Saturday, February 20, 2010

The Cheese Stands Alone

Just before Thanksgiving Mr. Burns and I discussed looking at rings.
We also discussed the inevitable merging of households if the whole ring thing stuck.

He wanted to keep his condo for a few more years, so that it might appreciate enough for us to have a better down payment on a house later on. Deep down I knew that was a smart plan, but I didn't like the idea of moving into his place instead of a new to us our place. (that's one reason he splurged on the new elfa closet system.)

Mainly, I didn't like the idea of living that far away from downtown.

I'm a downtown girl. My friends are downtown. When friends move to the suburbs, they have babies and disappear.

That's what bothered me most. I didn't want to disappear. I didn't want to be the type of married person who loses touch with my single friends. I shared this concern with a married friend of mine - who assured me it would happen. Even though it's just a 20 minute drive - no one would bother to make it. I would make new friends.

The crux is I don't want to abandon my old friends.

I hate it when someone you have been close to for years - gets married - has babies and then decides they don't have time for you - the single person - anymore.

I vow that if I ever get married, I will not neglect single people. I intend to invite them over for movie night or for meals. If I would blessed to have children, I want my single friends to be their Aunts and Uncles. I want all my friends to continue to be a part of my life - no matter their circumstances.

But maybe it's just not supposed to be that way. Maybe as people grow and move onto new stages of life - they're supposed to leave the past behind. Maybe. Because after all, the only people hurting in such a scenario are the single people.

My concern was proven when Mr. Burns and I broke up last month. It happened on a Friday night. As soon as he left my house, I texted one of my single girlfriends to see if she was working or not. She saw the urgency in my text, called me, asked what was wrong and came right over to console me.

The next morning, I wanted to share the news with my other friends. Voice mail. Five voice mails in a row. My other close friends are married and have kids - it was Saturday morning so it was family time. In a time of need - they weren't available. Not that I begrudge them time with their families. I was ALONE.

The first person to call me back was a single guy friend. Then my dear friend Kikr - who, while blissfully married, doesn't have kids - and knew that if I called at that hour (before 9am on a Saturday in her time zone) something was up.

Now, I do understand that the world doesn't have to be immediately available to me.
All I'm saying is - it made being alone sting all the more, because I'm the only one. I'm nobody's priority. I have missed the boat. I forgot to get married and have children. I waited too long. The world is justified in being indifferent to me.
The cheese stands alone.

FYI ~ my concerns about merging households was NOT the reason we broke up. Just want to clarify before someone decides to jump on me about that.

13 comments:

Terry said...

I fully, understand you, I had a guy friend as my BF, and I have a BFF he told me that is all we are, and I understood, the minute he got a girlfriend, he dumps me as a bf and I still hurt, it's been since November he told me on instant message while I was at work on my phone, I told him I was happy for him but, I will never hear from him or talk to him, he said he was sorry i felt that way, well, truth be known, it happened, I only see him now because he owes me money and is paying me installments that is the only time I see him and I have to beg for it, and he never calls me or text me or talks on line anymore. It hurts, because we were really close, it was sort of a benifit thing too and I guess, we learn, and it is hard to see him even just to drop a payment off as all I do is cry after I see him. i would never do that to my single friends either. Hope you keep that!

TRS said...

Oh... I'm so sorry Terri - at least you know you are better off without him. Jerk.

Of course with a guy, it's partly because his girl is keeping him from seeing you.

I just hate how it is (and I'm guilty too because when I had a boyfriend I saw less of my girlfriends - it's natural I guess) that once they have a family they just don't even know how to relate to us anymore. And they USED to be single!!!

Terry said...

TRS: you are so right, my bff stepped in and he knew I cried, I was at work when he told me, she even sent me a facebook message and asked me what the deal was. my friend found your blog and I been reading for along time as alot of them are married people.
I have to see him tomorrow to drop a payment off, it hurts me everytime.I was told I have to keep my feelings out of it, he knew I wanted more and told me he wasn't into a relationship right now. I guess stupid was on my face, but, thank you, thank you for sharing it's nice to find someone to be able to share with, I feel like I have found a new friend. it's hard and when Im with my married friends I get very down and cry later as i see them with children and well you know. but, I pick myself up and brush myself off and keep moving. your awesome!

TRS said...

Terry, My heart hurts for you.

You are in my prayers... and I'm going to ask the rest of my bloggy friends (because they are AWESOME people,) to pray for you too. Got that Bloggy Friends?

I worry that posts like this one today are sometimes just negative fodder - but then I get this correspondence from you and I know that it helps you just to read/hear someone else going through what you are going through too. It's cathartic. It is the Holy Spirit at work. (look at that - God makes use of my whining!!! ha ha! All things for His glory!! )

I'm proud of you for not avoiding your married-with-children friends. I know it's hard to subject yourself to everything you don't have. But I also know that it feels good to be immersed in it as well. A delicate thread we balance on.
Sometimes just going to church is painful because there are so many families there - and you/I wonder why THEY deserve it and you/I don't. I guess that's not how God wants us to see it. But it IS hard not to feel that way.

If nothing else - I UNDERSTAND. God loves you Terry. I love you. Love is all around you. <3

Steamed Dumpling said...

