Something ive always struggled with is making and keeping friends. Since getting better from my various mh issues I have been able to feel confident in myself enough to make friends. But keeping friends? It just doesnt seem to work.
Here are the problems that occur with almost all of my friends:
1. They don't seem to understand my culture. My Mum has very strict of the when, who's and what's of the people I hang out with. But Because I'm 18 my people seem to say "You're an adult you can do whatever you wan't" or "just sneak out" or "she can't tell you how to live your life". The thing is I have to respect my mum's rules about going out with my friends because I need to earn her trust. (after all up until 15 months ago I was very suicidal etc.- and If I don't respect her rules how am I supposed to be able to be treated like an adult?). So basicaly they (my limited friends) don't understand that I need to respect my mum's wishes of how and when I hang out with said friend.
2. I'm always the one asking to hang out. I'm almost always the one messaging first. I'm always the one putting the effort into the friendship. And it seems to me that they woudn't care if i just stopped taking to them. They wouldn't notice. Its not like I can do anything fun with them anyway (see point one).
3. My friends are always busy and hanging out with other people but I seem to never be invited because well, i dont know. And when I suggest to make a time to hang out they say "I'll wait till a few weeks when I'm less busy" and then all over social media are oictures of them hanging out with other friends.
4. Ive started like 10 months ago to have the philosophy of being my own best friend which has worked out well for me-its allowing me to get beter in my mental health and not relly on other people. However I've been told of the benefits of having friendships despite this. So everytime I try It just leads to drama or them not understanding me etc. And i just dont know what to do.
5. I do have a couple of friends that work out well (because they come from families of similiar cultural values) however these two frienships are more like family friends (theyre like my non-blood related cousins whom I see almost every day). But even these friends have their own other friends (whom are so NOT my type of people btw) and I can't help but think that I just need new friends? BUT how do i do that when it's just so hard?!
Just to clarify I can make friends its just hard for me to find people whom are both understanding of my culture. And also even though I can make friends its the maintaining friendships that seems to lead me to shit.
Any ideas guys? espescially on point one or how to make friends and then keep them (not like hold hostagekeep)but like actually keep talking to in a relationship where I'm npt the only one constantly putting effort.
Thanks for starting this post @hopethepiano. This seems to be something that comes up quite frequently here on ReachOut, and hopefully lots of other people will identify with your story, and hopefully be able to get some help too.
First of all, I love that you have obviously taken so many positive steps lately. Rebuilding trust with your mum, putting high importance on your family relationships and respecting her rules - that is incredible! Not a lot of people are able to do that, especially when it means standing up to your friends and saying no. It's also fantastic that you're confident enough to make new friends, and that you recognise enjoying your own company is really important. So for all of those things, I want to give you a massive high five! I hope you can take a moment to appreciate all that awesomeness because even if your friendships aren't where you want them to be just yet, you're working on it and you've made some really big strides.
I am one of those people who is guilty of letting other people reach out to me when they want to hang. I think by this point it's just habit, and it might be that way with your friends too. When you are used to having someone else initiate contact, you can get a bit complacent at maintaining the friendship. I never thought that this might be hurtful to my friends until I see a post like this. So if your mates are the same, perhaps they need a reminder that friendship is a two-way street. Maybe link them to this post on being a good friend