Life As It Is

22 September 2010
My life is as it is. It is interesting to see it fall into similar patterns of life no matter where I am. I have now lived in Maryland for nearly three months. I can't believe it. It sometimes frightens me how fast it has gone, but that's not the point of this post. My life has fallen into the same pattern as it has everywhere I've lived. For example, I have never had many friends. I have many "acquaintances" who are my friends at work, school, etc., but not people who I hang out with or party on weekends with. When it comes to actual friends, I have few and far between. In the three months that I have been here, I have four friends. I would only consider one of them pretty close and I only met him a little while ago. Two of my friends are old friends from BYU and we do things every now and then, one is my second cousin (we have a lot in common and it's fun to be around him), and the last is someone I met through my second cousin. They all live in DC, so my weekdays are pretty lonely in good ole Fredneck, but I have fun on the weekends with my friends or by myself. I go to parties, clubs, bars, church, and hang outs to meet people to become my friends, but they never become my friends. They are place in the "acquaintances" category. This frustrates me.

I want and need more friends, but it seems like I cannot make any. I want someone to call me to do something. I want someone to show up at my apartment randomly. I want to stop organizing get togethers. I don't know if this will ever happen though. I recently stopped going to church because nobody in my ward talks to me. I have only had four people talk to me at church and none of them remember me the next week. The bishop and second counselor haven't even remembered me. It's kind of frustrating because I feel like I stick out like a sore thumb in church with the people of Fredneck. I've tried striking up conversations with a few people, but it's awkward to say, "Hi, I'm new to the ward. My name is Sean." You think that they would already notice you are new talk to you. It seems like the people in my ward are more concerned about the visitors. Why? I don't know. What I do know is that the people in my ward talk to the visitors more than they talk to me. It's disheartening.

Another example happened last night. I went to a gay Mormon party to watch the season premiere of Glee (PS I thought it was a little lack luster). There were a lot of people there and they basically all knew each other fairly well. They asked me a little about myself and what I was doing. After I told them, it seemed to stop. Nobody really talked to me anymore. I felt like I was the odd man out. That I was different from the rest. That they didn't want me there. Don't get me wrong. They were all very welcoming, but I personally didn't feel welcome. Maybe it will come with time. I don't think I'll go again though. I need to find a place to meet young professionals, like myself. That way I will have things in common with them, and hopefully I can make friends because acquaintances only go so far.


Beck said...

Being new or in new situations has always been awkward for me. It takes me a while to warm up and "fit in" (if ever). It takes common experiences and frequent interactions to make connections, particularly if everyone knows everyone else and I'm the odd one out...

This is normal. I'm sorry you have felt so disconnected. Keep trying and keep engaging, even if it is hard and hopefully connections will be made.

We all need friends and feel accepted and needed. I can't help but feel how similar your post is with that of Abelard's latest post - being all alone yet surrounded by people who seem to pass you by.

Don't give up on church. Go to the Bishop and say you want to be involved. Do you want to be involved? Receive a calling? If there's an activity, volunteer to serve in the kitchen and do the dishes... I've found when I'm willing to get behind the scenes and serve one-on-one cleaning up or whatever, the connections are easier than just sitting in church and feeling like no one cares.

I've been accused of being a "social butterfly", but that isn't always the case. In new situations, I'm content to disappear. I think people sense discomfort and it is a rare person that fights through that discomfort and reaches out to make one comfortable... keep trying!

Mister Curie said...

I'm still interesting in meeting up. Sorry that Philadelphia is so far away from Frederick.

darkdrearywilderness said...

Hey Sean, long time no talk! I'm just catching up on blogs while I have a minute. I can definitely empathize with you on this post...I get tired of the acquaintances that don't want to move up to the friend category. You're right, it's frustrating. Hang in there :)

Butterflies and hand-grenades said...

Hey Sean!
I understand completely! I have maybe 10 people in the world I consider actual friends, the others are almost friends, or people that I have been acquainted with, and there are too many to count. Don't give up on looking for them but I agree with not going to church to look for them...
I recomend getting involved in something like a play house, so that you will be with people, in a relaxed and fun atmosphere, where there will be lots of guys, and not a whole lot of judgmental bigotry. You will have a million excuses to hang out with them, and they will seek you in return. Just try it, or something like it, and I bet it will help :)
Have an awesome day, you deserve it!