have been phasing out friends who I hang around with out of habit so there are less and less people with whom I speak on a regular basis. For example, I have only spoken to P once since Christmas and that conversation lasted less then 10 minutes. Also, I did not call FL Friend on her birthday this year (although that was more an oversight since I was at Sister’s surprise spa weekend and I did try her last night) nor did I send her a gift when she had her newest baby.

Don’t get me wrong. I like doing nice things for friends and when FL Friend had her first baby, I sent a really thoughtful present. But, an interesting thing about having a wedding is that you see who likes doing nice things for you.

Husband and I were married on May 6, 2006. Technically, people have a year to buy us gifts and we have a year to write thank-you notes. However, all our thank you notes were completed by July (except for those for gifts that arrived after then, naturally) and we have pretty much figured that if someone has not bought us a gift yet, we are not getting one.

Some of the people who did not buy us a gift are expected and I do not fault them.
There is my high school friend who grew up as part of my family and lives in California as a writer. The mere fact he flew to NY and celebrated with us was gift enough. Or Husband’s high school friend who has never bought anyone a gift and lives at home with his parents after losing his job and apartment all within a year. But then there is CA couple that recently got married themselves. Husband and I flew to California and attended the wedding and even bought them a nice present (hoping it would serve as a reminder) but although we received a thank you note for the gift we purchased, they did not reciprocate the gesture. And CT friend for whom I lavish gifts on her children at every opportunity, but did not even buy a card. Or, FL friend who did not come to the wedding or buy a present. So no new baby gift for her.

The thing is, you can never mention the lack a of a present as a reason for talking to someone less and less since that would be considered rude, and at the same time I am also not asking to be given anything expensive – just a token acknowledging the event. And what makes it so much worse is that the people who neglected to buy us presents seem to be the ones for whom I spent the most effort over the years. Like a DC friend who spent many a night on my couch when he did not want to be home and who once told me once that I was his best friend. He is an attorney who makes a decent living so its not as though a sterling silver serving spoon would set him back too much.

Is it wrong to gauge how meaningful someone considers our friendship by whether or not he/she sent us a wedding present? I suppose there is something a little twisted about that, but on the other hand, even a card would suffice as acceptable.

So, if you find your phone calls returned less and less, a lack of holiday gifts for your children (who have never sent a thank you note anyway) or no new baby gift waiting for you when you return from the hospital, think about whether you have done anything to deserve it. Think about whether you have made it worthwhile for me to really be your friend. Sure, I am sad to lose you, but I will get over it. And in the meantime, you may find me having a drink with N and the new friends I am making.

4 comments:

mom said...

hope i am still your friend...anyway it is a sad fact of life (maybe not really sad) but as you grow and expand your horizons friends that you made while you were younger do fall by the wayside. and, there are new friends to be made at every turn in your life. you just need to leave yourself open to these new relationships. so it is okay to step back from some of these older friendships...they themselves might be feeling a strain in the relationships and dont know how to put it to rest.

Suzanne said...

People are assholes.

wingin' it said...

some friendships are like a good beaujoulais...drink it while it's young then throw away the bottle and savor the memories.

Peg said...

I like how wingin' it put it! :)

Over the years, I have found that as my life enters different phases, a number of my friendships sort of wither up.

Honestly, women are tricky. Generally speaking, we are competitive and catty. I often feel more at ease with guys.

After I got married in '00, I found that certain friendships I had been hanging on to out of 'habit' were not all they could have been. I no longer had a lot in common with my two closest college girlfriends, who at 30 years old, came to visit for a weekend at my new home w/ my Secret Admirer & stepkids, and were childish, rude and selfish.

Same thing after I, or some friends, had children. Watching someone you were truly close with raising little hellions or whiney, sniveling, self-entitled brats will really change your perspective!

In any event--I've rambled so long, just to say, I think it's part of the natural order of things. I vowed long ago to shuck off friendships that weren't working for whatever reason, and I'm getting better at doing it without a lot of guilt.

Best,
~Peg