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Old 08.05.2012, 11:09
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What kind of friends are these?!

what do you do when you realise that with certain people you used to be really good friends with and do things together (including kids and partners) suddenly there is no interest on their part to ask how you are but you always have to listen about their stories?

this annoys me a lot and I honestly don't know how to react, since for me friendship is a mutual concept and thank god I have enough friends of this kind. still I find it really difficult to just forget them because of all we have gone through together and also it is not an example I want to set for the children, whom I wish to encourage in keeping up friendships irrespectively of distance.

specifically, what do I do if they haven't realised in the least that I am feeling this way (they are too busy with themselves)?
one has just invited us as if nothing had change to a surprise party. but I honestly do not feel like dragging the whole family on a weekend trip across europe. I would have done it just a year ago but now I just want to ask them: why didn't you ask once after our move how our new life is going??

so many other friends have already visited us and shown such keen interest for and desire to take part in this new chapter for us and the kids - why should I waist my emotional energies for people who don't seem to deserve it anymore, just for old times' sake?

I think it's probable that some of you out there have had similar experiences (it happens more when you emigrate, I think) and I would very much value your advice, in general and in particular - how do I answer regarding the party? just give an excuse (coward, I know)?
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Old 08.05.2012, 11:19
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Re: What kind of friends are these?!

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what do you do when you realise that with certain people... suddenly there is no interest on their part to ask how you are, but you always have to listen about their stories?

specifically, what do I do if they haven't realised in the least that I am feeling this way (they are too busy with themselves)?

one has just invited us as if nothing had change to a surprise party. but I honestly do not feel like dragging the whole family on a weekend trip across europe. ...now I just want to ask them: why didn't you ask.. how our new life is going??
...why should I waist my emotional energies for people who don't seem to deserve it anymore, just for old times' sake?

...how do I answer regarding the party? just give an excuse (coward, I know)?
Be truthful, both with yourself, and with your friends.

First, I see YOU expecting too much of your friends. You expect them to be interested in your new life and as excited about it as you are. You expect that they will open the dialogue for you by asking about it. Some of your friends, as you indicated, have come to visit, but were they really interested in YOU or were they interested in a reason to come visit Switzerland?

Secondly, you should be honest with your expectations and your desires that your friends will inquire about your life changes. You say you're tired and exhausted from having to hear about them all the time. So SAY SO! It's not fair to expect that they will be mind readers and know how you're feeling about not getting enough broadcast time. You have to tell them.

"Ask me, Laverne. I need you to ask me about life in Switzerland and how we're doing." Or you could just segue the dialogue yourself instead of waiting for an invitation to do so. You are allowed.

To me, however, you DO sound cowardly if you cannot have this conversation with the people to whom you claim to be close enough to call your friends. If you cut the cords of your relationships you'll only end up regretting it later.
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Old 08.05.2012, 11:26
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Re: What kind of friends are these?!

I'm afraid it could be a case of the old jelousy. They probably think that your life is very glamourous, while they stayed behind dealing with the same routine.

My advice, take a break from them. If, after a while, you think of them with affection, contact them and set something up. And talk to them.

I guess it happens to most of us, to some extent. Some of my friends didn't survive the break, though, and that's ok, that's life.

I know it hurts, good luck.
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Old 08.05.2012, 11:28
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Re: What kind of friends are these?!

I have a really good friend who is only about 20 mins away from where I live. We used to meet up regularly and often would share a bottle of wine at one of our apartments. Since she has bought her new house, has two kids and has gone back to work and I have had 1 kid and also work full-time we just never seem to find the time to get together. We have a running joke that the only time we get to see each other is at one of the kid's birthdays

It doesn't mean we like each other less but weekend time has become precious family time and life just gets in the way. Saying that, thanks for this thread, you reminded me that it's about time for our quarterly catch up phone call!
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Old 08.05.2012, 11:34
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Re: What kind of friends are these?!

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Be truthful, both with yourself, and with your friends.

First, I see YOU expecting too much of your friends. You expect them to be interested in your new life and as excited about it as you are. You expect that they will open the dialogue for you by asking about it. Some of your friends, as you indicated, have come to visit, but were they really interested in YOU or were they interested in a reason to come visit Switzerland?