TRS, I don't think your posting is negative fodder. There are many that feel the same. It helps when we see others voice the same feelings. I completely understand. When there are times when I need my girlfriend the most, she's off spending quality time with her BF. I can't really blame her but well...you know.

When I was in a relationship, I always tried very hard to make sure my single friends were not lonely. I knew how it felt when couples just dropped off the social circle. I promised I wouldn't be one of them. But I took it to the very extreme and my relationship suffered. I took so much time trying to make my single friends feel included that I neglected to nuture my relationship. I've learned to balance that now. But lately, I've found that I want to spend ALOT of alone time with a certain someone. So I now understand those couples but again I know how it is to feel irrelevant to a degree and try hard to encourage him to spend time with his single friends and make sure I not forget about mine.

Terry, sorry you are hurting. Will be praying.

TRS said...

Yes... it maybe the natural order of things because if a relationship is going to work you do have to be committed to it - and that means a lot of time together - and time alone together.

Mr. Burns never wanted to spend time with MY friends. If he had, we could have integrated some of our date night/ social time with our single friends. I think the right guy for me will love my friends like I love them.

And... this just came to me. The reason it hurts to lose our friends to marriage is -- for single people, our friends ARE our FAMILY.

We are born into families - and the natural order of things is to create our own family when we go off into the world. Single people create families out of their friends - rather than by making babies.
So when friends disappear, it feels like a betrayal.

~ifer said...

For many many years, I was right there, all my friends getting married, having kids, not having time with me. What was even worse was that awkwardness that they suddenly felt around me, like they somehow couldn't be happy around me because I was still alone. That feeling of "what do we do with Jennifer now" and the inevitable "let's fix her up with..." that always came along.
Now that I am married, that feeling remains, only now it is the fact that we do not, and possibly cannot, have kids. Now all our church friends are those with small kids, and when they sit in Sunday School and talk about all the cute things their kids do, we look at each other, and suddenly, we are on our own little island once again.
Never, never give up your friends. They will need you even more when you get married, people. And you know what? They won't resent your happiness, if they are included. They will look at it and be happy that you found it, and hopeful that they will find it someday.
I speak from personal experience.

Terry said...

TRS: Thank-you so much, that brought tears to my eyes, happy tears, Of course we text him today and he forgot to bring the payment he will tomorrow we shall see. It hurts me to think that, he even lies to his own girlfriend.
I love married friends my bff is married and they treat me as part of that family 30 years of friendship, but, not having the same thing she knows it's tough on me. but, I continue to be a part of the kids, Im greatful to have found you and thank her, her blog is LifeWithoutKierra it's about the loss of her daughter.she helps me find single people blogs that I can relate and she brought me yours. Mr.burns doesn't know what he is loosing, and with you being a Christian I can relate, thank you, and keep blogging I keep reading. Wish I had more info to correspond with you.
Have a great day, God Bless You TRS.

KristyWes said...

TRS - I totally appreciate your posts! It really does help to know that we're not alone in these feelings and struggles.

Krissie said...

I so understand this struggle. I don't think that it has to be the natural order of things. My best friend is one I became close to after she was already married and I was still single. She has always made intentional effort to meet me where I'm at as a single person, and doesn't hold back in talking to me about where she's at in her marriage. She had a baby a year and half ago, and has continued to make incredible effort to not let her daughter get in the way of our friendship either. Inevitably though things have to change, but we've done our best to adapt our friendship to that. She's the most amazing friend ever, for letting me be a part of their lives, and the effort she puts into our friendship is such a blessing. I pray that you can each have a Melissa in your life.

Cause yes, sometimes it just stinks.

Genevra said...

The line that really stood out for me was the line "I'm nobody's priority". Single, in a relationship, friendship, part of a family, or married, it doesn't matter. It hurts when you realize that you are not as much of priority to the other person. Being discounted hurts no matter what the situation.

My heart feels for all of you and myself that have been discounted for whatever reason. I'm happy to read that there are some great people who are aware of that and go out of their way to make sure when they are on the other side of the fence they don't forget what it was once like back here.

Anonymous said...

Question:

I'm single too and I've experienced the same thing with friends who become unavailable as they have married. As a result, the friendship has deteriorated severely. Some of them include those who would definitely been in my wedding party if I had married several years ago. Now, I am very doubtful that I would include in the wedding party if I got married. If you did marry, would you include those once-close-but-no-longer-close friends in your wedding party?

TRS said...

Anon - no - I wouldn't include the 'once close' friends in my wedding party.

But then, I've always only wanted one or two of my friends up there with me anyway.
It was interesting when I was dating Mr. Burns, when he would talk about his closest friends, they were guys that he had stood up for and expected them to be his groomsmen if he ever got married. This was like 5+ guys!
I told him that I only wanted one or two girls - three max!

In fact, I like the idea of excluding the bridal party altogether. My last two closest friends to get married didn't have a bridal party. It seems a bit silly at our age to force people to buy dresses and put out for you!
And it's also precisely because - by this time - our closest friends are people we have known for 3-5 years instead of 15 years... because the people we knew for 15-20 years got married and forgot about us!!!

Great Question!!

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