Truth be known, I have no enemies. Well, none that I consider enemies, but I'm sure there might be some who consider me one.
I started this blog around the same time that I started coming out and to be honest, of the some 1,500 people I told online (most friends I know live overseas), only a very small handful have ever replied. Those that did have shown themselves to be the most wonderful people in the world. That small handful of people who have been so supportive have far outweighed any feelings about the other 1,490 who never bothered to even acknowledge my note.
But it makes you wonder what went through their head though doesn't it? Did they just dismiss it because it was too much to deal with or did they not really like me in the first place? You know what? It actually doesn't matter. Perhaps I've lost 1,490 people who just wanted a facebook number or need to know that they knew people over time to make their life feel full and complete. Either way, I'm not that concerned now.
What I really wanted to talk about was how we find friendship in the most unlikely places. I've known a lot of people in my time. I'll always be grateful for knowing them but does it really make them a friend? In these days of online social networking where even someone you met once can be a 'friend', can you really count the number on your facebook/Bebo/Twitter page as a true friend? Can you call them at 1am because you're having a crisis? Can you call them to say hi and just have a chat? How many of them do you even catch up with for coffee and a muffin? Yeah, the list begins to dwindle when you really think about it!!!
I came out to a lot of people. Only a few replied. And they have shown themselves as true friends. They keep in contact and even though they may not fully understand what or who I am, they still know that I will always continue to be their friend. I will always be there when they have a crisis at 1am, I'll always be there if they need to chat and I'll always be around for coffee - if I'm in the right country at the time of course!!!
False-friends: Hmmm.... Something I've become quite good at finding. They are the people who knew you when you were 'normal'. They "...will always be here for you" but in a crunch, something, anything, will become more important. These people genuinely want to be your friend and shouldn't be disregarded. Either they can't or haven't yet accepted who you are or have a self-concern that being associated with someone like you or I will somehow label them. Its ok, its just a process (well, that's what I tell myself). I just put these friends in the 'yet to be decided' category. I know I shouldn't but its how I deal with them wanting to talk one day, and then not hearing from them for two weeks or more!
True-Friends: Linz, Lee, Alicia, you have been wonderful. Lee, after all this time of no contact, I am over the moon that we're talking again albeit via google talk :o). If not next year then the year after, it'll be party time for us babe. Linz, oh so wonderful Linz. Of all the people I know now and have ever known, you are the one person I thought I'd lose (I was so sad at the thought). We haven't seen each other in years, but every time we talk it's like I just saw you. I love you dearly princess. Alicia. Again, you have surprised me in so many ways. Given your family background and beliefs, to have you give me so many words of support has been absolutely wonderful. Our relationship has, to this point been a bit awkward, but I know that that is changing and I am so grateful that you now know the real me.
I've learnt that people we think we know, and call our friends - even best friends, sometimes aren't who we believed. Maybe it was us or it was them. Maybe we trusted them too soon and they took advantage. Maybe, we took advantage and they saw it. Maybe, my story, or yours, is too much to handle. Either way, I've come to the point now where I know that the people I call friends (whether they talk to me or not), I call friends because I feel a friendship attachment to them - irrespective of their reciprocation. I don't advocate letting anyone go, just because they find it hard to understand me. Please don't ever drop anyone just because you don't like their actions (or lack of). You decided they were a friend once - and probably for a very good reason!
I'll always be around for that 1,490 people - yes, even at 1am. You see, they are my friends.
But there is something I forgot to remember....
I never said that they had to think of me as their friend in order to care for them. And that's the key.