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Sunday, August 25, 2013

A real friend is one who makes you a shameless "Chick Mix".

All of us - every single person born on this earth has a certain something about them nobody else has ever, nor will ever possess.  One attribute which rings as an ever present and ever constant truth is that we all have our own personalities; we all embrace a unique presence identified only to us as individuals.  Unless we make the choice to abandon that completely...

I really do believe that someone, at some point in time, no matter how briefly, has wanted to be just like someone else.  Having the argument of "I have always been my own person." is fine in our more mature, adult lives for many, but I really do believe everyone has had that want at some point in time.  Finding those desperate to fit into whatever environment they lusted after was an extremely easy task from the day I started preschool and did not begin to taper from its widespread presence until my years in college (but even then, it was not eliminated entirely).  Spending our youth trying to map out our direction based upon the decisions, personalities, and actions of others is a fairly normal behavior and can be filed away as a learning experience, but there is a problem with all of this - what about my generation in the current day?  What about the generation before me?  Did we all outgrow this?


Should anyone be surprised when I say the amount of people I knew in high school who ditched their friends and altered their personalities for someone they were dating was pretty significant?  Doubtful.  I saw this happen regularly and am fairly sure this practice continues to this day and will still be happening long after us Millennials are extinct.  Boy meets girl, they spend every open second together while neglecting their friends.  After a period of time, they split up, and both return to their old friends.  The system works (at least when you are between the ages of thirteen and eighteen) and the reason is because you are all stuck in the same place through the entire process.  When teenagers dissolve their romances, the same friends they had before are still around because they are all within in the same building, taking the same classes for most of the day, walking the same hallways, and sometimes living in the same neighborhoods.  Making nice with the offending party who broke the ties usually happens because, well, otherwise you are going to be walking through a big fog of awkward for the duration of your school years.

When I was in college, the same thing happened, but on a less-frequent scale, mostly because I spent practically no time with any of my classmates away from campus, which was probably a good thing.  Jumping forward a few years into my adult life, this cesspool of immaturity sprang right back up and I was brought to my wit's end about it on more than one occasion.  Not only Millennials, but Generation-X seemed to be falling back down into the mindset of living as teenagers, socially.  Maybe this is nothing new and has happened with every generation before us?  I have no idea, but we are acting like a bunch of complete idiots, regardless of your viewpoint. 

When I worked in my last field of employment, it was based around relationships and if those business relationships were not actual, they were intended to be believable.  Unfortunately, I also started applying this to my outside life by being involved with groups of people as an investment in friendship when I would have been better off keeping those people as passive acquaintances.  What I mean by all of this is no matter how close in age I was to these new "friends", they had all reverted to (or never grown out of) the relational mentalities of about a decade before, while I was growing into maturity, knowing full-well who the hell I was.  Do you want examples?


A person disappearing from a group and acting entirely different because they had "met someone" happened continually with my new group of friends, just as it did in high school - but there was a much different variable involved.  You see, as we grow and get past our years of formal education, most of us have figured out who we are and have begun living our lives accordingly, which is great, until we meet someone.  Much too often for me to take comfort in, Millennials alter themselves to better fit the mold of someone they are interested in, which changes who they have grown to be in the eyes of the other party within that relationship.  
This is stupid.
At some point, after much time and emotion becomes invested between these people, someone will have their actual personality come to the surface while catching the other completely off guard.  The break-up or divorce comes shortly after and those friends they had before - those with meshing personalities?  They are often no longer around at that point. 

The difference between acting like an immature high school student when considering your personality and the way some people alter it for the sake of someone else is that your high school friends are in the same vicinity day-in-day-out.  When you are an independent adult, however, you have no intended life restrictions and no inkling of a guarantee of re-connection with your former group because of this.  Why would you?  High school students usually live a pretty standard, fairly similar life to each other, but adults can make their own decisions and take individual directions in whatever way they please.  I have made a choice to write off essentially the entire group of friends I mentioned earlier, and many others beyond that group for the same reason.  The drama was not worth the relationship.

The question I must ask and would love to know the answer to is "Why?".  
I really want to know the reasons behind why I know a few people have had cold feet before their wedding day and heard even more stories about others in the same instance.
I want to know why independent adults always tend to assume they can alter their entire personalities to fit the lifestyle of someone else and expect everything to work out ideally.
I also want to know why adults assume long-standing friendships can be put on hold for romance and then be available to pick up the pieces compassionately at the push of a button.

Ideally, yes, a true friend will be there for someone who makes a bad decision or takes a consequential personality alteration, as I have been at times for some people - but playing the game becomes old quickly and the cord must be cut at some point.  Knowing the breakdown is personal and individual, but never comes as a complete surprise for anyone with half a conscience.

This all comes back to games and why I find dating to be so much of a waste for me.  I have no desire to have someone try to fit the mold of who they want me to think they are, and I have no desire for them to try to make me believe they have similar interest to me when they do not.  
Why would I want to spend months or possibly years attempting to figure out what game someone is playing with me or in what way they are attempting to impress me?  Years ago I gave up on trying to impress women, which is probably a big part of why I am still single.  A woman I was dating at one time said "My best friend is mad because I haven't seen him in two weeks."  That is something I was not at all in support of and told her to go see him because I refuse to be the reason someone else changes who they are.  Forget jealously - that guy existed before me.  Nobody's life is going to be altered that way on account of me.

Life-change is so huge, but we take the idea so lightly in the name of romance.  
Changing my life is not based around relationships, because successful relationships fit inside of a person's already healthy personal life.   Creating drama in a life-facet when everything else is going well for the sake of another person is childish and a direct path to complete, relational failure.  

Within the past year, I have changed my own life and completely altered it out of necessity.  I gave up alcohol and removed the enablers who followed it.  So far, that has very nearly been the best decision I have made - and in one week, I will have spent a year away from it entirely.
See?  Sometimes the change is good for the right reasons.

Making a change for someone else to approve of you is a bad decision.
Making anyone believe you are something other than yourself is a bad decision.
Pushing aside anyone who has done nothing but support you is probably the dumbest decision you can make.

Just this one time, I will tell you to be like me in this one way:
Surround yourself only with those who care about you as much as you care about them.

Do not compromise your personality or lifestyle for anyone.
I am not afraid to, and will verbally call you out as a fake.     

Grace and Peace,

-Add me.  Follow me.  Tweet me.  I really don't mind.-
Twitter:  @JDrewSilvers

The lyrics in the title of this blog came from this song:



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