Saturday, April 9, 2011


I am really upset. Over the last two to three years, I've been learning a lot about what it means to have friends. I've also learned about what it means to lose friends. It's heartbreaking.

And that's what we have in common: heartbreak.

"Someone got their heart broken by someone else. And now they are singing about it. And we can all relate. Even if the music gives us a rash. Why is this? And why is it that it's not just about lovers, it's about parents and their children, friends who have been hurt by friends, business partners who part ways. Why is heartbreak so universal?"
- Rob Bell

Letting people "in" to who we are is a risk.  That's why relationships are so scary. (At least that's why I think they are.) But really, friendship is a risk, especially if you plan on being authentic with your friends. As we become closer to people, things are revealed.  Often times, when questionable traits are brought to light, we give up on the person.  Why do we do this? No one is without fault. That's what makes people so interesting. The uniqueness factor, the similarities...

"Your friend is the man who knows all about you and still likes you."
- Elbert Hubbard

So let's talk about duplicity.  There's a difference between "giving up" when the going gets tough and letting go of poisonous relationships.  Trust me; I've had my fair share of said poison. The worst part of these kinds of experiences is when you don't realize that the poison even exists until it has taken over your body. Sucking this poison from every extremity is a painstaking and daunting task, at best.

I don't know your thoughts these days
We're strangers in an empty space
I don't understand your heart
It's easier to be apart

We might as well be strangers in another town
We might as well be living in another time
We might as well, we might as well
We might as well be strangers, be strangers

To counter this depressing reality, I'd like to talk about the wonder of genuine people. As I've said many, many times, being who we are created to be is the most important thing to be. To be anybody other than yourself is a tragic compromise. When we find people that compliment, refine and encourage who we are by being who they were created to be is an exhilarating find. Those are your friends, people!

Friends encourage you, support you and love you.  Friendship does not always involve rainbows and butterflies prancing around unicorn-shaped clouds. I mean come on, let's be real here. There is going to be irritation, misunderstandings and difficult times that will test those friendships.

But isn't that life? Don't you want real life people in your life??

It's a risk. And I've been hurt by taking those risks; however, finding those people that I now call my friends has made all of the failed relationships pale in comparison.

I have more thoughts on forgiveness and reconciliation, but that's a blog for another time.



amyschmamey said...

bah. I'm crying again.
So. Ummm. Yeah. You are right. And that Keane song... kinda really perfect actually. And as I am currently trying to suck out the poison, that bit about current friendships making the failed ones pale in comparison... that is true, but it doesn't take away the feelings of hurt, mistrust, betrayal, and bewilderment.
One day at a time. I know that my situation will heal up and it will be distant memory that won't even effect me anymore. I'm looking forward to that.

Lillian said...

Excellent blog Liz!!

The tragedy of poisonous relationships is that we don't realize that they are poisonous until the damage is done.

The beauty of real life people is that they are there to help you suck out the poison. These real life people are also the ones who don't spew poison when the road gets rocky. My best friends are honest with me, but always and genuinely in loving consideration of my heart.

The beauty of real life people in our life is that when irritation, misunderstand and difficult times hit, they don't abuse you.

I have the beginnings of a blog on forgiveness and reconciliation that I hope to post one day soon. But I'm doing my research the writings and teachings of people I trust. Since it isn't "due" anytime soon, I've only worked on it a bit at a time. I can't wait to read your thoughts!

Gwiddle said...

So true! I hope that everything is okay, and that this is just reguarding past relationships/friendships. I hope your having a great weekend Lizard, i'm here for you {via the WWW} if you need anything!

miss indie said...

Great post Liz! That Keane song is beautiful.
I've dealt with my share of poisonous friendships and they are devastating, especially if it was a close friendship. I remember thinking a year or two ago that it was pointless trying to make real life friends because it seemed like I was never going to find those awesome, life-long friends that i had always been searching for. Since then I've learned a lot about friendships, both what I'm looking for in a friend and also what it means to be a friend in return.
And you are so right, any amount of poisonous friendships is totally worth it once you find true friends. Those friends are the ones that will stand by your side no matter what and have your best interests at heart.
I think it's always super tough getting rid of a bad friendship, but once it's over and you've picked up the pieces you'll realize that it was something you had to go through in order to grow and learn a little more about yourself. It will help you make better friendships and be a better friend, and that's so awesome if you can take something from a negative experience and turn it into something positive! :]

pea.ess. I'm going to bug you until you post a video! I want to hear you play! haha :P

Dad said...


In my world there are precious few people who have the patience and perspective to know me well. Probably Bob C. would be one. When we ran into each other at your cousin Lisa's wedding in '07 (plus or minus one) it was the first time we had talked in 29 years. Almost since college. Yet it was like we were continuing a briefly interrupted conversation.

But there is One who knows me thoroughly, better than I know myself, and loves me perfectly. And in that relationship I delight more than all the others combined.

To know and be known; to love and be loved. Human friendships here in the fallen world are at best a poor imitation of the ultimate knowledge/love relationship.

This is why confession, forgiveness and grace are so important. They fill the gaps in our relational brokenness.

The big question is not how to find the perfect friend(s); there aren't any. It is how to be that perfect friend, even though you know you will not attain perfection in this life.


Gale said...

This is a beautiful...really beautiful post, Liz. & Kind of something I needed to read tonight. (how'd you get in my head??) You made so many good points.

I especially loved the paragraph about why you think relationships are so scary. I actually was looking for an author's name at the end and realized you wrote it. You're good. & right on point!

Been feeling sorta disconnected lately, this helped me realize something. Thanks:)

la petite lydia said...

This is such a great post Liz. I know what you're talking about. Like you said, we have all been through it. This post is seriously amazing. I really like reading your blog. You always have such insightful blogs.

Han said...

I love that Keane song. But it is true - you can be so separate from the people around you that you may as well be in another town. A friend asked me on Sunday why I wasn't going on a trip with her and some other girls when I pointed out it was because I wasn't told the dates she said why didn't I ask - I guess that was kinda my fault but at the same time it's only now like a week before they go that she's asked me why I'm not going.

Han said...

Sorry my comment was kinda negative. I'm sorry bad Hannah!

I should have stuck with I know what you mean rather than launching into one - sorry lovely

Amylou said...

I loved this post! I've had so many of the poisonious friendships and I'm so thankful when I see who my true friends are. The ones who really love me through real life.
I'm so glad that you have found that and I hope that time can heal all of our old wounds.
Wonderful post as always Liz!

Breeanna @ a brilliant melody said...

As my friends and I are getting older, it's been harder to stay close. Everyone is so busy with their own lives. It's hard for me to make friends, because I don't feel some people are genuine.