UK Fashion, Beauty & Lifestyle Blog

Sunday, 5 April 2015

Ideas On Friendship

I've wanted to write this post for what feels like my whole life. Perhaps that doesn't make sense? Let me explain: I've wanted to be in a position to write this post for my whole life, and I feel like finally.. over the last few months.. things have clicked into place in a way that could allow me to help someone.. maybe one of you guys? And if that's the case.. well then it's all worth it.

 I have this feeling that you guys know me.. the real me.. but you don't know my life and what happens behind the scenes and so, I'd like to share a little bit of that with you.. just to help you build up a better picture of who I am, and why. So lets crack off with a bit of background for you.

As a child I was very much a tom boy and rather than playing with dolls and trying on princess dresses, I'd much rather be rolling around in the mud, playing football, or trying out new wrestling moves I'd seen on WWF with my brother. I was boisterous, confident and fun (apparently). 

When it came to starting school though, I had a really hard time making friends with girls. I'd play with the boys and they would always pick me to be on their team when we'd play football.. but.. that was about it, and when it came to actually interacting with girls, I just couldn't find any common ground. It didn't help that one girl in particular had taken a dislike to me and made it her mission to make sure that no-one would talk to me or be friends with me. This lasted all throughout school with various people taking turns to bully me and make me feel worthless and alone until I finally managed to leave and start afresh in senior school, (so for those not in the UK, that's age 11 onwards) LOLJK, everybody hated me there too. I think I'd almost accepted that I was 'different' and felt so unworthy of friendships that I didn't know how to handle them when they came along... that and the fact that girls at that age tend to be quite 'cliquey' and I dunno.. yet again I failed to be part of that. Don't get me wrong.. I didn't spend every break time sitting on my own like I had for pretty much 4 years previous, but I was still never really part of any group.. always being left out of meet-ups and social events. You get the picture by now I hope? 
 
By the age of about 13/14 I had decided that the reason for this must be because I was ugly.. and that must be why I didn't fit in. I needed to have control over something and I struggled for quite a while with eating (or not eating) - not to the lengths that many do, but enough to drop to a size 6 on top which.. if you know me.. you'd think was practically impossible cause - themboobsthough. 
I found myself becoming part of a friendship group made up of mostly boys and by the time that college swung around, I was starting to feel a little more settled and a little less alone. The thing is though, all those years of not being 'right' not fitting in?.. well that meant that I still hated myself. And I don't mean hate as a passive comment, I mean full on loathed every fibre of my being, both physcially and mentally and I couldn't accept that anyone who 'liked' me would actually stick around longer than a few months, because no one ever had.

-This is actually a really positive post so.. stay with me-

One person did though. That person also happens to be my best friend now.. and my boyfriend too and I couldn't feel more blessed to have him in my life. BUT ladies and gents, that's not what this post is about in the slightest.

I wanted to write this because for my entire life I had felt 'not enough'. I had loathed myself without cause and convinced myself that there must be something seriously wrong with me.. that it must be instinct to dislike me.. else how could that many different people want to make my life hell?

Well let me tell you something right now. 
Those people? are nothing. And I? I am something.

Over the last 6 years or so, I have gone through somewhat of a transformation (yes physically, because omgcake.. but also mentally) I no longer fear meeting new people because you know what? They don't automatically hate me. In fact.. most people tend to like me and I'm not saying that because I think I'm awesome or I'm delusional but because it's healthy to feel positive about your presence and personality. Feeling this way is something that has taken so so so many years, and so many harrowing experiences that I need not go into over here .. but I finally feel somewhat at ease.. with the kind of person I am. Sure, I've done some really stupid things, and there will always be things I regret doing.. hurting people.. or not doing enough to help others, but I'm human, and we all make mistakes sometimes and I've come to accept that.

Up until the last few months, I still felt pretty uneasy about certain things.. not alone, just unsettled. I had friends, I had people in my life that were meant to be friends but turned out not to be, and all too often, could take a situation 'too personally' and think that someone was about me.. when really it just wasn't. A lot of my friends (who are all wonderful in their own ways) have different interests than I do, and although I can have the absolute best time with them, on down days I'd started to question myself because sometimes I didn't want to do the things they did.. "Am I boring? Am I lame? Am I the worst kind of person?"

