Fair-weather friendships

[deleted account] ( 8 moms have responded )

Are you an 'all-weather' friend or a 'fair-weather' friend?

Definition of a fair-weather friend:
Usually a good friend to begin with that eventually takes advantage of a true friend and does not maintain the SAME loyalty and respect. Without an explanation why, a fair weather friend may abandon a friendship altogether for superficial reasons or changes in moral beliefs without a care for nurturing fair dicussion.The exception is when that person needs something, they know they can still count on an "all weather friend" .

Have you ever felt abandoned by someone you considered a true friend when the going got tough?
When does a fair-weather friend cease to be considered a friend?

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Jeannette - posted on 09/22/2009




You know what, I was a fair weather friend once. I have felt sooo guilty about it too. Not in the sense that I needed them for support of any kind, well, maybe a little moral support...anyway, I stopped talking to them. I avoided them in town. Now, I am not a complete jerk, so when I did run into them, I was gushingly polite...but I knew it didn't make up for me letting our friendship drop off.
I just felt like, after several get togethers we weren't going to click, but I didn't engage in conversation about it either. I felt uncomfortable around them, and they were so nice, but I was not religious like them. They were never mean about it. I really felt like I should have talked to them, because at one point, I did tell them I wanted to visit their church. Then I realized how bad I felt in church again...so I just avoided them.
I don't think they'll befriend me they way they had before and I don't blame them.
I just feel guilty still because I know what it is like to have a friendship end, unexpectedly, seemingly without reason.
Sorry, I have to admit, I've been a jerk before.
I've made effort to be more selective like Sharon pointed out. I don't want to make that mistake again, and possibly hurt/offend someone else.

Emily - posted on 09/22/2009




Great question. Thing brings a friend of mine to mind. The other night we were hanging out and the fact that we are not as close as we once were came up. She told me that she just didn't have the ability to be there for me as I adjusted to motherhood because she had issues of her own to deal with. Granted, she did but I still don't think that is an excuse for leaving a friend suffering from PPD out to the dogs. She really hurt me when she said this. I am not by any means a high maintenance friend...just want to hang out once in a while. To me she is the perfect definition of a fair weather friend. She also has a history of just ignoring people cause she can't deal with their issues because she doesn't agree with them. I considered her to be one of my best friends...I really don't anymore but I don't know if I am ready to call it quits, something I've seriously considered ever since she only calls me because she needs something.

[deleted account]

I think we've all felt abandoned by someone we considered a true friend. It hurts and it sucks but it happens. It's one of those "Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me." kind of things. That being said, I can honestly say that I've been both. I haven't ever intentionally used a friend, but there was a time in my life (when I was a lot younger and didn't realize I was doing it) that I had a few friends that I only called when I needed something. I've also been an all weather friend. In my real life away from CoM I have a group of true blue friends and we would all do anything for each other. We all serve different "purposes" (for lack of a better word) in each other's lives. I was a loner for a great majority of my life. I had acquaintances, not friends. It wasn't until my late 20's, maybe early 30's that I realized the value of a good friend. Not the value as in "what can I get from this person" but value as in recognizing how much they made my life better just by being in it. I've also learned along the way that friendships are like romantic relationships in a way. When it happens too much, too soon, too fast.....it usually doesn't last. I've met people, become fast friends with them and then realized after awhile that I really didn't like that person very much. It happens. As for "when does a fair weather friend cease to be considered a friend?" That all depends on how much you can take. If someone is really feeling like a door mat and like they are being used and it's causing grief and stress in every day life, then distancing from the "fair weather" person would be wise. Personally, I believe that each and every one of us is a little "fair weather" or we have been at some point. It's part of life and it happens. It doesn't make us bad people or bad friends. It's just a life lesson that teaches us how to be the "all weather" type. I hope that all makes sense lol

Erin - posted on 09/21/2009




I've always been an 'all-weather' friend, but I do find my tolerance for bullshit has lessened dramatically since becoming a mum. And there are things that are absolute deal-breakers for me. Like when I found out a friend was not only doing speed almost daily and around her kids, but was injecting as well. That is not something I can support or condone, so I had to walk away.

My oldest friend in the world lives 5mins away from me and has seen my daughter exactly 3 times in 7.5 months!! I've always been the one to make the effort (phone calls, texts, arranging catch-ups) and now I just don't have the time or the energy. If she needed me I would absolutely do what I could, but the day to day stuff has kind of fallen by the wayside because I can't be in a friendship anymore where all I do is give.

