Sunday, August 29, 2010

Defining Friends

True friends stab you in the front.
~Oscar Wilde~

I've often haggled with the use of the term "Friends" in relation to social networking sites. Until today, I've pondered on it and let it go, pondered it and let go. Today, I found myself de-friended by someone who fell under my "Friend" list. *Gasp* So, today, I broach the subject....just what constitutes a friend?

But oh! the blessing it is to have a friend to whom one can speak fearlessly on any subject; with whom one's deepest as well as one's most foolish thoughts come out simply and safely. Oh, the comfort - the inexpressible comfort of feeling safe with a person - having neither to weigh thoughts nor measure words, but pouring them all right out, just as they are, chaff and grain together; certain that a faithful hand will take and sift them, keep what is worth keeping, and then with the breath of kindness blow the rest away.
~Dinah Craik, A Life for a Life, 1859~

I don't think that I could express "friend" any better than the above quote. Simply stated feel safe. Safe through times of laughter, distance, adversity, and quietness. Safe when it's necessary to speak truths and safe when it's necessary to hear them. Friends build one another to their greatest good but not through false words or praise. The truth resides between friends even when sharing different views. Friends love and respect despite human frailties.

It is a false pretense to label "people we kinda know" as "friends". With social networking more and more a part of daily life, friendship has arrived at a blurry destination. I have made very real friendships online but few on my list are friends. Admittedly, sometimes I forget this and treat others as if they are my friend. I suppose I really owe the one who de- friended me a thank you for removing themselves from my "friend" list, therefore, bringing me one step closer to a list more suited for the title.

Do not keep on with a mockery of friendship after the substance is gone - but part, while you can part friends. Bury the carcass of friendship: it is not worth embalming.
~William Hazlitt~

Quote from my dear friend and artist, Vanessa


Misha said...

Most excellent pondering, dear Peacegirl.

And yes, that person did you a favor. Though, I would recommend keeping your ears open in regards to glitches, which often result in unintentional deletions.

But that's just because I can't imagine anyone deleting you???

Hope your Sunday has been a lovely one.


peacegirl said...

Dear Misha,

I love you because you bring this cheesy grin to my face and my heart.

And even if you had come and said any thing contrary, I would have listened and loved you just the same. You know why? Because I believe that's how friends grow ♥

My Sunday has been glorious...truly. My son and his bride came for Sunday dinner :) Complete with apple pie.

I do hope yours has been peaceful as well!

Vane said...

You know I love everything you write or express in your beautiful pictures. This is a great topic and I smiled seeing my quote "can we be called friends?" I wrote it in a very similar situation with someone I thought was my real friend and hurt me.

But we all learned of those experiences and learned how to be better friends.

Great blog as always.

Your friend Vane (aka I love my imperfection)

Greger said...

Well its pretty hard to truly open up and be a friend on streams and blogs... I may consider YOU a friend, but not the gazillion others who are going to see it.

I have had people on these social networking sights call me friend, brother, even mentor... just to gain my trust, and then twist my words; just to start a battle that would draw more hits to their blogs.

So Sad it is... Whats your email?

peacegirl said...

And I smiled, Vane, to see you here ♥ I have gone back and edited you will see because I want the world to know you are my friend and that I adore your quote. Please forgive as I was not thinking.

We think alike so many times ♥

peacegirl said...

So you agree, Greg, that "People I Kinda Know" would be way more fitting. I try not to let it anger me but trust in the natural process of having those weeded out who are not real.

Thank you so much for coming over here :)

No matter how mixed up it may seem, these are MY thoughts and how I see it said...

All I can say is I love you Paige!!! I cherish all our times we have had, our talks. It's not often I find people, FRIENDS, who understand what I am going through, don't judge me, but put me in my place when need be. I really appreciate that!

peacegirl said...

Ever since I discovered the freedom of shedding my skin and being "real", I want and expect that from everyone. You do know that leaves me very disappointed a lot? But not with you, chica.

I only want to call friends those who accept me "just as I am". It is rare, I tell you, rare. I plan to hang on and nurture the few I have like that♥

Marian said...

It is challenging even in real life to be sincere and have the expectation that the other person will equally honor this, but on-line...we don't know... We can have hopes that our intuition about the person whom we read blogs that they write and their comments, etc. is the person who we think that we know... It's not easy, however...

I'm struggling with how someone who I trusted in "real" life treated me... UGH~~!!!!!

peacegirl said...

Don't you think, Marian, that time weeds these online imposters out? I really feel like my online friend group has narrowed itself over time to a few very special friends that I can trust. It was like the interest just kind of fell away with the others.

And I feel ya on the other, thus inspired this writing. But what I struggle with most, because I sometimes expect no less from others, is that I don't just build up the courage and wipe all those I don't really consider friends out of my life. I mean, seriously, I talk about being "real". What exactly is my purpose in maintaining a superficial relationship? *ugh*

Kev said...

I'll begin this comment by saying that although I am an "online friend", I consider you to be a friend I can trust and I hope you feel the same way. We have had our chats; I think these two quotes "fit" us.

"Friends are those rare people who ask how you are and then wait for the answer." ~ Author Unknown

"The best kind of friend is the one you could sit on a porch with, never saying a word, and walk away feeling like that was the best conversation you've had." ~ Author Unknown


peacegirl said...

Thank you, Kevin. I'm proud to call you friend.

There's one thing I am learning about friendship as I grow wiser (not older) and that is that even friends do not always see things from the same perspective. To me that makes life interesting. It helps me to open my mind, to learn, and to grow. Sometimes I remain firm in my stance and sometimes I see new things.

This is something I am cherishing about friendship. Sadly, I was defriended for having a different point of view. My wish for that person is that someday they will learn the value of learning to agreeable disagree :)

I love both quotes. I love a friend who "waits for the answer". ♥