Blogging has been the icing on the cake for me in many ways because it's allowed me to come into contact with even more like minded people.  I don't mean like minded in the sense that we all have an interest in blogging either - now this is important - I mean in the sense that these people are MY kinda people. My kind of people don't need a drink in their hand to have the most memorable night, they don't see anxiety as a weakness and they are out there - grabbing life by it's absolute balls and inspiring me every day to be a better person. I had thought that my kind of people didn't exist, and I remember reading Laura's post on 'The Tribe' and feeling so so far away from that. So far away from feeling whole. 

I remember one night as a teen, when I was sobbing to my mom about loneliness.. she told me 'I think you have a very romantic view of what friendship is and what it means' I always believed that a friend was a support, someone to rely on... someone that would be there for you no-matter what and someone who wouldn't judge you... someone that would give you the same as a life partner would but just without the -wink wink nudge nudge-. I'd always firmly believed in the strength of friendship even though I was yet to experience it to that level myself but I was starting to think that maybe that just didn't exist. Maybe people weren't inherently good and caring.. for a while I lost faith in humanity.

 - Today I'm coming to you from a very different place -

I'm no longer that self loathing, lonely girl that I once was. Sure I have bad days and I feel alone.. but deep down inside I know.. I know that I am good, and I am real, and there are others like me whether I've met them yet or not. I am 'enough', and though some might not see it, others will. I cannot tell you what it means to me to feel comfortable enough to message someone saying, 'I've felt really anxious today' and be met with understanding rather than judgement, to feel confident walking into a room full of people I've never met and knowing that they have no reason to dislike me, to feel good if I decided I don't want to go out and get drunk one night because I want to get up early the next day and really experience what the world has to offer me and to feel confident in my decisions to go with what feels right, rather than what I feel pressured into by others.
If you watched my video on Internet hate then you'll be familiar with this school of thought but just to reiterate.. I think it's important to understand that just because someone is a dick, it doesn't necessarily reflect on you.. they could genuinely just be a dick. Maybe they can't help it and they've got their own stuff going on? Well that's cool.. but you don't need that in your life. Now, don't get me wrong here, I think it's important to have a bit of self reflection cause hey, sometimes it'll be YOU that's being a dick, and it's important to be able to see that too but if there's a situation in your mind right now, perhaps a friend that keeps putting you down or, someone who cant possibly be consciously talking behind your back then I dunno.. maybe they're the dick here, and maybe you should cut yourself loose. Oh, and if you're going to do that.. don't hold onto that hate and upset, don't grapple daily with that grudge, instead just let go.. free yourself and move the hell on.
I mean.. Aint nobody got time for that.
I think that most of all, what's really changed for me is that I no longer fear being friendless.. because as soon as you feel whole, and you feel enough? There will always be people around that respond positively to that... sometimes you just gotta stalk the hell out of them until you can call them your friend. (Note: I'm not condoning like real life stalking here.. but don't be afraid to say hi to someone you think you'd get on with.. I've made some of my best pals this way)
That's where I'm at right now and I'm slowly but surely assembling my tribe so that we can go head on into battle with that thing called life - together.

So, if you're feeling alone, or if you've lost faith in the idea of friendship... if you're worn down by others views on you and feel like you're not worth it, read these words and read them so deep that they become engrained in your very being:

You Are Enough
Your Tribe Is Waiting For You

X


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25 comments

  1. This is a very beautiful and honest post :)

    I wish you a wonderful Easter break

    With love, Hayley x

    http://thelifestylemenu.co.uk/

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    1. Thank you Hayley! Hope you had a lovely easter! (: xx

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  2. This was such a wonderful, eloquent post!

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  3. Like I said, this totally got me and I felt the same as you did (sometimes even now, I'm very worried about people liking me), but now I always try my hardest to be open and confident in talking to new people, and having awesome friends (like you ;) )

    Lauren x
    Britton Loves | Lifestyle Food Fashion Beauty - www.brittonloves.blogspot.co.uk

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    1. I think it can sometimes be surprising how many people go through similar things or have similar feelings when the nature of stuff like this is to feel isolated and alone!

      Can't wait for Friday lady!
      xx

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  4. Such a lovely post. I’ve struggled with friendships and still do. I had friends growing up, then entered a bad relationship which ruined my friendships. And then I entered a job where 95% of my colleagues were men so I really struggled to find female friends. I felt pretty worthless. I’ve now moved away where I work in an office full of much older people so I still struggle to make friends. I’m getting married later this year and don’t even have a bridesmaid. I’ve felt in the past that when meeting new people they’ll automatically not like me, and where’s the logic in that? And I think that’s one of the reasons I started blogging.