To me, however, you DO sound cowardly if you cannot have this conversation with the people to whom you claim to be close enough to call your friends. If you cut the cords of your relationships you'll only end up regretting it later.
you sound a bit harsh, but I quite deserve it, I'm afraid. I'm just as annoyed at myself as at my friends...

I need to correct a couple of things, though: I am not talking of acquaintances, we've plenty of those too and visit and do things together but there isn't the same emotional involvement.
I am talking of persons with whom we have mutually shared not just the fun moments but also the difficult and sometimes tragic.

you're right that because of that, I should be able to switch from the "pissed off" to the "angry and disappointed" stage and simply express it.
my feeling is that at this stage in their life they would simply think I'm behaving hysterically.
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Old 08.05.2012, 11:49
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Re: What kind of friends are these?!

Been there and completely understand your situation!

The saying, "You know who your friends really are, when you are jobless" is really true!

Of course, your situation is not the same but it's a tough fact that people drift apart when their paths no longer meet. I think your friends have faced that and dealt with it their way. It's time for you to do the same. Pointless to waste your energy on things you can not change.
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Old 08.05.2012, 11:54
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Re: What kind of friends are these?!

They sound a real pain in the ass .... with friends like these, who needs enemas.
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Old 08.05.2012, 11:56
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Re: What kind of friends are these?!

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you sound a bit harsh, but I quite deserve it, I'm afraid. I'm just as annoyed at myself as at my friends...

I need to correct a couple of things, though: I am not talking of acquaintances, we've plenty of those too and visit and do things together but there isn't the same emotional involvement.
I am talking of persons with whom we have mutually shared not just the fun moments but also the difficult and sometimes tragic.

you're right that because of that, I should be able to switch from the "pissed off" to the "angry and disappointed" stage and simply express it.
my feeling is that at this stage in their life they would simply think I'm behaving hysterically.
And sadly, it is quite often these relationships that drift apart the easiest when one friend feels let down or hurt and doesn't express it to the other person. The feeling is deepened by the fact you half expect them to know you would feel like this so it feels personal . Nip it in the bud quick is my advise as you will always regret it if you really drift apart.

Sadly I speak from experience as I drifted so far from my best friend when I moved here. She couldn't understand a) why I'd left her b) why I couldn't fly home all of the time and c) I felt she didn't understand me when I hate massive bouts of homesickness. (I wasn't as blameless as I am making it sound, this is just my side of it).

We still talk but the relationship has never been the same. I even missed her wedding If only we'd actually talked about it at the time instead of stubbornly refusing to and not doing it 3 years too late.
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Old 08.05.2012, 12:20
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Re: What kind of friends are these?!

I am very grateful for all your sincere advice, thank you sharing your experiences. it helps to know that this seems to be a known problem and that there are different ways of dealing with it.

@ J.Marple. jealousy, envy: after a lot of thinking I had thought of that too, although it is not a natural sentiment for me and not one I have any understanding or justification for. I do not want to believe it... (besides, it's not like I am superprivileged)

@mimi1981, I know what you mean, but all my friends are working mums and actually that's one of our bonds, helping each other with kids, home and school issues... even work

I am sorry about your best friend. it is difficult if not impossible or desirable to "replace" one. I hope and am quite positive that with what you have learned from this experience life will give you another chance with her or someone else!

@MarkL2005 what you point out is very important. I am sure that these friends would willingly help us if we had a big problem. but would I go to ask them a favour if I could avoid it at that stage? if they didn't even see the problem coming because they were too self-absorbed? it would feel like begging, not like asking for solidarity.

and yes, I think that I need to accept the fact that I have put up with these egocentric "friends" long enough and now it's time to part - if they want to come I will open the door but it's up to them.
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Old 08.05.2012, 12:25
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Re: What kind of friends are these?!

