Boxes…we all bitch about them, checking them on forms, or having to put people into those proverbial “boxes” in our lives.
Sure, everyone is in some way catagorized in your life. Family, close friends, lovers, associates, acquaintances, etc.
How do you figure out where to put people, and what kind of box you need to build for them in your head?
Once you have spent some time with someone and gotten to know them, on whatever level it may be, don’t you throw them into some catagory in your mind, some box?
Like my parents and family members, I know where they fit in my life, I know what box to keep them in, what they need from me and what I need from them. It’s very clear, and it’s very much a ritual type of relationship. They need to know I am safe and sound, that I am healthy and doing well. But they don’t need to know the intricate goings on in my life, unless something somehow affects them.
I have friends who I associate with that I would not consider to be “close” friends in anyway. I see them socially, in very structured atmospheres. Those are friends that I don’t have much contact with on any kind of regular basis, only when necessary for social engagements such as get togethers or holiday parties. My relationship with them is quite cordial and they really know little about me in truth, and visa versa. They are more “acquaintances” than anything, I’m friendly with them, but don’t consider them part of my posse. Their box is pretty flimsy, often people fall out of that box and back into the general population, disappearing from sight and it doesn’t really affect me one way or another.
Then there IS the Posse. My personal “posse” consists of one of my sisters, her beau and a couple of closer friends that I spend more time with. They are people that I generally have on-going, sustained contact with, every few days at least I will hear from them, or they will hear from me. We check in on each other, we help each other out when needed, we socialize, and do things together, share stories, have conversations, debates, disagreements, and yet we remain closer friends. I can call any one of them at a moments notice and they would be there for me for whatever I need, and visa versa with them. In true Posse fashion! I also have a couple of very special friends who have known me most of my life. All in all I can count all of my closest friends, those I really consider to be super important to me on one hand. Those people I trust and can count on when I need them. They don’t judge me, and I don’t judge them. We live our separate lives, yet we know the other is there always. Those are the people I really keep in a good strong box, where they aren’t limited but they are protected always.
In coming back to this post and rereading it I have come to the conclusion that I don’t really care for the box theory. It’s too limiting and stifling to friendship. People don’t belong in boxes anywhere. I need various types of people in my life for the variety of things that they bring to to table. I need my close friends, I need my family and I need my really special friends….acquaintances are cool, but I really don’t need them in the ways that I do my friends. Acquaintances are more for the business world and are those people like the mechanic that works on my truck, he’s an acquaintance and I need him on occasion to solve a problem for me. I pay him, he does the job and we part on friendly terms. I may not think of him again until I need him again…that’s how it works with acquaintances.
Closer friends in the Posse are curious about what you are up to with your life. They want to see you doing well, and being happy. I share meals with them, go places that we find interesting or hang out watching football, have bonfires, talk, laugh and be silly with them sometimes. Close friends are welcome to come to the house and walk in without knocking. The dog even knows them. And when I am down and need a close friend there is one always there to try to cheer me up, to listen to me bitch or over analyse the situation; close friends just know how to listen without being judgmental. And a close friend will back me up when I need it.
I wrote once about Butches and Femmes possibly being friends here. While it was a while back, much of the post does still resonate with me. And even after some recent conversation I am pretty much assured that it’s a hard line to toe. It seems that with lesbians being friends that one always wants to secretly sleep with the other….do you think this is true dear reader? I am wondering, and it blows my mind a little to think like that. I don’t want to think that my friendships are somehow based upon someone’s secretive sexual desire.
Butches and their Butch buddies don’t seem to have this problem. I’ve never found myself attracted to a Butch buddy. The comrades I’ve found in my fellow Butches are those that I want cuss with, and to JOKE about sex with, talk about girls with and be evilly so un politically correct around. I’m probably the most relaxed around them because I know that no matter what I say they will just laugh and usually nod their heads in agreement. Sometimes the Posse has members who I can be like this with as well, but not generally as much as with my other Butch buds.
Around more girly girls I am a little bit different. I keep my manners in check and am very careful with what I say, lest I offend them. That’s just how it works, at least I think it is. We are different around different types of people in our lives, we adjust to the setting and the situation. Perhaps I am more behaved and well mannered around my more femme type friends because I don’t want them bashing me to the girl that I may be attracted to should they ever encounter her, or should they know her in some way.
Three beers and a few tequilla shots and yeah, even some of my girly type friends do look pretty damned good….but that’ the alcohol talking, not my common sense or sense of responsibility and decency. This is why I do not drink to get drunk. I may have a couple, but never enough to cloud my judgement to that degree any longer.
Anyway, friendship is a funny thing. It’s something that we all need; other human interaction, but that can mean that we have to be flexible and accommodating sometimes.
And when does friendship turn into something more serious? Or can it? Does it? Will it? You never know. There are some people who come into your life who don’t always neatly fit into any of the friendship box…then what do you do? When I figure that one out I will let you know.