    Thanks for posting this, it’s made my day.

    Debbie x www.hellodeborah.co.uk

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    1. Thanks so much Debbie, and thanks for sharing your story!
      It can be so hard when we're in environments that don't necessarily lend themselves towards making friends. I think that the rise of social media really hasn't helped. We see things online that make us feel like everyone has a massive group of friends and we can't relate when most of the time, that's not the case.
      Also I think it's important to understand the quality of friendships.. I'd rather have one great friend than a group of ten who didn't care about me.. y'know?
      I hope that through blogging you feel closer to a community of people, and know that you are enough - I mean, you're getting married so there's at least one person who's world you are the center of and that's something that a lot of people don't and never will have!
      Thanks for taking the time to comment!!
      xxxx

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  5. This is such lovely post Ally! I think feeling confident and comfortable in yourself as a person helps with friendships because you know you deserve good friends so you naturally find good people to be those friends. I think blogging is such a good way to meet new people and to start to feel more comfortable, people are really open and honest so you start to see that you're not alone and other people feel the same as you or are 'your kind of people' which is lovely.

    Emma x
    Writing Essays With Wine

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    1. Thanks Emma!
      Yeah I'd definitely agree with that, I think that's what's really changed things for me! And you're damn right there too.
      You're my kinda person gal!
      xx

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  6. This was absolutely amazing. I can relate to it so much. Even now (I'm in my final year of uni) I struggled with the whole mentality of it - basically everyone is out getting high and I'm sat here like hmmmmm yeah I want to go eat nice food, go to the zoo and blog.

    Georgina
    foxonthehunt.com

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    1. Thanks so much Georgina!
      Haha, ohhh Uni days, I've been there and got the T-shirt gal!
      Also I just wanted to say that when I was at uni, I thought that life after it would be rubbish and I wouldn't ever meet new people and that it was kinda my 'last chance' if you get what I'm saying?
      Not the case at all, you've got your whole life ahead of you and it's what you make it!
      xx

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  7. Thank you for posting this. I think the reason so many of us can relate is because to a certain extent, everyone feel's alienated and isolated, even the ones we think have it all sorted when we look on from the outside. Although mostly having come through that stage of my life, and - like you - slowly finding ways to feel 'enough', there are still times when I revert back to that mindset. I've not had the best weekend with anxiety, which for me is always related to not feeling good enough, but reading this helped make me feel better this afternoon so thank you for your honesty!

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    1. I think you've hit the nail on the head there! I can revert back to that mindset easily too.. I think it's totally natural! I think what is important though is how far we've come, and how much further we have to go too.
      I'm so sorry to hear about your weekend, and I can't thank you enough for saying that I helped you feel a little bit better. I hope you continue to grow and feel better within yourself.. it's never easy.. but it's doable.. I think.
      Thanks so much for taking the time to comment,
      xxx

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  8. Oh God this post is like my life story! I was bullied in school too and never fitted in. The girls were all so bitchy and gossipy, full of drama. I just wanted to have fun! I've always hated bitching. I don't think I'm very good at making friends, I struggle to push myself out there and think I come across indifferent but really i'm just scared of rejection. Also scared of looking like a stalker... I still haven't found my tribe :( I feel like there's something wrong with me. I have one kind of close girlfriend but I'm not sure we're right for each other. She lost it at me a few times and threw things when she got mad, even when it wasn't because of me. I don't blame her I blame society but she's one of those competitive girls, who has to be the centre of attention, especially as most of our friends are guys, we both struggle with girls, but for totally diff reasons. I hate how she sees me as competition rather than someone who can build her up to her best person. She had a massive bitch about me to my best friend, whose a guy, it was some of the worst things anyone's ever said about me and I still don't understand how she could say these things yet claim to love me and be my best friend. Sorry for over sharing... posts like this do that to me! This post is like I already said, my life story, but without the happy ending. I hope I get a happy ending and find my tribe, being lonely is too hard.
    amber love