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what do you do when you realise that with certain people you used to be really good friends with and do things together (including kids and partners) suddenly there is no interest on their part to ask how you are but you always have to listen about their stories?

this annoys me a lot and I honestly don't know how to react, since for me friendship is a mutual concept and thank god I have enough friends of this kind. still I find it really difficult to just forget them because of all we have gone through together and also it is not an example I want to set for the children, whom I wish to encourage in keeping up friendships irrespectively of distance.

specifically, what do I do if they haven't realised in the least that I am feeling this way (they are too busy with themselves)?
one has just invited us as if nothing had change to a surprise party. but I honestly do not feel like dragging the whole family on a weekend trip across europe. I would have done it just a year ago but now I just want to ask them: why didn't you ask once after our move how our new life is going??

so many other friends have already visited us and shown such keen interest for and desire to take part in this new chapter for us and the kids - why should I waist my emotional energies for people who don't seem to deserve it anymore, just for old times' sake?

I think it's probable that some of you out there have had similar experiences (it happens more when you emigrate, I think) and I would very much value your advice, in general and in particular - how do I answer regarding the party? just give an excuse (coward, I know)?
I wouldn't worry about it. Friends are like icecream...as long as things are cool, everything tends to stick together. As soon as matters heat up a little, everything melts away. I don't have any friends and look how cool I am.
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Old 08.05.2012, 12:42
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Re: What kind of friends are these?!

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I wouldn't worry about it. Friends are like icecream...as long as things are cool, everything tends to stick together. As soon as matters heat up a little, everything melts away. I don't have any friends and look how cool I am.
well, that's your fault for bragging about how glamorous your life in witzerland is, no wonder they don't want to visit you, they're just envious
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Old 08.05.2012, 12:43
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Re: What kind of friends are these?!

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@mimi1981, I know what you mean, but all my friends are working mums and actually that's one of our bonds, helping each other with kids, home and school issues... even work

I am sorry about your best friend. it is difficult if not impossible or desirable to "replace" one. I hope and am quite positive that with what you have learned from this experience life will give you another chance with her or someone else!

Thankfully we did mend it after 3 years but in that time she missed the birth of my first baby and I missed her wedding. A good lesson learned not to let stubborness or misunderstandings to stand in the way ever again. I've since met 3 wonderful friends in Basel who I could trust my life with and although not replacements, fantastic women who will always be in my life.

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well, that's your fault for bragging about how glamorous your life in witzerland is, no wonder they don't want to visit you, they're just envious
Oooh, I'd love to know where this exotic Witzerland is. I always knew LiB was on another planet.
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Old 08.05.2012, 12:52
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Re: What kind of friends are these?!

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Thankfully we did mend it after 3 years but in that time she missed the birth of my first baby and I missed her wedding. A good lesson learned not to let stubborness or misunderstandings to stand in the way ever again. I've since met 3 wonderful friends in Basel who I could trust my life with and although not replacements, fantastic women who will always be in my life.



Oooh, I'd love to know where this exotic Witzerland is. I always knew LiB was on another planet.
good news. life goes on

Witzerland is where all privileged former friends live... only unfortunately my Oxford-degree butler-slave has his day off today so I have to do the posting on EF myself (hence the typos)
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Old 08.05.2012, 12:54
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Re: What kind of friends are these?!

Unfortunately, friends come and go. Sometimes it's difficult to figure out why exactly you lose contact or interest. Sometimes your lives turn around and you go different ways or enter worlds where your friends do not belong.

Regarding the party, why not take it as a chance to renew the friendship? It was certainly a step from their side, and maybe you will find the time and situation to tell them how you feel?
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Old 08.05.2012, 13:08
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Re: What kind of friends are these?!

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Unfortunately, friends come and go. Sometimes it's difficult to figure out why exactly you lose contact or interest. Sometimes your lives turn around and you go different ways or enter worlds where your friends do not belong.

Regarding the party, why not take it as a chance to renew the friendship? It was certainly a step from their side, and maybe you will find the time and situation to tell them how you feel?
thanks, normally this would be the case and I would be delighted to go...
I am a very faithful sort of person, so it's not difficult to keep my friendship as long as I see that interest is mutual. I have very often made the first step because I knew we would be "taking turns".

now I feel it's "too little, too late" and am not prepared to face another disappointment. at a party with so many people most of whom I hardly know I don't think it is likely that the opportunity to talk seriously would arise.
I'd rather let it cool completely off for a while.
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Old 08.05.2012, 13:34
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Re: What kind of friends are these?!

