What should you do if you don't like someone and they're your friend?
What should you do if you don't like someone and they're your friend? It's not really 'don't like', it's more like, 'lack of respect'.
I still care for them, but I kind of see them more like younger than me, and don't really know much. They're not immature people either who just play pranks all the time and crack inappropriate jokes. But, I don't know, I just feel like they're still pretty naïve.
It's annoying because they're supposed to by my friends. I should be seeing them as equals and not judging them, but sometimes I just feel like patronising them (and it really annoys me when I do patronise them).
I think of the good qualities they have that I like—it cheers me up a bit. But, I don't want to let the qualities I like to cloud my judgement and make me forget about the stuff that annoys me too.
Blah, this is weird. What should I do? Is this normal? How do I stop thinking or feeling like this?
Hi and thanks for asking us.
Yes! This is totally normal. We all grow and change, and sometimes we change enough that our friends who we used to be close to are not friends anymore. This can happen from either of you changing. Maybe you have matured a bit quicker than your friend. That's okay. It's not something you can control.
I understand you feel an obligation to keep your friendship, but it might get more and more tiring the more you feel different to how your friend is. Basically I'm saying that it's okay to let go of some friendships and develop new ones. Maybe later on you'll grow close again. It often happens that way.
Having said that, if you want to put more effort into keeping this friendship, see if you can do a bit more work on yourself. I like the way you have been focusing on how to see your friend fairly and as she is—good parts and bad. You get annoyed with her immaturity and her lack of respect. If you want to build a stronger friendship with her, find out what parts of you are immature and disrespectful.
There's a bit of a zany exercise you can do to work this out. It'll be weird, but it can really show you a lot about yourself. Find a private place and pretend you are your friend. Act just how she would. Exaggerate. Make it really, really over the top. Get into being your friend as much as possible, doing the things that annoy you. There will be a point, if you're willing to push yourself a little, that you realise that you do some of these very things that annoy you. You'll feel like "Oh!...right. I get it. I'm also immature and disrespectful. I do it differently, my way, but I still do it." Have a go, if you feel up to it.
Relationships are great places for growth and for fun and love and support. Sometimes it's worth putting in the effort to grow so that you keep the relationship. Sometimes it's better to flow with the natural tides—let go and find someone new.
Hope this helps.