And some people really are takers. I had a group of friends in my early 20s who were like this. It took me a couple of years, a lot of effort and support from me, and a few big shitfights before I realised I was getting walked all over. I think most 'all-weather' friends know that feeling of putting yourself out there, making all the effort, providing all the support and encouragement, only to have it thrown back in your face. It happened to me several times, so now I am definitely more choosy about who I let in to my life.

Charlie - posted on 09/21/2009




I am an all weather friend and have been used and stomped all over in the past by people who i thought were my friends .
I have since matured from their "days of their lives" bullshit and the sad thing is they haven't matured at ALL , not one bit .
Even then they would still call and ask for help in certain situations, i would always help a person out no matter what but sometimes i cant help but feel they cant be helped they LOVE drama .
My best friends i can count on one hand , no matter the distance we always stay in touch ( i am skyping Israel right now ! ) and they are always there for me through thick and thin , they were always the ones back in my wild days to pull me aside and tell me to snap out of it ( my best mate actually slapped me across the face ) i may have been pissed off at the time but THAT is a true friend .
The other people who i thought were friends at the time were nothing more than enablers to my drinking and drug addiction .
I also saw who my best friends were when i lost my first child they were all there for me when i needed them most , they didn't spin bullshit to me about why it happened they would just ring and listen to me cry for over an hour without saying a word which is just what i needed .
Writing this has made me realize what amazing TRUE friends i have , thanks Cathy .

Johnny - posted on 09/20/2009




I'm generally an all-weather friend. I did however recently end a friendship because of her constant critiques of my parenting skills. She is a hard-core natural momma and I just don't measure up to her standards. She berated me constantly for allowing my daughter to have some formula, for using cloth diapers all the time instead of doing elimination communication, for not allowing my daughter to wean herself to finger food but instead spoon feeding her purees, The list is longer but you get the point. And this was after years of me putting up with her crazy animal-rights stuff like embarrassing me in restaurants by demanding that the kitchen prepare her food in a totally separate area with knives that had never touched meat and insulting passers-by who happened to be smoking cigarettes. I feel a bit guilty, I did not bother to confront her. I just stopped responding to her e-mails and screened her calls. I feel like confrontation is pointless with someone so convinced of their own perfection. But I feel bad for just dumping a friend, especially since she's been having a bad time in her marriage lately. We had been close friends for 14 years, but I just couldn't take it anymore.

I've also been abandoned by my very best friend from high school. When we went on to college, we stayed good friends, but back in grade 11 she had been born-again and was extremely religious. When I was at the end of my third year of college, she sent me a letter informing me that unless I could take Jesus into my heart, our friendship was over for good. Obviously, I wasn't going to convert simply to keep a friend. Although about a year ago, she looked me up on Facebook and apologized. We have kept in touch since then.

I also don't make close friends easily. I have a large circle of casual friends, but my true girlfriends now number only 4 (was 5 until about 3 months ago). I will stand by those girls through thick and thin, and they have gotten themselves into some pretty crazy situations. I love them immensely and would go through a lot to preserve those friendships. Which is why I'm feeling so bad about ending things with my one girlfriend.

?? - posted on 09/20/2009




I'm an all weather friend. I have felt abandoned before. I'm all in or all out. I don't piss around with friendships. There are very few people I would call a friend. And every single one of them knows that I will be there at the drop of a hat if I can be and in any way I can be, I'll be there. BUT when someone breaks my trust, it's is broken... they return to being just another person in the world that isn't worth my time, effort and energy.

And when it comes to people who are 'fair-weather' friends... they aren't friends, they're just people. They get a civil conversation, they get no disrespect but I don't go out of my way for them, ever.

Sharon - posted on 09/20/2009




I'm an all weather friend until the friend stops trying to help themselves. Not just for a day or week or a couple of months, if they are still moaning and haven't done jack in half a year, I tend to pull away. People that low will drag you down with them. And more than likely they need professional help.

"Have you ever felt abandoned by someone you considered a true friend when the going got tough?"

Not since I got out of highschool. Heck not since jr. high. I got really picky really fast about who to call a friend. I try to not call casual aquaintances "friends". I don't have fair weather friends because I am that picky. People want to befriend me just to get what I have or ride my coat tails when I'm successful don't stick around, I can smell them at a 100 yards and they get shoved off fast. Unless I have a use for them "here you can clean these pens and I'll see if I can find that animal carrier you want, address of exotics breeder, etc" I feel free to use them because they're already trying to use me.

My neighbor is a good friend. She can call me to watch the kids, borrow food, heck if she asked to borrow my beloved truck I'd either loan it to her or drive her myself. I like her alot. I can do the same with her. Need real butter? sure thing! Need to borrow the multi ton dump truck? sure! They're awesome generous people.

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