We say "Goodbye" and shed a tear when leaving at the airport but perhaps forget when casually signing off on EF it may also be the last time you hear from someone.

Nothing's permanent. If they're appearing lost in themselves, talk to them about your concerns. There's nothing to lose and it may be the start of a conversation on the state of their lives; fluff and distraction is often used to cover the chasms in their life... and in that moment you become the angel on a listening mission. Don't listen forever, though.

Or they could just be really boring people and you've outgrown 'em.

Talking never hurts.
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Old 08.05.2012, 14:44
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Re: What kind of friends are these?!

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We say "Goodbye" and shed a tear when leaving at the airport but perhaps forget when casually signing off on EF it may also be the last time you hear from someone.
wise words....
this is also a kind of "friendship".
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Old 09.05.2012, 05:52
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Re: What kind of friends are these?!

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.... Some of your friends, as you indicated, have come to visit, but were they really interested in YOU or were they interested in a reason to come visit Switzerland? ....
A very good point.

How do you deal with this knowing that some friends/ex-work colleagues are keeping in touch with you because they have a chance for cheap accommodation in Switzerland? Does it depend on who they are? (i.e. if you deem them to be "important", you turn a blind eye).

And what if family members (who barely had any contact with you in the past) suddenly start becoming friendly and ask about visiting you? Is it genuine interest from your family, or are they just trying to find a cheap trip to an otherwise expensive country?
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Old 09.05.2012, 06:56
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Re: What kind of friends are these?!

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what do you do when you realise that with certain people you used to be really good friends with and do things together (including kids and partners) suddenly there is no interest on their part to ask how you are but you always have to listen about their stories?

this annoys me a lot and I honestly don't know how to react, since for me friendship is a mutual concept and thank god I have enough friends of this kind. still I find it really difficult to just forget them because of all we have gone through together and also it is not an example I want to set for the children, whom I wish to encourage in keeping up friendships irrespectively of distance.

specifically, what do I do if they haven't realised in the least that I am feeling this way (they are too busy with themselves)?
one has just invited us as if nothing had change to a surprise party. but I honestly do not feel like dragging the whole family on a weekend trip across europe. I would have done it just a year ago but now I just want to ask them: why didn't you ask once after our move how our new life is going??

so many other friends have already visited us and shown such keen interest for and desire to take part in this new chapter for us and the kids - why should I waist my emotional energies for people who don't seem to deserve it anymore, just for old times' sake?

I think it's probable that some of you out there have had similar experiences (it happens more when you emigrate, I think) and I would very much value your advice, in general and in particular - how do I answer regarding the party? just give an excuse (coward, I know)?
To answer the question in the thread title: they are probably just totally clueless about how you feel. As Kein Französisch said: tell them that you need them to ask about your life.

I personally know that I tend to feel a little more negative about my friends the more time passes between getting in touch. With time I learnt to stop me from getting into this negative thinking and also to lower my expectations I have of my friends. They have busy lives too and, also, they are human and allowed to forget about asking how my life goes, just to make an example.

I am sure your friends invited you because they wanted to be with you and show you that they did not forget about you, not to annoy you with the hassle of a long trip
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Old 09.05.2012, 08:27
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Re: What kind of friends are these?!

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A very good point.

How do you deal with this knowing that some friends/ex-work colleagues are keeping in touch with you because they have a chance for cheap accommodation in Switzerland? Does it depend on who they are? (i.e. if you deem them to be "important", you turn a blind eye).

And what if family members (who barely had any contact with you in the past) suddenly start becoming friendly and ask about visiting you? Is it genuine interest from your family, or are they just trying to find a cheap trip to an otherwise expensive country?
we have the perfect solution to this problem: we simply do not have space for (adult) guests! when they visit we organise either an paratment or a nice and cheap B&B in the vicinity.
so who comes comes for us, no doubt
of course we cook for them, organise everything and invite them out to a nice restaurant, which is always really appreciated.
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