New (old) “friends”

They may be a generation older or younger, but I have some new “friends.”My wife has helped with that – they are our friends. Part of me wants to resist, but I’ve accepted nobody my age wants to do anything with me other than my wife and my siblings. That’s fine. Why complicate things? I really don’t want that many friends, and I’m not sure if I like that label anyway. It’s far too vague and, given past experiences, just another way to exclude people.

Really, it’s two couples. I hadn’t seen the one for a while, but we are playing some games together. The other is relatively new, connected through my wife’s work, and they also enjoy playing games with us.

I don’t know what “normal” people do with friends. Much of it – what I’ve witnessed or seen people post – looks boring and obnoxious (that is, from a sensory or activity standpoint, not a judgement). Playing games is fine, especially with only a few people.

One week, my wife scheduled something social for three days. That was too much!

Oh, we also play through video conference once a week with one or two of our children and a close friend. That started during the pandemic. The problem is I didn’t do the third thing, so now she can bring that up as me not being compliant when she set up something to do.

I feel like I can’t win against this social “game” everyone plays. But, when I do these type of activities, I do feel better, usually. Unfortunately, sometimes that is when people end up disliking me the most, when I’ve let down my guard, “unmasked,” and they don’t like what they see.

Playing games in-person three hours a week is plenty. My wife and I play a lot with just the two of us as needed to supplement any deficiencies. She needs it more than I do, as she hates being alone. I’m not sure she’s ever been home alone! Seriously, I don’t know when that has happened. I am every day!

My old friends, those from 2022, have all largely forgotten me, I suspect. A few of them contact me, and that is usually nice, when they aren’t confusing me for some reason. They made their choices, and they didn’t choose me. I’m used to it, and, in many ways I’m thankful because I don’t need to deal with trying to sort out when people are taking advantage of me anymore. I no longer need to worry about fake friends if I just follow what my wife does.

To those who never wanted to be my friends, it’s no longer that big of a deal. I fact, it’s a very small deal or no deal at all. They rejected me, and I’m going to see that as a blessing. Why would I want to be around people who don’t like me? I’ve spent too much of my life trying to be friends with people who don’t really care if I’m dead or alive.

There are some people, former acquaintances, who are so malignant, they’d probably laugh if they heard I’d died! That’s crazy, but they’ve demonstrated that enough to be a pattern of behavior. And, they hadn’t accounted for me being able to figure it out when too many things were not making logical sense. They can surround themselves with whatever friends they so choose, but I neither want nor need to be a part of that, and I’m determined to never be sucked back in to that toxic world by anyone again.

My current “friends” seem safe enough, and they also enjoy what we do together. I’m not letting them get too close, however. “Good acquaintances” is the way to go!

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