But as we get older, finding friends like that becomes virtually impossible. From your mid-20s and beyond, you have to concentrate on your life and work on becoming the person you're meant to become. Unfortunately, the side effect of that is that you have no time or energy to actively deal with other people's problems. In fact, many times, someone else's problem is your gain, and you're taught to use that advantage to improve your own situation in life. So misery is actually a good thing, provided you're sidestepping that landmine and ensuring others take the fall. Thinning the herd, so to speak.
My point is, the type of friendship that would genuinely benefit me right now can't really be provided by anyone anymore. And that's no one's fault. That's the simple evolution of life. You grow up, be your own person, everyone else be damned, and only after you're successful do you circle back and check how everyone else is. Usually to stand and compare at the finish line.
This strategy obviously doesn't translate very well by the time you're 30. The world wants documentation and papers and citations and numbers proving your worth, to which I have none. And friends don't have all summer to hang out anymore. Everyone has a career they're hammering away on, children they're trying to juggle, and a husband, wife or a divorce they're tolerating/smothering with love. "Hanging out with friends" is, at best, 4th or 5th on the list of priorities. At worst, it's deemed a waste of precious time.
You're going to lose friends. Period. The longer you live, the more friends you're going to lose. Because the more time people spend existing, the more opportunities life presents them with ways to differ from each other. When you're in elementary school, everyone's on the same page: Dogs bark, cats and cute, and glitter is edible. In middle school, physicality starts bubbling to the surface, and the athletes separate themselves from the intellectuals, and vice versa. In high school, those subgroups are fragmented even more by music and after-school life, with surfers, skaters, jocks, nerds, goths, hipsters, band kids, theater groups, and so on. By the time college comes around, politics and religion have entered into the mainstream of the young consciousness, further splitting everyone into smaller and smaller groups.
This is why we all played "Duck-Duck-Goose" in groups of forty in 2nd grade but now discuss global economic policies with a only like-minded friend or two in a coffee shop.
So relationships become the primary source of emotional, physical - and sometimes mental - equilibrium. We start craving for a connection with someone else on our astronomically specific level of personality combinations. As previously pointed out, friends simply don't have the time or resources to truly understand or care about you or your problems in depth. But that one right person does. Call it love if you want (or don't), but that spark is the highly saturated remains of a desire that no longer gets fulfilled by spending time with dozens of friends every day. There's a reason friendships become more important as you get older: There's less of them. But the same need for them exists. And when no true friends are possible, the intensity for a meaningful connection magnifies And that's why finding someone you click with feels so mind-blowing, amazing, scary and overwhelming at times. They're essentially every friend you've had/needed in one being.
I appreciate the friends I have now and all the reaching out they've done. I won't use names, but there have been a few pleasant surprises. But I also know that if I don't initiate texts or calls or speak to them, they won't text, call or speak to me back. Which, again, is 100% normal and can't be criticized. We'll see who cares enough to stick with me this time around.
I'm done helping people at the sacrifice of myself. I've been burned over and over and over again, and if I'm being honest, it's my fault. I've been forcing my naive 7th grade mentality on the world, believing that just getting people to like you is enough, and that trust is a default setting. But the adult world is cynical, negative, and needs an ass-kicking. And I'm tired of being nice. I've given up on having good friends.
But friends or no friends, all I want is my one connection.
So I have someone to share my world-stomping with.