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    1. Hey Amber,
      Thanks so much for your comment!
      About your friend: It's hard for me to comment on your individual situation but what I can do is share some of my own.. I've been in SO many situations like you describe.. not so much recently but definitely more when I was a little younger and at the time, it was heart breaking, confusing, and just the most horrendous thing. It can be confusing.. growing up and having relationships with different people as we're all changing... we're all learning. One day this will be something that you look back on without feeling pain or emptiness, but with warmth at how much things have changed.
      I'm currently 24, and I've attended so many courses, so many years of education.. different cities, different houses, different people and I'm still not 'there'... I'm just MORE 'there' than I ever have been and that's what I wanted to share really.. not that I'm now living the dream but that it DOES get better..
      I never knew that I'd be making new friends at 24.. I thought that I'd had my chance so to speak but that's not the case for me and it's not the case for you either.
      I'm sorry that things are hard for you right now but they will get better.. it may feel like a long road but just know that through all of this, you are enough.. and you will find your tribe.
      I used to think that my kinda people didn't exist but that's just because I hadn't met them yet.
      Keep faith, things will get better!
      XX

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  9. You're my kinda persona Ally. Sometimes you just want to do a Stone Cold Stunner on someone right?!

    Buckets & Spades

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    1. Hahahahaha Matt, you name it & I've attempted it! (More frequent than not though.. it's been me out for the count ha)

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  10. I've been on a similar journey and I'm constantly amazed at my self acceptance that keeps growing and growing like a big, beautiful tree. Yeah. I like myself now. I really do. And when people nitpick my behaviour I can shrug it off because I know it's not my fault if someone doesn't get me, and not everyone has to get me. I can still be as good a person as I can to them, or just walk away.
    I find that a lot of people are just cruel or close-minded for various reasons. That sucks, but it doesn't have to ruin my day or my life. I know I try. I know I am compassionate. I know I get things wrong and am not always at my best. But my flaws don't define me.

    ✿ my blog ✿

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    1. AHHH Lil this is the comment I'd been hoping to read. I'm so glad that you have self acceptance as I can completely relate to how hard it can be to get to that point. It took me so long to realise the things that you've written about but now I feel like I'm on totally the same page.. which isn't something I'd have ever predicted!
      Thanks for sharing your story and showing others that there is hope (:
      xx

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  11. So proud of you for coming so far Ally - I must say that you're definitely my kind of person and think you're too awesome for words, anyone who thinks differently aren't worth our time - we only live once, so we should fill that life with important, positive people :)

    Hazel xx

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    1. Ohhhhh Hazel you absolute BABE! YOU'RE MY KINDA PERSON.
      You are dayummmm straight gal!
      XX

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  12. I adore this post. I'm the same as you, i was very much a tomboy (still am most days aha). I was obsessed with having tonnes of freinds, but half of the time they backstabbed me, i was terrified of being lonely.

    I wasn't until i forced myself to ditch all my so called friend that i realized i could never be lonley when you learn to love and respect yourself (that sounds so cheesy but so true) Thanks to blogging i've gained such a self confidence and made some life long friends, im so glad its doing the same for you as well :)

    Charlotte www.thegoodowl.co.uk xxx

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  13. This is such a great post! I think your spot on, we should never feel we are not enough nor should we feel we need to become someone else in order to have friends. It is rather sad that society is build on this false pretence that you have to be a certain way to be popular, or that you even need to be popular in the first place. It makes me wonder, how many people are living fake lives? The number of people who I know that seem really popular yet lonely at the same time. I put this down to the fact they are not being themselves hence their friends aren't really people they get along with. I think you find this a lot in schools and university. Everyone should just be who they are and not be scared to embrace their own hobbies and ideas. As a Muslim who wears a headscarf, I have been told on numerous occasions that I should change the way I dress or have hobbies that I don't particularly want in order to have more readers, followers and friends. Like, heck no! Why should we be forced to think and act a certain way to make people be our friends!

    Thank you for your thought provoking blog!! <3 xx

    Aishah
    www.grainsandgains.com

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  14. Amazing post! I had a similar time at school, struggling to fit in and never really having friends who were girls because I cared way more about bands than make-up. I have slowly acquired many girl mates now, since leaving school and I hardly even noticed it happening. I was introduced to a friend of a friend on a night out, and she was that real girly type of girl. I kind of found myself going back into the habit of feeling like I didn't really fit in, before realising how much I had changed, and that I was totally wrong because I got on with this person like a house on fire!

    As for now, I've never been more confident or had more friends. What I love is that these people and my friendships with them are so different - They all have different ideas of having fun too! I've grown to realise that fitting the mould would never been as good as being able to hang out with loads of different, really nice people.

    While it's not nice to know you or anyone else had a crap time with people in school too, it's kind of reassuring to hear a similar story and know people have been in the same boat as me in terms of friendship AND grown into a more confident, happy person from it :)

    ♡ Emily from TRENDPILL x

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