Friday, 19 February 2010

Sam: Frenemies


Having a stroke has forced me to confront a wide range of issues - but the issue I didn't actually expect to confront was the nature of my friendships.

After having post-stroke central fatigue, where
even talking is like lifting a mountain, it's forced me to confront the question of which friends make me feel good and which friends don't. In other words, which friends are really good and loyal - and which friends are frenemies.

After a
bit of research, I've been relieved to find out that, apparently, most people have a lot of the latter. According to US studies in fact, usually 50% of our friends are frenemies, people that we feel ambivalent about. Not only that, but these people are actually bad for our health. When we are around them, we get so stressed out that it raises our blood pressure - so they could in the end be dangerous to our health, or even kill us.

W
hen I've had to look at which friends make me feel good and give me energy and which friends I feel ambivalent about, I feel much happier surrounding myself with people who make me feel good. So I'd like you to do what I did and take the frenemy challenge - go through your Facebook list and count how many friends make you feel good, and how many don't. Post your findings here, and let's have a percentage breakdown of how many of your friends are frenemies.

9 comments:

BenefitScroungingScum said...

I think this is quite common after a serious illness/accident. I have brilliant friends in my life now, but only one of them was a friend prior to my becoming disabled.
Have you heard of the spoon theory btw? It's ace for explaining chronic fatigue http://www.butyoudontlooksick.com/category/the-spoon-theory/
BendyGirl

Supernatural Girl said...

I have 6 people out of about 60 on facebook that I would say I want to be in their company. The others I would not care about or would not want to be with.

Anonymous said...

I don't have a Facebook profile, because I don't have any frenemies - only 3 real friends (which is enough for me) :-)

Anonymous said...

P.S. Hope you feel better soon, Mr Sex. You've been through a major ordeal. Strength to you!

Jules said...

My divorce was the 'key event' that led to a 'culling' of my frenemies! This was a good few years ago now and I am vigilant in keeping them culled now!

Another key thing was being advised that 'if you hang around with wankers people will think that you're one too'!

Some people say I'm 'harsh' but it certainly works for me!

scapegoat said...

A messy menage a trois revealed the vast majority of my friends were actually shit stirring hypocrites.Me and the other bloke sorted out our differences like adults - he knew the relationship was dead,and had been for months if not years before she unexpectedly stripped in front of me.Then every twat with some kind of story/gossip/rumour about me crawled out of the woodwork and bent his ear.
I have two facebook friends.Genuine friends who never bowed to the peer pressure to ostracise me.Bollocks to frememies.I love meeting them in the street.I love shoving their own 'crimes' right down their throat.

Aiko said...

Well said Bendy (sorry havent emailed you yet)
It's amazing how friendships change and you realise who the real friends are when you are ill or in my case get iller. The minute I was unable to get out much at all, a lot of people disappeared. Just what you need. Wishing you well, CFS is a bugger as are other illnesses.

Helen said...

A few years ago my 3 year old son became extremely ill overnight with a bacterial infection and he almost died. I kept going while he was ill and in hospital for nine days, but then the shock caught up with me once he was home and recuperating and I stopped coping -it was like my brain was closing down and running at a fraction of its normal speed. I found that my very closest friends were simply wonderful, and my neighbours and some acquaintances were also just fantastic, doing lots of practical things for me like making meals and gardening. The people who let me down - badly - were my kind of second tier of friends, who either just stayed away or were even openly critical of me, to each other and even to my face. I've worked out now that in this level of friendship each person is ascribed a kind of role. I'm normally the strong one, the one with lots of energy and a bit of an agony aunt, and so those friends simply couldn't deal with me being 'out of character'. My best friends already knew me warts and all, and neighbours knew me as a local mum so that was enough for them to want to help, but those mid-level friends couldn't support me. Needless to say, I ditched most of them and I'm a lot happier for it! Some of them, the ones who just stayed away but didn't bitch, apologised a few weeks after for staying away and not offering support, so I was able to forgive them and pick things up with them again. Sam, I really hope you continue to get better, it was good to find your post. x

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