Real Talk: Fake Friendships

Hello Everyone,

I’m starting a new series that deals with more ‘serious’ topics that I care about/have experienced. Disclaimer:these posts will be rambly, serious ,and sometimes ‘dark’. So if you’re not into that, feel free to look at my other more lighthearted posts instead.

Today i’m touching on the topic of fake friendships. I feel as though everyone has experienced this to some capcity in their lives. If you’re lucky, you’ve passed the fake friendship’stage’ of your life (AKA high school) and have for created some lifetime friendships.

For the rest of us, we seem to still be stuck in such relationships time and time again. In my experience, such ‘friendships’ usually come about from either necessity or esteem reasons. For instance, being friends with a coworker you have strong distaste for, but she has key “office info” that’s useful to you day to day. So you both interact as friends and not aquatintences to gain each other’s trust and fully reap the benefits. This kind of arrangement can work if both parties have an agreement (albeit a unspoken one) of being mutually beneficial ‘friends’ to each other because the situation calls for it.

The other situation that leads to fake friendships,esteem, is usually when one or both people want to feel better about themselves/their characteristics/how they are viewed by others in one way or another. For example, in my last year of highschool my entire class was ‘friends’ with each other for the sole reason of not wanting to feel left out. Even though i know for a fact many of them did not actually get along ; but they didn’t want to be the ‘loser’ eating lunch alone. So they laughed at each others jokes,smiled and noded in conversations where they had strong opposing opinions, to fit it.

I went to a huge university that was very cliquey; much like high school. So needless to say, I didn’t get on with people very well. I was more of a loner but didn’t mind that because I wasn’t into all the typical college things (like partying) that everyone else was into. So i just kept to myself to avoid having fake friendships as I often found them draining and ultimately upsetting because I wasn’t being myself.

That was all fine and dandy till the year i had to do my summer internship. Suddenly I found myself trapped with 17 people from my school , everyday from 9-5 for 3 months. Needless to say, i made friends. We all had lunch together everyday, talked during breaks, joked around and even socialized OUTSIDE the office at movie theaters. Some might even deduce that we were becoming actual FRIENDS !  *gasp*. But alas, it is a very prticular feeling when you know the person you’re currently having a conversation with will not sitting across from you/texting you/etc when the summer comes to an end. Its an even more peculiar feeling when there is a mutual silent understanding between everyone involved on that very fact.

Just like that, at the end of summer, numbers are deleted, interaction is ceased and faves are ignored when walking down the corridors at the start of the new semester. It’s crazy. As if all the stories,jokes and memories shared shall be kept forever in that situation you both experienced , that brought you together, never to be brought up again when the situation ends.

It quite a strange phenomenon, to know your arrangement has an expiry date. If your like me, it will leave a bitter aftertaste in your mouth, making you more guarded with each friendship. If you’re stronger than I, you’ll take it for what it is and smile as you say Hello and introduce yourself to the next stranger that sits beside you.

I’m working on being the latter.

Tuti xx

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