Sometimes life pulls us in a variety of directions and as we grow and our families grow and our surroundings change, sometimes our circles tend to change as well. I can testify that it becomes increasingly difficult to maintain a social life as a parent, homemaker, or a spouse with children. Having friends that don’t necessarily have the same obligations as you can put a damper on things because they don’t always understand the predicament that you’re in. Being a mother with mainly mothers as friends and very few non-mommy friends, I get a little frustrated when a non-mommy can’t comprehend what I’m dealing with.
I often want to react in the “flesh” when these things happen, meaning that my initial response may come from a place of anger. I immediately want to go into defense mode and begin saying demeaning things or insult their level of intelligence or maturity. I had to realize that this isn’t Godly and that everyone isn’t in the same space. We reach different levels at different times of our lives and some people may take longer than others. This is especially true for those that are coming of age and they are transitioning from child to adulthood. As a young, single mommy I had to place many of my personal pleasures to the side for my daughter so that I could be completely hands-on; finding my faith has shifted certain interests, as well.
Just like any relationship it may take some elbow grease to keep your friendships afloat but often times we grow apart and we become another version of ourselves. If you are a person of faith this happens often and it can happen quickly when you begin to realize that you simply can’t indulge in the same activities as you used to with the same crowds as you used to. A long time friend of mine frequently questions why I have a full schedule or why I may choose to take classes during the evening or why I can’t promise to go vacationing and I gently explain that most people do what they HAVE to do. She doesn’t understand the life of a single parent or what comes with handling an entire household by yourself and I try to remain sensitive to that. You have to remain sensitive to certain things in genuine friendships just as you would a romantic partner but we also need to realize when certain ties need to be cut.
One way to determine if you should let a relationship go is to ask questions such as…
what/how does this person contribute to my life?
Do we still share the same interests?
Can our friendship survive in spite of our differences?
Will it benefit me to salvage the friendship?