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I'm tired of unequal relationships :(


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I have had this issue on my mind for some time and I hope to hear some of your opinions on this matter. It's a rather long post but I don't think it's possible to give a full picture of the situation otherwise.


As a person I prefer to keep a small number of close friends I can count on as opposed to a wide circle of acquaintances. The problem is that more often than not I find myself being the one putting in the effort into maintaining the friendship.


Let's call one of these friends Z. I connect with with Z when we talk and we appreciate each other's personality. The problem is that I am almost exclusively the one having to ask Z whether he wants to hang out. I have always been there for Z when he needs me. Recently he has been through a breakup of his 3 year relationship and I have gone out of my way to help him through it by staying over at his place and talking to him late at night.


While he has said that he values my friendship and advice, going as far as to say that I understand him best of all his friends, but it seems to me that our friendship has never been a priority to him. Last year he was always involved in his uniform youth organization and rarely had time and now even when we're supposed to be on holiday he seems more concerned with applying to as many universities as possible rather than spend new year's eve with his buddy. It really eats me up because I have invested alot into our friendship since I feel we share alot in common only to have him tell me he's unavailable whenever I suggest we do something.


While Z is more of an extrovert with many acquaintances, he claims that he prefers to have a small group of close friends he can trust. Unfortunately, while he says that I just feel that he's more of a taker than a giver when it comes to friends. I don't think it's fair to me at all because from what he tells me he went out of his way for his ex girlfriend to meet her and everything so I don't see why he can't give our friendship a slightly higher priority in his life.


I want to just come out and tell him all this but I don't want to come off as being too possessive or needy. I am very selective towards the people I choose to forge friendships with and so I'm really at a lost for what to do. I wish I could be the kind of person who has many friends and takes a little from each friendship but I don't work like that. Please don't bother to reply to tell me that I just need to make more friends because chances are your mind works differently.


It's come to a point where I'm asking myself whether I should treat this friendship as a tie that just floats. I would rather lose a friend than put up with this sort of second rate treatment but at the same time it's rare that I find someone who I connect with so well and I genuinely do feel some satisfaction from helping him through his breakup. It's just that I do expect him to put some effort into us being friends instead of me having to do it all the time.


Your thoughts are most appreciated

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How much is his friendship to you? I agree that he is not being fair towards the friendship, so i also think that if u can live with him not being ur friend, then do so until or unless he contacts u.


Have u ever went to him with a problem or anything ? how has he reacted? has he helped u as u helped him or he tried to have nothing to do with it?

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Unfortunately I know exactly what you are talking about and it's something that has plagued many if not most of my friendships.


The question I am asking myself in this regard is why is this happening? Why am I attracted to both friends and girlfriends who are not as thoughtful as me? I am certainly not a saint, and I know of people who are more thoughtful and giving than I am, yet I have not necessarily been attracted to them as friends/girlfriends... why?


I've read (and it's made some sense in my life) that when a person continually finds themselves in this type of situation it's because they feel a certain type of purpose or importance by taking care of/being the giver in a relationship. It comes from an unhealthy place usually due to some dysfunctional situation in the persons childhood. I don't know if that speaks to you at all, but it has for me.


So I repeat the question of why are you attracted to them? Maybe they seem to be more stimulating or intriguing because they think differently then you do, but within that difference is the fact that they are not being as considerate or outreaching as you are. Why do you think you are not attracted to people who could potentially give back in return what you put out, because there are certainly people out there that can?

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I've had friendships kind of like that, too. I had a couple really good friends but they would never call me to hang out; I called them. Always. Our friendship continued like that for several years until we all got older & went to college/got married/ had kids (well, me only the college part).


It bothered me somewhat but not enough to not call them. I knew they weren't doing it on purpose; they just weren't thinking about it.


For your friend, it seems like maybe he takes you for granted because you are always there for him; always contacting him. He has no reason to change his ways with you because he knows you will handle everything. With his gf, it's a different story. A gf is on his mind more so it's easier to think of contacting her. Plus he has to work at it, or else the girl would leave.


I might tell your friend something like "I know you've been busy lately, so the next time you have the time to hang out, you call me. You have to follow through & not call him even if you haven't heard from him in a while.

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I had a friend who would never call unless I called her even though we always have sooo much fun together. So, one day I decided I'd wait to hear from her and I eventually did. Just like you said in your post, Please don't bother to reply to tell me that I just need to make more friends because chances are your mind works differently your friend's mind might work differently than yours. I have no doubt that my friend enjoys my company and has just as much fun as I do, but she's just not 'same minded' as me in how often to keep in touch or who calls more or whatever...your friend probably doesn't even notice you're putting in more b/c his mind doesn't add it up like that. You can talk to him about it, but you may have to learn how to just love a friend who's different from you in that respect.

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